I'm Zoe and I'm the owner founder of Best behaviour dog training, and I'm going to tell you a little bit about how the business came about and my story behind it.
I got Millie my beautiful Millie, who was one of my first dogs, and I was looking for kind dog training and force-free. I knew that I wanted Millie to be a massive part of my family and I knew that treating her with kindness and respect was the only way I wanted to train.
I struggled to find a trainer that could offer me this. I did in the end, but it took me some findings. With that I thought, how can this be possible in this day and age, that we cannot find good force-free trainers, So I went and trained with Millie, and I fell in love with training, it was an addiction, I adored it.
Dogs are always really selfless and they give so much back, they never argue with you, they are always there to greet you, they're just amazing at giving you loads and loads of fuss and attention back. I get so much out of being with them because there's nothing like coming home to loads of dogs greeting you with happy faces and waggy tails. I love animals because they're often misunderstood by people, and I love being able to share my knowledge of animals and my understanding of them with other people.
I love having them because it helps my understanding, and it's the biggest part of my education.
Like many of you who join training with us you become so satisfied with what you get from your dogs, it becomes a fun hobby and something you can do all of the time with your dog, but for me, it was much more than that. I had a background in animal science and behaviour anyway and had always dreamt of having my own business. I wasn't quite sure where I was going to go with it all, but when I got Millie and started to look into behaviour in training, I was astounded by how much was needed to be done in the industry.
I had a dream and I just wanted to make it happen and with sheer grit and determination and lots of sacrifices, it did. After many, many years of training, it took three years to train as a trainer and a further two years to train as a behaviourist, all whilst doing a full-time job, I then was able to open best behaviour dog training.
The thing that was a real driver for me was that I have always had a really strong passion for animal welfare. It was that a strong passion combined with wanting to share all the knowledge I had with owners also give our owners a choice. As a dog owner, if you don't know, you could potentially end up going to a trainer that's potentially going to punish and harm your dog, and I feel passionate that owners should have that choice and they should be going to people that are qualified and able to do a really good job for them.
As with everything, we started small, starting with one class a week just with a few clients, and some of those people are still with me today from all those years ago. The great thing about it was, it did open my eyes to what needed to be done in the industry and with classes in the area. From that, I developed the business further and we got to a stage where I was able to give up my full-time job and just focus on my job training, so the dream did start to come true. As with all dreams, there's always the harsh reality. It’s always hard getting going and getting your name out there to get started, but we kept going and going making incredible personal sacrifices along the way, and have grown the business to a really good level today.
We have grown into a big training school, but we're still small enough to care, and we're full of passionate trainers that adore, working with you and your dogs. It’s taken me many years to find the right people to fit our team, and it's a joy to have everybody working with us who thinks the same way, feels the same way, adores dogs and believes in absolutely amazing dog welfare. I have now increased my rescue animals to 17 dogs, 50+ cats, 4 rabbits, 4 guinea pigs, a hamster and a bird. When I was a kid I wanted to rescue my own animals, and basically, I'm rubbish at saying no. So, when I get a sob story or a story about an animal that is in desperate need. It's usually me that says yes. and that's why I've ended up with so many because I just can't say no and I absolutely love them, and every single one that comes into my life brings something new, and I just wouldn't be without them.
My dream has been to have lots of my own animals and be able to share my knowledge with other dog owners. The things that give me the biggest buzz are when I see classes where people start with a few weeks, but when I work with those owners over weeks, months, and then sometimes even years because they keep coming back to me. It's fantastic to see the incredible progress they make.
There's nothing more rewarding for me than a dog trainer that sets a puppy up on the right steps and gets the puppy working well within that family and the family come back to me, year two later and say they have got the best dog and we're so proud of them and are having a great life together, that's so rewarding for me.
The other thing that's rewarding is when I work on behaviour work because sometimes I get cases where owners think about rehoming or they think about putting the dog to sleep. The reward for me is if that animal can stay in the home and be part of that family still because we've done all the work to help them stay together.