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About Me

Joanne Thompson

aka Joanne The Dog Trainer

Professional Obedience Instructor, Certified Trick Dog Instructor, CGC Evaluator, S.T.A.R. Puppy Evaluator, Canine Conditioning Coach, Stunt Dog Judge

International Association of Canine Professionals (IACP) - Professional Membership

IACP Education Committee

Joanne has 50 years of hands-on experience, working directly with tens of thousands of dogs and owners. From group classes, private lessons, to board & train programs, Joanne has worked successfully with everything from puppies to severely reactive/aggressive dogs. Treating each dog as an individual, Joanne is able to read the dog and assess a behavior/situation to know how to best address the problem. Joanne is experienced with a variety of training disciplines and methods, so is able to use what works best for the dog, creating a path to clear communication between owner and dog.

Joanne has never been without a dog in her life.  From the time she could walk, she's been training dogs, cats, and even reptiles!  As a young girl, her first training project was a Belgian Malinois named Thor.  In typical Malinois style, Thor was a challenge right out of the gate, teaching Joanne many valuable training lessons.  In elementary school, a 3rd grade assignment was to teach the class something she was passionate about.  Joanne chose dog training. A mock group class was set up with families/dogs and teachers/dogs. After the mock group class, the principal called Joanne's parents to ask if she could continue teaching classes.  While continuing to teach, one of Joanne's after school jobs was dog walking and dog sitting.  Upon graduating high school, Joanne started a successful in-home pet sitting/training business, before going on to open her official dog training business, teaching obedience, agility, and behavior modification. 


Dog Training for 50 years, training is not just a passion or a way of's who she is.  Over the years, Joanne has trained, trialed or titled in AKC herding, obedience, rally, agility, conformation, tracking, and trick dog; UKC obedience, agility, rally, and conformation; AHBA herding; BHA barn hunt; and DMWYD trick dog.  She has owned, trained, and handled multiple High In Trial, Reserve High In Trial, Top Ten, and #1 Top Herding Giant Schnauzers in the country, several years in a row.  She is currently owned by a Giant Schnauzer (Fuzz-Butt), a Blue Picardy Spaniel (Gracie), a Chocolate Lab mix (Sadie), Miniature Poodle (Louie), and a Belgian Malinois (Kalina).

Our Philosophy

At The Balanced Dog, we believe in addressing the dog as a whole...both mind and body. Mental exercise is just as important as physical exercise. We believe in building a solid foundation in basics, not just with basic obedience and manners, but the dog's mental state of mind, which sets the tone for the dog's success as he progresses through life.  Along with working with the dog, we make a point of working with the owners to help them better understand and communicate with their dog by teaching the owners how to handle the leash as well as understand body language and what the dog is trying to tell them.

Continuing Education and Certifications

Ivan Balabanov's Treat Chasing 2.0

Ivan Balabanov's Chase & Catch 2.0

Ivan Balabanov's Possession Games

Ivan Balabanov's Teaching the Out Command

Do More With Your Dog Trick Dog Instructor Certification

Do More With Your Dog Stunt Dog Judge Certification

Do More With Your Dog Canine Conditioning Coach Certification

AKC Canine Good Citizen Evaluator

AKC S.T.A.R. Puppy Evaluator

AKC Trick Dog Evaluator

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