Cleveland area dog trainers give expert tips
Who we talked to
Rachel Friedman, owner
A Better Pet LL
2553 Queenston Road
Mel McGrath, owner
Paramount Dog Training
1173 Station Road
Kelli Coleman, owner
26700 Highland Road
What services do you offer?
Rachel Friedman: "I'm a pet and service dog trainer who specializes in getting people to get their pets to do what they want."
Mel McGrath: "On-leash and off- leash obedience training, behavioral problem solving and rehabilitation."
Kelli Coleman: "Doggie day care, training, grooming, a pet bakery, a unique gift shop and a cafe' for humans."
What's your experience in the industry?
Rachel Friedman: "I have a master's in social work, and I'm independently licensed in Ohio."
Mel McGrath: "I've been dog training for 12 years. I got certified at National K-9 in Columbus, trained under four mentor trainers and started this company in 2000."
Kelli Coleman: "I've been a pet sitter for many, many years. I started the bakery out of my home a few years ago. I've been a dog lover my whole life."
How do you charge, and what is the cost?
Rachel Friedman: "For a single-dog, three-hour session, I charge $300. For two dogs, it's $325. There's also a travel fee if they don't live in a certain zone."
Mel McGrath: "My evaluation fee is for an hour and that's $50, and my hourly session fee is $75 an hour. Sessions are private with no group lessons."
Kelli Coleman: "For basic group classes, it's $125 for a six-week class. For correction training, it's one-on-one, $100 an hour."
What's one helpful training tip you can offer?
Rachel Friedman: "Be proactive, not reactive. Set the dog up for success and don't blame it for your problems."
Mel McGrath: "In housebreaking, if you control what goes into the dog and when, you can control what comes out and when."
Kelli Coleman: "I believe the best technique of training is eye contact."
What makes you stand out from your competition?
Rachel Friedman "I have a real passion for this and I'm always learning and evolving."
Mel McGrath: "Hands-down, customer service. I'll always call you back and I'll work with any dogs, regardless of issues."
Kelli Coleman: "Our cleanliness, the experience and personalities of our help. We also want to stay small because we like the one-on-one contact."
Do you own any pets?
Rachel Friedman: "Lily is 9 years old and a mixed breed, Bean is almost 5 and an English Springer Spaniel, Trip is almost 7 and a Jack Russell Terrier. Grace and Lola are the cats, and they're both rescues."
Mel McGrath: "I currently have six dogs: two Dobermans, a bull mastiff, a cattle dog , a Lab-Chow mix and a female German shepherd. I'm allergic to cats."
Kelli Coleman: "Yes. I have senior citizens. Sable, my Newfoundland, is 12 years old, and Rocky, a Lab-Husky mix is 14. I just had to put down my 17-year-old cat."