I just wanted to thank you for the sessions with Jasper. Whilst I still have work to do with him (and myself) I am beginning to see a real difference in him, for the better. Walking him is much more enjoyable on the lead. I actually feel proud as he walks at my side! Today we practiced off lead heel work and he was ace! Result.
Another very happy customer.
Sally and Jasper the Labrador - February 2018
Before using Damian, I used another gundog trainer that was recommended though social media. After two months of lessons, I had seen no improvement in my Springer Spaniel, Harry. Each lesson he put me down, saying my dog was no good and I needed to sell him, I didn’t want to do this.
I searched for another gundog trainer and I came across Damian. I have now been training with him for four months and I have seen massive improvements in my dog and also myself. Damian has given us both a lot of confidence, he shows me where I am going wrong and how to correct it. Damian has also been able to work with me having a disability, you couldn’t ask for a more understanding dog trainer.
I wish I had found him sooner.
Sam and Harry the Springer Spaniel - January 2018
Okay so to kick things off, a little background into our situation. Seven months ago we purchased a golden cocker spaniel puppy called Benji, an adorable looking boy. We brought him home, and soon small issues starting to reveal themselves. He started with some guarding; toys, food and high value items around the house and garden. Being proactive, we tried puppy classes, and even a couple of different "qualified" behaviour therapists. Well it is safe to say that none of those worked at all. In hind site, it seems they were telling us all the wrong things. Over time Benji's behaviour started to get worse, until eventually he was rebelling against me, with a few near miss incidents.
As our options were running thin, Leanne decided to research a professional gundog trainer in the local area, and that is when she found Damian. She went to visit him, and after just one session she came home armed with a new set of rules, and information, so we could quickly start putting techniques into place. Leanne was very impressed by his confidence, and his abilities. Damian is the first trainer we have encountered to actually take the dog and handle him, to show us how it is supposed to be done. The following time I was able to participate in the session, and I was equally impressed. To see Benji walking properly on the lead really made me smile and this gave us hope, and this was achieved in under 60 seconds! Damian has a no nonsense style, and his techniques are simple and effective. He was able to correct us on subtle yet important things, such as what lead to use, when and how to feed him, things people were unable to tell us form the start, because Benji did not come with an instruction manual!
Following our lessons, we were struggling with Benji's aggression in the house, it had reached the point of the unthinkable. Damian was quick to take Benji in on a 1 week aggression residential assessment over Christmas, so that he could assess him. He was quick to identify our issues. Benji was over-loved from the get go, allowed too much freedom, and was under stimulated. Benji also needed a diet! Damian followed up with evening calls to track his progress, and to help us establish new rules and routines inside the house. Every time we have faced a problem, Damian has been quick to respond to help us day to day.
Thanks to Damian we still have our adorable dog, he was a last resort, and we are thankful to him for helping us.
This guy really knows what he is doing....
Leanne/Damien and Benji the Cocker Spaniel - January 2018
We want to say thanks for friday really has opened our eyes ..beleive it or not he's being so different in a good way ...cant wait for the nxt 1 on 1. He's in his crate and loves it .
Lynn and Marley the French Bulldog - January 2018
When I was looking for a dog trainer for Pepe my pug, I didn't want a stereotypical trick treat trainer. Just because I have a small dog doesn't mean that I'm going to treat it like a handbag. My first training session with Damian was very cold and blustery but so positive. I walk with a stick so I need Pepe to walk beside me with no pulling at all. The first thing Damian did was swap the harness and lead I was using as he explained the harness just gives the dog more power to pull. By changing equipment the results were instant and Damian then taught me how to use the lead to correct rather than restrain. Pepe had a good time and was very tired when we got back home. We both learned a lot and are looking forward to next week.
Debbie and Pepe the Pug - January 2018
Once again thank you my lesson today.. I'm enjoying walking Isla so much more now that I can walk with out her without her pulling me all over. It use to be that after a walk I came home frustrated and no enjoyment at all but after just a couple of lessons with you I now can walk her with confidence. Doing the recall work today and seeing that she can do it, with a lot of practice and patience I'm hoping to get her coming back and retrieving with your help. Thank you once again .
I would recommend any body who has any problems with their dog not to give up but to book a lesson with Damian he is straight forward and to the point but if you listen and take his advice and put in the work you will be rewarded with a better behaved dog. Look forward to my next lesson.
Karen and Isla the Labrador - October 2017
After admittedly struggling with two self-willed Springers pulling us all over the park and with virtually no recall, we were recommended to try Damian at Tessleymoor Gundogs. We were a little apprehensive at first but Damian understood perfectly and immediately pinpointed the problems (with us and the dogs!) and started us on the right path.
Now 3 sessions in and the dogs are already showing what they can do with the right handling and positive reinforcement. The dogs enjoy the training, patience and perseverance is being rewarded and looking forward to being able to do so much more with them.
Andrew and Jazz/Beth the Springer Spaniels - September 2017
I have two rescue dogs - a patterdale called Tilly and a Bedlington whippet called Alfie. Tilly was the main reason I called Damian for help...she was the sweetest of dogs indoors - cute, cuddly and sweet natured with anyone that came to the house. However, as soon as we went for a walk, she would pull, lunge and bark aggressively at anything (dog/cat/pigeons/cars etc) and become highly stressed, even squealing in an embarrassingly high pitched tone! (We were the talk of the neighbourhood!). Tilly was totally out of control, and as I thought, beyond control. This had been going on for about 3 yrs, with no improvement. I had settled with avoiding other dogs by walking her less often and only at times when less dog-walkers around etc. The other problem was doors....she would bolt through them when open. I felt I had to educate any visitors to a complex door system to stop the dog escaping!
Having told Damian about the problems I was having with Tilly, he had three key questions for me....Are your dogs allowed on the furniture? Do the dogs sleep with you on the bed? Do you feed them human food as treats? ...the answer to all three questions was yes! Hence, in the week prior to my first session with Damian the first changes instigated....No more human food, couch replaced with floor, no more dogs in bedroom (or bed!). The first few days I felt awful...I had a clear case of withdrawal symptoms from my dogs!
On meeting Tilly, Damian changed to a slip-lead, and within literally seconds he had her walking to heel! Not only that, with his spaniel then sat just meters away, Tilly was sat calmly looking at this dog with no barking, no pulling, no squealing - nothing! I couldn't believe my eyes!
Obviously, it's one thing for Damian to evoke this behaviour in my dog, but the key is for me to learn the tools. So far, one week on, it's working! We managed to walk past a cat with no reaction today! I can't speak highly enough of Damian and his Skills. I am absolutely amazed. If you have a dog with behavioural issues, I would thoroughly recommend Damian to you. Well impressed!
Debbie and Tilly the Patterdale Terrier - September 2017
Just wanted to update you on how Chip is doing.
Fantastic! That's how he's doing.
The three sessions we had with you have been the backbone of all the subsequent work Chip and me have done.
I've followed your advice and do training with him every day. In fact, almost all the daily out and abouting Chip and me do has the training you showed me in it.
I'm still not sure what you did, but in three sessions you trained me to train a dog. You aren't a dog whisperer, you're an owner whisperer.
I still need to do more work with Chip so I'll be booking some more sessions with you later in the year but for the time being he returns on whistle, he stays on whistle until I tell him to move on and he walks along with me (almost always! and more work on my part will sort that). I'm just going to continue on these basics for the next six months.
Rob and Chip (little bugger that he is!)
Rob and Chip the Border Collie - September 2017
I have a two year old cocker spaniel called Lucy who made talking her out on a walk a nightmare. She would constantly pull, bark and spin at anything bigger than a car, she would bark at bikes, prams, people almost anything to the extent that I would try and take her out when it was quiet. I have spent over £1000 on puppy classes and a three week residential course and although her general commands improved the walking hadn't.
When I heard about Damian I though I'd give training another try as I was at my wits end, I very nearly gave up on her but love her too much. I couldn't believe her behaviour as soon as she met him, she didn't bark and walked immediately at his side and quietly, sitting every time he stopped, she made me feel like an idiot.
Damian asked me about her behaviour in the house which I thought was good, however it seems like I've been doing that wrong as well! Being on the settee and bed she has become the leader and does not respect me that's why she ignores me when walking but behaves impeccably for Damian.
We have now had 3 lessons and she actually sat quietly when a lorry and tractor with a trailer went past. I know it's going to take time, I didn't think there was so much to think about and I obviously need training too but I wish I'd met Damian last year before I threw money down the drain. I've learnt more in 3 weeks than any training before and look forward to more lessons.
Janine and Lucy the Cocker Spaniel - September 2017
We took our 12 week old working cocker spaniel to Damian as we wanted a well behaved dog. We were advised from our vet that lessons are great idea for our dogs health and to keep them stimulated.
Damian was very approachable and always at the end of the phone. His classes where fun and always engaging for Jenson. Each lesson Jenson showed great improvement.
Unfortunately due to distance we could not carry on with Damian but would recommend it to anyone who can. Jenson was gutted!
Ollie and Emily
Ollie/Emily and Jenson the Cocker Spaniel - August 2017
We took Alfie to Damian after reading all the fantastic reviews, he some how just knows how to work with dogs it's like magic, he told us plain and simple what to do with Alfie and after only 3 sessions he's already well on his way to be the perfect working companion and family pet. Anyone thinking of going to Damian give it a go but put 100% in and really listen to what he has to say and you'll get 100% out.
Thanks again Damian!
Jamie and Alfie the Springer Spaniel - August 2017
We would like to say a massive thankyou for helping us with our puppy Nala. We started off really concerned with the way she was behaving. She wouldn't allow anyone to greet her without freaking out or even walk with her and we assumed she had really bad anxiety.
Well after our first session we couldn't of been more wrong! Nala was basically running rings around us and we needed your help to learn as owners and to correctly train her. Your advise was perfect. We followed your training advise for 3 weeks and today we had our second session and Wow, what a difference. From a puppy who was terrified of anything and everyone to now with great heal training in place and she has already with a second session progressed to on and off lead recall and sit. It's just amazing!
We would of never managed to achieve this without you, we're so glad we chosen to go with you. Your session's are well worth the money! We couldn't be anymore grateful to you and your advise. We look forward to booking another session with you.
Thank you again so much Damian.
Jess & Rob
Nala 3months old- Rottweiler Cross Husky.
Jess/Rob and Nala the Rottweiler x Husky - August 2017
We bought Rolo and Fudge from a breeder and only being 2 months apart they have grown inseparable and formed a pack making training feel impossible as they didn't listen to us at all.
We attended puppy classes when they were young however it led to them only behaving to bribes with food which is not realistic. Fudge the smaller one established himself as the clear leader of the pack and was becoming a nightmare on walks, barking at other people and dogs and pulling on the lead, Rolo copied this behaviour making walks something we dreaded rather than enjoying. We got to breaking point and decided we needed help!
We spent a long time searching for the right person online and reading reviews about trainers and that's when we came across Damian. We can definitely appreciate why there were so many glowing reviews, he is a real life dog whisperer!!! He has shown us that most of the behavioural problems stemmed from us and has probably spent more time training us as owners than the dogs. He is fantastic and we are so grateful for his help as now walks have become so much better, and we are enjoying the dogs so much more.
Thanks the real boss (Nicola)
Nicola/Mark and Rolo/Fudge the Miniature Daschunds - July 2017
We just wanted to say thank you for the lesson with Riley yesterday. It was so lovely to see how he can behave and we are looking forward to learning how to encourage that behaviour all the time.
We would very much like to book more sessions with you if you would be willing.
Louise and Riley the Irish Red Setter - July 2017
Thank you so much for todays training with Jack and I.
I’m like most people who have a dog, I have done the same thing year in year out and never really
fully understood how to get the best from the partnership with my dog, until now.
I have already noticed a marked improvement with Jack and also with myself when walking with
Jack. My confidence level has gone up and my stress levels have come down. So again, thank.
It was a shock to watch just how well Jack interacted with you, if thats the right word to use and with his instruction, but it was also very inspiring because i could see Jacks potential.
For anyone thinking of gundog training or dog training in general i cannot recomend enough how beneficial it would be for you to speak to Damian.
Andrew and Jack the Springer Spaniel - July 2017
Just wanted to say many thanks for the valuable training advice you gave us yesterday, we enjoyed it and found it very useful. I have already seen an improvement in my behaviour which Wilf appreciates. I have started enjoying our walks/training session again, which is great and even at this early stage other people have commented on the difference. I would definitely like to continue our training with you so if you could let me know when you free in a few weeks, that would be great.
Ann and Wilf the Cocker Spaniel - July 2017
Thanks for today's lesson Damian,
I knew I needed retraining, but I hadn't realised my standards had slipped so much!
During our first hours lesson I was amazed at the transformation in Millie's behaviour, (she has proved that she can walk to heel and keep focus), now I need to put into practice everything you demonstrated - I'll be looking forward to enjoyable walks from now on.
See you soon for more words of wisdom.
Sharon and Mille the Cocker Spaniel - July 2017
Thank you for the lovely pictures of Layla. Quite a difference in her demeanor between the before and after photos. She looks far more perky and confident after her first training session.
Both my friend and myself were very impressed with your training session. I couldn't believe how quickly Layla , my new rescue dog, responded to your instructions and within five minutes you had her walking to heel without pulling on her lead.
Within the hour you had achieved a significant change in her behaviour. She appeared less anxious because she understood what you wanted her to do.You obviously have a deep understanding of dog psychology.
By continuing at home with the clear instructions you gave to me Layla is now a pleasure to take on walks. She is visibly more relaxed and enjoys her outdoor time at our side rather than constantly pulling on the lead.
We are very much looking forward to our next lesson with you which im sure will progress Layla's development even more.
Katrina and Layla the Spanish Rescue Dog - June 2017
Just a short email to say thanks !
After our first training session, with our 7 month old chocolate Labradoodle, Henry. We had major issues with his unruly behaviour when walking, after just 40 minutes with you, we completed a 3 mile walk home, with total perfection ! No pulling, no being distracted, and has turned walking him from a pain into pleasure. We cannot believe we achieved these results so quickly.
Thanks once again, and we look forward to our next session to try and clear up a few more outstanding niggles.
Richard and Christine with Henry the Labradoodle - May 2017
After only a few minutes watching Damian with Isla it was obvious he knows what he is doing. Damian achieved more in one hours lesson than 2 months of the previous puppy training I had attended, all I kept thinking was why hadn’t we been recommended him sooner!
Be prepared for an honest appraisal and quality banter – there’s no beating around the bush to please the client, he had us figured straight away, Isla rules the roost!
We will definitely be braving crossing the border back to Lancashire for many more lessons, it’s not going to be a quick fix and nor does Damian claim it will be, but I’m certain with hard work and guidance form Damian there is light at the end of the tunnel.
Andy with Isla the Hungarian Vizsla - April 2017
A big big recommendation for anyone thinking of going to someone for dog training help. From the moment I met Damian with Elmo (my 4 year old springer) he knew within seconds that the dog was in charge of me and not the other way round! A few little tweaks and tips from Damian and I was walking Elmo and not being pulled left right and centre.
Another main issue was that Elmo barked at every single dog he walked past. Damian experimented this with two of his own dogs and showed me that if you remain calm and do not panic and tighten up on the lead then you can solve this problem with relative ease.
It is still very much a work in progress but during that 50 minute one to one I have learnt more valuable information than ever before. Thanks again mate and see you in a few weeks.
Jonathan with Elmo the Springer Spaniel - April 2017
I love my two golden retrievers, but lately, it had become impossible to walk them. Both would pull on leads when walking and it really was becoming a chore taking them out. We started to dread it and my wife was unable to walk them. They'd also started escaping our garden by jumping over the walls and chasing livestock, which was very concerning. (For us and the sheep involved).
We'd been to a number of trainers, some would try dominance approaches, which we really didn't like and then others would be completely food focused. Which meant giving our dogs hundreds of treats, rendering it useless unless we had food in our hands as, without it, they just completely ignored us.
We were getting to the point of despair and thought there must be someone out there who can help us not only train our dogs but also help us understand what motivates them so we both have a great relationship.
There was, and his name is Damian. We found Damian through instagram and after reading his website and testimonials my wife and I could not get in touch faster. Damian managed to book us in at short notice for our first lesson and we were counting down the hours.
First lesson - we met Damian and had a great chat about the dogs and their behaviours. Before we'd even got down to training he had a firm but constructive conversation about not having one of our dogs on the back seat, as this was very unsafe. That was our first lesson learnt and we changed it straight away. They both now go in the back boot (4x4, we don't lock them in an actual boot :) ).
Next part of the lesson - focusing on walking without being dragged around. The first part of this lesson, Damian introduced us to a slip lead, he put it on our boy Oscar and what followed was myself and my wife stood with our mouths open wide, laughing in disbelief as we couldn't believe that in about 5 minutes, he had oscar walking on a loose lead without pulling and without a single treat being given. AMAZING.
Then we said, "right, that's fantastic, but wait till you meet Millie". At this point, Damian approached our car and opened up the boot. Millie dived out the car, like she does, ready to drag us round as normal.
Before getting her on a lead, Damian was having none of it. He calmly put Millie back in the car and made her sit and wait, whilst he put Oscar back in. On a normal day, my wife and I can be seen playing the role of a goalkeeper diving around to catch them both as they jump out the car. Somehow, Damian had them both sat in the boot, waiting patiently until he decided it was time to for them to jump out. FANTASTIC.
I get Millie out and Damian gets to witness the golden fluffy beast that is Millie as she persisted in drag me around on her lead and practically choking herself. At this point, Damian stepped in.
He put the slip lead on, which Millie was not happy about and she was determined not to conform. Within about 3 minutes, she was walking to heal by his side, staring at him attentively. WE COULD NOT BELIEVE IT! This is the dog that no one can walk, no trainer had ever succeeded to make her walk to heal. My wife and I were staring at each other laughing and saying "Is this guy the dog whisperer?". (I'm so glad we didn't take him up on his bet, which would have resulted in me losing my car after successfully training Mille).
What Damian achieved in that one lesson has been life changing for us. We're going to continue to work with him, as one day I really want them to work in the sporting field. This was once a distant goal, but now I can't wait to keep going back as we both know that by working with Damian, we can pretty much teach them anything.
We couldn't recommend Damian more. Don't bother wasting your money or time on anyone else. I wish we'd met him months ago.
Thanks Damian for your work and help so far. We can't wait to come back.
Mark with Millie/Oscar the Golden Retrievers - April 2017
We approached Damian, as Jarvis our 12 month old Cocker having hit puberty had lost all sense of lead control and recall. It had got to the stage where walking him had become very stressful and we could no longer let him off the lead for fear of losing him. We were conscious that Jarvis wasn't experiencing the quality of life that we had hoped for him and therefore something needed to be done. Having spent a considerable amount of money on puppy classes and 1-2-1 sessions with 'generic' dog trainers using treat/reward based methods, we were getting nowhere and decided that we should seek the advice of a specialist trainer, i.e. someone who really knows and understands a gundog.
We found Damian through an internet search and were immediately impressed with the testimonials on his website, his obvious knowledge & experience in gundog training. I can honestly say that we have not been disappointed and that any expectations we had in advance of us meeting Damian have been greatly exceeded.
Before we even started tackling Jarvis's issues, we had a long chat about how things are done around the house and realised that in falling for those soft Spaniel eyes, we had allowed Jarvis to rule the roost. Whilst Jarvis is a much loved member of our family, contrary to what he may think, he is not the top dog and with a few small changes the correct order of the house has been restored! Importantly to us, despite these changes, Jarvis remains the same happy dog he has always been.
At our first session Damian advised us to ditch all the leads we had been using and to switch to a simple slip lead. He showed us that with the right use, this lead is humane and very effective. Within seconds, Jarvis changed from a dog that would drag us down streets and across fields to one who walked calmly by our side on a slack lead still with a tail wagging merrily. We could have cried with relief! Damian has also introduced us to whistle training; teaching us various commands to get Jarvis to sit, turn and recall. We practice these every day along with work on lead control and are overjoyed that Jarvis is responding so well.
As our 11 year old son said to Damian (without any prompting from us) "we have achieved more in 1 session with Damian than we have ever done with all the treat/reward based training we have attempted previously!" Our friends have all commented on how Jarvis has changed even after 1 session, from a dog that was very excitable and somewhat out of control to one who is very calm and responsive to commands. Life in our house has become so much more relaxed, we are no longer stressed, Jarvis is behaving himself on his walks and appears still as happy as he ever was.
We still have much to achieve but with Damian's on going help (and for the first time ever) we are confident that we will succeed and that Jarvis will have an enhanced quality of life. As a family, we all look forward to our sessions, especially our son whom Damian includes in the training as much as us. If you are reading this testimonial and are in need of help with your dog, we cannot recommend Damian highly enough and only wish we had found him sooner.
Jane and Marcus with Jarvis the Cocker Spaniel - April 2017
Just wanted to give you a quick update on Georgie and also to say thank you for letting me come back to you, to anyone who thinks that after a few lesson’s you know it all you will be sadly disappointed, this is what I did to the detriment of my dog and her training, she quickly became ‘top dog’ in our house and she was soon running rings around us.
After returning to Damian and receiving a ‘boot camp kicking’ on my first lesson back I realised that the problem was not necessarily with Georgie but with me, she had no structure, no discipline and she was out of control.
Now after 3 sessions she’s no longer excessively pulling on the lead, mounting or mouthing. I am very pleased to say that she has lost weight and is a happy, confident, and disciplined dog who is no longer ‘top dog’ in our house.
Thanks for all your help and advice.
Janet with Georgie the Labrador - April 2017
I contacted Damian in December last year after reading the excellent reviews on what he had managed to achieve training wise with owners and their dogs.
I have two Italian Spinones, Darcy eight and Nell 18 months. Darcy can be relied on to keep an eye on me during our walks and always likes to be fairly close and doesn't wander off. Nell on the other hand is totally different and never keeps her eye on me. Nell wants to do what she is bred to do, that is quartering and flushing paying no heed to a whistle or my mad calls for her to come to me. Hence my call to Damian, things could not go on as they were. Not only was it embarrassing but dangerous to have a dog that did not understand recall.
Ideally training should have started with her much earlier at six months but circumstances didn't allow for this. Appointment booked for initial 1-2-1 assessment, after a three hour drive, yes three hours (I was determined to sort this out) Nell and I had our first meeting with Damian. I was told to forget whatever had happened in the past and to work with positively going forward. Nell is a beautiful girl, very clever and bright and I didn't want years of frustrating walks but a dog that listened and understood what I was asking of her.
First visit, walking to heel, sit and wait command - not too bad from Nell's point of view but I was doing everything wrong and overcomplicating my instructions and not relaxing whilst training - I acted like a sergeant major. Not much fun for Nell. Basically I wasn't getting engagement from Nell, obviously birds and scents are much more interesting than I.
Damian has shown me ways to get Nell to engage and this has meant training has been successful. Recall work was going well but then I had a few blips with Nell running off, it's disheartening but small step each day and consistency make me feel that I am getting somewhere with her. The training sessions were once a month but we have increased these (just for a short while) to every two weeks. At the last session the three of us were walking round the field with Nell off the lead, walking to heel, something I would never have believed possible. I have been working on this exercise since our session and it's going really well. A way to go yet but we are definitely getting there. It's about training the owner as well as the dog.
Margaret with Nell the Italian Spinone - April 2017
Hope you had a good break at Easter. We're missing our fortnightly visits up to Lancashire. What started as a serious business getting our 3 year old chocolate lab Ruby trained not to pull on the lead and recall so she was safe became good fun.
Wanted to say thanks for giving us the skill and encouragement to keep going. Its a real joy now to walk her on lead and we feel more confident about keeping her engaged with us rather than just doing her own thing. A lovely bond has developed between us as a result.
Thanks again you certainly tuned into us three and got us on track to learn together and enjoy. That cheeky defiant girl you first met is a delight to be out with and we've had so many lovely comments from other dog walkers. It's been well worth it.
Andrea, Nigel & Ruby
Andrea & Nigel with Ruby the Labrador - March 2017
A quick email to say a HUGE thank you for your work with my girl Xena whilst in your care at residential. And agreeing to continue with us on the forthcoming training sessions.
As you know Xena was proving to be too much of a handful for me and your description of “baptism of fire” only mildly described how I felt, you saw for yourself how stressed I was with her and how pushy, and dominant she was (2 females like this within the one household was always going to be a challenge).
I have to be honest and say that prior to her attending your residential I was having doubts as to whether or not I had made the right choice, not only for me but for Xena as I only want the best for her, and for her to realise her full potential, something I now know without your help I would never achieve.
I am so happy that I didn’t just give up and came to you for the proper advise, it was a difficult decision to put her into what we classed as “borstal” for a month especially as you banned all contact J but you have worked wonders with her, you have achieved in a month what I most likely wouldn’t have in a year. Xena has come home a changed girl and all for the better, you promised to teach her manners, and you most certainly have. I know she is still young and will try to push boundaries (last night in the park with so many distractions proved that) however before you taking her under your wing, going out with her was always a chore and very rarely a pleasure but after picking her up on Monday that is soooo not the case, our morning walks are awesome I get in twice the distance in half the time as I’m not continually having to fight with her to stop her pulling and I can’t wait to leave the office to take her out on her evening stroll.
With your continued training and advice (for us both) I see a bright future ahead. From the bottom of my heart I thank you…
And a message for anyone considering residential with you….. DO IT!!!! DO IT NOW…… you cannot imagine the joy ahead that it will bring
Big licks from Xena x
Jean with Xena the German Shorthaired Pointer - February 2017
Thought you might like an update on our boy's progress. He is doing really well and we are now able to enjoy stress free walks on the beach and in the woods. He is responding well to the whistle, not chasing birds or animals and good with other dogs. He is steady but not very interested in people he doesn't know. Done a lot of ball retrieving and a bit with the dummies. Hope to do more when the fields are a bit less muddy.
Had a great time in Scotland before Christmas and are off to Kielder Forest this weekend so lots of good walks for Ziggy. Still having battles to keep him off the sofa but you can't win them all. ( well maybe you can, but we can't!)
Thanks for all your help which has obviously paid off. We'll maybe book a revision session when we are able to get into the field a bit more.
Sandra and Noel with Ziggy the Springer Spaniel - February 2017
I have to say that even with just the one session we spent working with "Good Girl" (Coco) on Tuesday I've had my view of dogs changed. I'm now well aware that I've spent 12 years falling for Spaniel eyes and basically allowing them to rule the roost.
Much appreciate your help
Mark with Coco the Cocker Spaniel - January 2017
Hi Damian I just wanted to thank you for working with us all and Roxie and Lola today.
Seeing my dogs respond within minutes with you confirmed I knew I had made the right choice to come to you for training.
I know we have lots of work to do but I feel really positive that we now have the right tools to work with for the next few weeks until we meet up again.
The best moment for us today was watching young Thomas walk Roxie to heel this made his day as he has never in the 15 mths we have owned her been able to walk her unaided.
Kim took the girls out to the park after we got back and she said they were a delight on the lead no pulling at all. Recall well that's for another day 😂
And my promise to you is I will not look down when I'm walking them lol also purchased 2 slip leads today so much better than all the crap harnesses and lead collar combos I've tried in the past.
Once again thank you and see you soon for round 2.
Wendy with Lola the Jack Russell x Yorkshire Terrier and Roxie the Labrador x Pointer - January 2017
I have to say that even with just the one session we spent working with “Good Girl” (Coco) on Tuesday I’ve had my view of dogs changed. I’m now well aware that I’ve spent 12 years falling for Spaniel eyes and basically allowing them to rule the roost.
Mark with Coco the Cocker Spaniel - January 2017
This is written as a genuine thank you to Damian for everything he has done for myself & Wurly and to anyone reading this wondering if they should try this type of training, do it now, don’t wait, you won’t regret choosing Damian as your trainer.
We have had Wurly since he was a puppy & attended training sessions as soon as we could. Unfortunately, the quality of that training was not specific to a springers needs & whilst Wurly was well behaved in the house as he got bigger he started to pull on the lead & his recall was non-existent.
I tried 2 trainers (including a gun dog expert). Again, this had no effect & Wurly started to run off from the house & would regularly take a half an hour run around the field & return to me when I was practically hysterical with worry! He once left home for over three hours & was found chasing livestock.
The final straw was when we went on holiday & Wurly got free from his lead & decided to chase some sheep, got one in the loch & was holding it under when we eventually caught up with him.
At this point we had to agree as a family that we were unable to keep Wurly. It was no fun for us & most importantly we weren’t doing the best for our boy. I decided to try one last attempt & had a look on the internet. I was drawn to Damian as his testimonials were very positive & there was a clear message that Damian is passionate about his work which wasn’t always my experience of other trainers.
At the first lesson, Damian had Wurly walking to heel almost immediately and it was very clear that despite my efforts I was the one in need of training. Damian is a great guy, very direct with comments & humour and very helpful with his advice & follow up. The thing that I felt immediately was that Damian not only knows his stuff but he is clearly passionate about dogs being trained to do what dogs are meant to do. Damian has a way of communicating with the dogs that shows he understands what they need & can get the best from them.
I started to make progress with Wurly but due to some personal issues the training lapsed & I found myself back at the beginning. At this point I decided to invest in Wurly & booked him in for a four week residential. The change in our boy has been unbelievable. We have had to make some small changes at home as a family but the improvement is visible to anyone.
Wurly now walks on his lead & doesn’t chase the children on a family walk. I can now let him off the lead which I still can’t believe is possible after our earlier mishaps! The first time he was off the lead at training was quite emotional. Wurly was hunting around the bushes, working with Damian & the other dogs, returning on the whistle & it was obvious that he was happy which in turn makes the family happy.
We are still in training and I will continue to go to sessions to with Damian. I can now let Wurly off the lead & he hunts and plays with us rather than against us. He stills likes the rabbits but he no longer heads for the fields and returns hours later.
My advice would be not to wait until you have an issue with your dog before calling Damian but go for sessions as soon as you can. The lessons are an investment & will result in a happier dog.
I am looking forward to the next chapter of gun dog training and seeing what else my crazy spaniel & I can do with Damian’s help.
Debbie with Wurly the Springer Spaniel - December 2016
I am writing this letter as a personal reference for Damian Barson. My husband and I first came accross Damian whilst we were looking for a trainer for our 11 month old English Springer Spaniel. It was important to us that we found a trainer that was reputable and one that was knowledgable in this field and one that our dog actually liked.
My husband and I first had our boy in one to one training when he was as young as 9 weeks old (not with Damian Barson, I wish Damian had been our first and only trainer), we thought at the time the trainer chosen was the right one. The trainer claimed he had trained and worked with Springers and seemed to know what he was talking about so we booked in for 12hrs of training. Weeks later we noticed how our dog was very timid around him and was not progressing in training like I would have expected him to,and lots of other things did not add up either. We decided to cancel any other further lessons we had booked in and never returned.
We first contacted Damian Barson after doing some research as we did not want the same thing to happen again as it had with the previous trainer. An appointment was made were our dog could be assessed but also to give us an introduction to what Damian does and what he was about.
After watching Damian work our dog and observing how our dog reacted to Damian we decided to book him in for 1 months residential training. I had a good feeling about my dog Bert's training this time. I felt confident that my dog was in safe hands and would be well looked after and was being trained by someone who did actually know what they were talking about. Damian also gave us a tour of where our dog would be sleeping and where he would have his training and this also filled me with confidence. During the 4 weeks Damian would ring and keep us in touch with Bert's progress and I found this very reassuring. Week 4 was collection day and we were so excited that we were getting our boy back, we could not wait to see him and see what he had learnt.
I can only describe Damian as being a "Dog Whisperer". My husband and I could not believe our eyes and looked at one another saying "is this really our dog?". We were blown away at the amounts our dog had learnt but also by the sheer skill and understanding of dogs Damian has.
I most definatey without a shadow of doubt would recommend Damian Barson as a dog trainer to anyone. My husband and I are so pleased and it was the best money we have spent in a long time. We can see exactly where the money we spent has gone and that is in the high quality of the training our Bert has had. We still return for training sessions with our dog, but they are for us now!! We are all very happy with the level of professionalism shown and given at all times and are well on our way to having the best trained Springer this side of Watford Gap!!!
Many thanks for everything, we cannot thank you enough.
Jan and Phil with Bert the Springer Spaniel - November 2016
I brought my two adorable but mental cocker spaniels to see Damian today. He started by telling me I was getting them out of the crate wrong, we worked out that they don’t listen to me (at all), and that I don’t enjoy walking my dogs because they pull like mad. Within literally a minute he had each dog walking at heel and looking for instruction. With a bit of practice I could do it too! I’ve brought home two different dogs and a different dog owning mentality. Looking forward to getting a good recall! Thanks Damian.
Janet with Parker/Forest the Cocker Spaniels - November 2016
Just to let you know we are delighted at the progress with Indie!! She really is coming on and after only four sessions we realise we have done the right thing. Even though Indie is our 5th Dog talking to you alone after her arrival and planning a proper routine has helped not letting her get into bad habits from the start. From the first lesson on the lead it is obvious you totally understand how to get the most out of Indie. Yesterday’s lesson was a delight to see with Indie making a fantastic retrieve from a very good distance to hand with Caoimhe your dog for a distraction.
I think it shows the benefit of planning your dog’s training as soon as you know you are expecting a Puppy to arrive.
You instruction gives the incentive to put the effort into Indie to carry on seeing results!!!
Bob with Indie the Wirehaired Hungarian Vizsla - October 2016
Thank you for this mornings lesson it was great, probably the best yet. I was thrilled with Madhbh’s performance. I never thought I’d get this far, and without our continual help and belief I wouldn’t have. Again thank you so much for making my dreams become reality.
Diane with Madhbh the Flatcoat Retriever - September 2016
Alfie (the Springer) got to meet Damian today. I booked Alfie (& me) in with Damian for an assessment to ascertain future potential. I soon realised that Alfie is doing just fine and it is I who needs a 4 week residential! The hour was great fun. Lots of learning with humour thrown in. Seeing Damian’s dogs in action too was inspirational. To see Alfie respond to you the moment we were on the road doing the heel work was fantastic. It really did make me have a tear to see how positively he responded to you.
I can’t wait to get Alfie booked in for his 4 week residential having seen the positive impact in only an hour.
Tanya with Alfie the Springer Spaniel - August 2016
After taking my cocker to Damian this morning he got Sam out the car and had him walking nice and sitting all the time we were talking that was just somthing I though I would never see. He was well behaved and Damian never once used his name I was convinced he had swopped dogs lol. In a total of under 15 mins he had my dog doing things I would take forever to get him to do. Thank you Damian see you in 4 wks.
Eileen with Sam the Cocker Spaniel - June 2016
I take my cocker to Damian and at first we both thought we have a challenge on our hands but Damian doesn't give up if he see's potential he'll work at it and make sure my dog becomes a cracking dog and he has! He's a nice guy and so easy to get along with!
Reece with Vince the Cocker Spaniel - June 2016
Great session yesterday. I still haven’t stopped smiling. Thank for all your support and encouragement wouldn’t have got there without you.
Diana with Madhbh the Flatcoat Retriever - April 2016
Well it’s been two weeks now since Andy went to collect Arthur. Right from the very first moment he just fitted right in and became one of the family, it has been completely amazing. None of us realised just how much we missed having a dog around. Thanks to you, Arthur is an amazingly well trained little dog, as well as an intelligent, soft, cuddly, nutty, mud magnet, he fits in just perfect! A massive thank you, to you Damian, for matching us with this gorgeous, little spaniel. He has the most fantastic personality. At home he potters about quite happily, doesn’t bark, loves a cuddle and a groom. At the field, on the other hand, he makes lots of noise, and flies about at great speeds the whole time. He’s made play mates out of our two sons and doesn’t seem too bothered by the other animals, although he will be just a blurr to them.
It’s all too good to be true and we are very grateful. We could not have picked a better match for us.
Many, many thanks from the Tramaseurs. XX
Andy with Arthur the Springer Spaniel - April 2016
My contact with Damian started back in August 2015 when having seen his Facebook page I rang him to pick his brain on choosing a puppy, he subsequently put me in touch with Lou who had a litter of fox red labs for sale of which Damian one of the litter too.
Bryn was my first dog let alone my first working dog and I had a lot to learn, Damian’s advice before our first lesson was invaluable with the right start to Bryn’s training & life being key.
Weekly lessons started in October through to December and Bryn was making good progress, in December I started a new job and the lessons stopped until February and those 8 weeks were when the good work stopped and due to my lack of knowledge and change of circumstances life with Bryn became a challenge. He started to do what he wanted, and any attempts to curb and discipline his behaviour made things worse, I eventually managed to make time for a lesson in February which can only be described as a hideous experience, Bryn showed no interest in Damian or myself and just wanted to do what he wanted and wouldn’t listen to any of the basic commands we learnt so well from October to December.
On the journey home I was annoyed, upset, disheartened and frustrated so considered my options. I could try and carry on with Bryn’s training with the help of Damian and hope I could gain enough knowledge to make Bryn the dog he can and deserves to be, or I bite the bullet and send him away to Damian’s for residential training to instil the basic commands back into Bryn and to help his progression.
I spoke to Damian at length about my plans and we agreed it was a good idea, it would be easy to think he would be keen for residential stays as after all he runs a business but he has always been honest about what is best for the dog and the owner so I trusted his judgement.
I dropped Bryn off at the arranged time and said good bye for what was going to be a long 5 weeks apart (not that he cared)
Damian kept me up to date with phone calls, tweets, Facebook posts as and when he could which were always much appreciated.
I picked Bryn up on Easter Monday and didn’t quite know what to expect, would he be totally different would he be a bit better than before?? I could tell things had gone well when Bryn completely ignore my presence and was totally focused on Damian, at first I was gutted but then he had been sent there to gain respect and focus and that is exactly what he had.
Damian took time to explain what he had done and what we needed to do going forward. Bryn and myself were sent home with some very specific instructions, no more no less.
Bryn has been back just short of a week and he is a pleasure to have around and train again, we both have fun training and I am building a bond that will hopefully be as strong as the one he clearly had with Damian when I collected him last week. I’m sure we will have more ups and downs on our training journey but I know from Damian that under the right instruction Bryn is fully capable being a great dog and I owe it to him to make sure he reaches his full potential and with the guidance of Damian we will get there.
Scott with Bryn the Labrador - April 2016
We first took our springer spaniel to Damian due to him pulling on the lead and attended a course of classes. Damian provided us with instruction, practical demonstration and support whenever we needed it, not just in the classes but also over the phone at any time. His advice is clear and concise and he isn’t afraid to tell you how it is, even if it isn’t what you want to hear at the time. On reflection it’s what you need to hear. He allows you to see the potential that your dog has and makes you feel comfortable and at ease with his professional manner and sense of humour in what can be a stressful environment! Despite improvements in our dog our situation changed and due to the arrival of our little boy and a very jealous dog we had to consider the option to re home, again Damian was there to give us support and advice through what has been a truly emotional and up heaving situation. Damian took the time to help us find a new loving home for our spaniel and he couldn’t of found a more perfect place. It is obvious that Damian cares about the dogs he over sees.
I would highly recommend Damian to any dog owner and would like to thank him for everything he’s done for us over the past year!
Danielle with Arthur the Springer Spaniel - April 2016
I was struggling to cope with my puppy as I hadn't realised just how much exercise and training was needed for her in comparison to other dogs I've had. I was at a low ebb with her and discussed options, including rehoming, with Damian who provided me with advice and support for me whilst I reached my decision. I've since had a further lesson with Damian and have more booked in. He has provided me with tips and what to work on with her. Instead of crying I was smiling at our last lesson and look forward to progressing further with my puppy.
Dawn with Lola the Cocker Spaniel - March 2016
Mark and I would like to say thank you so much for training us and our 13 month old lab 'Dave'.
I can't believe how much we do in an hours 1-1 training and always look forwards to our next session.
A massive thank you for our last 1-1 session where you worked with Marks 12 year old daughter. She is so much more confident with Dave and does her homework training with him at every opportunity, the bond between them is lovely to watch.
I know we have a way to go but thank you for training all of us and making me confident with Dave. After every session I feel more positive.
If you are reading this testimonial and trying to decide on a trainer for you and you dog, all I can say is pick up the phone and call Damian, you won't be disappointed.
Jilly with Dave the Labrador - March 2016
'What can I say, Wow, so impressed with Damian. We have Oscar, a 13 month old Old English Sheepdog, albeit extremely smart and lovely but unruly. Walking got to become a horrible experience and in the end became non-existent due to the constant pulling, lunging at cyclists, and just being really hard work. Within 10 minutes (if that) Damian had him walking to heel, sitting on command and generally respected him instantly. To say I was impressed was an understatement to actually see someone able to bring Oscar under control actually made me cry! I know there is still a lot of work to do but 2 days after seeing Damian walking has become a pleasure. Fantastic. Thank you'
Abbie with Oscar the Old English Sheepdog - February 2016
Just a short mail to express my thanks for the training given to Callie and just as importantly myself.(The latter of which I fully intend to continue with). Callie although only 18 months old has after her 8 weeks or so of residential training come home with a maturity that has far exceeded my expectations. She has fantastic focus and is a joy to walk with as she never leaves my heel. She is now retrieving to hand with a confidence that I never thought she would have. She still has a way to go but from the timid little girl that we dropped off but she now has a confidence and is all too eager to please. I am really looking forward to the next shooting season and look forward to having a confident and enthusiastic companion that I cannot wait to work with. I am looking forward to many more 1-1 training sessions with yourself to polish Callie and get her to reach her full potential.
You will be highly recommended by myself to anyone that enquires and indeed I already have.
Rob with Callie the Springer Spaniel - January 2016
We were recommended to Damian by another one of his customers, we had issues with both of our dogs lunging and barking on the leads at other dogs and taking us for a walk instead of us taking them, within one session Damian had them healing and walking past his dog with no barking or lunging and taking his advice I've found it so much easier to walk them and walking past other dogs is so nice without the barking and pulling, we have been to so many dog trainers and nothing we got told worked we were ready to give up.
Would definitely recommend Damian to anyone
Hannah with Ella/Bob the German Shorthaired Pointers - January 2016
I took our border collie for an assessment with Damian today. Damian is hopeless at weather forecasting, (it was throwing it down), but what a nice, sunny guy to deal with. Our dog is now 2 and a half years old, we've had him a year and from the very start we've struggled with his behaviour, not knowing what to do. To us our dog appeared very nervous/anxious and very reactive to people/cars ie.lunging, barking, hackles up, so we have tried to avoid such situations, because of the stress they caused to both us and him. I must admit I was a bit worried going to see Damian, fearful that our dog might react and bite. To my relief at no point did our dog show any aggression towards him. He walked calmly alongside him, leaving me open mouthed and feeling a bit foolish. Damian sussed me out as contributing factor to the 'problem', my behaviour often serving to fuel/reinforce the dog's fears/anxieties. I enjoyed the session, and to be honest came away feeling a bit numb and shellshocked. Damian was lovely - straight talking,honest, ever up beat and optimistic. I've now got my work to do and it does seem strange because its different than what I'm used to, but with Damian's help and support I feel we are now moving in the right direction. Can't wait for next session, when my ears will again take a bashing ... in the best possible way!
Kath with Blue the Border Collie - November 2015
Laura and I would like to thank you for doing such an excellent job recently with our golden retriever puppy, Plato (now 11 months old), during the 4 weeks that he spent with you in residence. We are very pleased indeed, so much so that we are looking forward to Plato following up his training with you for a further 12 days residence over Christmas.
As you know, prior to joining you Plato was a difficult dog, not least because he was a whopping 44kgs in weight. These problems, as we have come to learn, were entirely due to the way that we fed and handled him in the past. In this regard, he ate far too much, and too often, leading to obesity. We also permitted Plato to take us for walks rather than the other way around. In particular, he was permitted to pull on the lead like a train, to dart off in any direction at will in order to sniff at the bottom of trees and walls, to forage for food amongst the rubbish strewn around London’s pavements and parks, to lunge towards other dogs and small children for the purpose of play, and to bark at squirrels and other wildlife. As it turns out, we only made matters worse by using a 10m extension lead, thereby teaching him that pulling leads to even more freedom, the consequence for us being anarchy. And when Plato was off the lead, these problems were only exacerbated, resulting at times in total chaos. In short, as we had no sense of how to lay the foundation for training a gun dog, said foundation plainly being to teach the dog to walk to heel, Plato had no discipline on or off the lead and, if uncorrected, his behaviour was only likely to deteriorate.
Suffice it to say that after 4 weeks of residential training with you, the transformation in Plato’s behaviour is truly remarkable. First, Plato dropped 8kgs and looks absolutely fantastic. Being the correct weight must surely have a positive effect on other aspects of his behaviour, not simply feeding. Secondly, and even more importantly, you have taught Plato to walk to heel and we are implementing this training so that he does it with us. This makes walking him more of a pleasure, whereas previously it was often a nightmare. And although I was not supposed to let Plato off the lead until I had worked with him a bit more, I did so in the park (sorry...!) and was absolutely amazed to find that he returned to me at pace on 4 toots of the whistle! Truly amazing.
While Plato is far from being “the finished article,” we look forward to continuing his training for life, including his scheduled residential training with you over Christmas.
Mark and Laura
Mark and Laura with Plato the Golden Retriever - November 2015
The story of Lincoln.
Lincoln is a 3 year old rescue Hungarian vizsla. He was put into the rescue centre when he was about 10 months old. We don't know the full story but we know his leg was broken, he was emaciated and he had serious behavioural problems. He spent 4 months in the rescue centre before they felt he was ready to be re homed.
When we got Lincoln he was very fearful and mistrusting of people especially men. He also would take things like slippers, tea towels and guard them and attack if we tried to take them away. He would attack runners, bike riders or anyone who surprised him.
We tried to deal with his problems by letting him do what he wanted in the house and giving him unconditional love and affection. However his problems persisted and we would back away from him when we thought he might go for us. He needed to be with us constantly and would bark and scratch at doors if we tried to keep him in a room without us.
I didn't think his problems could be solved and we couldn't leave him with anyone as he was not safe. So I looked through Google to see if I could find a trainer as a last resort.
I found Damian and read some of his testimonials about training dogs with behavioural problems. We spoke and I explained some of the problems we were having. We arranged an assessment session and off I went.
I had an hour with Damian and my life has changed. Not to be too dramatic but my beautiful but dangerous dog is now a joy. For the first time in 1 and a half years he sleeps down stairs in the kitchen and doesn't bark and scratch to get out. In fact he hardly barks at all now and he accepts lying in his basket without getting upset and wanting to sit with me.
We only did an hour!
It's only now I realise how hard it has been, and what a joy my dog really can be.
Kathryn with Lincoln the Hungarian Vizsla - November 2015
Where do I start... I had an aggressive rottie that was getting worse I tried to sort the problem myself but I knew I needed help and guidance so I rang Damian. I explained the situation (and yes I knew deep down that I was a major part of the problem but I didn't understand what sort of aggression Mia had), he told me straight that I had to get this sorted out asap (Damian was very blunt!). We arranged an assessment and when me and Mia turned up I was not looking forward to it AT ALL, but Damian was friendly, funny, calming for Mia especially and for me as well by the end of the session. He let me know straight away our problems and shocked and amazed are the only words I can use, oh and JEALOUS. He took her from me and straight away she changed, she was like a different dog, she walked along side him, she listened to him, she sat for him ALL IN SILENCE, with a little encouragement. I made her anxious, I made her feel that she had to protect me, I made her fearful, yes unfortunately I was the weak link and she has fear aggression (that kills me to say that but it is true). Within the hour I had been rehabilitated, and given the tools to help us both thrive - to relax, relax and oh yeah relax, be confident, smile, and tell her don't ask. Then to my horror Damian introduced one of his dogs (eek!) he took Mia again and I could of cried my jaw dropped nothing, no aggression at all she didn't even want to go near it no teeth, no lunging, no growling, no barking awesome. It is not going to be a quick fix and I know its going to take time, I can't thank Damian enough Mia has been awesome since, I am working hard to make this work and she does take the mick and push it but we are getting there. I am going back for more training to get our recall sorted. Thanks again Damian (ps I was gutted she wanted to go home with you, you swine) Highly recommended
Nicky with Mia the Rottweiler - November 2015
A big thank you Damian for working your 'magic' with our two Hungarian Vizslas, Binxs who is 2 years old and Bertie who is 8 months old.
After being with you for 2 weeks of residential obedience training at the end of October, there has certainly been a transformation. Before, we had two dogs who were very demanding, no manners and selective hearing; they have been home for just over a week now and the household is a lot more peaceful. They were trying to push the new rules towards the middle of the first week home, but we have ensured that all the hardwork and basic rules they learn't with you have been re-enforced. Before the training, we would probably have just let things slide and half heartedly forced the obedience; we now feel more confident that we know what is achievable.
Taking them for a walk is a lot more pleasurable and we now feel that we have some tools to build on, from what they have learnt with yourself. They still have their bouncy personalities but their manners of not jumping up, staying off the furniture and listening more to commands is very reassuring. You have made a difference!
Lisa and Mark
Lisa and Mark with Bertie/Binxs the Hungarian Vizsla's - November 2015
Just a quick message, can’t speak highly enough of this chap and his training. Top Bloke!👍
Just a message to thank you for all your help in the last 2 weeks and support in finding Charlie a new home.
Massive emotional upheaval for myself but having spoke to Charlie’s new owners a couple of times since letting him leave I have definitely made the right decision for him in allowing him to continue his training and become a proper working dog, and a new friend for life with ex game keeper! Absolutely buzzing last time I spoke to him.
When I got Charlie I had no idea about gundog training, I have enjoyed the journey and learning on the job myself and hope to go back to it again one day and get back involved. In the meantime I’m looking forward to seeing Charlie in full light on a shoot next year!
Thanks Damian, top man.
Leon with Charlie the Sprocker - October 2015
Just a quick email to say thanks Damian for the lesson in how to train my springer spanial leni. Can't believe that in only one hour I learnt more than in two years of dog ownership. You made it so simple and friendly. Leni seem to enjoy it. Everything made sense and I can now apply your instruction . I can honesty say I would recommend you to evey dog owner I meet . thanks again . Alan
Alan with Leni the Springer Spaniel - September 2015
Thank you for your help with Diesel and most of all for making me realise my own mistakes and areas to develop so I can teach my boy correct manners.
I am more than happy to attend the training session next week and in September
Patricia with Diesel the German Shepherd - July 2015
Just wanted to say thank you for this mornings training with Oscar. I really enjoyed watching how quickly Oscar got the hang of things and hope he (and I!) will get better and better!
We have been out a couple of times this afternoon at home and practised what you showed me and he loved it. The children both had a try and our older daughter certainly had the hang of it. My younger daughter found it more tricky but I think Oscar associates her with "running around" the most. We'll persevere with her though!
He has been positively saintly all day and not barked once! He has a really lovely temperament so I look forward to seeing what he can do!
Cathryn with Oscar the Labrador Retriever - July 2015
I just wanted to let you know how pleased I am with the training and care you have undertaken with Elvis my 11 month old Golden Retriever puppy.
The three weeks residential he spent with you whilst we were away on holiday has transformed him into a very calm and obedient young dog that listens and acts on command, Elvis in my opinion is now acting and showing signs of maturity that I would expect in a 2 or 3 year old dog. I can’t thank you enough for what you have achieved with him.
I fully understand that it was myself that also needed guidance on how to address him ( Not too much information and a bit firmer ) He is now an absolute pleasure to take for a walk, as you know he would not walk past other dogs or people without wanting to joyfully approach them and to his cost he had been attacked on a couple of occasions by smaller dogs. He will now walk past distractions without interest,which is a big break through.
The two other areas that have most noticeably improved are that Elvis now eats his meals with relish, which was a concern and if allowed off the lead he now comes straight back on command.
I always look forward to meeting you with your open and jovial manner, I would have no hesitation in recommending your services to any one who needs help and guidance with their dogs
Your expertise has certainly transformed our bouncy puppy who at times wanted to do his own thing into a mature adolescent that I now have the confidence to take anywhere with me.
The whole experience has been first class and Elvis is already looking forward to his return visit to 'Barson Towers' in August.
In our household Damian you are now fondly referred to as the Dog whisperer
Vince with Elvis the Golden Retriever - July 2015
Thank you so much! Just had a lovely walk as per your training this morning wow what a difference, feel so much more confident!
Avril with Eva the German Shorthaired Pointer - July 2015
Thanks for your help with Marble. I was so impressed with what you've got set up and I know Marble will benefit enormously from being in residence for training.
Andrew with Marble the Labrador - June 2015
Hi Damian- been meaning to get in touch for a while. I've had Belle for just over a year now and I wanted to let you know how well she is doing. There is always room for improvement with her heel work (she does like to be a bit ahead) but off lead she is great. She walks to heel through a field of cows, does long distance sits/recalls and even an emergency sit/stay as a deer ran fifty foot in front of her once! She charms everyone she meets and is an absolute joy to own. So really just to say another thank you for all your help and advice back in the beginning.
Dawn with Belle the German Shepherd - June 2015
Hello, we would like to say a big thank you for your class this evening. We saw a difference in Teddie in just 45 minutes and can see where we've gone wrong.
We will see you again next week.
Natasha with Teddie the Poodle - April 2015
Thank you so much for all your help and support. Il make sure I use what I've learnt and stick to it oh and the most important thing relaxing!
Thanks again. Il be sure to recommend your service and if I ever need you again in the future..hopefully not!! Il be sure to get in touch.
Rachel with Malakai the Malamute - March 2015
We would like to thank you very much for the encouragement and confidence you have given us over the last few weeks and I know that Ozzie's behaviour is much improved. As you have said it is not necessarily the dog that is at fault but the owners where most faults lie. Myself I am more confident when out with him and I endeavour to put into practice all the points you have given us. There is still some way to go but now it is up to us to continue with the training. However, I hope that you will not mind if in the future we need further training or advice we can book additional lessons with you.
Davie with Ozzie the Border Collie - March 2015
Really enjoyed today. I thought Lola did well and I'm going to focus on retrieves, but she was listening which I was really pleased with and when she came back she listened with all the group dogs around. It was great to meet new members of the Tessleymoor Gundog Club and I'm looking forward to the years gundog club training.
Thank you for a great morning.
Christine with Lola the Labrador- Feb 2015
Thanks for the lesson yesterday. It gave us great confidence and pointed us in the right direction. Both Sue and I have been out this morning with Ozzie and he has been very good. We purchased a slip lead yesterday as you suggested and it seems to work well. We have been practicing walking to heal, Sit (although he was not as good today at that as he was yesterday, refusing to bend his back legs at first before eventually giving in) and I had success with sit and come with him facing me on the lead. He still does not engage with us but its only one day.
Thanks again for giving us the confidence and positive outlook.
David and Sue with Ozzie the Welsh Border Collie - Dec 2014
I have to thank you for inspiring me to train Belle in the way that you have because she has been an absolute life saver for me this year and that is why I want to keep taking things forward with her cos I know she deserves the best I can give her. So thanks again and yeah will call you once the silly season is over to arrange a time.
Dawn with Bell the German Shepherd - Dec 2014
Thanks for this mornings lesson really enjoyed it. Came home feeling really positive. I know there’s lots more to do but I feel happy that I will be able to achieve and cope. My confidence is returning.
You are great!
Diane with Madhbh the Flatcoat Retriever - Dec 2014
I must have Googled ‘pointer recall’ and every variation of that phrase a hundred times before I found Damian. Meggie is a beautiful English Pointer; I researched the breed and she ticked all the boxes: enjoys exercise, good temperament for a family pet and from working stock so easy train - how wrong could I be.
After attending local puppy classes it became obvious that my English Pointer was not like the other dogs. She refused to lie down, didn’t want to walk to heel and there was no way she was ever coming back. As one of the swiftest dog breeds, this was a problem. I persevered with all kinds of training techniques but by the time Meggie was 18 months old had settled with walking her on a long line all the time, not what I had envisaged. I followed Damian on Twitter, wishing that he was just down the road in Yorkshire rather than across the Pennines in Preston but eventually, after a particularly disastrous walk, I called him.
We talked for 20 minutes. In the nicest possible way, Damian told me I was doing it all wrong and despite the two hour drive, I was to come and see him as soon as he had a free slot. So I did. Damian knows about gundogs. He knows that they are different from your average pooch in the park. He explained how they learn, about the bond I needed to establish with Meggie before she would do a thing for me and about getting her to work to her breed standard. By the end of the hour she was walking to heel with him and hanging on his every whistle. I nearly left her with him.
Since then I have visited Damian every couple of months. He gets Meggie – English Pointers are the aristocrats of the gundog family – they don’t like getting wet, they don’t respond to harsh words, they work at distance so they need to read your body language. He is always encouraging and we both know, it’s more about training me than training Meggie.
I have spent hours in wet and windy fields teaching Meggie to quarter, to wait and most importantly, to come back. It has not been easy and there have been prolonged periods when it seemed that we were making no progress. So I would call Damian, have a good grumble, he would give me a pep talk and off I would go again.
It’s worked. I now have a dog that responds to my whistle, looks at me for directions, waits at the end of the walk and most importantly, comes back. She watches me, she chooses me over the open fields or scents of the wood. She makes me smile every day. She can run free while she is out so she is calm at home, plays fetch with the kids, spends hours snoozing. She’s not perfect but we have come so far, I just wish I’d taken her to Damian when she was 12 weeks old.
Damian has given me a dog that is happy because she knows what’s expected of her. His knowledge of what makes gundogs tick is outstanding and unusually, he’s also great with people. He made me laugh at myself, relax with my dog and enjoy training her to become the dog she was meant to be.
Helen with Meggie the English Pointer - Nov 2014
"Although I have had German Shepherds all my life this was the first time that I have approached a trainer for guidance and assistance. This was mainly down to my new dog Rebel being very powerful and excitable.I was a little apprehensive due to this being a new experience however Damian was very approachable and put both myself and Rebel at ease. The experience was extremely positive and by implementing Damian's guidance Rebel is already responding very well .We are both looking forward to our next training session.
I would definately recommend Damian to anyone in a similar position trying to train a very powerful & strong minded dog!"
Paul with Rebel the German Shepherd - Nov 2014
I’ve had Hazel out today on our 1st day of the pheasant season… The land wasn’t what were used to as during her 1st season we shot in a wooded area as I knew she was a bit ‘hot’ headed and both of us needed to learn.
Today was always going to be a challenge as this open arable farm land over 1800 acres.
Pleased, I’m chuffed to bits, only twice did I have to raise my whistle tone from a gentle tone, she retrieved a few birds, she put an awful lot up and didn’t run in once. Several of the beaters & guns asked how I stopped a spaniel running in and we were commended on the steadiness & standard of work.
There’s a little to work on for next week but it’s all about reinforcing what we’ve learnt & having some fun at the same time.
Damian, my joy is down to your patience with the pair of us and how you’ve advised me to train her, I would have gotten rid of her if I hadn’t of found your training style, thanks buddy!
Phil with Hazel the Springer Spaniel - Nov 2014
We had a great first day. Moss sat steady while Richard shot, I gave him about three retrieves during the day and he performed excellently and faultlessly. He has not quite got the idea how to carry a pheasant yet but with time i am sure he will. Delivered everything straight to hand and released it when commanded with no damage to the birds. He stopped, took directions and listened to what I wanted him to do.
When it came to beating he was excellent, turned when whistled, recalled when whistled and hunted fast and thorough. To be honest he scared the sh*t out of me with his speed and determination, something I have not seen a great deal in him as Damian can testify. We flushed a few pheasants during the day, on some he sat steady because of the thick cover he was working in. He flushed a pheasant in some very thin cover and I could tell he was ready for the chase, fortunately the bird flushed in my direction and I could step in and correct Moss!!!!
On one drive I could tell he was getting a bit hot headed as he was pushing too far towards some feeders, I recalled him and stuck him on the lead for a bit to calm down. After we passed the area i took the lead off and continued hunting him up until the end of the drive.
We did not flush a great deal but it was really an ideal day to introduce him to pheasant shooting. I still have a bit of work to do with him, particularly heel work and try to remove his drive to chase flushed pheasants in thin cover but I think this will come with experience, training and patience.
Overall one very happy and gundog owner :). So I have to say a big thank you to Damian for his advice, patience and confidence in my ability to train Moss.
Scott with Moss the Cocker Spaniel - Oct 2014
I just wanted to say thank you for what you've supported us in so far and what I hope for in the future (glass of wine in the pub without an acting up shih tzu!). I was thinking about what we have done with him that has made us a bit soft, and when we got him he was quite poorly and had multiple horrid procedures and then got snapped at by 2x shepherds when walking him locally so I think the anxiety lies in the humans more than him, that being said! My mum should be bringing him the 8th as I'm on holiday, and she's particularly soft with him, so I'm just asking that you keep your eye on her as I know for fact that she still picks him up and let's him on furniture when I've told her that it's an absolute no. But honestly, I've noticed massive differences in his behaviour and my dad has finally accepted him as a "proper dog" and we managed to go to Lytham last weekend without much bother. We plan to take him round the moors and to the pub next weekend to see :)
Courtney with Solomon the Shih Tzu - Oct 2014
Where do we begin! Our dog Teddy is a rescue dog, the only thing we know about Teddy's past is that he had been abandoned and is roughly between 3 & 5 years old. Teddy had been with us for around 7 weeks when he began to show signs of aggression towards other dogs and was very dominant.
Our vet recommended that went to Damian for some training. We arranged a 1 to 1 session, we filled Damian in on what we knew about Teddy and then showed him how we walked Teddy, or rather how he walked us! Teddy is a fairly big dog and is very strong. Damian pointed out what we were doing wrong and within a few minutes of holding him on a more appropriate lead he had him walking much better. Damian then introduced us to one of his dogs, and we soon discovered that actually Teddy isn't aggressive, it was us being naive in handling our dog.
We began attending group dog training classes where we learnt how to walk Teddy properly and how to manage his behaviour.
We have now had Teddy for 6 months we, and he, have received outstanding training, support and advice from Damian who doesn't hesitate in telling us what we are doing right and the areas we need to improve.
In truth, if it wasn't for Damian's input Teddy probably wouldn't be our dog now, instead we have a dog who we wouldn't be without.
We cannot thank you enough for your professionalism, honesty and above all else your patience.
Kim and James with Teddy the Cross Breed - Sept 2014
I got my black Labrador pup (aka Tigger on ice) Evan at 9 weeks old, I have always wanted a well-trained dog that I could take round my horse and have the confidence that he would come back! From day 1 he was a bundle of energy and loved to test boundaries, so I knew training would be very important. I started training with him from 14 weeks, but the initial training I received was all based around treats, and even though I am sure at times I have bought a dust bin not a dog he was losing interest and focus on the basic commands I was asking of him when treats weren’t involved. After chatting to a few people I was told to give Damian a call, it was the best piece of advice I have ever took.
After a long chat with Damian and going through what training I had previously done with Evan, we agreed that the best idea was for me to attend the group dog training classes to help socialize Evan and to get him and me back to basics!
This is exactly what I did and have never looked back. From the very first class I could see how passionate Damian was about his work and his dogs, the way they respond to him, work with him and are constantly wagging there tail in the process as he always makes it fun, I knew I had come to the right place for me and for Evan.
His teaching methods were completely different from what I was shown previously, but Evan responded well with them and I could see over the weeks that he was finally responding to me in the way I wanted. I was elated the first time I just had to move my arm to achieve ‘heel up’ and seeing him starting to respond well to my sit whistle, I could finally see my hard work paying off. But I quickly realized it’s not just about training my dog I had to train myself as well – the big one to relax and not to panic if it doesn’t go right every time!
One of the things I have found really beneficial is Damian bringing different dogs in every week, to show you that they’re not all perfect, some are stubborn and over excitable, but if you are black and white and follow the basics you can have a beautifully behaved and attentive dog. It gave me a lot of confidence as Evan has matured he has become a very boisterous over excitable dog who likes to test boundaries. Tigger on ice would be the perfect description. But Damian has given an abundance of helpful advice and tips for me to try through the week, which has worked amazingly!
After attending my first course of training classes I decided that I would like to train Evan as a working gun dog, so we stepped out of the classroom and into 1-2-1 gundog training sessions. Fieldwork! Scary thought! I pictured numerous Marley and Me situations thinking once Evan was in an open field he would be off, but I was pleasantly surprised he remembered the commands he had learnt at dog training classes. Since my first lesson I have gone every 2 weeks and seen such improvements in both myself and Evan, which is no doubt down to Damian’s relaxed and black and white approach. I still have my homework to do and it shows if I’ve not done it, but the improvements from day one are amazing! I am so pleased with progress so far and even though he comes out like a bomb of energy every time, I now know if I keep calm and follow the rule of ‘black and white’ he behaves like a saint.
Evan spent ten days in residential training with Damian whilst I was on holiday as I wanted him to continue training and didn’t trust my parents to do it (sorry mum & dad). Damian put my mind at ease by showing me round his kennels and telling me about Evans training programme. I drove away knowing that my boy was in good hands and felt pretty sure he might not want to come back home after spending ten days enjoying himself in fields with Damian and his dogs. I came back to one happy Labrador and instantly noticed a difference in him once he got home, he seemed more settled in his crate, sharper on his commands and grown up in his attitude. The improvements showed in my 1-2-1 lesson after my holiday, he was more attentive and responsive and seemed like a different dog.
Evan still has a way to go in his training towards being a steady gundog, but I know with Damian’s help and guidance we can achieve that. I'm looking forward to continuing 1-2-1's to increase my own confidence and to continue to develop my bond with Evan. I appreciate all the help Damian has given me with Evan and wouldn’t hesitate in recommending him to anyone.
Vickie with Evan the Labrador - June 2014
Were to start ..we got Tag as an 8 week old puppy and the first 12 months were great we went to puppy training classes, socialised him all the things we thought we had to do. Tag grew in size and confidence and became the 'leader' of the pack. He is a smart dog and knew which buttons to press. On the lead he took us where he wanted to go slept where he wanted to, ate when he wanted to but one of the biggest problems for us was barking in the car..... Horrendous! How had we got in this position? We had to do something ! It was last chance saloon for Tag.
We knew we needed help but it had to be the right sort of help and that's when we phoned Damian. We arranged a 1-2-1 and in that hour he put us on the right track and gave us confidence to get our life back together. Three months later and a lot of hard work including a residential with Damian, attending classes every week and learning how to understand Tag walking him is a pleasure and one of the best times was walking along the pier in St Anne's last week and people commenting 'what a well behaved dog'. Barking in the car has stopped but he will test us every now and again but we now know how to deal with it.We will still continue to go to classes for as long as Damian lets us and continue to work with Tag everyday. We cannot thank Damian enough for his patience and knowledge and giving us a life we all enjoy.
Thank you Damian
Peter and Nicola and Tag
Peter/Nicola with Tag the German Shepherd - June 2014
Damian was recommended to me by a friend, I was having problems with my two year old GSD rebel.
On brining home a new puppy Lexi, Rebels behaviour changed. Normally a well mannered dog he had turned into the devil, and was showing high aggression to any other dog. Walks were no longer fun, half the time was spent hiding behind cars to avoid rebel seeing other dogs and me being dragged around like a rag doll.
I had tried many training classes, but these seemed to make him Worse. I had a long chat with Damian over the phone to see what he could do, he pointed out few things I was doing which was making matters worse and recommended 1-2-1 training with all 3 of my dogs.
A 1 hour drive, and we met with Damian, thing I found with him, he is straight talking, focus on the positives. What amazed me the most was how rebel just fell into line with him, 10 mins later Damian told us what the problem was, handed back a well behaved dog.
Feeling inspired by this we drove home and proceeded to bundle the dogs off to the local dog walking park (strike while the irons hot), it was amazing rebel was more relaxed no signs of aggression and happy walking past other dogs. I checked that I had infact brought the same dog home !
I continued training with Damian, am still not sure if I have been trained or Rebel, however job done,one well behaved non aggressive dog, now just waiting for group training classes with Damian.
I cannot recommend him enough, the bloke nows what he talking about and worth every penny
as the end results are just amazing and in a short period of time.
Thanks Damian, but your still not having Rebel...
Andrea with Rebel the German Shepherd - May 2014
Let's get it out the way – if you don't like people talking straight, or people who are confident in their abilities – don't go to Damian!
We've had our rescue Rotti x GSD Barney for almost a year. He's five. Around the house he's almost perfect but he's been a nightmare to walk and has been dog aggressive, including seriously attacking another dog when he once got loose. All this has left us not wanting to walk him and my partner loosing total confidence with him. We've taken Barney to two other behaviourists who recommended this, that, and the other but nothing has worked. A colleague suggested we speak to Damian and see what he could do.
I had a long chat with Damian on the phone and he was honest and straight talking. Even on the phone he started to identify some of the problems he thought we had and suggested we went to a 1-2-1 session with him a few days later
We met Damian earlier today. Within 5 minutes he told us that our dog was massively overweight and we loved him too much. 10 minutes after getting the dog out of the car he was walking perfectly to heel. 18 minutes after getting him out of the car he was walking right up to one of Damian's dogs and showing no interest in him at all. I can take all the constructive criticism in the world from a man who takes less than 20 minutes to inspire us with confidence with our family pet that we've struggled with, cried and argued about for a year!
We'll be going to some of Damian's classes to further increase OUR confidence (the dog is well behaved – he's not a problem dog) and working with Damian to progress our ability to live and work with our dog properly.
For those who think Damian is an expensive option, or they don't like the fact he is confident in his ability, or the fact he tells it exactly how he sees it and pulls no punches, I'd ask yo to meet his dogs, or meet our 8 ½ stone dog who until a few hours ago was almost uncontrollable on the lead. That's the same dog we've just walked 2 miles with very little issue.
Dave with Barney the German Shepherd x Rottweiler - May 2014
.. Where do I start ,
I first spoke to Damian re Gundog Training after a I had bought a dog at 11 months (part trained). My thoughts of a part trained dog and what I got where very different....
I trained for a while with another trainer maybe a month but it was no fun for me or the dog it was very regimented and almost as if the dog was working out of fear ... So I contacted Damian spoke to him and arranged a 1-2-1 Gundog Lesson.. we had a runner a dog not focused you name it we had it.
So at the end of the lesson the following advice was given... Relax with your dog he is not doing it because he is disobeying you, he does not understand what you want, You are to erratic in your actions/commands the dog is confused fearful almost. Stop focussing on the negative beating your self up because he run off ,So he run off but he come back in 5 minutes and not half hour so he is slowly trusting you as he come back.
Damian has given me the confidence to train my dog with care and attention .. If any thing he has trained me.
I am now a more relaxed trainer who is getting from my dog what I always wanted and enjoying every minute .. Don't get me wrong it goes wrong from time to time but a quick call and short discussion is all it takes to put you right and sort the problems.
I have just started Gundog Training Classes that are very good for us both and gives us access to lots more training scenarios with other dogs around in a very relaxed atmosphere.
(no money changed hands in the writing of this)
Darren with Ollie the Labrador - May 2014
Thank you for the excellent guidance and encouragement you provide in your dog training classes and 121 training.
When I first started coming to Damian's training classes, Django seemed to be a born couch potato - even at his puppy stage. It was a real struggle to get him to walk very far on a lead without him digging his heels in, or turning his attention to whatever he could smell on the ground.
With Damian's help I learned that I needed to give my own energy levels a boost and get Django's attention by being the most exciting person in the room - no easy feat when your dog is lying down yawning away! Unconventional dog that he is, it took some time and some bribery with old receipts and pieces of straw (much to Damian's amusement) before Django finally started to focus and learn the all-important 'watch' command. Now, after only three courses, he is a different dog and I am a different owner.
I am so proud that he can perform a sit/stay/recall off lead even with distractions. I watch him with a smile as he walks happily to heel and I know we still have a lot to learn, but Damian has given us strong foundations to build on. We couldn't have improved so much in such a short space of time without his skills and advice.
Vicky with Django the Lurcher - April 2014
Thank you for the excellent guidance and encouragement you provide in your dog training classes and 121 training.
At yesterday's class I was able to get Alfie to sit and recall off lead. This is such an achievement for me compared to the beginning of the year when it was a major struggle to get Alfie into the class at all - he would bite and pull his own lead and I couldn't get Alfie's focus during class.
Following class yesterday I took Alfie for a walk and we came across a couple walking their two dogs who were both barking and lunging. I got Alfie to sit and stay while the two dogs passed us and the couple commented how well behaved my dog was. I've a long way to go with Alfie but this comment was so good to hear as Alfie responding to my command with the distraction of other dogs around just wouldn't have been possible prior to training with you.
I'm really pleased with progress made so far and I'm looking forward to continuing training classes to increase my own confidence and to continue to develop my bond with Alfie.
Lisa with Alfie the Jack Russell - March 2014
Just wanted to say thanks for a good 6 weeks training class. You are very good at what you do and I will definitely recommend you. I'm very pleased already with Lulu's improvements, still needs a lot of work though. And little Kipper, well I need to not expect too much just yet...Maybe we will see you again when he is bigger in an advanced class?
Sandra with Lulu/Kipper the Springer Spaniels - March 2014
Thanks so much for all your help on Thursday! Absolutely invaluable!
We noticed a change in Gus almost as soon as you left! You are the dog whisperer! Went and bought him a slip lead that afternoon and have noticed a HUGE improvement with him walking and his general behaviour already! Luke even took him on a 4 mile walk in the rain today! So you have definitely made an impression for the best on both us and Gus!
Can't thank you enough!
Adara and Luke with Gus the Hamilton Hound - Feb 2014
I want to thank you for all your help but we won't be continuing with training at this time due to work commitments. I feel Bella has come on a long way and think we have all benefitted from your classes, so thanks again.
Rebecca with Bella the Miniature Australian Shepherd - Feb 2014
I first spoke to Damian on the phone regarding my 13 week old Lab and the difficulties I was having with her recall when out walking. We agreed that the best idea was for me to attend group dog classes to help socialise Bella and get her used to being around other dogs.
This is exactly what we did and after just one session (an hour) with Damian I could immediately see a difference in the way Bella was responding to me and quickly learned that it was as much about me learning as it was about Bella learning. Damian gave an abundance of helpful advice and tips for me to try through the week ready for the class the following weekend. Throughout the week I could not believe the difference in Bella, she was much more responsive to my commands and seemed a lot more “with me” rather than against me.
After attending a few of Damian’s classes I decided that I was going to put Bella to work and train her as a working gundog, this is something that I had been thinking about from day 1 but was never really to sure or confident enough to consider starting to train her, however with Damian’s help I knew that the task would be a lot easier.
I discussed the idea with Damian and we arranged a 1-2-1 lesson with Bella to start the basics and to educate me in the methods of training as much as her. The first 1-2-1 was a great success with Bella showing great promise for the future, this was no doubt down to Damian’s relaxed and exceptionally professional approach. You can see the love he has for his own dogs and the dogs he trains for clients, his bond with them really is quite amazing.
We are now 3 months down the line and Bella is making exceptional progress training with Damian, her gundog work is far beyond what i ever imagined we could achieve in such a short space of time. We now attend the weekly group gun dog lessons, which are great! Its a fantastic way to get together with other people that enjoy training their gun dogs and to help each other out all we can.
I 100% believe that what we have achieved would not have been near possible without the help and knowledge of Damian and more importantly the amazing understanding and bond he has with the dogs. I couldn't imagine training my pooch with anyone else.
I really cant thank him enough for all the help and time he has given to us.
Jason with Bella the Labrador - Jan 2014
When my new puppy had fully settled in to my house an issue developed between him & my pug. Although he had total respect for my male Rottweiler, he would constantly attack my pug when out on a walk & especially when in the house & I’d have to break them up as my normally feisty pug wouldn’t stand up to him. As soon as I left the room he would start on her & it was clearly causing her a lot of stress as she would hide under the table or in the kitchen. I spoke to Damian about it, who knows Easo well anyway & he told me the issue was that the pug was allowed on the furniture & there was an imbalance in structure in the pack….
I was reluctant to change things at 1st, hoping it would settle on it’s own but when I finally accepted that something had to be done the change was amazing! Within 24 hours Easo had stopped having a go at her at every opportunity & even calmed down himself! My home is now much more settled & everyone is more relaxed & I even found them on the same bed the day after! I never doubted he was right but I certainly didn’t expect it be so quick! I can now go upstairs, without having to separate them 1st & although he’ll still chance his luck with her it’s nothing to what it was! My pug is slowly getting used to the new routine & I can now sit down of an evening without Easo constantly requiring attention of some sort! Thank you very He’ll also be pleased to know I have confined her to the back seat of the car, securely , rather than letting her roam around, when the car was stationery which was another piece of advise he gave me.
I’d really like to take this opportunity to say a big thank you to him for all his help, patience & advise, not just on this, but several issues I’ve had with Easo. He is always happy to take the time to speak to me and knows exactly what I’m hoping to achieve. He wants you to succeed with your dog. As a trainer, I can’t recommend him highly enough and I look forward to continuing to train with him in the new year.
Vicki with Easo the German Shepherd - Jan 2014
It has been an incredible year for me, one way and another, but the one of the things that has kept me together has been my trusted pal, Mollie. She, whom you found for me more than a year ago, has been a working progress project for me. Something to think about outside of work. Mollie is absolutely loyal, a wonderful working dog and a great cuddle in the evening.
Thank you for all your support (I know I have been an arse sometimes), encouragement and advice and the telephone calls egging me on. It means a lot to me. Joining the club has helped me get out of the mundane work ethic I have had for more than 30 years, so it’s a hard habit to break. Mollie has provided that outlet for me to enjoy myself, outside in the fresh air and with a group of great people who are also supportive. Its also been something for me, and me alone. Thanks for today. For me the icing on the cake was Mollie out doing the right thing. Consistent is the word for 2014 with many more great sessions with you and the Club.
Thanks Damian from the bottom of my heart for everything and finding Mollie for me.
Jenny with Mollie the Cocker Spaniel - Dec 2013
Awesome 1st lesson with Damian, feeling positive about mine and Connie's progress, thank you.
Francesca with Connie the Springer Spaniel - Dec 2013
I originally took my Springer Spaniel Tess (18 months old) to Damian in June of this year. From my initial meeting I knew Damian was a good man and had a genuine love for all dogs. He was able to tell me instantly what was needed to be done with Tess and what her potential was. A dog is a big commitment, I knew that when I bought her. It's also a big commitment whether you want a dog as a pet or as a working dog. Funds were pretty tight and I couldn't commit to the training. However, after just one assessment with Damian, Tess behaved differently. Especially on the lead.
I got back in touch with Damian in November. Not the best time of year to begin training as it's dark for most of the next few months. Especially in Lancashire. However, I wanted Tess to achieve her full potential as a working dog! but I also wanted to become part of the gun dog scene. It was great to see Damian again, who could remember everything we had discussed 6 months earlier. Quite remarkable, really. We had another one to one session (assessment) which is not an easy hour, as Damian basically points out all the things you have been doing wrong. But it's for your own good. He gave me the reigns back to be in charge and I went away to practice for the next two weeks.
The next meeting he brought one of his young spaniels by the name of Nell. A cracking dog. Nell and Tess spent the next hour doing what working dogs are made for. I have never smiled as much in that hour with my dog before. We had a real bond and when she looked into my eyes, it was almost like she was thanking me. Damian speaks a lot of sense and is straight to the point. I like that about him. He is a strong character and everything he does is for the dog. I have now joined Damian's gun dog club and hope over the next few months that my bound with Tess grows and my bound with the gun dog world does too.
The next few months will be exciting times. I am very fortunate to have met Damian, he is truly a decent and honest bloke. Which is rare in this world. I would recommend Damian to anyone who wants to get the potential out of their dog. I hope over the next few months that I continue to learn from the master. I hope that we become friends, he shares many views that I do.
I will post another update in a months time and tell you what Tess has got up to next.
John with Tess the Springer Spaniel - Dec 2013
Over the past few weeks Damian has been pushing me more and more to give serious thought to the idea of selling one of my dogs. Why… because my boys are siblings… bought in haste, and without much thought given to how they’d develop and mature together. I initially bought them as pets, even though they’ve a great pedigree and are from good working stock. However, following a residential stay with Damian, he unlocked their true potential, giving me a glimmer of what they were truly capable of, and suddenly I was hooked and eager to train and work both dogs.
I commenced training on a weekly basis with both boys and the transformation in their behaviour was amazing. I had the time to devote to them and thought naively that things could only get better. What I didn’t factor in was the special bond my boys were forming. Working them together became increasingly difficult and Damian recommended I work them separately. I followed his advice and both boys thrived; however the situation wasn’t ideal. I was actually hindering my dogs’ progress and began to realise that I was keeping them together for my own selfish needs.
I followed Damian’s advice and made the very hard decision to part with my little Reggie. Please read his blog on Tessleymoor Gundogs.
Thank you Damian for all your help and support…I would never have made the decision without you, and whilst it breaks my heart I know it was the right one.
Sheila with Reggie the Springer Spaniel - Dec 2013
Sam my little working Cocker my heart beat loved him with a passion right from the minute I set eyes on him at six weeks old. Spent a year going to all the conventional training classes sometimes up to 3 times a week travelling two hours at a time. Thought I had a well trained well behaved dog. Imagine my horror when at 14 months he flushed a couple of pheasant and all the training went out of-the window. Red mist descended every time we were out. Recall which had always been one of the strong points gone! Nothing worked any more. In desperation and under the threat of Sam being shot I contacted Damian. The first thing I learnt and something I urge anyone considering buying one of these wonderful dogs is get advice from a expert Sam's breed lines means he's hard wired to work he would never have been happy just been a house dog that went for long walks. And although I hate to say it is probably a waste of a talented dog.
Damian much to my horror recommended a month of residential training ! which we then followed with a course of one to ones 4 me to learn how to work him 2 his working potential although we still have a long way to go Sam is a happier dog. And much to my surprise is more tired after 30 minutes of being worked than three hours walking
I can't thank Damian enough for the advice guidance and support. Janine and Sam.
Janine with Sam the Cocker Spaniel - Nov 2013
Thanks for your encouragement, really pleased to be finally making progress, appreciate all your help.
Helen with Meggie the English Pointer - Nov 2013
I first spoke to Damian after weeks and weeks of online research, pheromone diffusers, multiple peoples ‘dog training’ advice all to no avail and we were at our witts end with our tiny puppy George. Although tiny, he was becoming more and more the biggest part of the household, he was more work than our almost two year old son! He barked constantly, wouldn’t leave our sides and was starting to show signs of dominance towards us all. We were at the point where he couldn’t be left alone, my husband and I were eating at separate times and my son’s food was constantly being stolen. No matter what we did he wouldn’t listen, he seemed to bark more and one day I had enough and rushed to the Internet and found Damian’s number, I called and he gave me more advice on that telephone call than we ever found online or in any book. We booked in our home assessment and were counting down the days until we could solve all the problems with George. Damian arrived and almost instantly George was most certainly put in his place, somewhere he had never been before. It was even difficult to get George to misbehave whist Damian was around, he didn’t bark, slept happily in his crate….a brand new puppy all together. And from that day he has been a completely different dog to be around, happy, eager to please but content with himself and doesn’t take advantage of situations like he was. I am so glad Damian has helped us have a happy, easy going home again…I would have never given up on George and would have continued in a search to help him but I am certain without Damian’s help we would still be here sat in different rooms, never leaving his side and feeling more and more frustrated that he is taking over. If anyone is struggling with their dog and their behaviour is becoming such an issue please contact Damian, it is worth every penny to have a peaceful happy household with a calm respectful dog. Thank you so much Damian from the Bamber Household.
Kayleigh and Matt with George the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel - Oct 2013
After considerable research I decided to contact Damian to help both me & my Weimaraner Fletcher.
Fletcher is a head strong adult male & I was struggling to control him whilst out walking. He was pulling on the lead, lunging at other dogs & showing signs of aggression.
Fletcher & I met Damian for an initial assessment & it was agreed that Fletcher was suitable for residential training. I immediately felt confident with Damian's ability to help me & Fletch. He put me at ease which isn't an easy task!
On my way to drop Fletch off for his 2 weeks stay I was feeling very emotional but when I arrived Damian gave me all the reassurances I needed & I drove away feeling happy that my boy was in good hands.
Throughout the 2 weeks, Damian kept in regular contact with me providing updates on Fletchers progress & I'm pleased to say it was all really positive.
We agreed that following his residential training Fletcher & I would have 1-2-1 training with Damian before progressing to group training.
Prior to collecting Fletch, I asked Damian if I could attend one of his group classes to observe so that I would know what to expect. As Fletcher had been doing so well, Damian decided that both Fletch & I would attend the class. To say I was nervous would be an understatement. However, Damian was confident that Fletch would be absolutely fine.
Fletch & I attended the class & he was an absolute star. Damian used him for demonstrations & my boy took it all in his stride. I couldn't have been happier with the progress that had been made in 2 weeks.
Fletcher is now back home with me. I have some work to do to build up my confidence in my ability to handle Fletcher but I have 1-2-1sessions planned with Damian before I return to group classes. However, Fletch & I have been out together today & it was both a pleasant & positive experience.
I cannot thank Damian enough for the work he has done with Fletcher so far & I look forward to continuing working with him to rebuild the bond between me & boy.
I would definitely recommend Damian to anyone who needs support, guidance or training for their dog.
Tracey with Fletcher the Weimaraner - Sept 2013
Many thanks for all your time and patience on all the courses that we attended, George as come on in leaps and bounds with your professional advice and we hope to carry on as we left off.
Ann and I hope to see you later in the year for further professional gundog training.
The courses have been fun with the relaxed and funny side with great humour along the way many thanks, Jim, Ann and George the Labrador.
Jim and Ann with George the Labrador - Aug 2013
Thanks for your help and I feel that we are now getting things moving with Cloud. When I think back to the desperate state we were in when we first called you and how he is today, there has been fantastic progress and he is reaching the ideal I wanted for a hill walking companion.
Brendan with Cloud the Siberian Husky - Aug 2013
Thank you so much for today, you have no idea how good I am feeling right now after this mornings results. I am determined to get Otis to the standard your dogs are, and I am so glad to have found not only the best dog trainer but a great dummy thrower. LOL!
Lynn with Otis the Labradoodle - July 2013
I just wanted to drop you a mail to let you know how impressed I was with tonight's session and how much I am looking forward to improving my relationship with Max.
Your interaction with Max showed me how much potential there is for me to improve and how much fulfilment and enjoyment we can have with him.
Hope I didn't disrupt the session with my comments. They help me affirm my understanding and hopefully learn.
A week of training awaits and I look forward to next weeks session.
Chris with Max the Standard Schnauzer - July 2013
In April 2013 training commenced with my two Springer Spaniels, Ronnie and Reggie. We started with two weeks residential gundog training, and following the success of this I decided that I would like to further their training with 1-1 gundog lessons. Collectively we achieved some great results, however it became apparent that the boys would benefit from working in a larger group and Damian decided that they were ready to join a a group gundog lesson of ten.
Five weeks of group lessons and me and the boys are buzzing! Great fun and we've learnt do much! Again we've moved forward and are now working in pairs - Ronnie and Reggie are alternating with Amber the Labrador, with lots of focus on steadiness.
With Damian's guidance and direction, over the coming months, I look forward to achieving a good working relationship with my two dogs.
Sheila with Ronnie/Reggie the Springer Spaniels - July 2013
I have a very boisterous 10 month old chocolate Labrador. We have been training with Damian since she was 12 weeks old. Initially we did 2 of the six week ‘basic dog training’ courses and have been having regular 1:1′s since. We have recently Been attending the group gundog training also.
Although She is progressing really well with everything that is thrown at her in the 1:1 sessions , we have found it difficult to replicate the same standard when she is around other people and dogs despite her being well socialised early on. She just cant resist running over to play! After discussion with damian regarding how to progress this, He asked if i would be willing to try buddying up with another client and her dog(s) to road test a new way of training he was considering offering as an option; training as a pair, rather than on our own. I thought this was a great idea and just what we needed to hopefully help manage my little girls attention span problems and improve her social etiquette. We have had 2 lessons so far with our training buddies and I have been really impressed (particularly with Damian’s matchmaking skills-he couldn’t have paired us up with a more suitable partner).
We are currently working on practicing the techniques we have been working on in our 1:1s and the gundog training but with another 1 or 2 dogs working on the same things around us (rather than a whole group). this is getting her used to working around other dogs rather than playing, but in a more graduated fashion. it is still work in practice and we have a way to go, but we have already seen an improvement in her attention span & focus in the 2 sessions we have had so far. Her steadiness is much better and her retrieves coming on. Although she is still making a break for it on occasion to play with the other dogs, the frequency seems to be reducing (I hope my partner will agree!). This type of session is just what we needed and I would really recommend them to anyone whose dog needs practice working around other dogs in a guided and controlled environment.
Lindsey with Amber the Labrador - July 2013
So impressed with Ralph after his 2 week residential dog training with Damian. After bolting a couple of times before residential training, the day after he returned we were on a walk and he picked up a scent and started heading off but after using the whistle he immediately stopped and returned to my side and sat down, to say I was Impressed is an understatement!
Adrian with Ralph the Springer Spaniel - June 2013
Otis is a second generation Labradoodle, a breed that is half labrador, half poodle, we had researched the breed and found the dogs to be both very laid back but with a boisterous streak and a willingness to learn.
We had looked into all kinds of puppy training and my husband had come across Damian’s Dog-training 4 u website, after having numerous conversations with Damian regarding our puppy and the best way to train him I knew he was the best person to train both us and our dog.
After arriving for the first dog training session on a Saturday morning we were surprised at the amount of puppies that all wanted to play and misbehave, after only a few weeks we started to see a marked improvement in his behaviour and as Otis got older and a little more wiser and the basics that we were taught started to sink in, Damian suggested we further his training and push him a little more by further by joining the gundog training classes that he does on a Saturday afternoon, we arrived to find all manor of gun dogs all training to be working dogs and Otis the gangly Labradoodle who just wants to join in the fun, after the first week and a few purchases we went full steam ahead to get him up to speed.
On the second week his sit waits were brilliant he would sit there for as long as I needed him to before sending him out to retrieve the dummy, and at just 7 months old this is an achievement. We still have to overcome the problem of him not returning with the dummy, he does come back but in a round about way and this is a work in progress which sometimes he understands and other times he will run behind me and lie down and want to chew it, he has a laid back approach to giving you anything like toys so we have to make it fun for him, but he is willing to learn and loves to work. I really enjoy working with my dog and we train with some excellent dogs and handlers who are really friendly and very helpful when it comes to getting the best out of our dogs.
I would definitely recommend Damian to anyone who wishes to get the best training money can buy. I am planning to continue with these classes because it keeps me focused on getting Otis to the level of a working dog which for a Labradoodle will be an achievement, and also because it is fun and very full-filling to see the hard work pay off, and because I simply love working with dogs.
Lynn with Otis the Labradoodle - June 2013
Awesome gundog training lesson, no calling name, dummy retrieves great. Thanks. Worth every penny!
Jenny with Molly the Cocker Spaniel - June 2013
Brilliant couple of hours gundog training, worth every penny and the 6 3/4 hours in the car. Im looking forward to coming back up in August
Phil with Hazel the Springer Spaniel - June 2013
I can't believe the difference in Hudson after an hour with you. I walked him through some chickens this morning. No pulling, no barking and he remained focused. Even the wife can walk him. Thanks.
Tim with Hudson the Labrador- May 2013
It became apparent that we were having difficulties controlling him and he was becoming increasingly disobedient around the house doing things such as mouthing, biting clothing and constant jumping up for attention.
We decided to book a home visit with Damian to let him asses what was going on. Immediately as Damian walked in the door he had Ralph under control without even touching him! Damian then went through the visit reassuring us that Ralph was not a disobedient dog, but that we had not put the right structures and boundaries in place within the house and that Ralph was taking advantage of this and taking liberties. Since then we have stuck to Damian's advice and Ralph has become a much more balanced dog.
I would recommend Damian to anyone who wants advice or training in any way (even for the owners in our case!). He is very knowledgable, friendly and even goes the extra mile supporting you when you have any queries in the future.
We have been so pleased with Damian so far we have cancelled the currently planned kennels Ralph was going to visit whilst we go on honeymoon and we have booked Ralph in for some Residential Training as we know he will be treated well and Damian will instil some first class training.
Adrian and Dannielle with Ralph the Springer Spaniel - May 2013
Last year we decided to add a new addition to our Family. George is a Black Labrador now fourteen months old. We found he was very strong willed little chap, very bright, the normal things like house training, sitting were easy to teach him, but at about four months we decided to get some order in our lives and go to a local puppy class, we tried two, but didn't feel they were for us, on a recommendation from our vet we contacted Damian to arrange a meeting for a 1-2-1 assessment, on George and us. I had read all the books and been on the internet on dog training but felt this was not working, we needed instruction, we had three 1-2-1 lessons with Damian. George was doing everything he should when Damian handled him, we were a different matter, so it was decided we would do a 6 weeks obedience course open to all types of breeds. On arrival we felt very much at ease as Damian is very down to earth. After only three weeks we can see a big difference in George he is responding to all basic commands and will walk to heel. The training class is fun and relaxed and we hope to carry on with further training for us and George, eventually we hope after training George will become a fully trained gun dog .We would both like to thank Damian for his patients and understanding, George is now getting to be a pleasure to take out for a walk without having your arm pulled out.
Ann and Jimmy with George the Labrador - May 2013
We've both enjoyed the dog training course on Sat mornings, I have decided to try and consolidate what we have learnt so will not be enrolling on the forthcoming course, (but I might be back at a later date), thank you for all the invaluable help.
Allison with Freddie the Beagle - April 2013
Ronnie and Reggie came to me at 12 weeks old from a lovely guy in Oswaldtwistle. Their mother is beautiful, and both parents are steady working gundogs.
During the first few months with the boys I did try hard to keep up with their training, however as Damian writes in his blog I soon became complacent; my sister had just passed away suddenly and I took comfort in going off on long walks with them. It helped me in the short term, but now I have two dogs in need of some structure and boundaries.
I had a trip planned overseas and was starting to worry about having to put the boys in boarding kennels, with little or no stimulation, when a neighbour recommended Damian. Within one minute of speaking to him I knew I’d found somebody who could help me, and on 23 March off went Ronnie and Reggie for two weeks residential training.
What a difference after two weeks! It’s remarkable to see just what Damian has achieved, and I’m enjoying putting into practice what they’ve been taught so far. They’re a joy now on the lead, walking to heel. I was thinking I’d miss walking them together, when in fact I’m finding that working with them individually is very rewarding.
I’m looking forward to starting 1-2-1 gundog training sessions this Friday, and whilst I appreciate it’s going to be a long journey I know with Damian’s experience, guidance and honesty I’m going to enjoy it.
Sheila with Ronnie/Reggie the Springer Spaniels - April 2013
Maisy is our first dog and is adored by the family. People would happily give us advice and let us know that she is timid and quite nervous. This is where my problems started; I was passing my fears onto her and making the situation worse. Maisy was showing signs of aggression, fear of other dogs and did not listen or respect us. This is where Damian became my much needed support.
After an initial 1-1 assessment it was decided that she needed to attend regular dog training classes which we have for 3 courses and thoroughly enjoyed. Damian has helped me to be consistent with my training and accept that if we have a bad day then there is always tomorrow to try again. With Damian’s support, Maisy recognises her place in the family and that the sofa is out of bounds. She is able to walk to heel, is very much focused on her owner, can sit and wait and will recall to a whistle even with distractions around her. The difference in her is amazing and we have a happy and relaxed dog and owner.
Thanks for all your help and the knowledge that I can email or phone for any further support when needed.
Jane with Maisy the Miniature Schnauzer - April 2013
Amber became a member of our household at the beginning of June 2012 when she was 9 weeks old, and everything was going well, although she was initially very timid outside and wouldn’t let us out of her sight, until late October when she started to run off when we were out for walks. We took her to obedience classes, which she excelled at as they were held indoors and she has always done as she was told to do indoors! But her continual pulling on the lead and then running away for over an hour one day and then the following week in early December she ran out onto the main road on her early morning walk which meant that we had to do something.
After searching the internet, we came across Damian’s website and thought it was worth a try, so we rang him and agreed that she needed to spend two weeks with him as a resident, so we left her the Monday before Christmas and picked her up on New Years Day.
As soon as Damian saw her he said that she was going to be a longterm project! So once the two weeks was up, we started fortnightly one-on-ones; then as the weeks went past we started to see major improvements in her behaviour outside. She isn’t perfect yet, walking to heel is still a challenge, although better off the lead than on the lead at the moment; but her love of being outside and being trained is clear to see and more fun for us than a pulling dog.
We can’t thank Damian enough for the support he has given us and Amber; and would recommend him to anyone, but our suggestion is that you don’t leave it as long as we did! She is currently back with Damian for another two weeks while we are skiing in the USA and are looking forward to seeing the next leap forwards in her behaviour. We know that she will enjoy her “holiday” even if we did send her with a cut paw…, We are still not sure whether it is Amber or us being trained, but we are very pleased with the outcome and Damian’s devotion and passion to his and our dogs is clear to see.
Graham and Carol with Amber the Springer Spaniel - March 2013
I have a black Labrador called Bailey who I started training at the age of 10 weeks. I had joined some local puppy training classes however I soon lost interest and was not keen on some of the approaches that they used. I then embarked on seeking out a reputable dog trainer whilst receiving recommendations from friends who owned gun dogs. I had purchased books and DVD's to help with the training before coming across Damian's website. I enjoyed reading all the positive testimonials and liked Damian's attitude towards training dogs. I initially contacted him via email and he was quick to respond with a phone call to discuss Bailey and the problems that I was experiencing with his training.
I booked an initial assessment with Damian and it was clear that my dog required basic obedience training in order to obtain his focus and to stop him from running off. I was amazed by what Damian was able to achieve after just 1 lesson and could immediately see the potential in Bailey. I chose to continue using Damian and to train Bailey as a working gundog. I started my training with 1-2-1 gundog training sessions and have since booked Bailey into residential gundog training. Bailey has showed some significant improvement and is now able to walk to heel; respond to the whistle for sit, stay and recall; sit steady for a thrown dummy and will retrieve the dummy to hand.
Bailey still has a long way to go with his training towards being a steady working gundog and I will continue with 1-2-1 gundog training sessions to ensure continuity. I appreciate all the help that Damian has provided me with in training Bailey and would not hesitate in recommending Damian to anyone who requires dog or gundog training.
Lauren with Bailey the Labrador - March 2013
About a year ago I found myself stood on a footpath in the woods near my house with a whistle round my neck and a slip lead in my hand and no dog. My 6 month old Munsterlander puppy had picked up a scent and gone. I had no idea where she was and was helpless to get her back all I could do was hope she would return to where she had gone from. She did return some 50 minutes later....
Once home We began to think of what to do. We had had dogs before we had read the books and been to regulars training classes but felt that we were way out of our depth. That' s when we found Damian' s website and gave him a call.
So, our new path started and we have now attended training classes, had 1:2:1 sessions and even residential training for our dog with Damain. He has always given us consistent and honest guidance and advice for us and our dog. He has always been contactable when things aren't going well. If you are willing to put in the time and effort and listen to sound advice then you can make progress and it will all be worth while.
Today I walked the same path through the woods with my dog running off her lead and .......when I whistled her she came back sat beside me and waited until I told her to carry on
Hillary and John with Inka the Munsterlander - March 2013
Just a quick message to say how much Hannah and I (and Lester) enjoyed meeting you and the session yesterday. With being slightly unsure of the best way forward but we are both really happy and excited at the prospect of taking Lester's Gun training forward.
Alex and Hannah with Lester the Springer Spaniel - January 2013
I would first like to say a big thank you to Damian for the help, advice & training given to both myself &Bizzy.
I got Bizzy a 10month old part trained English Springer Spaniel. It was clear she had some very basic training but she showed great potential as a gundog, after doing some training with her I decided I could not devote the time (Work/family commitments & exercising working my Labrador) needed to bring her on & instil the discipline & control needed for a gundog which is so important at such young age before too many bad habits become major problems. After speaking to Damian, Bizzy then went on a 6week residential training programme. I had been drawn to Damian's approach to training & the fact that he really seemed to care about all the dogs well being not about boasting as to how many Field trial champions he had produced. The cleanliness of the kennels and facilities were very reassuring when I dropped Bizzy off. Throughout Bizzy's time with Damian he kept me well informed of how she was progressing & always had time for me when I spoke to him.
When I picked Bizzy up she really had come on & it was clear some quality training had been instilled, although she was a long way from being the finished article. After returning home & carrying on training with Bizzy she settled in & responded well to my commands. Four days later I took Bizzy beating keeping a very close eye on her & she was truly exceptional getting better with every drive. The keeper amongst others commented on how well behaved she was & wished that he had more dogs in the line like her! I had an amazing day working/training a pup that was not even a year old. Although Bizzy still has a lot to learn & it will be a couple of seasons before she is absolutely spot on, the training she received from Damian really has been a great foundation.
It really is a testament to Damian & his approach to training that a dog I had for 2 weeks went away for training for 6 weeks then 4 days after being back with me was working well & under control in the beating line.
Thank you once again Damian, I now know I can look forward to many years of working Bizzy something she was bred for & will enjoy equally.
Lee with Bizzy the Springer Spaniel - January 2013
Thank you Damian for all your help and advice, We have had great fun learning from you. Your teaching style and demonstrations are the best we have come across in 25 years of dog ownership. Betsy and ourselves have benefitted greatly from working with you, she is still challenging us but we know that it is us that have to work on our consistency - Betsy knows exactly what to do!!
Stephen and Gillian with Betsy the Flatcoat Retriever - January 2013
In October last year my labrador bitch Dolly had a litter of 11 pups of which we decided to keep the spirited one, who we named Poppet. Poppet is 100% adorable & very quickly became the centre of the family's attention and without my realising, established herself as the pack leader! Whilst I attempted to instill the basics, she still caused havoc,ruling the roost,constant chewing & running off to greet other dogs. Walking the two of them out was a nightmare and a constant battle to get them to heel.Realising that I needed to regain control & Poppet now being 8months & growing in both strength and spirit, I began some research & I came across Damians website! I read numerous testimonials & blogs & felt Damian's obvious passion for his dogs,work & positive results would make him the ideal person to help. I spoke to Damian at length and we arranged an initial assesment with both bitches. Damian was welcoming and very quickly got the measure of both Dolly,Poppet & Myself! Basically, I was way to soft with them, they were overloved & my boundarys were very grey, leading to them ruling the roost. Damian suggested I attended his dog obedience training classes with Poppet,which I did for approx 18wks. I mirrored the training at home with Dolly & they came on leaps & bounds. Damian also persuaded me to invest in a crate, which I dragged my heels in getting only to wishI had done it a lot sooner! Poppet is now able to spend most of the class off lead, sitting, waiting,walking to heel & recall etc.
In Nov we decided Poppet would benefit from a weeks residential training. I was a wreck letting her go even though I knew she was in safe hands, and I was as lost without Poppet as she was lost without me and this showed in her lack of usual confidence. we had literally been each others shadows for 12months. It became clear that although Poppet had progressed well, that I was over loving her which was unhealthy for both of us. Damian kindly but firmly pointed this out and explained the boundarys had to be black and white & you really can overlove a dog to its detriment. He worked on her confidence,attention and sharpening up her basic training.And my only regret is having sent her for one week instead of two! On returning home Poppet was more grounded & attentive. The children also now love walking her whereas before it was any excuse not to! And as a family we are firmer in our boundarys with them both. We have now started on one to ones with Damian which are fun as well as invaluable. In which we are applying the training learnt in classes in an outdoor enviroment. We are also working on Poppets steadiness,retrieves & delivering to hand. Damian is very understanding & patient with my lack of co ordination and has adapted sessions to take this in to account which I appreciate. I look forward to continuing our training with Damian and attending gundog training group sessions in the future. Thank you Damian for your constant help,support & honesty.
Suzie with Dolly and Poppet the Labradors - December 2012
Thank you for all your help with training Jess to date, just put a story together as a testimonial for your website!:-
Jess Border Collie age 2 years old:
Having been to various dog trainers for guidance with my Jess, I still was not in control of her even though I was using all the tactics taught by the trainers, which involved treats. I was on the brink of despair and considering re homing Jess, until I met Damian at dog training 4u. Damian has restored my faith in Jess who is overcoming her social skills with other dogs since attending the classes. Jess pulled when walking, enjoyed being off lead but would not come back to me until she was ready! She is a very nervous dog having had half an ear chewed off by her siblings!
Within 2 minutes Damian had her walking to heal – I could not believe my eyes! Damian was very honest with me from the start and advised that Jess and I had lost our bond… we needed to have fun together and I needed to stop over compensating for the bad start in life she had suffered. Border Collies being such intelligent dogs were easy to train however I was letting Jess rule the roost!
Our dog walking now is much more pleasurable although not 100% yet which is why I am still attending Damian’s classes. Damian has been such a massive help to me with Jess. He takes time to explain each step of the training. The group classes are so enjoyable and Jess loves attending and loves Damian. She has complete trust in him and as soon as he takes her lead she is completely in his control – I just need the training now so I am in control!! My son Ben age 9 has attended 3 classes with me and at the last session he was able to make Jess sit and wait for over 30 seconds off lead while the other dogs were around. Ben listened to Damian’s techniques and followed them which enables him to handle Jess now better than I do! Ben was so impressed with Damian he bought him a box of heros for Christmas as he says “Damian is our hero helping us with Jess mum”.
I just want anyone out there to know of Damian at Dog training 4u as his training is second to none, he is very approachable with any issues you have with your dog and takes time with you and your dog to enable the training to be a huge success. Thank you Damian.
Elaine and Ben with Jess the Border Collie - December 2012
We would just like to say a massive thank you for all your help with Lola. We never thought we could achieve the level of obedience which you have instilled in only two weeks! We have gone from dreading the daily walk to looking forward to taking her out and arguing over who handles her haha! I never thought I would see that day.
We know that we still have a long way to go and we are looking forward to seeing you again over the coming weeks and months to continue progressing both Lola’s training and our knowledge. We now understand where we were going wrong and that the majority, if not all of Lola’s behavioural issues where a direct result of our inability to provide her with consistency and boundaries. We only wish we would have taken this step sooner.
Thanks again and see you soon
Fliss and Jason with Lola the Labrador - October 2012
Just wanted to say thanks for all your help, honesty and support with Poppy. Thanks to you she has found a lovely home and will hopefully become the dog she deserves to be.
Poppy the Springador - October 2012
Hi Damian and anyone who reads this.
I had decided to buy a dog to train to the gun when out of the blue came Blue, a Flatcoat pup free to a good home. Work commitments at the time meant I couldn't take him straight away so he was looked after by dad and step-mum until I was through the busy period and ready to take him. When he came to me I immediately set about training. I now know that I went too far too fast and achieved, well not much after watching a few DVD's and reading the odd book. I also sought advice from well meaning friends who have gundogs.
I contacted Damian and booked a one to one for an assessment. He took me right back to the beginning explaining that basic obedience comes first and you wont make a gundog overnight. I went away and worked on steadiness, stop and recall. I could tell straight away that Damian was passionate about what he does,knows his stuff and doesn't believe in cutting corners. Some of the things I was told to do by the well meaning friends now seem ridiculous. Beware!.
The obedience training was going well but I was getting worried cos Blue would not deliver a retrieve to hand. In fact he would not come anywhere near me with it at first. I felt that this side of the training was going backwards. Again beware advice from the well-meaners. Several times I heard "some dogs just wont" and "if his parents weren't workers he wont be either". Even, "get rid of it".
Get rid was not an option cos I love him to bits but I was in serious doubt about him working.
This is where Damian came in. He told me you have to stop doubting, stop thinking of failure and tell people who tell you he wont do it where to get off.
After a chat it was decided that Blue should have a weeks residential training. It would be beneficial, and cost effective cos I wouldn't have to travel and so much could be achieved in a week instead of around ten more one to ones.
Blue was dropped off on sunday and Damian kept me posted on his wellbeing and progress. By tuesday I had been sent an email with a film of Blue retrieving to hand. Two days to achieve what I hadn't in six months or more and had started to think wasn't possible.
Theres a video on here somewhere for all to see.
Needless to say I totally recommend Damian to anyone who is thinking of training. You get results , you can have a chat and a bit of a laugh and he's always on the end of the phone for advice when you need it.
Ive still a fair bit to go with Blue but I know he can do it so i'm enjoying it more now and I know who ill be listening to in future.
Cheers . Jeff and Blue.
Jeff with Blue the Flatcoat Retriever - October 2012
Trust you are well, thought I'd just drop you a line and let you know how I'm getting on. I've been working really hard with recall (during high drive moments) which was the only remaining piece of the jigsaw. I now have absolute control, he's unbelievable to see. No matter what I'm able stop him on a sixpence even after he has taken off!
I can do this anywhere with any distraction. Town centre's, on walks, I can call him away from any dog, person, child, duck, rabbit dead animal etc.
When I'm out walking people look truly mouth open stunned by the instant control. They are hanging onto their dogs collar etc and struggling away when trying to keep their dog from mine, he stands frozen the instant I give the command or returns if I ask. Doesn't look real.
That final piece of work along with all the classes attended and 1-2-1's have helped him become the best dog I could ever have imagined. Hundreds of hours of work but every minute was a joy and paid back a hundred fold.
Mark with Lord Bob the Dogue De Bordeaux - October 2012
Thanks again for the session on Friday, I am feeling much more in control of Jess and enjoying walking her now! I admit I am not the boss yet but definitely getting there!
Elaine with Jess the Border Collie - October 2012
I have bought my first dog, an English Springer Spaniel, named Jess. Looking back now I probably thought it was going to be an easy task training a dog however, whilst Jess is a loveable puppy, for the first few months there was never a calm moment in the house. I had tried other dog training and puppy socialisation classes but unfortunately Jess was becoming more dominant, constantly running off, pulling on the lead, jumping up and mouthing. I contacted Damian and from the first time I spoke to him, I knew that he was passionate about what he does. I booked a home visit and Damian came to see Jess without hesitation and was able to offer excellent advice and training techniques. Following Damian’s visit, I immediately felt more relaxed and confident around Jess and within 24 hours I was amazed by how just a few seemingly small changes had made a big difference to Jess’ behaviour both in and out of the house.
Jess’ training was followed up with group classes which taught Jess the basics of general obedience such as sit, stay, walking nicely on a loose lead, recall, attentiveness and distance control. I was gradually getting control of what used to be a fairly wild puppy. During each lesson Damian assessed where Jess and I had got to and provided me with insightful evaluations. I decided to take Jess’ training to the next level and sent Jess to Damian for residential training. I now have a puppy that works well to a whistle, is obedient and walks well on a lead. I have continued to work with Damian in 1-2-1 sessions improving skills and in just a few short months, I have a dog that is under control most of the time.
I still have a long way to go but the small victories really do mean a lot and I feel more relaxed and confident with Jess, which in turn creates a positive cycle instead of the negative one that I had got stuck in. Damian’s calm, friendly manner really put me at ease and he explained his methods in a clear and easy to understand way. I will continue to train with Jess and maybe one day she will become a fully trained gundog.
Louise with Jess the Springer Spaniel - October 2012
Just a quick note to Thank You for all your training at the group lessons (we didn't manage to see you when we were leaving last night as you looked very busy). We can definately see a big improvement in Kep's behaviour due to your advice and now it is up to us, with the knowledge you have given us, to keep up the training. I know we didn't always get it right (especially Me), but it was fascinating to see the control and progress that can be obtained if we stick to the 'rules'. We very much enjoyed the classes and our only regret is that we did not know about you when Kep was a young pup.
Chris and Christine with Kep the Cockapoo - October 2012
I recently moved back to the UK permanently and went through a lot of stress, paperwork (and bills!) bringing my Turkish dog, Chanel, back with me. She was only 1 and half years old and I knew there would be issues but I didn’t realise to what extent. She was very difficult to handle whilst walking and showed aggression towards most dogs we passed which scared and unnerved me. I was 5 months pregnant at the time so I knew it was important that we tackled the issues immediately so we were not faced with potential problems when the baby arrived.
I found Damian through the internet and left him a message explaining my situation. I received a call back from him and from that first conversation I knew I’d found someone who was passionate and experienced in his field and would get me the results I needed. We arranged a home visit and within those first few hours I had already learnt so much. It’s amazing how even the smallest changes can have such a positive impact. I set the boundaries recommended by Damian and began to notice the difference in Chanel’s behaviour.
From attending Damian’s dog training classes and 1-2-1 sessions, Chanel and I learnt many important commands and with practice and perseverance I now have a dog who focuses, listens to me and walks to heel as opposed to the dog who was pulling me here there and everywhere thinking she was the boss!
I was very tense and stressed when walking with her in the beginning and with Damian’s guidance I have learnt that by relaxing and enjoying the walk, so does Chanel! Her aggression towards other dogs is a working progress but Damian has shown me it is possible for her to ignore the other dogs we pass and I look forward to future training and walking her with the pram, which I would never have dreamed would be possible!
Sara with Chanel (CrossBreed) - September 2012
As first-time pup-buyers we had decided on a pedigree but contacted Damian on the off-chance that he could provide an informed, impartial opinion of the breed we had chosen. I was not very hopeful that I would even receive a response but thanks goodness I did!
Damian contacted me and I explained that we had already paid a £200 deposit on a handsome pup the previous evening. We chatted about the breed and breeder and I found I was unable to answer many of the questions Damian asked me. Although there was nothing in it for him Damian spent over 45 minutes talking to me and was clearly concerned about the breeder we had gone to. He suggested a plan of action and even offered to phone the breeder on our behalf! We contacted the breeder asking them, among other things, to send us a copy of the parents’ pedigrees. They were very defensive and within minutes we received a text from them asking for our bank details so that they could refund our deposit as they didn’t “feel right about everything.” The full deposit was returned to us within the hour.
If I hadn’t made the call to Damian we would have gone ahead and paid the full £900 for the supposed pedigree pup and worst still risked bringing an in-bred puppy into our lives with all the associated behavioural issues, health risks and potential vets bills – not to mention the heartache this could have involved for our family.
I am an intelligent, professional person but it is so easy to be led by your heart rather than your head once you have a cute little puppy in your arms. I can’t say how grateful we are for Damian’s input and I would definitely recommend him to a friend. He is very willing to help and clearly has extensive knowledge of dog breeds, temperaments and what to expect from a reputable breeder. With Damian’s help we are now looking at a variety of breeds and breeders before making any decisions.
Heather a new dog owner - September 2012
I own a black lab called Indi , she is a great dog with a strong personality , As I was trying to train her as a gundog her strong will and lack of steadiness was starting to dishearten me - time to get a trainer . I found Damian in a search on the Internet and booked an appointment . First time we met he had Indi doing in 5 minutes what I couldn't do in 6 months , from there I have had several one to ones with Damian which has really helped her along , and after she came back from two weeks residential the difference was amazing. Damian's work ethic is excellent. Thanks for all your help
Rick with Indi the Labrador - September 2012
As Oscar approaches his 4th birthday I just wanted to update you on the progress he has made since starting training with you in January.
It’s only when I look back I realise how far we’ve come, and how impatient I was in the early days! As you know when we came to you I was at my wits end and found him difficult to handle, ruling the house with full access to furniture, beds, car seats, laps! What’s more I was frightened to walk him due to his aggression towards other dogs. You highlighted how my nerves and anxiety were compounding Oscar’s bad behaviour and even after our first training session the changes you recommended we made to boundaries and limitations had an immediate impact on his behaviour. Through attending your weekly classes he became a better mannered happier and more obedient dog. In fact, now, we take it for granted that he will walk to heel (on and off lead), sit, wait, return, respond to a whistle etc all of which seemed impossible before we started training with you!
Whilst I’ve occasionally lost heart with tackling his aggression to dogs, significant improvements have been made and confrontations are now rare. After a break from classes for the last couple of months, I’m now delighted to be back in class to push things to the next level. You always warned us that tackling aggression was a long term, slow process with no quick fixes so I’m confident that persevering with the discipline of weekly classes and continued socialisation he can go from strength to strength! You never know he might even master a half decent retrieve!!!
Thank you for your continued support and guidance during the course of the year, I do hope Oscar can reach his full potential.
Bernie with Oscar the Cocker Spaniel - September 2012
From the first time I spoke to Damian, I could tell he was very passionate about what he does. He took my 2 yr old Springador, Holly, in for residential training and has managed to achieve, in just 2 weeks, what previous dog trainers have failed to accomplish.
Not only has Damian instilled the basic obedience in Holly on and off lead, he has taught me how to understand and have fun with Holly on our walks.
Lucy with Holly the Springador - August 2012
I stumbled on Damian’s website by chance and am very glad I did. Despite having attended puppy training classes, we’d been struggling to control Monty our German Shepherd, especially when walking outside with lots of people, and we were near the giving in stage and returning him to his breeder. Damian was professional, helpful and above all friendly and willing to listen to the problems we seemed to be having. I joined his new beginners training class and within 5 weeks of lessons, we have a happy, docile and obedient dog (Still have the odd relapse but we now know what to do and how to solve it). Unlike other training clubs I have been to, Damian takes the time to help you individually in the training class with any problems your having rather than as a general comment to the whole class. Damian came up with real suggestions of what would work and simply changing Monty’s lead made a big difference. I look forward to having more lessons and progressing Monty’s training even further – and even being able to have the courage to let Monty off the lead (eventually)!!!! Thanks Damian for giving me my confidence back.
Alice, Andrew and Georgina with Katie Monty the GSD - June 2012
I contacted Damian as I had reached the end of my patience with Nellie my 18 month old yellow Labrador. She was extremely well behaved in the home but as soon as we went walking and she was off lead her hunting instincts would kick in and she became heedless. I do a lot of fell walking and want a dog that will walk to heel and come when called. I had done most of my training from books and previous experience but Nellie is a working dog and I knew she wasn’t getting the proper guidance and stimulation from me. I had a one to one session with Damian and he had Nellie doing things properly almost immediately. He showed me where my energy and body language were going wrong and that consistency was essential. Nellie is so much more attentive to me since I stared the training that I have decided to attend a six week obedience training course with Damian to continue to learn how to train Nellie. She has the potential to be a fabulous dog.
Caroline with Ellie the Labrador - May 2012
'Damian has been a great find and I have to say I would have been lost without his invaluable advice. I contacted Damian around 5 months ago when Ruby was about 4 and a half months old as I was finding her a handful to control, especially with recall. We joined his novice dog training class to provide Ruby with basic obedience, stability and focus. I supplemented this with some one to one training sessions out in the field. The improvement she has made to date is superb and she is going from strength to strength. As a result of Damian's input and advice I am much more confident when handling and training her, she is listening to my commands and is developing into a willing and obedient springer spaniel.
I can't thank Damian enough for his encouragement and support, Ruby and I look forward to many more rewarding lessons.'
From a very happy Lisa with Ruby the Springer Spaniel - May 2012
After not having the best experience with a trainer for our first lab we wanted to make sure we found the right one for our new puppy Skye. With many phone calls made and lots of frustration we had got nowhere and whilst there are many dog trainers out there none come with any great feedback or history that could be found.
Luckily for us some tree's were being taken down on the lane we live on and one of the lads noticed me training with the pup in our garden. He complimented me on her standard and I thanked him but said I needed to find a trainer as it was only the basics and did he know of any. This is how we came to hear about Damian. The lad couldnt compliment him and his skills with dogs enough and so we decided to make contact. Here we are 10 weeks later with a well rounded labrador puppy on her way to being a confident and talented gundog. The classes are excellent and Damians style of training is one of positive interaction and recognition with lots of fun on the way. If I ever get asked for a trainer I would not hesitate at all to recommend Damian and I cant thank him enough for his guidance and support with our Skye.
Louisa & Paul with Skye the Labrador - March 2012
I thought you should share in this moment. Amber off the lead, on the beach. With your help, we are steadily progressing and more importantly, Amber is a far happier dog. I can't believe that prior to you coming for two house visits, this is the same dog that would disappear for 9 hours given the chance or drag me along on the lead when she took me for walks. No more biting in the house, just lots of play and dog food, and well, enjoying being a dog!!! me and my girl are now exhausted but very happy.
Michelle with Amber the Springer Spaniel - January 2012
I have been training with Damian for 4 months now and saw improvements from day one. Bailey is a typically strong willed and often stubborn Shar Pei, but with some excellent guidance from Damian in both our one on one training and group classes, we have made great progress in our training. I have always done my own 'self taught' type of training e.g. sit, wait, lie down, paw etc, but out and about with other catalysts it was a whole different story. Baileys' focus would be everywhere that it shouldn't be, but the classes have put a stop to that. She is now much more focused on me and the training and we have some fantastic walks together now. Even something as simple as taking Damians' advice on changing her harness to a slip lead has proven to be very effective. This way Bailey does not 'harness' the power, I do! No more sniffing the same blades of grass for minutes and stopping for a wee every couple of steps.
The classes are brilliant. It is great to be in a group environment and see that you are not the only one who has training areas to work on. It’s very easy when you are doing the training on your own to get down hearted if you don’t see the results you want, as quickly as you want, but we find the classes to be extremely rewarding and motivating. The environment is ideal for training Bailey due to the catalysts of other dogs and their owners which she would normally have been so easily distracted by.
I can’t thank Damian enough for the impact he has had on our training and our relationship. Bailey respects that I am the pack leader now and no longer tries to dominate me. He is always at the other end of the phone or an email if I need to ask him anything and is a great motivator and trainer.
Melissa with Bailey the Shar Pei - January 2012
I thank the lucky day I met Damian by chance, as I had been in a quandary over certain aspects of training my 2 year old lab. You only have to see Damian handling a dog to know immediately that he loves dogs and knows what he is doing. As a role model, he inspires you with the confidence to follow his training approach, and therefore teach your dog to be obedient and safe, which importantly, also means a happy dog.
With Damian, I soon leant that first and formost, your dog needs to know you are the pack leader and where it satands with you. That is how the bond and respect grows and is the basis for sound training. Put this together with Damian's straightforward and reassuring training guidelines, and some daily practice, after just a few sessions, already my lab is much improved. We are both happy!!
Susan with Sally the Labrador - January 2012
I have an 11 month Hungarian Wire Haired Vizsla. Having never had a gun dog before I thought that I would quite like to train him to be one. I had a book that gave me some ideas but didn't just quite explain what I needed to be doing. So I contacted Gundog-Training4u and arranged an assessment session to see if Angus had potential or not. I was very nervous, I knew I could train Angus in obedience but training him to be a gun dog was all new to me and I had no idea what to expect. Damian put us both at ease and went through the basics. He was very honest with us and explained that if Angus didn't have potential then there wouldn't be any point continuing, which immediately made me trust him as it meant he wasn't in it for the money and really cared about training the dogs. Fortunately Angus showed potential and after only a few 1-2-1 and group sessions he has come on in leaps and bounds, his confidence has improved so dramatically that he often works better for Damian than me now !! With each day he shows more and more enthusiasm to work with me and the focus is great. From the first session where he wasn't interested in the retrieve or going away from me, he now bounces up and down in anticipation of the dummy coming out of the bag and will do a long retrieve without a backward glance. It's fantastic to watch him changing. It hasn't just affected him in his gun dog work it has given him confidence when we go out walking; he now runs along side my other dogs and doesn't stick to me like glue anymore. A lot of this is all thanks to the way Damian handles both Angus and myself, and gives us confidence to learn new skills and help Angus become the dog he was meant to be. I started training just for fun to see if I could train Angus up to be a gundog, and now I would like to take it further and see if I can train him so that he could work out on a shoot. I am confident with Damian's help we can achieve this.
Rachael with Angus the Hugarian Wire Haired Vizsla - December 2011
I got Jasper a 3 year old border collie from a rescue centre, and called Damian in after one year due to the problems I had with him.
Damian came to my home, and concluded after talking to me and seeing Jasper that he had become "top dog".
With work in the home, Jasper is now finding his true position in the home.
And his now being trained outside. Our first lesson with Damian outside was amazing to see, as I have not been able to let him off the lead, as he tends to do his own thing.
I now can see what Jasper is able to do, and how much he loves working to the whistle.
Thank you Damian, you have trained me to understand Jasper, and given Jasper a happy life for the future.
Allan with Jasper the Border Collie - November 2011
I have a 7 month old Working Cocker Spaniel and want to train her up to working standard, though I have never done this before. I knew I would need help but just could not find someone who had experience of the breed in the field. Then I searched Twitter and up popped "@dogtraining4u_" and Damian: not only a gun dog specialist but also a dog behaviourist. I couldn't believe my luck. From our first meeting, I knew we would get on and his support and guidance would prove invaluable - so it has been. Of course it's all about accurate assessment of the dog's needs and training the trainer accordingly – that's what he does so well. Thanks Damian, I look forward to a long association with Dogtraining4U!
Derek with Jess the Cocker Spaniel - November 2011
Just to say - thanks for your guidance and encouragement with my "adoptive cocker spaniel ", Lois.
Karen with Lois the Cocker Spaniel - October 2011
After hearing nothing but praise for Damian's dog training classes I decided to sign up my 9 year old daughter and her new puppy Alfie. Alfie's training at home was going well but my daughter had no confidence in handling him. From week one Damian put both dog and girl at ease, they enjoyed the classes and even practiced at home everyday. By the end of the 6 week course my daughter and puppy had not only grasped the basics but were even attempting off the lead recall.
9 year old Myfanwy with Alfie the Whippet - October 2011
It is so great to find a trainer that I work well with. Damian is always a positive teacher with me which boosts my confidence. Always friendly and relaxed lessons and giving great advice when I went on my first shoot! Couldn't be happier that I have found Damian as a Trainer and looking forward to many future lessons and shoots!
Sarah with Frisky the Labrador Cross and Xena the Munsterlander - September 2011
Damian is very knowledgeable in what he does. He explains what you need to do and how to do it to achieve the desired results. He worked with my German Shepherds and myself, with the up most patience and the improvements in their behavior (and mine) was incredible. It didn't happen over night as you have to keep up the momentum and consistency with the training and he was always there to offer advice in-between lessons. I would definitely recommend him for any kind of dog training and to take his classes which he holds regularly and are worth every penny. Thanks Damian!
Jackie with her German Shepherds - September 2011
Damian has been training Jack the dog, and more importantly myself, for 4 months, since Jack was 9weeks, during this time Damian has ensured that we maintain the correct pack structure in the family unit and informs us on how to deal with unwanted behaviours.
I would recommed anyone to check out Damians classes or one to one sessions to improve both the dogs behaviour and relationship with their dog.
Justine with Jack the Labrador - September 2011
Damian is a professional, capable trainer with a down to earth attitude, who lives and breathes dogs. His passion and drive, coupled with his extensive knowledge of his subject has helped us stay on the right path with our first Labrador gundog Jack.
Rebekah - September 2011
Ben and Blaze had a great day out at the Lowther Game Fair. It was really exciting watching Ben working Blaze in a number of the scurry competitions. I felt so proud to see him working his dog confidently. Ben entered the junior handler competition which included 3 events with the times for all events added together to give a final score. Ben and Blaze came 2nd which means they have qualified of the National final at the Midland Game Fair!!!!
Ben and I are really excited... and looking forward to the final ...
Thank you for all your help and Ben is looking forward to the 2011 shooting season.
Ben with Blaze the Cocker Spaniel - August 2011
We are so grateful that we found Damian. He really knows what he is doing!
He replied to our email quickly and professionally. We had a fantastic 1-1 for problems we were having with our two chihuahuas.
We were having problems with our dogs barking excessively, bad manners, barking at dogs,not coming when called, whilst off lead.
We were feeling so disempowered and really at a loss. He helped straight away!
You feel like you have got a friend on your side that knows what to do. Damian gives you the info you need for the issues you have.
We felt like he gave us the key to the lock we just could not open. Damian is also lovely company and fun too!
With Damian, expect lots of info, lots of laughs and if you do the work, very good dogs!
Looking forward to another 1-1 for specific walking problem and also going to his group training classes later this year.
Damian is a pack leader and training us to be one too :)
Rebecca & David with Captain & Levi the Chihuachua's - July 2011
Just wanted you to know we're so grateful for all your support and advice with Amber and her dog training. Since your dog behavioural visit on Monday, her lead work is going really well and she is walking to heel for us both. She seems an all round happier and contented dog with having a few boundaries in place. Importantly, my husband and I are so pleased and thankful that your skills and patience have really made such a positive impact. Admittedly, we are a little shocked how you made a difference in one visit, but delighted all the same!
If there is a chance we can sign onto the next dog training classes in Preston please let us know. Her basic training really needs work and it would be great to be able to let her off the lead on walks (without needing a spare couple of hours to get her back!).
Michelle & Glyn with Amber the Springer Spaniel - July 2011
I've just read Damians log on his page and the best thing I did was taking Sasha and I'm very impressed with what he has done. I went to the first dog obedience class (Preston, Lancashire) on Saturday and I was amazed at what I learnt to do with her she is a hundred times better now and I hope I will go to other dog training lessons after her classes finish. She is responding to me more and it's only one class, he is right with what he says and he is very good with what he says so thank you Damian for letting me see that Sasha is not aggressive. I will keep up with it, I know now that my dog is a friend and not taking control of my life.
Eddie with Sasha the German Shepherd - April 2011
I just waned to say I enjoyed this mornings dog obedience class at Cabus, Lancashire. Its good to be focused again and I'm looking forward to next week
Thanks Louise and Fin :-)
Louise with Fin the Springer Sapniel - April 2011
Today I attended the next dog obedience class up with my puppy Bracken. We attended the first dog obedience class 6 weeks ago and after the first lesson I was panicking with what was expected of my 5 month old puppy and how much "better " advanced the other dogs were. I was totally daunted and thought I would never even get Bracken to sit properly by the end of the 6 week course never mind anything else!! You assured me not to worry and that I would achieve far more than I thought and not to compare the other dogs as we all are there to learn. Well you were right as always lol today Bracken joined the next class up, she can walk to heel on and off lead sit ,wait and is a far more balanced dog. This was very apparent when after the puppy class came out a lady with a puppy slightly older than Bracken said that I was lucky to have such a docile puppy. I explained that she was just not docile just trained!! It did bring a smile to my face as I was that lady 6 weeks ago. For all those just starting out the training works just stick with it and you will get there Bracken and I did. Thank you Damian, Bracken and I are looking forward to the next set of challenges.
Michelle with Bracken the Labrador - April 2011
I really enjoyed the first dog obedience training lesson today and found it very helpful.
Susan with Pippin the Cocker Spaniel - April 2011
Hello Damian and Andy,
I like to thank you both for your excellent expertise.
First Damian helped me to give my 3 dogs (2 German Shepherds, 1 Wolfdog) a pack knowledge, especially with my new Wolfdog puppy Zian . Basics are so important for the whole life. It makes it so easy for all of us. With Damian's expertise in training it was very helpful to produce those brilliant pictures. Andy, Damian and I decided what kind of shooting we are going to do next – and the dogs followed my commands meticulous. Now we have established a pack order which is so important having dogs. They like to please me all the time. It is very enjoyable for all of us to life together.
Thanks Damian and Andy !!!
Ilona with Tess, Tazz and Zian - April 2011
Afternoon Damian. Just to say thank you for yesterday afternoons dog training session with us. We've set as much as we can in place as you suggested. The covers are off the sofas, and I'm just rearranging the kitchen to get the crate back in and so that it is livable for us, the dogs will be in it tonight! We are all getting to grips with it. A challenge indeed!
Angela and Martin with Benson the Springer Spaniel - March 2011
Than you, the dog obedience class last night at Cabus, we really enjoyed it. It is good to get a steer in the right direction from someone who knows it so well. We are looking forward to next week.
Justin and Rebekah with Jack the Labrador - March 2011
Thank you for the lead training today. I have been out with Lucy this afternoon, although she tried it on at first she's soon got the hand of it and was walking very well. We look forward to our next training session.
Jane and Keith with Lucy the Labrador - March 2011
I would like to thank Damian for his help, guidance and training of both Ellie and myself. Although its has only been a short time the results are very positive and rewarding, which makes my outgoings with Ellie a pleasure rather than a challenge. I know we still have a long way to go but I'm sure with Damian's help we will reach our full potential. We look forward to our next dog training lesson.
Susan with Ellie the Cockapoo - March 2011
Many thanks for the dog training lesson today. The lead training was very helpful, we feel like we have a new dog already that respects and responds to us just after a few hours.
Jane with Tia the Staffordshire Bull Terrier - March 2011
Many thanks for the dog behavioural assessment & in particular your visit to see us on Friday. We found it highly interesting & great for going forward . It was very nice to meet with you.
We're still taking it all in & the assessment will, of course, assist. We will read it with great thought & if we have any queries we will, of course, come back to you.
Alan with Sam the Jack Russell - February 2011
The shoot was great. Blaze was amazing and has been for the majority of the season. The first round I attempted was the ducks. I clipped one but it just kept on flying. Baggy had a really good attempt at retrieving a pricked duck on the far side of the river but unfortunately he lost confidence at the last minute and returned without the bird. After that I tried pheasants, they were hard to hit but eventually got one. Blaze did two retrieves but has started shaking them, we think this is because a pheasant kicked him when it was twitching so he makes sure they are definitely dead. Not quite sure if this is alright for him to do but if not I will work on it with stocking pheasant.
Looking forward to next season beating and shooting.
13 year old Ben with Blaze the working Cocker Spaniel - February 2011
Just a little message to let you know how much I appreciate all your advice, guidance and tips with our training. I felt compelled to drop you a line after such an enjoyable and productive afternoons training, glorious sunshine was an added bonus too...lol. It was fantastic when Fletcher and I joined in on another training session this week, what a great exercise, very useful to see how Fletch responded to me even with the distraction of another dog he'd never met before. I also learnt a tremendous amount, not only from my own mistakes, but by watching how the other dog was handled and listening to your advice on any corrections.
I feel so proud of how far Fletch has come in such a short space of time after rescuing him only six months ago as an anxious, unhappy and severely malnourished dog. We still have a lot of enjoyable work ahead of us but I feel very confident and motivated to have Fletch steady, responsive and working well for next season with your continued support and guidance.
Jane with Fletcher and Luna the working Hungarian Vizsla's - February 2011
Just to let you know that I have just been on a lovely walk with the dogs and actually made it on the walk this time!
Lead work is coming on leaps and bounds but I do need to do more one to one, as they are walking a pace ahead of me.
We are all enjoying the field work, they are coming to heal when called.
We have come a long way in a very short time. I will be a good living testimonial for you on the stand.
Andrea with Bella and Trix the working Labradors - January 2011
We first started taking Hunter to Damian at the start of October when Hunter was nearly 6 months old. We had tried a couple of other options for training; one suggested by the Gundog Club and one we had found ourselves on the internet, but neither of these turned out to be suitable for us and/or for Hunter.
Hunter is our first family dog and we are keen to get Hunter in a position to be able to be worked properly whilst also being a dog suitable for a busy family. Before we came to Damian, when we were out with Hunter he took little notice of us and went off and largely did what he pleased. This would sometimes culminate in him disappearing for 15 or 20 minutes at a time hunting rabbits or birds through the local fields. This understandably made us very nervous about letting Hunter off his lead when out and was taking some of our enjoyment away from having him as we were concerned about him either injuring himself or getting himself lost. Alongside this Hunter had always pulled very hard when out walking despite any number of reprimands from us, making walking a chore. Despite all of this Hunter's behaviour has always been exemplary at home and he is a lovely dog, hence the reason we were looking for help!
Very quickly Damian has changed things significantly for us. Through Damian's support for the training and development of Hunter and probably more importantly through the development of us as owners and handlers, we have seen considerable improvements in Hunter's behaviour and performance when walking and working. All of this has been achieved through a sensitive approach to Hunter and a humorous, though professional, approach to our performance, which has helped us all significantly. Whilst we appreciate that there is still more room for improvement with Hunter and with us, we have been incredibly pleased with Damian's contribution to Hunter's and our improvement over the last 3 months.
Simon with Hunter the Springer Spaniel - January 2011
Thank you for allowing us to come to your home and training grounds. We had a superb time training Monty and watching your dogs work, a little way off for Monty at the moment but we have high hopes. I was pleased in how well controlled your dogs were in socialising with our little boy. It was reassuring to know that Monty could have freedom to be off leash but safe whilst training. We feel that being so relaxed during the training session allowed us to achieve more than we previously hoped for. We love training him to the whistle and he's already responding well, not quite as sharp as your crew but it's early days! Millie and Joe like to use the whistle to recall him after toileting, kids and noise, what a brilliant combination.
Andrea and Family with Monty the German Shepherd - December 2010
Today you gave me my dog back if that makes sense to see Molly come to me with the dummy was the best feeling in the world..well nearly... I was expecting her to ignore it or bring it back and start to play not letting it go or bring it...instead she brought it straight back to her mum.. but seriously you were born to your job without your input Molly may not be with me now. I can put my uniform on and walk into any patient situation and deal with it no problem I know I was born to nurse , maybe i should try training with my uniform on. Your right I don't believe in myself and over complicate it, but I will get there even if its taking longer than normal. Thank you!
Michelle with Molly the Cocker Spaniel - November 2010
Thanks for a great gundog training session yesterday. I'm really looking forward to next Saturday when I will be taking Blaze on his first shoot. It was such a great feeling watching Blaze work. I was really proud of Blaze hunting up, picking up and retrieving the pheasant properly. I feel really prepared for this after all the advice you gave me yesterday. I'm sure that he will do well on the shoot and I'm confident that I know what i should be doing.
Ben with Blaze the Cocker Spaniel - November 2010
I met Damian in 2010 and asked for help with our 3 dogs, Ellie a collie cross, Missy and Charlie, German Shepherds.
The problem we were having was mainly with Charlie who would pull on lead, was dominant and aggressive towards other dogs (but was fine off lead) and he had claimed the back of our truck as his.
Damian spent time with the whole family explaining that we didn't have strong enough boundary's set with all the dogs and we weren't consistent enough with commands. The dogs were confused as to who the real pack leader was, them or us?
He has spent time with us giving us confidence in everything he has shown us to the point that we can now walk Charlie to heel, his recall is excellent and I have been able to bond more with Charlie so he pays attention to me all through the walk.
We still have a way to go with Charlie, as Damian is helping me train him using the whistle, which Charlie is getting good at, and he is 100% better since we met Damian (or should I say that it us that have been trained and we are getting better?).
Jackie and Graham with Ellie (Border Collie), Missy and Charlie (German Shepherds) (Their Pack) - October 2010
Hayley just took Shane out and said it's the best he's walked ever for her! He'd also been walking to heel off lead for me. Thanks for the residential dog training and look forward to our next training session!!!
Ross, Hayley and Conor with Shane the Springer Spaniel - September 2010
We contacted Damian after coming to our wits end with our two dogs. We had reached the point where they weren't getting the walks they needed as each time they were taken out they would pull excessively, bark at other dogs and generally behave uncontrollably. Walking the dogs had become a far from enjoyable experience! On Damian's first visit we talked through our daily routine and the influence this had on the dogs, Damian recommended we change several things around the house and also the way we treated our dogs, in order that they begin to see us as leader. After the first session we implemented the changes Damian had suggested, we saw a change in the dogs overnight. The dogs had begun to look at us as more dominant figures. We have continued our new routine with success. Damian visited us again today, this time to help with the dogs heel work. Finally we have been able to undertake a calm and enjoyable walk, we even managed to walk past a barking dog with little trouble! We still have a long way to go but with the encouragement and training we have been given it doesn't seem such a daunting task as little less than a week ago leaving the house was a nightmare!
Andy and Rachel with Rusty & Lucy the x-breeds - September 2010
The day that Damian was due to come to assess my 9 month old cocker spaniel I was about to cancel and send her away. At the back of my mind I was thinking I may have to re-home her as I was convinced she would never change!! That was a week ago.. Since then Molly and I have been for a glass of wine, while she sat still for 3/4 hour with no problems, this was not even possible for 5 minutes. But today was my highlight, she walked perfect to heel and by the end of the walk she was sitting to the whistle!! She still has a lot to learn but I have faith in her and with the help from Damian, I know she is capable of being a well balanced trained dog. Without the recommendations and guidance from Damian this would never have happened. Molly is far happier and I'm calm with her.
Thank you Damian!!
Michelle with Molly the Cocker Spaniel - August 2010
Thanks for your advice and time yesterday, we have implemented as many as we can of the changes we spoke about on Monday morning. Storm seems slightly subdued since the changes we've put in place but has been a lot calmer, especially this morning!! Still a lot of work required but an improvement is starting to be noticed. We look forward to receiving your follow up training plan and will be in touch again.
Lee and Kath with Storm the Old English Bulldog x Mastiff - August 2010
What a difference two weeks made.
We have a twenty month old Working Cocker Bootsy. Bootsy can best be described as very, very lively.
Damian worked with him for a short while early in the year and did a great job with the basics and where we should go with his training. Due to circumstances we had to stop his training and the opportunity came up last month for to leave him with Damian on a residential basis whilst we were on holiday. It suited our needs perfectly, a caring and safe enviroment for him and also the chance for him to get dedicated one to one training.
Bootsy is quite a good lad but had a very poor concentration span.
When we went to pick him up he was a new dog. Damian showed us what he could do and we took him home expecting all to be forgotten the following day.
What a difference, he stops perfectly on the whistle, hunts and returns very well and has a perfect heel up command. He now walks well to heel off the lead which is the greatest achievement as he concentrates on us so much more.
All in all a great job and Bootsy enjoys his walks so much more now he has a focus and just wants to please.
Well done Damian and thanks very much
Chris and Heather with Bootsy the Cocker Spaniel - July 2010
Thank you for all the advise and help with training Ernie, I couldn't have done it without you!!
Ross with Ernie the working Springer Spaniel - July 2010
We contacted Damian for help with our two Springadors, Koko & Poppy. Over a very short period their behaviour deteriorated, to the point where myself and my wife felt we had lost control of them, both in and out of the house.
I must admit that there was a large degree of scepticism going into our first session, this however, was quickly put to bed when we saw almost instant changes in both dogs. Damian solved the issues within the home within 30 mins!
Two more sessions outside have resulted in very different dogs (and owners). We are now in control again and enjoying walks with our dogs, who are both training up well. We now enrich their lives and in return they enrich ours.
We all look forward to our future sessions with great anticipation, waiting to discover, the next steps in developing our pack!
Never mind, Caesar Milan - just give Damian a call!
Matt and Sarah with Koko/Poppy the working Springadors - May 2010
“I first contacted Damian at the end of November 2009, as I was having several behavioral problems with my German Wirehaired Pointer, Fergus. The main problem was his lack of interest on walks and his ability to simply just disappear when his hunting instinct kicked in. Other problems included pulling on the lead, dominance (especially in the house) and an obsession with livestock and birds. I had 2 lessons with Damian before we decided it would be best for Fergus to go in for residential training. Damian was able to put the basic training in place for me as I was getting nowhere at home, due to Fergus being a very head strong, dominant dog and he would constantly challenge me at every opportunity. This was down to myself not being confident enough when handling him and Fergus not seeing me as a pack leader. Although residential training helped immensely, it has not been plain sailing. Fergus would still try and challenge me on his return, albeit a lot less than previously. I have had to work hard to become the pack leader and with the support from Damian I have been able to do this. I am now finally getting to a point where I can confidently let Fergus off his lead on walks (something I haven't been able to do since November!) We have built up a bond and his focus is now on me (well most of the time!) I am now planning a holiday with Fergus to the Lake District, which I never would have considered previously. I look forward to future training sessions and hope to try something like fly ball with him.”
Nichola with Fergus the German Wirehaired Pointer - April 2010
“It was with great confidence that I asked Damian to find me a new puppy for my son’s 13th birthday. He had really enjoyed training Baggy with me and I felt that he was ready to have his own dog. When I bought Baggy I had little experience of dogs and didn’t really consider what I might want from a dog or how to select one. Damian was able to use all his expertise, knowledge and experience of dogs as well as understanding what I wanted and needed from a dog that he was able to find me the perfect puppy. Ben is now the proud owner of Blaze a fabulous working cocker from a top breeder. I would never have had the confidence to have bought a dog with such a pedigree but I know that with Damian’s training Ben will have a fabulous working dog. It was certainly a birthday present he will never forget.”
Anne with Baggy the Springer Spaniel - April 2010
“I spent several months looking for dog training for Baggy. Although I had originally bought Baggy as a pet I felt that he was unfulfilled and so after a lot of searching I found Damian and gun dog training! Gun dog training with Damian has been a very enjoyable and rewarding experience. Damian shows great skill both as a trainer with his own dogs and as a teacher. His passion for dog training shines through everything his does. He is always ready to give advice and encouragement about all aspects of canine welfare as well as training issues. It is really reassuring to know that he is available in between lessons to give advice and encouragement. He has given me great reassurance and advice about all aspects of dog ownership and I know that Baggy is now a happy and balanced dog as a result of training. Damian’s flexible approach shows a deep understanding of each dog he works with and this together with his ability to really get to understand the owner too makes him unique in the training world. No one could even come close to achieving the results that Damian has done.”
Anne with Baggy the Springer Spaniel - Feb 2010
“Just thought I would drop you an Email just to say thanks for a great first dog training session today. Both me and Maisie really enjoyed ourselves and we are both looking forward to more of the same.
Once again thanks for all your help and advice and see you next week.”
Eric with Maisie the Springer Spaniel - Nov 2009