Relationship-Centered Dog Training  


When we humans do what's required of us to fulfill our pets’ needs (not only to survive but to thrive), we end up practicing such important life and leadership skills as patience, boundary-setting, follow-through, discipline, consistency, positive projection, forward-thinking, confidence, perseverance, creativity, manifestation, and clear, calm communication. At Heel 2 Heal, our job is to help you and your pets bring out the best in one another by practicing this type of mutually-beneficial care and need-fulfillment. It's UP TO THE HUMANS to start this health-and-wellness-ball-rolling, so allow us to guide you in becoming your best self as a pet parent!


KERN COUNTY RESIDENTS: We offer one-on-one private sessions in your home, and group classes in Kernville and Lake Isabella (see below). We are also happy to meet with you on Zoom!

In-Person Group Classes in the KRV 


These low-cost, 6-week group classes will help you and your dog upgrade to the next level in your relationship - whether that means a cohesive walk together on leash, calmer and more effective communication, a deeper bond and greater understanding of one another's needs, or emBARKing on the path to becoming a therapy dog team in your community. 

MIND THE DOG: Mindfulness Training & Life Skills through Dog Handling


For individuals, couples, or families. This course will help elevate any individual or family’s bond with their dog in such a way that empowers a pet to become a “work-at-home” emotional support animal. With handlers and families fulfilling their dogs’ (emotional, physical, cognitive, and primal) needs, dogs are then able to behave their best, while fulfilling their humans’ needs for emotional support. This course could be especially valuable for people whose dogs are slightly shy or anxious – though no dogs with any history of reactivity or aggressive behavior will be permitted.

OUR INAUGURAL SESSION of MTD will be held at Riverstone Wellness in Kernville, CA, 14 Sierra Drive.

 Saturdays, June 18th - July 23rd, 2022 @ 11:00-12:30PM

Space is limited, so be sure and sign-up ASAP!




Puppy socialization and training, for puppies ages 8 weeks - 12 months.

Socialization (i.e. positive experiences around all manner of people, other dogs, and objects in a safe and healthy environment) is crucial for puppies’ development. This informal class and puppy social hour provides an opportunity to set your puppies off on the right paw and give both you and them a solid foundation on which to grow as individuals, and in the special relationship you share. This is puppy playtime with lots of teachable moments built in - for dogs and handlers alike!


Location: Kern River Valley Senior/Vets' Center @ 6405 Lake Isabella Blvd. in Lake Isabella, CA

* No sign-up required.


* Drop in any Wednesday between June 15th and July 20th, between 4:00 and 5:00PM. 

* Cost is $15 at the door (cash, PayPal, or Venmo accepted) to stay and play for up to an hour!


* MUST BRING PROOF OF YOUR PUP'S VACCINATIONS! Puppies must be UP-TO-DATE on all required vaccines for their age. Check with your vet if you are unsure which vaccinations are needed for your individual dog. But Distemper and Parvovirus are A MUST, NO MATTER WHAT.

* These sessions are not appropriate for dogs who have shown any aggressive behavior toward other animals or people.



Basic obedience and manners, for dogs ages 6 months and older.

This class is an excellent socialization and bonding opportunity for you and your dogs. In addition, your dogs will learn leash manners, basic commands – including SIT, STAY, RELEASE, CHECK-IN (eye contact), LAY DOWN, WAIT, LEAVE IT, and COME when called. You, the handler, will learn how to effectively communicate with your dog, even in the face of distractions.

AKC Canine Good Citizen (CGC) test is administered during the final class session and participants have the option of earning the CGC title if or when their dogs pass the test.

Learn more about what is involved here:




For dogs ages 6 months and older who have taken and passed the CGC.

This course is ideal for people who want their dogs to behave nicely in public. It is also an opportunity for safe and positive socialization, and a prerequisite for the therapy dog program or service dog task training with Heel 2 Heal.

In CGCA class, we will build upon what we started working on in CGC class, while increasing “The 3 D’s”: distance, duration, and distraction.

Classes will be held at the Senior Center in Lake Isabella, while the CGCA test will be given (during the final class session) at a public location – likely the True Value in Lake Isabella.

Learn more about what is involved here:



 Heel 2 Heal COMMUNITY CANINES Therapy Dog Prep Course

For dogs 1 year and older who have been approved to join the program after having taken the prerequisites to become a working therapy dog – including the CGC and CGCA – plus 3 supervised “novice visits” in the community.


This course educates volunteer therapy dog handlers on their and their dogs’ unique responsibility and role in the community. And provides therapy dog teams with advanced, on-the-job training in working interactively with children, teens and adults in various community-based programs, classrooms, etc.




For dogs ages 4 months and older.

This is a fun one! Not only does the class provide space and time for bonding and positive socialization, it’s also great cognitive enrichment and mental exercise for handlers and dogs alike. We will work with clickers (or marker words, if you prefer) to shape all kinds of behaviors, including SPIN, PAWS UP, GET IN A BOX, SIT IN A BOX, CRAWL, HIGH FIVE, SHAKE, GIVE KISSES, etc. Once you learn several items on AKC’s trick list, you will have the opportunity to test for your trick dog title during the last session of class.

Learn more about what is involved here:



PLEDG: Positivity, Leadership & Empathy in Dog Guardianship

For youth, ages 8-14.

We will come to your home for homeschool programming, or your classroom for on-campus learning.


The PLEDG humane education course integrates California’s Common Core standards for Health Education, and the Positive Behavioral Interventions & Supports (PBIS) model for positive behavior modification, into hands-on exercises with therapy dogs to create an innovative learning experience with academic, social-emotional, and practical applications.

Upon completion of the PLEDG course, students will have learned to:

* Teach dogs basic obedience commands using POSITIVE reinforcement

* Understand that nurturing our inner-LEADER brings out the best in ourselves and our dogs

* Interpret dogs’ body language and emotional states through an EMPATHIC lens

* Describe a week in the life of a pet DOG who is not just surviving, but thriving

* Connect the responsibility of being a pet GUARDIAN with the responsibility of caring for self and others.



Private Dog Training & Behavior Modification 

Fundamental Tenets of Our Approach:


  - Loving communication, need-fulfillment, energy management, and healthy (interdependent) relationship dynamics between dogs and their family/pack members, are fundamental to setting (dogs + people) up for success.

  - Addressing our dogs' undesirable behavior requires a keen awareness of our own; and a willingness to change personal behavior patterns in order to manifest what we hope to see in our dogs'.

  - Our approach is equal parts science-based and instinct-driven.

- We are happy to come to your home and cover any or all of the following:

998E695E-D4AF-4830-A955-305412064A2F 2.J

Pawsitive Foundations 



- Puppy fundamentals, including potty training & crate training

  - Basic obedience commands using positive reinforcement 

  - Walking on a loose leash

  - Integrating a new pet into the household

  - Establishing boundaries and providing structure

  - Developing healthy behavior patterns with consistent rules and daily rituals


Addressing Problem Behaviors 



  - Jumping

  - Excessive barking

  - Reactivity (i.e. lunging, barking, growling, on or off leash, in response to various triggers)

  - Separation anxiety & associated destructive behaviors

  - Not listening or following directions

  - Counter-surfing; getting into the trash, etc.

- Overexcitement and lack of focus


AKC Title

Prep Testing 


  - AKC S.T.A.R. Puppy

  - Canine Good Citizen (CGC)

  - Canine Good Citizen Advanced (CGCA)

  - Urban Canine

  - Trick Dog

  - Therapy Dog


Service Dog Tasks 



We provide consultation and training for individuals who wish to raise and/or train their own service dogs, for assistance with the following conditions:

  - Physical disabilities

  - Hearing impairment

  - PTSD

  - Autism

  - Diabetic or seizure alert

  - Therapy Dog