Kevin's K-9 Academy, LLC

Kevin's K-9 Academy, LLC

5.0
1 employee
6 years in business

About this pro

Hello! My name is Kevin Shaffer and owner of Kevin's K-9 Academy, LLC. I'm a Certified Canine Training Specialist and love every day I get out of bed in getting the satisfaction of helping people and their dogs develop a happier life together. Prior to my dog training business, I was a successful business to business sales representative for over 25 years but wanted something more meaningful and fulfilling. I started with volunteering at a local Humane Society and quickly realized my passion for animals was something that really drives me. I have always been a dog owner and dog lover and over time I came to realize that a career in dog training would be a great opportunity to help both people and animals. My wife and two children (9 and 12) have been an inspiration to me and have been equally excited about my career choice. We have 3 dogs of our own: Bailey, Brady, and Chloe. Once again , I am a Certified Dog Trainer and behaviorist graduate from the Charlotte, NC based The Dog Knowledge. I'm a relationship based/balanced trainer. I believe in communicating to the dog what is right & what is wrong. I take the dogs through the steps on how they learn for obedience as use a motivating factor (food, verbal praise, gentle touch, toy), use variable reinforcement & wean as the dog knows the command. Negative behaviors (resource guarding, jumping, bolting out the door, etc.) that can hurt the dog or one of your family, I communicate to the dog to stop the behavior with various tools so that someone does not get hurt. I keep your informed with a video journal along the way (day camps & board & trains) as your dog is learning and tell YOU as well on how to follow through on these learned behaviors to maintain consistency as it is half what I do and the other half is what you do to follow through with your pup. I look forward to training your “furry friend” so they become better members of your family. I truly love animals and look forward to getting to know each and every one of them! I love the satisfaction of seeing a happy client and a dog that becomes a more meaningful member of its family. Seeing the relationship grow through communication and understanding of each other is very cool to see develop. When the dog gets a more fulfilled life through structured training/exercise (with its owner), mental stimulation , obedience, interactive toys (for example) and communication (rules that are set) this is rewarding to me as a dog lover/trainer.

What should the customer know about your pricing (e.g., discounts, fees)?

We would cater the program and pricing to meet the need(s) of the client.

What is your typical process for working with a new customer?

I typically speak with them over the phone so I can determine what the issue is and whether I am the best fit to help meet their need(s) of their dog. If initially I determine that I could help, I would then email them a consultation form to fill out so I can learn a little more about the client, dog and main goals they want to accomplish. I would collect this information and we would meet and chat in person . Then we would decide on the best method(s) and training program to accomplish the goal(s).

What education and/or training do you have that relates to your work?

I am a Certified Canine Training Specialist graduating from an intensive program at The Dog Knowledge in Charlotte NC. I have extensively trained service dogs within this program that were placed with war veterans' for obedience and special needs. "Trusty" is one of the dogs pictured in a profile picture (Golden Retriever).

How did you get started doing this type of work?

My name is Kevin Shaffer & owner of Kevin's K-9 Academy. Prior to pet care and training, I was a successful business to business sales representative for over 25 years but wanted something more meaningful and fulfilling. I started with volunteering at a local Humane Society and quickly realized my passion for animals was something that really drives me. I have always been a dog owner and dog lover and over time I came to realize that a career in dog care and training would be a great opportunity to help both people and animals. I am a Certified Canine Training Specialist & graduate from Charlotte, NC based "The Dog Knowledge".

What types of customers have you worked with?

I have worked with clients with general obedience training, problem behaviors, , confidence/socialization, off-leash training, aggression, and fearful/skittish behaviors.

Describe a recent project you are fond of. How long did it take?

The 12 week service dog program I worked with "Trusty" , a recent certified service dog, was extremely rewarding to see him to go a decorated war veteran and how he would be helping him moving forward. It was a little emotional to let him go but the end result made it all worthwhile.

What advice would you give a customer looking to hire a provider in your area of work?

I would suggest picking a balanced trainer that cares about truly helping people and dogs and can teach a dog both "yes" and "no". In order to have a successful relationship & training program, you need to develop trust, understanding and communication between a person and their dog. A positive reinforcement ONLY trainer cannot fix or correct unwanted or undesirable behaviors you are trying to solve.

What questions should customers think through before talking to professionals about their project?

What have they tried in the past that has worked somewhat? What has not worked in the past or what have they tried to resolve the problem? Do they have the time & commitment to follow through after the training program as it takes consistency and follow through to maintain the positive behaviors after the training has ended. What is their main goal(s) in initiating such a program and what do they want the final result to look like?

Respond
Marie B.
March 8, 2019
Dog Training
Kevin is great! He knows what he is doing. I adopted a dog who needed some training with food aggression. I recieved a response very quickly. He told me about everything he was doing and instructed me on how to continue training Michi.
Respond
Matthew D.
February 26, 2019
Dog Training
Kevin was really easy to talk too, and he answered are questions in away that was easy for us to underfstand! He was Very professional! He helped us understand why and what we need to do to stop the aggressive biting from my 9 week old Rottweiler. Since he left it’s been so much better! Now it’s up to use to take the tools we learned today, and continue to use them so ‘KARMA” can have the best life possible! We will be using him in the future when Karma is older for age appropriate training. I would absolutely recommend dog owners that need training to use KEVIN’S K-9 training. Thank you again!
Respond
Sarah C.
February 15, 2019
Dog Training
Kevin has been a fantastic trainer! We did the 5 day program for our Great Dane pup who was basically scared of everything. Kevin worked one on one with her to introduce and socialize her in many different environments. He is very calm and sweet with dogs and is extremely knowledgeable. He sends videos through out the day of our dog’s progress and breaks down his methods and thought process. I look forward to working more with Kevin in the future and definitely recommend his services to someone looking for a trainer.
Respond
Ken P.
January 31, 2019
Dog Training
I was not able to use Kevin's service due to personal circumstances .
Respond
Allison B.
December 15, 2018
(Offsite Review)
My pup had a problem of barking in her crate when I would leave the house. I’ve tried everything under the sun and decided to turn to a professional, where I found Kevin. Kevin quickly responded to my inquiry and really took the time to understand the problems and needs. On training day, it took less than 2 hours to fix the barking and I am thrilled! He gave me some tips and tricks for further practice and for future reference, if needed. I am so happy with the results and highly recommend Kevin. Geveineve and I thank you!
Respond
Rebecca C.
November 30, 2018
Dog Training
Kevin was a tremendous help to me with my dog, Flint. Not only did he accomplish the goals we set forth for Flint, but he made me feel like I'm in control for the first time since Flint was a very small puppy. The consistent videos and detailed messages that Kevin sent will be a useful reference throughout my learning process, but I already feel so much more comfortable. Even after the three day training was up, Kevin sent me detailed instructions with reminders, and he told me to contact him anytime for issues or any relapses. This was a wonderful experience for both me and Flint. I would highly recommend him.
Respond
Chloe H.
November 19, 2018
Dog Training
Absolutely incredible to see the change in my dog and how responsive he is to Kevin’s training. He helped make my overly excited pup into a family friendly dog that is easy to handle.
Respond Show original review
Halia s.
November 8, 2018
Dog Training
I am amazed at the change in my dog in the first 5 minutes of him working with Kevin. Kevin took his time with us and educated us so we have the tools necessary to fix our issues with our dog. You can tell Kevin is passionate about what he does. I look forward to working with Kevin in the future!
Respond
Jill Z.
October 23, 2018
Dog Training
Kevin is spectacular! Understands and is knowledgeable in the understanding of canines. A++++++
Respond Show original review
Dari P.
October 23, 2018
Dog Training
Professionalism and Insight are the two terms that come to mind when thinking about my Doberman's week with Kevin. His plan of teaching is top form and he is very results oriented. Each day be talked about his plan for the day and where he would be for training. During the day everyday, he would send video clips to support the teaching he was doing. His summary each day and cumulatively at the end of tbe week will be an essential tool to help me to continue the work with Jordy. The week all too quickly came to a close. To let you know what Jordy thought- the day after he finished with Kevin- he was looking and waiting for him to arrive. For me, I am enjoying the good behaviors and my ability to refresh his memory when he forgets per Kevin's teaching. This will serve to enable us to enjoy our times together- awesome experience!
Respond Show original review
Lisette C.
October 16, 2018
Dog Training
My sister was having the hardest time getting her puppy to listen to her, even after consulting with a trainer previously. After a couple hours with Kevin the dog had turned a new leaf! He gave my sister tips on how to continue the training and maintain the behaviors they had established during that session. Now my sister and her puppy have a better relationship. We would definitely use Kevin again with the next dog and recommend highly to others!
Respond
Joy f.
October 5, 2018
Dog Training
Kevin is extremely knowledgeable and very effective in his training methods. He listened to the behavioral issues my dog was having, focused on the immediate issue and curbed the behavior in one session. Very pleased and would highly recommend Kevin.
Respond
Karen B.
September 22, 2018
(Offsite Review)
Kevin is a wonderful trainer! I had a tight budget and he worked with me and I was able to get 3 days with him and I feel it was definitely worth the investment. Kevin is very detailed and explains everything he’s doing so you feel confident as an owner to follow through after. He addressed my main issues of behavior with my dad (dominance/excitement/aggression), overexcitement and excessive barking upon hearing the doorbell, jumping, pulling a lot while walking and even out of the kitchen while mom cooks. We even got to incorporate a little of Glory and her excitement. I was always leery of spending money on a trainer with outcomes not always being good but that’s not the case with Kevin he’s great and addresses the issues and shows you exactly what to do going forward. I want 2 more days and hope to add that in the future - this time for off leash and treadmill. I highly recommend!
Respond
Kristy M.
September 18, 2018
(Offsite Review)
Kevin helped us with our 16 week old rescue. Our puppy will be a large dog when he's full grown and with 3 kids it's important to us to have a well behaved dog. Kevin taught our pup what is expected of him and then showed us how to continue his training. Our pup really took to Kevin and his calm demeanor. We were very impressed with the way our pup did each day. The daily videos were always fun to see the progress. We would recommend Kevin for sure.
Respond
Emily C.
August 20, 2018
(Offsite Review)
I have requested Kevin’s help with my 13 year old lab. He has troubles with his legs and no longer able to jump up the car. He does not let people hold him (and he is a bit chunky). We have tried on our own to get him to use the ramp but failed miserably and probably scared him even more. Kevin came to the house and practice using the ramp with totto and gave us very clear instruction to help totto get on the ramp. We are so pleased that totto is comfortable and able to use the ramp in about two hours. Kevin is very responsive, we communicated through emails and phone calls, he cares about the well being of totto. He checks back with us to make sure totto is doing well. Kevin is very professional and courteous. I am so grateful and will definitely recommend his service.
Respond
Maria K.
August 17, 2018
Dog Training
I don’t know where to begin... I contacted Kevin’s K-9 Accademy to help me with a rescue boxer I saved off of Craig’s list. I talked with Kevin at great length about Bentley’s background and his severe fear based aggression. He asked me questions about what my goals and expectations were with training. Finally Kevin’s schedule permitted him to meet Bentley in person. He came to my home and talked with me and at the same time studied Bentley. Kevin knew from the moment he met Benny that he was a challenge, but he also knew he could handle it. For the first time since Benny came to me I felt optimistic, I felt hope that soon he would be an active furry family member. The day of training came. Kevin came mentally and physically prepared. We talked over the game plan and then went in the backyard to begin. Bentley was explosive. Kevin had anticipated that. But within less than 10 minutes, Kevin had Bentley walking at a medium pace next to him doing laps in my yard. I was in total AMAZEMENT. Now Bentley is the same dog that for the last 4 months would not let anyone except me within 6 feet of him without him lunging. WOW! Kevin is a highly qualified dog trainer. He wears his love and passion for animals on his sleeve. I can’t say enough good things about Kevin’s K-9 Accademy and the compassion he showed to Bentley and me. On a scale from 1-10 I give 💯!
Respond Show original review
Virginia R.
July 17, 2018
Dog Training
Kevin was awesome with our pup, Canelo. He was always sending us videos and texts on what Canelo had been practicing on and how well he was doing. Kevin also made sure to go over everything in the afternoons at drop off. Looking forward to doing our off-leash training with Kevin. Would recommend to anyone.
Respond Show original review
Nancy D.
July 14, 2018
Dog Training
Respond
Jenn B.
June 28, 2018
Dog Training
Gave great advice on what to try before a session charge. Super nice and very friendly. Fast to respond as well. 😊
Respond
Kelly G.
June 24, 2018
(Offsite Review)
Kevin was greeted with Brody My 11 week old lab. I need more training than the pup. I will definitely be using Kevin for further training sessions Would recommend 1000%
Respond
Gretchen C.
June 21, 2018
(Offsite Review)
My dog was 71 lbs of pure excitement on a leash and too tough to walk or go in public places. Kevin trained her and my family in 2 days and she now walks with ease!
Respond
Regina S.
June 9, 2018
(Offsite Review)
My two dogs just finished 5 days of training day camp with Kevin. We were very happy with the experience. Kevin took the time to find out what WE really wanted to get out of the training and then tailored it to our needs. He not only trained our pups to do what we needed them to do but he also trained us! We have one dog who would bark at anything on a walk, especially other dogs and another that would pull terribly and was all over the place. By the end of the week they were walking like pros alone and together. Kevin also helped with separation anxiety in one of our dogs. We were able to get out and leave the dog alone for the first time in months!! We should have done this training years ago. Thank you Kevin!!!!
Respond
Meaghan d.
June 5, 2018
Dog Training
3 days working with Kevin & my 5 year old pup is like a brand new dog! Kevin helped us with leash training and behavior. I also learned so much from him in just a few short days! He even gave us some great pointers on training our new puppy as well. His training is truly worth every penny. Who says you can’t teach an old dog new tricks?
Respond
Carole K.
June 1, 2018
Dog Training
I discussed training both my puppy and older dog with Kevin. He is very professional and seemed to know what he's doing, so no qualms about his services. Unfortunately, we had an unusual and very costly repair come up suddenly for our home, so are putting off training for now.
Respond
Helen W.
May 3, 2018
(Offsite Review)
We highly recommend Kevin’s K-9 Academy! We did the week-long day camp for our 3 year old dog who is very sweet but is strong-willed and was in much need of better socialization skills. Kevin would pick up our dog in the morning and work with him throughout the day. He kept us informed of our dog’s progress with texts and videos on a daily basis. Kevin focused on issues that we thought were important for our dog and was much more successful than other trainers we had used in the past. We have been very happy with the results, and again, would highly recommend Kevin Shafer!
Respond
Melisa S.
April 9, 2018
(Offsite Review)
Super nice guy! Made changes with our Jax within the first 5 mins!! Would highly recommend!!!
Respond
Audra W.
March 29, 2018
Dog Training
We had Kevin out to work with our 2 very different dogs, one with serious car reactivity. Kevin was wonderful to work with! He explained everything and broke it down so I could understand and continue to work with my dogs effectively after our sessions. Kevin was great with our dogs and they responded wonderfully! By the end of our sessions, I was able to walk both my dogs together, calmly, right next to a busy road with NO issue, something I never thought we would be able to do! I would totally recommend Kevin for any training needs you have and we look forward to continuing to work with him in the future!
Respond
Julie B.
March 28, 2018
Dog Training
Kevin called us right away and gave us many tips on potty training, something that was our biggest struggle. We were doing many things right but he helped us tweak it and we have seen huge improvement in just a few short days. He did all this without a scheduled training session. We did have Kevin came to our house a few weeks later to help us with some other training issues. He was right on time, we were not, but he waited for us. He was very calming with our puppy and gave us lots of valuable information. We look forward to further training sessions with Kevin.
Respond
Malissa D.
March 27, 2018
(Offsite Review)
Kevin has a very pleasant personality and immediately connected with Ricky (my Jack Russell Terrier mix). The training tips I learned yielded immediate results. Kevin has done a great job following up since the training to assess how Ricky is performing. I was very pleased that he cared enough to check in after the fact.
Respond
Lily B.
February 26, 2018
Dog Training
Our toy poodle had a great week in day camp being trained by Kevin. Kevin took the time to listen to what we most wanted out of the training so he knew where to focus his time. He was extremely knowledgeable and provided us with lots of tools (videos and written suggestions) to continue the training in the future.
Respond
Shaun h.
February 17, 2018
Dog Training
Kevin at Kevin’s k9 academy is a true animal lover He listened to our concerns and addressed them with our little pup Ace Within minutes he had shown us little tricks to get our dog to listen Kevin helped us out gave us truly sound advice on what we should be doing with our puppy to be consistent and repetitive my wife and myself will take his information and apply it to our puppy. We would definitely recommend the use of Kevin’s services.
Respond Show original review
Claudia P.
February 6, 2018
Dog Training
Very professional, very knowledgeable! I would recommend!!
Respond
Linda B.
January 28, 2018
Dog Training
I have a 60 lb lab pitbull mix. She is 14 months old and very excitable. She jumps all over people, jumps the fence in the back yard and runs free for hours, pulls me on the leash to the point where she has pulled me down and is just totally exuberant and wild. Kevins been with Molly and myself 4 days and she has not jumped the fence since. She walks like a perfect lady on her leash and has stopped jumping on total strangers and myself. I can't thank Kevin enough for his help with Molly. He is fun and great to work with and the best part is Molly still likes him.
Respond
Dawnette W.
January 11, 2018
Dog Training
Kevin gave my husband and I extremely insightful and valuable information and tips for our puppy. Once we get the potty training down, we plan to have our puppy attend day camp with Kevin for some in depth training.
Respond Show original review
Betty r.
December 4, 2017
Dog Training
received helpful information
Respond
Bobbi S.
November 28, 2017
Dog Training
Kevin was great with my Pitbull. He determined right away what his issues were and we are correcting them. Things I thought would be a problem are not really a problem so that will leave extra time for learning obedience commands the PDuke has never learned. I would hire him again in a hot minute! He left me a very content and tired dog. Thanks Kevin!
Respond
Tracy O.
October 26, 2017
Dog Training
Kevin took the time to understand my situation, history with my dog, and knowledge level. He was able to offer valuable insight that I can easily work into my training approach.
Respond
Bill G.
October 25, 2017
Dog Training
Good guy and good trainer. He definitely adjusts the lesson and time to you and your dog. I have had poodles 35 years, but I still learned some new things
Respond
Katie E.
October 23, 2017
Dog Training
Haven't started yet but his information and knowledge is why I chose him. Looking foward to working with him
Respond
Thumbtack Customer
October 21, 2017
Anonymous Review
Respond
Thumbtack Customer
October 12, 2017
Anonymous Review
Kevin designs his training routines around the dog owner’s priorities for behavior modification. He is conscientious and professional and gets results. Jack Higgins
Respond Show original review
Chad S.
September 7, 2017
Dog Training
This is day 2 of our baby's training and we are already more than pleased with the results thus far. He is so calm and patient with her and us. The training is not only for her, but he spends the extra time to go over the days lesson so we can continue the instruction at home. UPDATE: A week and a half after her training is complete and I can' t say enough about the experience and how much easier it is to take our baby places and not worry about her knocking people down or dragging me. Kevin took her on "field trips" to department stores and ball parks, all to see how she would react in different situations and work on those. She is still a puppy; but a well behaved puppy. We will definitely be using his services again for other levels of instruction for our baby and can't recommend him enough.
Respond Show original review
Lindsey A.
July 28, 2017
Dog Training
Kevin did an awesome job with our 15 week old Ridgeback puppy (Jackson). He was able to help him with walking on the leash and resource guarding. He was also was very good about providing video updates as he worked with Jackson and resources for how to continue with consistentecy in training.
Respond
Kaitlin K.
July 19, 2017
Dog Training
Kevin was very professional and knowledgeable. We saw a lot of improvement in our dog after just 2 trainings. I would definitely re comment Kevin to others.
Respond
Anita c.
May 25, 2017
Dog Training - Private Lessons
Great to work with and very easy going with our puppy. Gave me a lot of good tips and made me understand so much with our dog.
Respond
Rhonda R.
May 23, 2017
Dog Training - Board and Train
I could not be more satisfied with Kevin's K-9 Academy. My puppy did a 3 week train and board and wow was it worth every penny! Kevin updated me throughout the training with videos and progress. Kevin followed up to every question I had and I had many. When my puppy came home, Kevin took the time to review the commands and how he worked with my puppy. My puppy is trained with his same personality (which was really important to me). Now that my puppy is back home I can tell how much good the training did him, Kevin was a complete advocate for my puppy and his training. With that said, the training was so amazing I am sending my other dog too! Thank you Kevin, we could not be more pleased and appreciative.
Respond
Kathie M.
April 4, 2017
Dog Training - Board and Train
Kevin has exceptional training skills. Our cane Corso, Remy, took to him immediately! Kevin also showed extreme care and compassion for our puppy. We look forward to keeping in touch with him and using his advise and training as needed.
Respond
Becky m.
March 2, 2017
Dog Training - Board and Train
Kevin provided a crash course in training for my older dog, who needed the basics. He was very insightful and helpful with information on the best way to train work with him and have him be successful. We will definitely be having more sessions.
Respond
Philip G.
February 20, 2017
Dog Training - Board and Train
We sent our pup Cooper for 2 weeks of training to get over his leash aggressiveness. Happy to report he's doing great, and we are happier than ever being able to take him for walks again without the fear of him acting out. Thanks Kevin!!! Highly recommended!
Respond
Rebecca L.
January 30, 2017
Dog Training - Private Lessons
Our session with Kevin was very helpful and informative. He gave us some very practical solutions to issues we have had with crate training and house breaking our puppy. We look forward to working with him again!

I have 50+ reviews and a 5.0 star rating you can reference at 

https://www.thumbtack.com/profile/services/vkWtN5UWj0by6A/reviews

Read more about this pro


Credentials

Davidson, NC 28036
Email verified
Phone verified

ReviewsWrite a review



There are no reviews yet



FAQs


What is your typical process for working with a new customer?

I typically speak with them over the phone so I can determine what the issue is and whether I am the best fit to help meet their need(s) of their dog. If initially I determine that I could help, I would then email them a consultation form to fill out so I can learn a little more about the client, dog and main goals they want to accomplish. I would collect this information and we would meet and chat in person . Then we would decide on the best method(s) and training program to accomplish the goal(s).


What education and/or training do you have that relates to your work?

I am a Certified Canine Training Specialist graduating from an intensive program at The Dog Knowledge in Charlotte NC. I have extensively trained service dogs within this program that were placed with war veterans' for obedience and special needs. "Trusty" is one of the dogs pictured in a profile picture (Golden Retriever).


Services offered