Happy Clients

happy clients

Fran brings to dog training a special combination of deep knowledge and skilled teaching. She is not only an accomplished, science-based trainer, but also makes training fun and accessible, for us and our dog. She worked with us at just the right pace, teaching what the evidence shows about how dogs learn and think, and appropriately dispensing with counter-productive myths like those about “dominance.”

Our 80 pound, almost one-year-old pure-bred German Shepherd Dog, Sarge, happily works for every member of our family — including four small children ages 4, 4, 7, and 9. [See “Fido Fun” photo]. He sits, stays, lays down, comes when called, and performs tricks, without leash corrections, yelling, or other behavior on our part that would undermine our relationship with Sarge. Sarge has been house trained since about age three months. And I can say with satisfaction that he’s never eaten a sneaker, guarded an object, or raided the trash.

Fran gave us the tools to get there, and has made our lives, and Sarge’s, happier all along the way!

Brian and Amy


As part of my dog training certification, Fran was my trainer mentor.  Over the course of 20 weeks, I was continually impressed with the care and patience that Fran showed in working with shelter dogs and potential adopters, as well as actual clients and their humans.  With her experience, Fran helped me apply everything I learned in my training classes and taught what it takes to work with different dogs.  Fran is truly devoted to all the dogs she works with and wants all of them to succeed.  Her positive training techniques ensure that dogs always win and are excited to learn.  She has a multitude of techniques that she teaches that help owners train and ultimately build a better bond with their dogs.  I have since passed my certification, but continue to work with Fran through a program that she has established where volunteers can work with shelter dogs to train them so they become more adoptable.  I continue to learn every week.

~ Sara Edwards, ABCDT



We just got back from Christmas with my parents (and their two pit bulls). After a nice slow introduction period, Molly had two buddies. We cannot thank you enough for all of the tools you have given us.

Merry Christmas!

~ Ehren and Vanessa


Dear Fran,

Thanks to you and all of your help—I have the most incredible dog (or maybe I should say, the dog she was “destined” to be)! As you may recall, I got Wrigley from Orphans of the Storm and she tricked me into thinking she played fetch, liked to run on a leash and was potty trained! She let this trickery up soon after moving home with me. Enter you and all of your help and positive training. You were patient and supportive (even when I was so frustrated and upset!).

I am so happy to report that Wrigley is truly one of the coolest dogs to walk this Earth. She is a fun, sweet, kind soul that is constantly becoming her happier, cooler self every day. She loves belly rubs, being outside, and playing with her dog friends whom she knows and trusts. Guests at our house constantly compliment her lovely manners. Each day, I drive the dog up to Evanston to my parents house were she attends “grandparent” doggie day care while I am at work and they are truly in love with my girl. She is a great traveler in the car, walks beautifully on a leash, and is a great cuddler.

I am adding a few pictures at the bottom so you can see the dog you helped be her better, calmer, wonderful-er self.

From the bottom of my heart (and Wrigley’s)—thank you.

~ Adriane M. Slaton and Wrigley


testimWhen I first met my dog, Dixie Mae, she was a dog with a lot of pent up energy who had lived most of her life in a cage. She didn’t walk well on leash, wanted to jump and lick every person we met, and chased all dogs. Then I met Fran. Within 5 minutes of meeting her, she trained me how to get Dixie’s attention and I saw a completely different dog. Fran has been an integral part of Dixie’s and my success. She gave us guidance through individual lessons where Dixie learned how to stay, leave it, come to me, and walk well on leash. We have taken several group classes with Fran. So far, Dixie and I have learned several tricks such as sitting pretty, giving high five, and continued her socialization with other dogs. Most importantly, we have discovered a true friend and mentor in Fran and been introduced to several other supportive dog owners and dogs. Dixie is almost to her ultimate goal of becoming a therapy dog, which will allow her to share her love with people. We can’t thank Fran enough for getting us this far!

~ Susan and Dixie Mae


Henry came into my life in late October, 2007.  At that time, he was about a year old and appeared to have had little to no training.  I had known Fran for several years and almost immediately starting working with her.  She is so good at figuring out the best approach to take when working with a dog.  She does not take a “cookie-cutter approach” to any dog but works with the dog (and owner) she has before her.  During our in-home, individual training sessions, she was not only working with Henry but also working with me.  She always provided me with recaps of our sessions and would give me tips/homework for our next session.   Over the years, Henry and I have gone through many individual as well as group classes with Fran.  My favorite class was our H.A.T. (Hounds Around Town) Class.  During this class, the dogs and their owners took our dogs to several different types of businesses in our neighborhood, including a Kitchen and Bath Store, a grocery store, and a nursing home.  We celebrated our “graduation” at a local bar and enjoyed their outdoor patio.  These classes were conducted in order to teach our dogs how to behave while being out in public and to teach the owners how to take our dogs to different places and not just leave them at home when we go out.  It was a wonderful class, full of learning and fun.   Thanks to Fran’s instructions, guidance, and, yes, patience, Henry and I were able to pass the AKC Canine Good Citizen (CGC) test in July, 2013.  On November 8, 2014, Henry and I successfully took and passed the AKC Community Canine (Canine Good Citizen Advanced) test.    Henry and I have a wonderful relationship and one that is way beyond any I have ever had with a dog.  We make a fabulous team.  I once remarked to a friend, who is also a dog trainer, that Henry is a really good dog.  His response was:  “Henry was a really good dog when you got him.  With everything that the two of you have done and continue to do together, he is a great dog.”  I know that this is true.  I also know that none of this would have been possible without Fran.  She is, quite simply, the best.   I can absolutely recommend her to anyone who is looking for a dog trainer.

~Patti and Henry