In-Home Training for You & Your Dog

References & Testimony

Good Dog Workshop is recommended by rescue groups and veterinary practices throughout the Northern Virginia area. Please contact us for our list of references.

Here is actual testimony from some of our clients:

“The two hour session exceeded my expectation. From our first introductory phone conversation to the session itself, Brian, the Owner, gave me guidance and reassurance on my interaction with the pack. I learned how to take control, lead, herd and correct, all with the understanding that it’s not what you say, but the confidence you exude that will encourage better behavior. There’s so much to learn about man’s best friend and a session with Good Dog Workshop will help you become a better dog parent. Good Dog Workshop is owned by a passionate, well-informed and devoted dog lover. If you want a better dog, teach yourself to be a better dog parent and take a session with Good Dog Workshop.”
      —Lynn W., Haymarket VA

Brian, the owner of Good Dog Workshop, came out to my house to meet with me, my wife and my mother-in-law, to try to help us with behavioral issues that we were having with our standard poodle puppy. All I can say is WOW! As soon as Brian entered the house and began to interact with our puppy, it was like she was a completely different dog. She was calm and submissive, and while we worked with Brian, she did not demonstrate any of the behaviors that were causing concern. Brian worked with each of us individually, and based on our personalities, showed us the best way to interact with our puppy. He also brought out [several] members of his “pack”, and it was interesting to observe how my dog interacted with Brian’s dogs and their different personalities. The two hours we spent with Brian completely changed our view on how to best deal with our “rambunctious” puppy. I would definitely recommend Brian’s services to any one who is having problems dealing with a dog that has behavioral issues.”
      —Alfred C., Chantilly VA

“Brian came to our house for an evaluation. It lasted 2 hours. During that time, he assessed our dogs’ personalities and our situation. He then explained the importance of exercise, what it meant to have the strong leader energy, and how to communicate that to the dogs. He also taught my wife and me a new way to correct our dachshund, who gets aggressive towards men, by introducing a different collar for him. We then went on a walk with that dog. He showed me how to correct the dog on a walk and how to introduce him to other dogs. Brian even brought two of his dogs with him on the walk. The last thing he did was bring one of his dogs into our house to see if our dogs would handle that well, and they did! It went really well! My wife and I felt a lot more confident about being the alpha in our home. We also felt a lot more hopeful that our Dachshund’s behavioral issues will resolve over time now that we know a more effective way to correct him and to be his leader. Brian explained very well, providing examples of previous jobs or of his own dogs. We felt he was very easy to talk to and open up to. About a week later, Brian called to follow up with us. He made it clear that we can give him a call anytime if we have any other questions or concerns, which we will definitely do if the need arises.”
      —Adam D., Sterling VA

“Good morning Brian, I wanted to let you know that the session with Josh yesterday was great and even exceeded my expectations. I was amazed at the results we received in an hour and a half. Truly remarkable! From the moment he arrived we had a new relationship with our dog that seemed to be beneficial for all of us. Remy seems more relaxed than ever which in turn made his owners relaxed. Now we understand how to utilize the calm assertive energy I have read about. Josh was really great at interpreting Remy’s body language and showing us what to look for when correcting him. My wife was really nervous at times but Josh really made her feel comfortable and she was able to follow through with the training scenarios. She has definitely elevated her status in our pack and seems really proud of that accomplishment. There is still work to be done, but for now I believe we have the skill set to make it happen. Thanks to you and Josh for helping us out!”
      —Mike M., Arlington VA

“Josh, Thanks again for your assistance today to help correct many of Gordi’s bad behaviors. We will do our best to instill better control over her and how she interacts with each environment she is exposed to. With your guidance we noticed a vast improvement, and now it is our job to repeat it daily. Thanks again!”
      —Nathan T., Ashburn VA, February 22, 2014

“Christina, We want to thank you very much for all your help. Caroline is doing much better. She is a quick leaner and we keep working at it every day. Take care”
      —Sherry S., Ashburn VA, February 18, 2014

“Hi Brian. Thank you so much for coming here to help us. You were absolutely amazing the way you got results immediately. It does show there’s more dynamics going on than just the GSD. I will keep you posted and just want you to know that you have given me so much hope. Thanks again.”
—Sally S., Clifton VA, November 19, 2013

“Brian showed me how to work with and understand my min-pin/terrier puppies. He is thoroughly trained, professional and keenly in tune with dog and people behavior. Words cannot accurately relay the incredible experience I had, the mountains of information given, hands on practice, and invaluable insight to my behavior as it affects my dogs. Brian is patient, communicates clearly what he is teaching and allowed me to practice the techniques on the spot. He has a his own teaching pack that is invaluable in the process of assessing my dog’s reactions to different situations. The “classroom” is his spacious farm with plenty of land, horses and just enough distraction to enhance the training while not putting the dogs in danger of being hit by cars. Once the training was done, Brian sent me a detailed email reiterating the training lessons, tips specific to my dog’s quirks, and “homework” to build on the experience. He encourages continued  communication to keep the success going. PLEASE take advantage of Brian’s skill and give your dog(s) a chance to have a wonderful, secure, safe life with its “pack”- you and your family. I was appreciative that the hourly rate was a flat fee of $150.00 per hour and not per dog. I was blown away by the experience and will definitely go back to Brian when I my dogs and I are ready to go to the next level of training.
      —Diane S., Herndon VA (Angie’s List review)

“Brian didn’t skip a beat to start our session and get to know us and our dogs. After listening to us and watching our dogs, he began to introduce our dogs to his pack. His dogs each had their own unique personality, but were all so well behaved that it put our dogs at ease. We worked through different scenarios that our dogs have trouble with (e.g., meeting new dogs on a walk) and each time I was surprised at how responsive they were to Brian’s instruction. He quickly was able to identify some issues that we needed to work on and there were things that neither my husband nor I would have ever thought about. Brian gave us great, practical things to work on with our dogs and gave us reassurance that with some adjustments, we can have the pack we want. I think it was well worth the time and money. I really do believe we’ll be able to make the needed adjustments to see our dogs become more relaxed and trusting of us as their pack leaders. It’s amazing how much of our own behavior dogs pick up on and we don’t even realize! My husband and I really learned a lot and saw changes in our dogs even during the first visit. Our lab even fell in with Brian’s pack! I honestly couldn’t have asked for anything more during this session. Brian was friendly, professional and CLEARLY knows and loves dogs.”
—Deirdre F., Burke VA (Angie’s List review)

 “Brian, Thank you so much for yesterday! Rob and I really learned alot and you were awesome with Jax. I walked him this morning and there is already such a huge difference! He was next to me the whole time and sat at every crossing without words. Thank you so much!”
—Christina A., Arlington VA

“Christina and Brian,
Wow! You guys are miracle workers! I didn’t tell you when we met that, leading up to our appointment, I feared I would have to return Maddie to the rescue group, because I doubted my ability to be an effective pack leader. I had been dreading Maddie’s and my twice-daily walks because of the way she pulled me and lunged at other dogs. I now love our walks! The first time we went out after our lesson, she tried to go after a squirrel, but I corrected her, immediately and instinctively, and she fell right back in at my side. She has been trotting next to me in heel position with very little correction necessary.  On Sunday afternoon, I took her down to the nature preserve near my house – something I hadn’t dared do before. We met several dogs, who she mostly greeted in a lady-like fashion (for a dog, at least). Where before I was embarrassed by her behavior, I now see other dogs pulling or carrying on, and I’m proud of my little girl. I appreciate your comments and I will do the practice you’ve recommended. Thanks for everything.”
—Kim M., Sterling VA

“Good Dog Rescue assisted with training and socializing my dog with other people (the trainer) and other dogs; they also taught my family members and me how to better work with my dog. The training went so well that a few weeks later someone said that they had to tell me what a good dog I have!  My dog is now better socialized, but more importantly, I am able to read his body language much better, control him better, and know how to better introduce other people and dogs to him.”
—Emily L., Springfield VA

“Thanks for all your help! Trixie is doing great and has 100% adjusted to the new baby with no problems.”
     —Patrick S., Quantico VA

Brian working with Bella & her owners
“Dear Christina & Brian,
      I can’t thank you enough for your time and expertise, Christina. I feel like something magical has happened at home. The house is peaceful and calm. The transformation in Bella is unbelievable. She hasn’t mouthed me once since you’ve been there. She sits and looks at me with respectful expectancy, like she’s waiting patiently waiting for me to tell her what to do, instead of her taking charge. And she spent the night in our room, uncrated. She did great! Thank you again. You’ve made our pack a joy to be with.”
—Lori E., Warrenton VA

“Great, Great, Great! My dogs immediately responded to Brian. He was very knowledgeable and was able to help me understand my dogs! He also brought to my attention the things I need to work on in order for my dogs to portray more positive behaviors. Everything clicked for me when Brian told me my dogs are a mirror of myself. I am now able to walk my two dogs and push the baby in the stroller without chaos. Thanks, Brian, for making our lives better!!!”
     —Lauren L., Culpeper VA

“Hey Brian, I cannot THANK YOU ENOUGH for your patience, your diligence, your eagerness to teach and prepare all of us to do what is best not only for our dogs but for us! My only regret is that I didn’t get into this a year ago when I first adopted Peanut (when her only issue seemed to be wetting the carpet, which she still does on occasion). But don’t worry, I won’t live in the past. Not to give you an inflated ego or anything but “all I ever needed to know about life” I quickly learned from two very competent, patient, perceptive dog trainers today!!! Who would have THUNK it??? Peanut is mentally spent [after today’s training]….not only am I “feelin’ the love” from her now but I’m seeing some real genuine respect as well. The latter is indeed most important in any relationship. I’m looking forward to the work I have ahead of me and trust Peanut is in the best of care through it all. Thank so much for spending the extra time with Peanut and for enriching the lives of so many beloved dogs!!! You rock!”
      — Becky B., Reston VA

“Thanks for all the help! We really enjoyed working with Mike and Chester is much better behaved now. He walks much better on the leash and his separation anxiety has decreased a lot. We highly recommend Mike and GDW.”
     —Douglas B., Burke, VA, November 13, 2011

“Dear Brian and Christina,
         Our girls are doing really well. It’s amazing what training us has done. We should have done this years ago. Sunday afternoon, our son and future daughter in law came for a visit. We decided to take them for a stroll down Main Street. Notice I said “stroll,” which meant we walked slowly. We decided to take the dogs, knowing there was a good chance they would misbehave on our slow walk. They were a bit frustrated, but actually did very well. How well? A woman who passed us walking in the opposite direction actually commented about how well-behaved our dogs were. Really. That’s amazing. I wish we would have met you both years ago!”
     —Kathy K., Warrenton VA

 “Good Morning Brian,
      You are truly amazing. I feel like the Dog Whisperer is in my home when you are here. We all really were mesmerized by your calm leadership skills and little talking while totally communicating in the dog’s language.  Cool. I am very pleased to say that each of us have seen steady progress with both Riley and Andre in the short time since you visited. Both dogs are getting regular exercise and interact more peacefully with each other, feeding time with Andre is now taking 5-8 minutes versus longer as we are waiting for him to ‘give in’ to our authority and then allowing him to eat, both seem to sense our ‘energy’ and respect us more, and I am much more comfortable around Andre. All good. “
    —Lissa L., Warrenton VA 

Brian, Olive is doing great. An absolute joy around the house and much better behaved in public.”
     —Sean M., Washington DC

Bandit with Morgan & Aston

Thank you soo much, you really helped me see how powerful I am and built my confidence level even more. I walked our other dog as well with Bandit, and I am excited to give them the positive energy and leadership they need. I am so grateful to you, thank you.”
    —Nancy L., Stafford VA

“Wow! That was the most pleasant walk ever!! People keep remarking how well Tucker is behaving. And I’m not tripping over him in the kitchen! Wahoo!”
     —Kathy T., Chantilly VA

“Hi Brian,
      Jocelyn called me right after their session [with Carlos] and was very excited about how much they learned. They thought their biggest problem was the dogs going through the invisible fence which Carlos fixed in about 5 min by adjusting the dogs’ collars. The session inside the house revealed the bigger problem, however. They were impressed by how Carlos calmly and firmly demonstrated the dominance issue. They really appreciated how Carlos handled the whole training session. Jocelyn was worried that they might be considered bad ‘pet parents’ but Carlos was never judgmental or condescending. They felt very comfortable with him and his techniques. They are eagerly putting his recommendations to use. THANKS FOR THIS GREAT SERVICE!”
     —Cindy F., Roanoke VA

“Hi Brian,
      I was so lucky to be on the receiving end of one of my clients’ workshops with Carlos today. I am so excited to ‘begin again’ as I feel like I’m armed with the proper tools that are going to give me more confidence in handling my dogs. I will continue to recommend your company, especially after seeing first hand how helpful it can be.”
    —Kathleen B., Potomac Falls VA

Daisy's new family

“Hi Brian! I hope you and your family enjoyed a wonderful Thanksgiving! We had a houseful of family and overnight guests and Daisy took it all in stride! She was amazing! Even the non-dog people commented on what a nice dog she is. She and Troy are best buds now too. He doesn’t want to go anywhere without her! She fits right in. You definitely have a gift for matching the right dog with the right family! Thanks again!”
     —Janette U., Rehobeth Beach DE

“Brian and Christina,
      It was a pleasure meeting you today and I thoroughly enjoyed the training session. It truly was an incredible amount of information but I do believe I have retained the most important points. Fred and Lucy are both more respectful of me when I enter and leave the house and we just came back from a 40 minute walk which was pleasantly uneventful. Squirrels were jumping out of trees and a deer crossed the road in front of us: one correction to each and we continued down the road. Until your probing, it never occurred to me that [our] previous dogs were better behaved because their lives were more structured due to our living environment at the time—as Oprah would say: my first ‘Aha’ moment. I hope to have more such moments in the next few days. Thanks so much for your time and I can’t wait to have our next session.”
     —Andrea S., Marshall VA

“Mike, I’ve been meaning to tell you that whatever you think you did for Nell, she is very noticeably more interactive and happy with us and with people that come over to our house. It’s awesome! She seems more alert but relaxed, like she’s finally able to pay attention without being scared of it all. The other day my hair stylist came by and as we were talking by the front door, Nell crept out of the office, all stealthy-like, to come sit in front of me and lean against my shins–this put her within a foot of the other lady and she didn’t shake or anything. Thank you so much for taking the extra days to work with her. Whatever you did made a very big difference.”
    —Danielle D., Gainesville VA

“The training session was excellent…far more was accomplished than I had anticipated. My dog responded well to the trainer’s very “in charge” but understanding demeanor. I can’t tell you how much we appreciate your prompt and caring manner. Wonderful service!!!
     —Kathy H., Casanova VA

“I love to save all his photos! You took great pictures again. They make me laugh when I look at them all just hanging out in the grass. LOL! Fado looks like he’s high, he’s so happy and his ears couldn’t stand up any more! He just loves coming there and hanging out. You guys are the best!!”
     —Barbara S., Burke VA

Leo & Thunder
“Thank you for your help today! The dogs are already better during their walks and I am working on the stranger thing. Thank you!”
     —Nita G., Manassas VA

“Good Dog Workshop is the best for training aggressive dogs. [Brian] has been helping me with my rescue dogs that have many issues and I’ve received many positive responses from clients, families and volunteers that have worked with him. I recommend them to all my families that are adopting dogs with issues!”
     —Laurie C., Alexandria VA

“Scott and I were very impressed with Carlos and his ability to relate to our dogs. His response to the dogs’ behavior seems instinctual with him and that is the state we are striving to get to in our relationship with Simon and Mika. Just watching the interaction between Carlos and the dogs when they needed corrections was priceless. You could sense the respect they had for him even after a struggle for control. Mika can be a handful at mealtimes and Carlos has proven to us that the control can be ours if we work at it in other aspects of her life. Eventually she will be the balanced dog that we hope for and getting these tips with Mika will make us better pack leaders for our puppy Simon. In his case, all the work will be done up front so we will avoid any future problems. This workshop should be a requirement for every dog owner. I’m passing along some of your material to K-9 Lifesavers, the rescue organization that we’re involved with, and will mention your Workshop to any of the adopters that I work with. Thank you for everything.”
     —Lynne S., Alexandria VA

“Good morning Brian,
     Thank you so much for the continuing wonderful pictures of Magic. She looks soooooo happy. Obviously she has adjusted well which speaks volumes for you and Morgan.”
     —Pam W., Big Horn WY

[It’s like] we have a brand new dog in our house! I don’t know what you did to him but he is FANTASTIC!”
     —Barbara S., Burke VA

“Carlos’ work with us on Saturday was exceptional. Both dogs are much calmer and submissive. They both look less depressed and anxious. Boss is much quieter, already, when the doorbell rings. Feedings are much calmer and peaceful. We are truly grateful. Many thanks, Brian. This was just the intervention that we needed.”
     —David C., Reston VA

“We were both extremely impressed with both you and Carlos. We feel as though we’ve finally found people that can actually help us address the issues we’ve been struggling with for so long now. The three other trainers we had seen didn’t even come close to figuring out our boys the way that you and Carlos did within minutes, and we had multiple sessions with those trainers. We’re so grateful to have found you all, and we’re confident that with the tools you’ve shared with us and a lot of hard work, we can get the boys to a happy place so we’re all at peace. Thank you (and Carlos!) for all your help–we’re extremely excited by the results we see in the boys (and ourselves) and we’re looking forward to continuing on this new path.”
     —Katie C., Gainesville VA

Huck, a German Shorthaired Pointer

“Thank you again. I greatly appreciate it. You are extremely easy to talk to, have excellent canine knowledge, stay 100% focused and have a very pleasant professional demeanor – definitely a WIN WIN situation!”
     —Misty Y., Bethesda, MD

“Hi Brian,
      Just wanted to thank you for sending out Carlos on Saturday to treadmill train Cheyenne. It worked! I can’t believe it but he actually likes it. When we are done he walks back into the room and gets on the treadmill all by himself. It’s quite cute. Thanks again.”
     —Lori C., Fairfax VA

“Carlos was so helpful.  My husband and I got a lot out of our session and could really see some results!”
     —Erin F., Fairfax VA

“We were very impressed with how quick Amph took to the training methods.”
     —Dave M., Arlington VA

“Rescuing our shepherd was the easy part, but trying to read his behavior was a bit more difficult. GDW provided a powerful learning environment for us and our dog in a short amount of time. We acquired the leadership skills needed to free up our dog’s anxiety, so that he could settle into his forever home. In this economy…Brian was money well spent!”
     —Barbara S., Burke VA

“Hilo stayed with GDW for about 7 days and we had no complaints whatsoever. Hilo came back happy and tired from all his walks and playtime! Hilo loved playing with the other dogs and really needed the behavior and socialization skills that Brian worked on. Thank you so much.
     —Marianne K., Warrenton VA

“I think your services are great, I still can’t believe what a difference I see in how Capone behaves. I am absolutely thrilled with the results. I actually look forward to walking Capone now, no more pulling. I really appreciate everything you guys did for us.”
     —Shannon C., Gainesville VA

“Hi Brian,
     Caesar and our Brian are doing VERY well together – thank you for helping us get the pack order straight in our household! It is a beautiful thing to see my 45-pound, 6-year-old son silently instruct our 85lb dog to sit, then lie down and wait before he feeds him, then signal him when it’s okay to get up and eat!  It’s great for my son’s confidence level, which in turn helps Caesar to know who is the boss, regardless of their sizes!  I can honestly say that they are enjoying each other.
     Your suggestion to take him on brisk, structured walks on a shorter leash every day has worked out very well. Caesar does very well on our walks, not pulling or being unduly distracted by other dogs, etc. Since his heartworm treatment was completed in August, we have started taking him out to soccer games, where there are more distractions, but he’s handling that pretty well, too.
     Interestingly enough, since we’ve implemented your suggestions, we no longer have the problems we had with Caesar chewing and being stressed when he’s alone. We still put him in the basement to sleep, but he is very accepting, and lies right down quietly. During the day when we’re at school, he’s in the house with no problems.
     I’ve wanted to let you know that we appreciate how you helped us to interact with our dog for a healthier “pack” relationship – you really made a difference! Thank you!”
     —Joyce B., Spotsylvania VA

“Carlos was excellent because ours was not an easy case. My husband and I have been at odds about how to discipline the dogs and Carlos made it very clear to both of us that if we aren’t on the same page his instruction would be for naught. It was interesting to learn that our dogs are not the problem – which I suspected but it was affirmed! They are doing much better and seem to love the treadmill. Thank you and we still may call for a booster later!”
     —Betsy C., Alexandria VA

“Your service was great, and the price even better. I will and have already highly recommended Good Dog Workshop to my friends and clients. My husband and I are very satisfied, even excited about the lessons we learned and the homework we are to apply to our dogs. I have finally learned how to get my dogs on the treadmill. We are very impressed with Carlos.”
     —Carmen P., Alexandria VA

“Brian was great and we learned a lot from him. We would definitely recommend his services to others.”
     —Barbara S., Marshall VA

     We had a great session with Carlos yesterday. We’ve been using the techniques already last night and this morning with success. And most importantly he showed us how to be confident and assertive so that we can be good leaders.”
     —Kira O., Ashburn VA

“You were so accommodating and helpful. You went over and above the call of duty seeing to Turk’s needs. I appreciate your patience with Frannie, recognizing that she needed more one-on-one attention early on, so that she could play comfortably and safely with the other dogs as time went on– that’s just the kind of supervised socialization she needed. I would feel completely at ease leaving them with you again, though I’m a little afraid they might not want to leave!”
     —Libby S., Washington DC

“Hi Brian,
     I can’t begin to tell you how pleased we are with your services. We were amazed at the instant results!!!! Carlos is such a cool guy, he helped with all our dogs, not just the one we thought had a problem. He gave us lots of advice, worked on us humans too, I was terrified to go on a walk with 200lbs worth of nutty german shepherds. The following day we went on a walk and for the first time in many months, I actually enjoyed it!!!! As the days pass it only gets better, now we look forward to walk, we do it twice a day even. Thanks a million!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”
     —Alejandra D., Gaithersburg MD

“Hi all at Middleburg Humane,
     In my last e-mail regarding the great progress Bella has made, I mentioned Good Dog Workshop owned by Brian Kerchner. I highly recommend Brian for any of the foster homes that are working with all of the “Settle” dogs, as well as any of your adopters that need help on the homefront with dog (and people) issues. He will come right to your home and watch you and your dog interact. When he came here to help with Bella, we worked on walking on a leash with the other dogs, as well as fear issues, and going into her crate. Brian is reasonably priced and very generous with his time. He will stick with you until a solution is found, and his positive energy is infectious! Brian is also on the Board for Virginia German Shepherd Rescue and has a real place in his heart for rescued dogs.
     I just wanted to pass on his information because his help with Bella has been invaluable to her progress and happiness in our family.”
     —Debbie G., Haymarket VA

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