My name is John Van Olden. I have been a professional dog trainer for the past 25 years. For the majority of my career as a dog trainer, I have specialized in helping dogs with challenging behavioral issues. My training has always focused on teaching a dog’s family how to work their pet through his/her problems, and I have a training approach that is realistic and easy for everyday families to follow through on. It’s a combination of this approach, and my client’s dedication to their dogs, which I feel has contributed to my extremely high success rate.
Over the course of my career, I’ve seen this industry change dramatically, and have had a front row seat for much of it. I am a charter member of the International Association of Canine Professionals, and served on their Board of Directors for 2 years. I started the first dog training franchise in the world, K-9 Advantage, in 1998, and following that, was the president of PAWSitive Solutions, the largest in-home dog training company in the United States.
In my career as a dog trainer, in addition to offering practical dog obedience training, I have also successfully worked with dogs who have experienced behavioral issues, and who had often been proclaimed “hopeless” by other dog trainers. Sadly, I’ve seen this occurring with greater frequency over the years, as certain training philosophies have gained in popularity, and often when a trainer’s cookie cutter approach doesn’t provide a solution to a dog’s issues. Rather than refer another trainer, they will often suggest surrender or euthanasia as their “professional” opinion. My case histories are full of these “hopeless” cases that have gone on to live happy lives in their original homes.
I don’t have a magic wand, and don’t think that what I do is particularly difficult. One of my intentions with this blog is to explain what has happened in this industry during my 25 years as a part of it, and why so many dog owners are told their dogs are beyond hope, when, in the majority of instances, this isn’t the case.
Today, I am the president of Canine Trade Group, LLC, which is located in Dover, Delaware. I train professional dog trainers who come to Dover from all over the United States to not only learn to train dogs, and solve complex behavior issues, but also to learn to start and run their own successful behavior training practice. Additionally, my company offers consulting services to some of the most successful dog training companies in the country, providing them with training protocols, administrative and marketing support.
This blog is a place where I can publish some case histories and stories of some of the dogs I’ve either worked directly with, or that some of the trainers I mentor have worked with. It is also a space where I’ll republish, with permission, some of my favorite articles from other trainers I respect and admire.
Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions or comments, either about the content of this website, or for basic training advise. I’ll try my best to answer your question, or refer you to a reputable, results-based trainer who can help you.