Trained With Kindness Trained with Kindness

Thumbtack Best Pro of 2015



“[My new dog came with] some basic skills, but with her breed, which is Pit Bull Terrier, it is important to me to go way beyond the basics, and to make sure that I have a dog that will respond immediately to my call, instruction or direction. Karin Kirtner was who I thought of immediately when I decided to go with a trainer. I knew her history with [her dog] Baby, and that she had a calm, firm, patient demeanor, which is something dogs pick up on so quickly.  As soon as Hazel and I started working  with Karin, I saw that her amazing skills and intuitive nature with dogs, would help Hazel to begin the process of being a potentially amazing dog. It was already there, but someone like Karin could tap into her natural desire to please, and to be aware of her surroundings and what she was doing.  It was magical.

We have a long way to go, as Hazel is still young and also Karin has to train me, which is going to much more of a challenge then my dog could ever be! I am so grateful and pleased to have an opportunity to work with such a skilled and talented  trainer.”

– Abby, dog Hazel

“Rocky was a great puppy before we had Christy come to our home, but he really needed to learn a few manners.  Her lessons on patient use of positive reinforcement were just what Rocky needed to become a more polite version of himself.  He no longer jumps in the dishwasher while we are doing dishes, and he calms down quickly when he encounters new people.  The best thing we learned from our sessions with Christy was that training is an ongoing process, and there is always room for improvement.  We cannot thank Christy enough for all the time she spent helping us teach Rocky to be a little, gentleman!”

– Lauren and Bob, dog Rocky

“Thank you again for all of your help! When we first contacted you, we had fears that we may need to get rid of Diggler. But after working with you, he has gotten so much better and those fears have definitely been erased. We will continue to employ the strategies you taught us, as well as introduce these new ones so we will hopefully be completely prepared when the baby comes in 3 months.

Thank you so much, we really appreciate everything you did for us.”

– Josh and Brittany, dog Diggler

“Christy has been my dog trainer for the past 5 years, during which I believe I have seen her training techniques evolve to become ever more kind, as well as effective.  She has helped Brandy, my Papillon and AKC Master Agility Champion dog, and me with everything from basic obedience to fun tricks and to helping with aspects of agility.  Brandy and I had reached a major hurdle in agility when Brandy began to refuse to get on the table. This became quite a problem before Christy became involved.  From other people, I heard comments to the effect that my dog just didn’t think that she needed to listen to me, was playing with me, getting away with it, and so on.  Christy helped me to become more understanding of my dog and how to work with her, which also helped me with my own self-image as a handler.  Now Brandy hops on the table so easily and we have been able to advance again in agility! Many thanks to Christy, who I highly recommend!”

– Nancy, dog Brandy

“Many thanks for your great help! We agreed to keep Honey [our daughter Rebekah’s Pit Bull] this summer wondering if she and SnowPig [our Bichon Frisé] would cohabit, or if the latter would become a meal. We were so pleased with and relieved by your work! But only later did we learn just how effective it was!

Several months after returning Honey to Rebekah in NC, we visited them and took ‘the Pig’ with us. We met Dolly, another pit. She and Honey are very close. We introduced Dolly and ‘the Pig.’ Dolly is very laid-back and showed no aggression. As Dolly and the Pig became acquainted, Honey watched. In the first 10 minutes, Honey moved between Dolly and the Pig 3 or 4 times and just stood there. It seemed odd; then it hit us. Each time Dolly came near Snowpig, Honey politely said, ‘the pig is with me.’ When she was sure things were good, all three had a joyous free-for-all for an amazing hour!

Honey’s response to aggressive dogs improved greatly. Rebekah says that this transferred immediately on her arrival in NC. Rebekah is thrilled with your work with Honey! This went so well that we want our own pit bull. That’s a recommendation! Again, thank you so much for solid, effective work!”

 – David and Lisa, dogs Honey and “SnowPig” (aka Spanky)

“I am so incredibly pleased with Scotty’s new behavior!  You are so dynamic and your techniques are wonderful, for both Scotty and myself!   With all the materials you provided and your easy-to-read-and-understand book, I felt like you were right there with us when we were practicing on our own!  The three sessions you provided for us have gotten us on our way and I feel confident and at ease in every situation.  I also used your technique to calm Scotty on the 4th of July!   I noticed he was getting nervous with firecrackers exploding throughout the evening, and was able to calm him immediately.  After a few minutes of working with him, he was relaxed and playful the rest of the night!

“I am looking forward to our ‘check up’ session and will definitely sign up for some extra classes that you are providing!  I am so grateful that you are in the area and were able to bring your knowledge, patience and love of animals to our home!  I will be in touch and again, THANK YOU for everything!”

– Karen, dog Scotty

“I want to thank you for all your time and effort with me and Suzie.  She is behaving so much better, and her housebreaking has made lots of progress.  I really enjoyed all of your classes.   They have made me aware of Suzie’s strengths and weaknesses.   You are very knowledgeable, talented and fun.  I will certainly recommend you to anyone looking for training.”

– Eve, dog Suzie

“Christy — a huge THANK YOU for the excellent training with me and Guinness. Yesterday we were just outside the house and he wriggled out of his collar!  He looked very surprised and contemplated making a run for it. I stayed calm and immediately started my training — calling him with a happy voice and claps and verbal enticement of a treat to follow me into the house (rather than going towards him which was my initial impulse). After a few seconds of contemplation, he came to me and we went into the house! I immediately gave him a payoff with some rottisserie chicken, so he was generously rewarded for obeying. It could have been a disastrous situation if I had done the wrong thing- so I thank you from the bottom of my heart for helping me to have an obedient dog.”

– Noreen, dog Guinness

“At 44 years old this Roxanne was my first dog and I was told dogs grow out of their problems by the the time they are 2 years old, well my dog seemed to grow into more of them. So I am lucky that my first trainer was Christy Paxton and she trained me how to train my dog.”

– Ronnie, dog Roxanne

“My dog was a rescue and I felt like I needed to be rescued from her!  While I have have rescues before this dog really was a hard case and none of the old school training worked on her.  Christy Paxton intelligent and kind training methods have truly been a lifesaver for our dog.”

— Zoey, dog Roxanne

After one evening of training with Christy, our Scottie was a completely different dog. Christy helped us press the reset button on our dog’s behavior, and now everyone at our home is happier. Our dog works hard to get attention by being loving and patient rather than barking until she gets her way. Christy trained us so we can communicate better with our “baby.” Christy is a personable, professional and truly gifted trainer.

– Kristen, dog Mayzie

Just wanted to thank you for a great class. We learnt so much and life seems a lot easier with her now. I’m finally enjoying her!

– Liz, dog Penny

I have enjoyed your teaching methods enormously — I worked for years with [other trainers],  so I have some credibility when I say I admire your methods.

– Jan, dog Murphy

I used to do a lot of yelling and pulling on my dogs to make them listen. But thanx to you I learned a better way – which is why Bailey is the best dog I have ever owned. It’s because you taught me to be the best dog owner/trainer. I was always impatient with my dogs before, always expecting too much from them. Positive reinforcement definitely makes a difference. They will almost always do what you want as long as they know what it is that you want and there is a reward for them when they get it right. Also, having a sense of humor makes everything OK!!! Thanx for doing what you do and doing so well.

– Sandy, dog Bailey

We took the basic class in Fall of 2007 with Lexi the red doberman [Christy’s note: Lexi was a rescued and was three when she came to class.] She was antisocial and had to be behind the desk at Westlake Animal Hospital. I wanted to give you an update…. She’s doing wonderful. We frequently take trips back home to Iowa, and car rides are smooth now. She no longer counter-surfs.

Now for the most exciting… I can walk both Lexi and her sister (another Doberman) Henni by myself! Also Lexi is able to go to Petco now! I cannot believe it’s the same dog! …Henni is now 1 1/2 and is an excellent dog. From the courses we knew how to raise her and didn’t have to deal with any of the Lexi-like problems.
I think the most important lesson was on how to regain control. Thank you so much for all of your help!

– Lacee and Joe, dogs Lexi and Henni

We … wanted to let you know how grateful we are. The class really opened our eyes and we are embracing the training lifestyle. We are excited that Dexter has improved so much and continues to do so. Car rides are more enjoyable, but he still is having the other dog/cat issues. With time and more socializing we know he’ll get better.

– Dana and Mike, dog Dexter

I can’t say “Thank You” enough! You have changed life for Georgia for the better and made me a better “owner” for her. My dog, whom everyone said would always be aggressive and that I should get rid of her if my husband wanted to bring another dog into the house, with your help, has done a 180 degree turn around. Instead of attacking our new dog Keg, they play together, and both have learned how to be much better behaved dogs. Thank you for helping our whole family be a happy family.

– Carolynn & Joe, dogs Georgia & Keg

Thank you for turning our Dempsey Dog into such an angel. We can’t thank you enough for all your help, Christy!

– Danielle & Ryan, dog Dempsey

Thank you for being one of the most fun and knowledgeable trainers I have ever had with any of my dogs. Thanks for working with me and the wheelchair. I know you had to change some things but I think all worked out well.

– Charlotte, dog Olive Oyl

Thank you so much for your continued support after classes.  It really means a lot to Matt and me that we can still contact you when problems arise, and you still give specific advice tailored to Maddox’s needs.  The advice is invaluable, and helps our communication with a dog we love more than words, but don’t always understand.

 – Emily & Matt, dogs Maddox and Isa

We have to admit that when you first told us what we could teach Edison and Lucy, we laughed: Come when we called them? Lie calmly on the floor, even when the cat runs by? Not these dogs! But their progress has been amazing — the fact that they actually listen has restored peace to our house! Thank you for helping us understand their behavior and, most importantly, for showing us how to change our behavior in order to improve theirs. We’re so grateful!

– Emily & Emmet, dog Edison

I cannot tell you how many compliments we get about how well behaved Roxie is. Dr. Love, Dr. Nappier, and the rest of the staff at Westlake Animal Hospital cannot get over the difference in her. Some of her accomplishments at home include: finally going up our stairs, waiting for us to say okay to greet guests, down stay is really good, walking is better, and finally we leave her kennel door open now when we leave the house because she has proven that she can be trusted when she is by herself.

Dr. Love said Roxie is the best behaved shepherd in his practice and Dr. Nappier agrees.  We all said it had everything to do with the training you gave Tim and I.

– Christine & Tim, dog Roxie

Let me say Ava, Jen and I all enjoyed your class. We gained a lot of fantastic techniques and got a lot of answers. Definitely appreciate your upbeat and positive attitude. Looking foward to the next series of classes. Will certainly recommend you to anyone who is in need.

– Ron & Jen, dog Ava

… I just wanted to let you know that Kim and I were very pleased with the classes that you prepared for us and our group. They were very informative and I feel that if we use your techniques that Willson will grow to be a balanced and well-behaved dog. Even though in her case it might take a little more effort on our part to get it right.

I also like what you said in the first couple of classes that we’ll only get out of this training what we put into it. I couldn’t agree more, and know that we will have to work (in a fun way) with Miss Willson often to achieve good behavior results. In the early stages with our new puppy, Kim and I had moments when we weren’t sure how to react with her questionable moments. But after taking the first initial classes we felt empowered, and felt like we knew exactly what we should, or maybe more importantly, what we shouldn’t be doing. So thanks again, and we would highly recommend you for anyone who needed help with their dog training …

– Dave & Kim, dog Willson

When I first met Christy I was not sure she would be able to help us with Davinci, our Bichon. Davinci has terrible allergies and had been wearing a cone on his head for months. He was so preoccupied with his health, behaving properly was the last thing on his mind. Christy showed us how to help Davinci forget about his itchy skin and focus on other things. Jumping on guests is no longer a problem, begging has gotten much better (the kids keep sneaking him food). Davinci is able to sit and stay, come when we call him and kennel up when necessary. These are all things he could not do 6 months ago. I have tried other dog trainers since we had another dog prior to Davinci and nothing worked. Christy helped our dog become part of our family. His annoying habits are pretty much gone and we are all living a much happier life.

– Renee, dog Davinci

We just wanted to let you know that Magic is doing great! The real test came today when my nephew came over to the house. They had not been at our house since the [biting] incident with Magic at Easter. He did wonderful! Even though the children were told not to run around in the house, at one point they were and Magic did not chase after them. At another point he listened to the leave it command when I felt he was getting too close to my nephew. He was a very good boy today and we owe it all to you!

– Glenda, dog Magic