Life with a reactive dog isn’t easy

You’re here because life with your dog isn’t quite like you imagined.

 Your dog is struggling, and so are you. And it feels lonely.  

I want you to know this → You have done nothing wrong.  

Some dogs need extra support to get by and thrive in a human world. Your dog isn’t naughty, bad, or aggressive. Your dog simply needs a helping hand to grow their confidence and make the world a little less scary.

Life with Harry hasn’t always been easy

When I first got my dog, Harry, I was full of dreams of all the wonderful things we would do together. But when he started being reactive to other dogs, everything changed. It was almost like we were grieving for those dreams, for the life we imagined we would have together.

 Every time Harry had a meltdown, I felt really upset and embarrassed.  Why was this happening?    

Was it something I was doing or not doing?

Was it a couple of unfortunate events that happened early on in his life? Did I underestimate the impact of these events? Did genetics play a part?    

Before I knew it, Harry’s reactive behaviour was getting worse, and he was barking and lunging on a regular basis. I had to keep Harry on the lead more, walk in different places and leaving the house with him felt unpredictable and fraught with worry.      

Anyone who has been pulled down the street by their reactive dog understands how physically painful this can be on your arms and shoulders. But it wasn’t just that.

There’s an overwhelming fear that they will pull you into danger, hurting either themselves, you, or someone else.        

I felt absolutely gutted. This had never been part of the plan.        

I felt lost, so I sought advice. But unfortunately, this made his reactivity worse.        

I felt desperate. I wanted to help Harry. I was sure it was stressing him out as much as it was me, and the thought that he might be hurting was just unbearable.      

My heart told me there must be a better way. We couldn’t keep doing what we were doing. I wanted to help Harry, so he didn’t feel the need to react. I wanted to get back to enjoying our walks together more than anything.  

The start of something beautiful

I always wanted to be a dog trainer. But it’s thanks to Harry that this dream became a reality, and I began my journey into force-free dog training. As I attended course after course to help him, my thirst for knowledge and understanding just grew and grew.

I have trained with some of the best dog trainers in the country, and I’ve learned an incredible amount about how to help support not just reactive dogs, but their guardians too.    

It’s so important that both ends of the lead receive emotional support and training so they can move towards a happy and fruitful life together.    

There were many different things that influenced Harry's behaviour, and my training enabled me to help him and ultimately ease some of his distress.    

I now use my experience to help other guardians and their reactive dogs to make the world less scary, more predictable and crucially, enjoyable again.    

I want you to feel supported and confident that you can gain the skills and understanding to help your best friend and make life happier for you both.  

Confident Connections for reactive dogs

Confident Connections is an 8-week training programme for reactive dogs that’s unlike anything else.

I developed this programme to provide guardians with a full support programme that tackles every element of life with a reactive dog. We cover everything from hazard training, to loose lead walking, to self-care and mindset training to help you navigate it all and feel like you again.    

It’s tailored to you and your dog, it provides you with instant access to an emergency toolkit that you can use straight away, and it’s bursting with training techniques and learning to help make life better for both of you.    

Most importantly, the programme is backed up with weekly 1-2-1 support from me.    

I will be by your side throughout to guide you and help you adapt what you learn, so you not only have the tools but also know how to use them effectively in your day-to-day life.    

You’ll learn to understand your dog, and you’ll be equipped with everything you need so that you no longer feel like you’re living with a ticking time bomb 

What Una’s Mum thinks….

I recently became Mum to a 4 month old rescue dog from Romania. Una instantly bonded with me but everything else in the world seemed too much for her.

For 2 weeks I tried to get her comfortable with the world and every time we took a step forward we would then take a step back. I was getting upset and feeling like I was letting Una down.

She is a beautiful dog and all I want is for to have the best life, out on adventures with me, running, walking, going to the countryside & beach!

Not a chance.

Una wouldn’t walk outside and was upset by every small noise or person walking past the window.

Because I am on my own I want her to get along with my parents, but that was also hard for Una. She barks and shows her teeth.

Then I found Sonia, she gave me a call and instantly gave me solutions to help Una.

Even before enrolling in the course, I had tools which, helped Una relax.

The course has been invaluable and Sonia as well, who is so supportive, constantly in communication, and there to help.

The 1-2-1 sessions are amazing to get specific solutions & suggestions. The course itself is easy to follow along and logical.

Una and I have a lot of fun trying out the activities. Which not only help her confidence but strengthen our bond. Her progress is outstanding!

I honestly can’t thank Sonia enough for everything she has done to help us.

Be patient, keep your faith and all will get better I promise. With Sonia’s help, you will overcome any barriers you & your dog face.

Helen & Una

Qualifications & accreditations you can trust

I’ll be honest, I’m a bit of a learning junkie, so this could be quite a list!

 I’m an IABTC canine behavioural instructor, certified control unleashed instructor, certified YEL (your end of the lead) instructor, Dog A.I.D trainer (assistance in disability), Scentwork UK instructor and a UK Sniffer Dogs instructor, to name but a few!  

I am continuously learning and participating in various courses, seminars and webinars. 

Get your free introduction to scentwork today

Scentwork is a world of fun, but it’s also an incredibly powerful tool for reactive dogs. Dogs are olfactory beings, and introducing your dog to the world of scentwork can give you an incredible tool to use both on your walks and at home.