We're located in Illinois serving
Schaumburg, South Elgin and surrounding areas.
We have experience in training dogs for home, service or therapy work, hunting, pulling, tracking or search work, conformation, and obedience. We also have years of experience grooming, breeding, and problem solving. No matter what the breed or the behavior, we’re here to help. So don’t complain, just come and train!
Behavioral psychology is simple. Animals do what is rewarding. The more often an animal is rewarded for doing something, the more likely the behavior will occur again. Proper application of the psychology is not as easy. Indeed, the so-called professionals are often sadly lacking when it comes down to methods. Cesar Milan and Paws RUs K9s were applying the psychology long before we understood it.
First, one needs to remember that the animal being trained defines the rewards. Food is rewarding only to the constantly hungry puppy or retriever. If one wishes to reward with food, some adult dogs may need to be half starved before it becomes valuable. Praise is only valuable if it comes from an individual the animal wishes to impress and never valuable to the antisocial animal. The highly popular clicker method requires not only a hungry animal but also proper conditioning, usually with food, to make a click valuable.
We feel it makes more sense to pair the food with a word of praise while we train our hungry pups. Teaching those pups to view their owners as leaders that they wish to impress and to enjoy handling is our first priority. You really don’t have to be a “cookie jar” or clicker carrier in order to have a happily working canine companion.
When we start training an adult dog, we are careful to set things up so that the dog can do nothing other than what we want them to do so they will be rewarded with praise coming from a valued leader. We must also remember that those same psychology principles apply to the human portion of the class process. Our classes don’t really teach dogs, we teach people. Setting people up for success by carefully explaining an exercise and preparing the person for what their dog will most likely do is critical.
Students can help by asking questions and by being willing to try things. One of the most important jobs of PawsRUs K9s is to look for opportunities to reward the two legged student with a bit of praise for a step in the right direction. Good handlers are made by being rewarded with good responses from their dogs and praise from instructors. It is the number of times a student is rewarded for doing things right that make it more likely they will perform correctly again.
Once the animal or student knows what they should do, a bit of punishment added to block mistakes and redirect to the correct way can greatly shorten the time needed to achieve a high level of success. This can get a bit tricky because we don’t like punishment any more than our dogs do. We are especially good at avoiding corrections by getting defensive, making excuses for our behavior, and sometimes even quitting. We must try to remember that a good correction can stop us from making that mistake and finally put us on the road to success just as it does for our dogs. So, try to think positive but not permissive. Remember to praise or correct your instructors too!
Our instructors have spent their lives around dogs, but they would rather not talk about exactly how many years that adds up to. They love dogs and wish everyone loved dogs, but untrained dogs aren’t always very lovable. Disappointed by some of the current trends in dog training, they felt compelled to form Paws R Us K9s to share their knowledge and experience with those that might need a little help with their canine friend. While they participate in competitive dog sport, they all feel it is much more important for dogs to be working companions rather than titled pets.
While growing up, Toni spent as much time as she could at her Grandparents farm where there were always working dogs. Each day a working collie brought the cows in at milking time and little terriers kept the farm free from marauding wildlife. When she was old enough to have her own dogs, Toni was drawn to the German Shepherd. All of her children grew up playing with and being watched over by these wonderful dogs. Toni has bred several litters of puppies and titled her dogs in obedience and tracking. She has used her tracking dogs to find lost pets and a missing toddler and to provide therapy at hospitals and nursing homes. Toni also often makes house calls to solve behavior issues including biting.
Val also grew up with dogs and owned a Beagle, Cocker Spaniel, Doberman, a German Shepherd, and Mixes before falling in love with Golden Retrievers. Val’s Paws R Us Goldens are much sought after for home and conformation because of their good looks and even more beautiful temperament. Val expects dogs to have great manners and her grooming experience and no nonsense attitude makes her an excellent puppy raiser and instructor. Her dogs also excel at therapy work. One of her dogs, Heidi, was called in to a hospital where she succeeded in bringing a man out of a coma that the medical staff had given up on. Heidi found lost dogs, a gas leak, and even rescued a dog that had fallen through the ice. Heidi lived a long life truly in service to mankind. Val shares her life now with golden retrievers, Cooper and Jesse.
Penny often tells people that her life began when her family moved to the country and she got to spend her days tromping fields with dogs. Her favorite thing to do these days is still tromping fields with dogs. Penny has trained many different breeds, obtaining 43 AKC tracking titles over the years. 7 of those dogs became champion trackers. Both her miniature poodle, Deuce, and chocolate labrador, Pekoe, were champion trackers, Car-Dun-Al ODTC, Inc. Hall of Fame dogs, therapy dogs, and searched for lost pets. She is a tester/observer for Therapy Dogs, Inc. and the Director of Training for Car-DunAl ODTC, Inc. In 2004, she won the Red Cross Hometown Hero award for her work training service dogs to help people with disabilities. Penny has also trained and titled dogs in obedience, agility, and hunt tests. She has hunted with a dog, used another to pull her young children in a sled or wagon, and devoted many hours to therapy work.
We have experience in training dogs for home, service or therapy work, hunting, pulling, tracking or search work, conformation, and obedience. We also have years of experience grooming, breeding, and problem solving. No matter what the breed or the behavior, we’re here to help.
New classes start on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday nights throughout the year. Additional classes will be added as needed. Check our calendar for upcoming classes and events. Please check the contact us page for the location of classes.
A Health Certificate form must be completed by your vet and on file at the start of each dog's first class - download the Health Certificate form.
6 weeks, $80
for puppies 9 to 18 weeks of age, no prerequisite
Students will learn how to establish good behavior and avoid problems before they start. Topics include housebreaking, chewing, bite-inhibition, nutrition, grooming, manners (especially around children and food), shyness, aggressiveness, socialization, basic obedience, and responsible dog ownership. Food and play rewards are used to teach basic commands like sit, down, stand, stay and come. By stressing the importance of the canine need for leadership, we help you start building a working relationship where the dog is eager to work reliably and happily for simple praise and attention.
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8 weeks, $100
for young dogs up to maturity, no prerequisite
This class is designed to continue reinforcing the skills learned in puppy preschool class. Students will learn to communicate easier with their dog so that future dog training will be a pleasure for both dog and handler. Young dogs will become skilled at coming when called, going to a special spot and staying there, walking politely at your side or behind you, and staying wherever they might be left. Since the young dog is so eager to learn, we try to introduce everything you might need your dog to be able to do later for agility, obedience, service, therapy, hunting, herding, or search and rescue. We still use lots of food and play rewards, but pups have to learn that commands from their human leaders may not be ignored.
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8 weeks, $100
for mature dogs at least 6 months of age, no prerequisite
Dogs on leash or long line will perform sit, down, stand, heel, stay and come reliably regardless of the distractions. No one wants to be their dog’s walking cookie jar or toy box so food and toys are now used mostly as distractions. Dogs will work very hard to please their leader so you can just reward with praise and affection until there can be no doubt that the dog understands what it should do. Only then are corrections used to shorten the time it takes to achieve a high level of reliability.
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8 weeks, $100
prerequisite: grade school diploma
One really hasn’t completed schooling until you at least have a high school diploma. Unless you have off-leash control and reliability under distracting situations for all the commands taught in the first part, a dog really isn’t trained. And again, no food or bribes are needed to get your dog to work!
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Jump, Fetch, and Sniff
8 weeks, $100
prerequisite: grade school diploma
This is a $100, eight week class for beginner graduates. We use food and toys to introduce skills needed for advanced training in various venues such as obedience, hunting, agility, tracking, or search work.
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This is a $15 per week drop-in option that’s just plain fun. We go back to using food or toys and simple exercises are individually performed at stations on a course. These exercises will seem like fun and games while you and your dog develop better teamwork, precision, and reliability.
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Anything else you wish to do with your dog? We can help. Just ask us!