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~We adopted Beerus from a shelter when he was 3.5 years old, needless to say, he came with some behavioral and trust issues. Prior to training, any home visitors were met with aggressive barking and lunging. After researching local trainers, we decided on the Balanced Dog with Joanne, and signed Beerus up for the two-week program. We were pleasantly surprised when Joanne made the journey to assess Beerus’ behavior at our home in Laramie. During his stay with Joanne, she sent us videos and messages to show the progress he was making with the training. Upon his return, Joanne spent several hours with us to teach us everything Beerus had learned during his training sessions with her. We now have the tools to help Beerus accept visitors into our home and he happily greets his newly made friends. Thank you, Joanne!!!

Marci M., Laramie, WY


~Joanne is a master at changing lives. She is very knowledgeable on dog behavior and always knows the steps to take to get a well trained dog. It is clear that she truly cares about the dog succeeding and wants both the parent and dog to do well and to understand each other. Joanne will make a point to not finish a lesson until she feels both the parent and the dog understand what is expected of them. She is truly amazing and I will forever recommend her to anyone.

Colin S., Ft. Collins, CO

~We tried training our own little Minka, but alas we needed a professional. We decided to go all in and checked for the best out there is in our area. The reviews we read about The Balanced Dog were very positive, so we connected with Joanne. She came to meet Minka and learn what we were seeking, and then tailored a plan specifically for our fur baby. We signed Minka up for the three week board and train. We got daily updates and/or videos. We saw daily progress. We then got to meet with Joanne and Minka and take the reins. She coached us what we needed to do to keep training going. She was available “on call” to ensure training would stick. We cannot speak highly enough about this fabulous experience! We very highly recommend Joanne and The Balanced Dog! Joanne is amazing!!!!

Teresa C., Allenspark, CO

~We cannot believe what an amazing job Joanne did with our 1 year old golden pup. We had done some basic training at home but it was hard to reinforce training with two small kids at home and busy work schedules. Joanne taught our pup how to calm himself down, stay in his "place", sit and stay, and taught US the importance of giving our pup a job to do. He came back his same goofy self but with a purpose and a mission to serve. She created really detailed videos while training so that we could replicate training technique once back at home, and then spent significant time with us making sure we understood next steps. Our dog received so much love and attention while in training and now that he's home he is such a gentleman. I cannot stress what a good investment this is. Joanne laid the foundation for a doggy lifetime of being a very good boy.

Erin C., Ft. Collins, CO


~Joanne opened her home to our wild and crazy rescue, Bruno when we were at our breaking point. He attended the 3 week e-collar residential training. When we picked him up at the end he was a different dog...or rather we had the tools to understand and manage the dog he was. He still regularly has puppy brain but if we use Joanne's prescribed activity plan including his 'working walks', he is an enjoyable member of the family - less barking, easy to walk on a leash, well behaved with guests and our kiddo, and generally less stressful in our house. Plus now we have the tools to address behaviors that pop up and are ready to extend him to long leash training this spring. Joanne has been very accessible and helpful in the months after Bruno was with her and I highly recommend her services.

Erin F., Lander, WY

~Joanne has been so helpful in training my Irish Terrier Finn. He started with in home training then moved to her group classes. His training was going so well we did the 3 week board and train program Joanne offers for off leash training. Joanne has the perfect setting for off leash training. Finn is so much happier going for hikes off leash and so are we! Joanne is responsive and goes above and beyond to help with training. I would highly recommend her!

Suzanne P., Ft. Collins, CO


~Joanne is a very kind, understanding and patient trainer. She has helped us with training our dog Cookie. We are very fortunate to have been able to use her services.

Richard J., Ft. Collins, CO

~Joanne is everything we were looking for, she is living her purpose and is doing exactly what she was meant to be doing. Our fearful rescue is a confident man now and we have learned how to feel confident taking both dogs in public. She was so patient with us and the fact that we were learning too. Joanne is professional and timely, she listens to understand and is good at finding out the finest tweaks to set you and your dog up for success. She weaves in humor and grace while teaching clearly and safely and is genuinely a wonderful human to be around. We have nothing but praise for this lady, she set us and our dogs up for success in this world. We love you Joanne!

Ann G, Wellington, CO

~Joanne did an incredible job taking my 9-month old Shepador from a dog that was inconsistent in his obedience and definitely not safe to be let off leash into a dog that is highly consistent, happy, and safe to hike off leash with me (using an e-collar). I also very much appreciated her willingness to carefully evaluate my needs and to communicate with me throughout the process, sending videos of my dog's progression and also showing me the dog-friendly rural environment in which he was being trained. Joanne was also good at training me on how to get the best out of my dog. She spent several hours at the end of the training working with me at my home on use of a prong collar and e-collar and on some practical issues. I've found great success and enjoyment using these techniques over the past month. My dog will "place" on command and stay for as long as I reasonably need, will recall consistently when off leash, and will at least try hard to show restraint when cheerfully greeting strangers. I very much feel like I got my money's worth.

Also, when I had a family emergency after training that took me out of town for a few weeks, Joanne stepped up and on essentially zero notice accepted my dog for boarding and did a little refresher work on jumping.

Seth C., Red Feather Lakes, CO

~Willow is a rescue that I adopted about six years ago. When I got her, I tried several dog trainers, two animal communicators, and still had a very reactive dog who was not well trained. And a few months ago I heard about Joanne. She came over to my home to meet my dog and do an assessment. We talked about the various options, including private lessons and board and train.

I decided to do the two week board and train. It’s the best investment I’ve made!

Joanne kept me updated with pictures and videos so that I could see how Willow was doing and what she was learning. The most amazing thing was that she had Willow around other dogs, and she was doing fine. She even took her to a brewery to try out her new skills.


After two weeks, Joanne brought Willow home. She spent hours training me and my best friend on everything Willow had learned. She taught me how I was contributing to Willow’s behavior.


I am absolutely amazed at the difference in my dog. One of the things that Joanne offers is six week obedience classes in City Park and Spring Canyon Park. Attending those is included in the board and train package. Today, Willow completed her first six week session.
She has gone from a dog who would go into what I used to call “terrier hysteria“, barking and lunging at dogs, even across a field or down the street, and now, Willow can be in a class with 15 dogs, and it doesn’t phase her one bit. She is excellent with sit/stays, down/stays, and all of the basics. I can’t even believe this is my dog. I can tell her to go to “place“ and she will stay there until she is released.


Joanne truly knows and understands dogs. She is also able to train their humans so that they can support their dogs. I cannot imagine a better dog trainer. She is truly gifted and customizes everything for exactly what the dog needs.

It is obvious how much she loves and cares for my dog and the other dogs that she trains. I cannot recommend her more highly. I only wish I had found her six years ago when I first got my dog. But I’m glad I have found her now.

Ava  D., Ft. Collins, CO



~Two words: life changing. Even before I got my dog, Kristoff, I dreamed of getting to take my companion with me everywhere I could. Unfortunately, I didn’t do the best training job while he was still a tiny puppy, and next thing I knew, I had a 100 lb dog pulling me all over the place – and let me tell you, I’m not very strong. Due to being a COVID puppy, he also started barking and growling at new people when they’d come over. If I took him in the car, he’d whine and cry, and growl if a person walked along the sidewalks. I began reaching a point where I felt hopeless. Then my brother recommended Joanne and The Balanced Dog.

Through private lessons, not only did Joanne help Kristoff become the dog I needed him to be, but she helped me become the owner he needed me to be as well. If you want a well trained dog, you need to do work too – this is a partnership. But if you’re patient with your pup and yourself, you’ll find yourselves in that perfect world you dreamed of. One of the biggest things she taught me was to have confidence in myself. A big reason Kristoff was acting the way he did was because I lacked that confidence and self-assurance, so he thought he needed to take the reins. But as the owner/ parent, you need to be the one in control, and let your dog know that you’ve got it handled.

One of the days that shocked me most of all was our “graduation”, where Joanne took Kristoff and I to walk through the busy and bustling Old Town. If you would’ve asked me to do that when we first started, I would’ve laughed and said it was impossible. There’s loads of people, other dogs, loud traffic, lots of smells, etc. But after all that hard work, I found myself walking with my dog as casually as we would in our backyard. Between that and the group classes, Kristoff and I can now go anywhere and do anything. He stands right by my side, pays attention to my body language and movements, doesn’t pull, doesn’t growl or even huff at other people walking by. We don’t get people over very often, but when we do, I no longer worry about him ballistically barking – there’s the normal barks of warning me someone is there, and excitement to see them, but now I feel calm and in control. If he starts to have a problem, I can confidently calm him down, and then we can enjoy our visit. In the car, he has a blast and enjoys seeing the world. We’re at the point I always dreamed of being at. I can’t thank you enough Joanne!

Maggie S., Bellvue, CO

~A true dog whisperer. Joanne changed my rude 3 year old terrier mixed breed baby into a remarkably well behaved sweetie. She also made me a much better pet owner. Beso boarded and trained for 3weeks where she not only learned to behave, but she also learned to love Joanne and all her dogs. She is so encouraging for both dog and owner but also takes no nonsense when Beso tries to test the waters. Seeing Joanne conduct a group class at Spring Canyon Park led me to contact her. Best investment I’ve made in a long long time. She is truly a gem.

Marty W. Ft. Collins, CO

~We did the two week Board and Train program with Joanne / The Balanced Dog for my two 70-pound 2 1/2 year labradoodles.

Going in, we had a variety of issues. Dog A had developed a variety of reactive behaviors. While walking on leash, Dog A was reactive to other walkers, bicyclists, passing cars, cats, rabbits, dogs in their backyards, etc. He would even lunge into the street at cars and trucks, which was super alarming and dangerous. He was overly excited when meeting other dogs and people. He was never aggressive, but would jump and show generally poor manners. I would carefully plan my walks to avoid things that could be triggers. Dog A was also very barky when in his backyard, which isn't great in any neighborhood. His recall was inconsistent. Dog B was a counter surfer, and had already had one vet visit for eating a six month supply of heartworm meds. We'd lost numerous food items that had been left too close to the edge of the counter. Dog B was also very wary of strangers, and with guests, would subject visitors to loud barks. He'd calm eventually, but if the guest left the room and came back, it started over again. Both dogs were incredibly reactive in the car, going nuts when passing any dog, a walker or bicyclist. We also had issues with anyone coming to the front door. I ended up putting up a sign at my door asking guests not to knock or ring the doorbell, and to just text me if they knew me.

Joanne did an evaluation where we discussed the dogs' issues. She recommended the two week Board and Train program for both dogs. Joanne provided regular updates with many photos and videos for us to see their progress. We were often amazed seeing their behavior evolve. Joanne then brought the dogs back to our home, and spent 3 hours training US. In addition, we have additional follow up lessons in our home, and lifetime (!) group lessons, which we have been doing.

Our dogs are transformed. Truly. They aren't perfect yet. We are still working on manners with guests and not going crazy when someone comes to the door. But I literally have people comment on our walks out how well behaved they are. Dog A's reactivity is almost completely gone on our walks. I can walk anywhere in the neighborhood without concerns. I have the skills to ensure that peaceful walk. Dog B is so much more comfortable with new people. He readily calms down with visitors, and is much more relaxed in general. Both dogs are awesome and relaxed now in the car. I don't have to keep a sharp eye out for what might trigger them, and can instead enjoy the ride too. Their recall when in the backyard is excellent now. They still give a few barks, but will quickly stop and come inside when told.

If you are on the fence about a program with Joanne, do it. She will give YOU the skills to be a good dog owner, and will start your dog(s) down the path of good behavior. Our dogs are transformed, and we are looking forward to many years of enjoyment with them.

Kira S., Ft. Collins, CO

~Milo is a different dog! He completed a board and train program, and we have followed up with group classes. High strung Pom-Chi, but have the confidence now to do more things together in public. Highly recommended!

Chad E., Wellington, CO

~Joanne is a miracle worker, Lucy was with her for two weeks, boarding/training, and she came home a well behaved puppy.

Joanne balances love and was amazing, and she helped us learn how to communicate with Lucy. Joanne is creative and best of all effective. We now have wonderful, smart puppy that wants to learn all the time.

Liz B., Denver, CO

~We rescued our dog, Larry, when he was 7 years old from a small non-profit shelter in PA that would take in dogs that were destined for euthanasia in high-kill shelters in KY; it was a high-stress situation, and we noticed pretty quickly that he could be very reactive toward new dogs especially when we took him on walks and would just deal with it, even though it was not ideal and we could not bring him anywhere. Fast-forward to us moving out to Colorado, a very dog-friendly place, and we quickly realized that we could no longer "just deal" with Larry's reactivity. A quick Google search of the best trainers near Fort Collins brought us to Joanne and The Balanced Dog, and very quickly our nearly-10-year-old mutt was enrolled in her program. In the few months that we have worked with Joanne in both private and group lessons, we have learned how to be more confident handlers for Larry, and we no longer worry about him when he walks by other dogs. We can actually take him places now, like brewery patios and to the park because Joanne taught us valuable skills to help us better understand Larry and his behavior, as well as other dogs', too. We are so thankful for the time, care and attention she has given to our family and we cannot stress enough just how worthwhile our experience with Joanne & The Balanced Dog has been.

The photo is of Larry (brown dog) and his friend, Jetson. Without Joanne, we would not have been able to load him up in the back of a Jeep and head to the park, especially with another dog. The Balanced Dog has given us so much more freedom and we couldn't be happier with our results!

Julia & Logan, Ft. Collins, CO

~To say that Joanne is an amazing dog trainer is an understatement - she is sincerely phenomenal.

Throughout the entire process of the 3 week e-collar training with our dog, she communicated every step of the way. Joanne first met with us and went over the program and got to know our dog. Then we communicated with her our goals for our dog, and she shared with us exactly what she would be able to accomplish - everything lined up perfectly! While our dog was staying with her for the e-collar training at her home for 3 weeks, Joanne shared videos, photos, updates, and stories. She cared for our dog and loved him as if he were her own. She was structured in her training and she NEVER gave up on him! There was a specific task he was not able to do and so she consulted with a leading tasking-training dog trainer and then communicated with us our options. Together we brainstormed and she kept trying and 3 days later he was able to do the task we needed him to do! Her joy and care really made us feel so good about his training. In the end, after 3 weeks of our dog staying in her home with e-collar training, he became a completely different dog - new calmness, no more leash pulling, wonderful adjustment to the ease of the e-collar, and in general amazing behavior changes, including no more jumping on people and completely focusing on us when out in public. He has become a perfect gentleman of a dog and we cannot even begin to express our gratitude to Joanne. 5 stars for Joanne's dog training skills, as well as her kindness and support before, during, and even after the boarding training was done. The training price was reasonable and not overpriced and worth every penny for the amazing transformation that our dog has gone through in just 3 weeks of e-collar training. His empathetic personality has remained the same, but he has become a very well-behaved and disciplined dog. We can tell that he takes pride in the work that he is now doing. Thank you, Joanne!!

Rita F., Fort Collins, CO



~Our chihuahua mix has had puppy obedience training but we wanted to reign in her reactivity towards the doorbell, strangers in the home, barking, and also behaviors towards our cat and child. We enrolled her in Joanne’s two week boarding and the difference is astounding! She hasn’t chased a squirrel since coming home and she’s much better at tolerating the doorbell. She’s also a lot more independent.

We have loved Joanne’s communication throughout this whole process- text updates with pictures and videos and she answers any questions we have. She has taken the time to teach us how to best help our dog in our home and it’s really helped us reinforce everything that our dog has learned. We’re excited to continue the reinforcement by joining the group classes this summer. Thanks, Joanne!!

Carrissa & Morgan, Ft. Collins CO



~My two puppies and I have absolutely LOVED working with Joanne! We have participated in 8 weeks of private lessons and one 6 week session of group obedience classes…. and oh my, what a difference it has made in my pups behavior (mine too – LOL)!! Joanne helped me work with my two super high energy puppies - girls that have very different personalities. When we first started lessons, one puppy was afraid of her shadow and was quite reactive, the other loved everything and everybody. After 3 months of training I have two beautifully behaved girls! They are still young and have lots more to learn, but I’m thrilled with their progress in just a few short months of training.

I have thoroughly enjoyed and appreciated Joanne’s training methods/principles/philosophy. She promotes and practices kindness, patience, gentle, compassionate, logical, firm, no dinkin’ around, and consistent training techniques….. all of which worked beautifully and effectively for both myself and my two wild child pups. I learned a ton! My pups learned a ton! She helped me figure out each pups specific training needs and how to continue growing our positive, fun, loving, and well-behaved relationship! Best of all… my puppies ADORE her! You should see their waggle butts whenever she is around. Thank you Joanne!

Sue R., Ft. Collins, CO



~Joanne has been wonderful to work with and has helped us come a long way with our Doodle (who isn't a doodle). We loved the board and train option as our days are busy and we received frequent videos and photo updates of our pup. Joanne has been key in helping translate everything Doodle learned in her home to ours, and we definitely could not have done it without her.

Nicole B., Ft. Collins, CO

~I rarely write reviews (maybe 4 in my lifetime), but Joanne is deserving of an outstanding one.

I cannot express enough how grateful I am to have found Joanne as my dog trainer. Before Joanne, my dog Fiona was completely out of control. I had tried every training method I could find, but nothing seemed to work. Fiona never listened to me, and her recall was so terrible. I couldn't even get her to come when I offered her an entire pan of Cinnamon Buns; believe it or not, that's not even a joke! Fiona was very aggressive towards other dogs, and I could not go anywhere in public with her. She comes everywhere with me now- even with food/ other dogs.

Joanne was recommended to me by a passerby-er on a walk when I commented on her dogs' obedience, and my dog's lack of it. I started with Joanne's dog class, and it was a game changer.

Joanne is an incredibly talented trainer who knows exactly how to get through to dogs. She has a deep understanding of the science behind dog behavior, and she focuses on helping you build a relationship with your dog based on mutual respect.

After taking Joanne's class, I decided to do private lessons to work on recall and walk obedience. Joanne was patient, kind, and extremely knowledgeable. She provided me with practical, effective strategies and she worked with me every step of the way. She was SO patient with me. I asked her so many questions and she went above and beyond with answering every single one.

Eventually, I decided to go even further and have Fiona trained with an E-Collar. I was hesitant at first, but Joanne reassured me that it was the best option for my dog's needs. Fiona spent two weeks in board and train with Joanne, and the results were truly amazing. When Fiona came home, it was like she was a completely new dog. She was attentive, obedient, and responsive to my commands in a way I never thought possible. Even FURTHER- (if that's not enough already) she continues to follow up after, to make sure training sticks, both in- person and over the phone.

I was originally was on the fence about investing in training, due to being on a very tight budget this year. I am so thankful I decided to because it was worth every single penny. I saw investment rather than purchase, since it is really is an investment in your dogs safety, your peace of mind, and your relationship with your dog for years to come. She also has the most reasonable prices of all the others I explored.

Joanne didn't just train my dog--she also fixed my relationship with my dog. Before Joanne, I felt like I was constantly battling my dog for control. But after working with Joanne, I feel like we're a team. I'm in charge, but Fiona respects me and trusts me. It's an incredible feeling, and it's all thanks to Joanne's expertise and guidance.

I cannot recommend Joanne enough. She is a no-nonsense, tell-it-like-it-is trainer who truly cares about her clients and their dogs. She is worth every penny, and then some.

Hannah K., Ft. Collins, CO

~Aaahhh- how to express my gratitude and happiness... Joanne had my dog Sushi for 2 weeks @ board and train. My dog is (well, was) very reactive on leash around other dogs, major resource guarder, had zero leash skills, and has bad anxiety with noises. My dog came back to me a NEW dog! Shes been walking on the leash wonderfully- I don't even feel stressed to take her outside. She knows the place command now and goes right to her spot to rest/calm her mind if shes anxious and stays there until i tell her to come off, and shes learned to share with other dogs... Is this real life!? I couldn't thank Joanne more ! Sushi and I are so much happier and less stressed. I highly recommend Joanne!

Ashley H., Denver, CO

~Joanne took on our 5-yo GSD sisters who were over-reactive at the door, spooky with strangers, and impolite with strange dogs. They participated in the 2-week board and train/behavior modification program. We got back two dogs that were respectful, understood how to listen to instructions, and were like easy-driving sports cars to walk. Maybe as important, she helped us address our own insecurities and trust issues with the girls along with providing support and techniques for lowering our anxiety.

This was an all-around a fantastic experience and we're looking forward to continuing the journey with Joanne!!

Paula W., Ft. Collins


~Joanne is truly the Dog Whisperer! We scheduled a two week board and train with our 3 year old mini Aussie Bailey - focusing on reactivity and behavior modification around children. The best part about Joanne is that she doesn’t merely focus on your beloved pet, she ensures “mom and dad” also obtain the skills necessary for a lifetime of success. Since training Bailey (and us) have gained the confidence to live in harmony! Joanne continually checks in on Bailey and is readily available via phone, text or a personal visit to provide support. I am looking forward to her group programs at City Park this spring. If you want to be a better pet owner and give your pet a supportive edge, you need to call Joanne today!

Jeni J., Ft. Collins


I had my young German Shepherd stay with Joanne for 3 weeks for a board and train. Joanne was so helpful the entire time! She sent many photos and videos throughout his stay so that way I could keep track of his training progress - she helped develop a personalized training plan for him and was very proactive with taking him around town to help brush up on his neutrality in all environments. On our take home lesson, Joanne provided me all the tools to continue to stay successful going forward. I felt very comfortable with her the entire time! Always took the time to answer my questions and never made me feel like she was in a rush or that she didn't have time.

~Overall, I would 100% recommend Joanne for all your training needs and I'm very excited to continue our training journey by attending her group classes going forward! Thank you!

Madison Y., Denver, CO



~Joanne was so helpful to us! We did a 6 week in-home private training for our two COVID doxie pups, Lyra and Crowley. They were super reactive to ALL guests, ALL the time. We have one session left, but the difference when we have people over now is staggering. Before, it would take forever to calm them, then as soon as someone moved they would go at it again; non-stop barking that would occasionally escalate to nipping from Lyra. Now, we can actually enjoy our guests, and have also made progress with basic commands and walking in our busy neighborhood too.

Holly P., Wellington


~We reached out to Joanne a few months after we adopted our Rescue Border Collie mix. We noticed that after he settled into our home, he was really bad with leash pulling, nipping, and not following commands.
After we met with Joanne, we did some training with her, and I see such a huge difference in my dog and I feel like we have better tools to help our pup continue to learn and grow with us.
Her pricing for private lessons is very reasonable, she is a non-fluff type of dog trainer, really has a love of dogs, and is very knowledgeable!

Layne G., Ft. Collins



~My dog Rocky is a border collie/ pitty mix who has struggled with meeting new people & dogs & it seemed to only get worse as he got older, not to mention his incredibly high energy which has resulted in him always finding a new way to be ornery. I began feeling hopeless when the places he could go & the people he could be around started getting smaller & smaller. Joanne truly takes the time to get to know your dog before beginning any lessons. I never thought Rocky could allow someone else to get to know him, until now. She has not only helped instill discipline in Rocky but also has brought up his confidence & been a tremendous help giving me a better understanding of what I can do to help him thru his tough moments. Joanne has helped me build structure in Rocky’s everyday life & his transformation has been so cool to watch. My once high alert, anxious, sometimes scary little pup is learning how to slow down, relax, & have trust in me. Joanne’s dedication goes beyond our weekly lessons as she has been there with advice anytime, any day & I am so very grateful!

Amanda H., Ft. Collins



~Having read reviews of Joanne's work on FB, we chose her to train our 2 year old 94 lb Labrador, Kenobi. Being a 'pandemic puppy', Kenobi was a very anxious and hyper protective companion. As time progressed, if felt like we could no longer have friends in our home and, it saddened us because we know how affectionate this dog can be with absolute strangers in public. Joanne was a perfect match for our situation, as my wife and I are exceptionally busy professionals with little time between work, kids, and life to maintain consistent training habits with Kenobi. We chose to have Kenobi board and train with her for two weeks and the results have been fantastic. Family is visiting over the holidays and he has been manageable and warmed up to them very quickly and affectionately. It is like night and day; Joanne instilled discipline and good behavior and we can't recommend her enough!

Brian M., Ft. Collins

~Joanne was recommend from my breeder, and she’s been amazing! We have a 1yo Mini Aussie and are doing the 6 private lessons. Before you sign up for private lessons, Joanne does a consultation. She met with us and we went through every aspects of our dogs routine, from what he eats to behavioral issues or concerns. Joanne really took the time to understand our dog and our relationship with him before lessons even began!

When we started lessons, it became really apparent she has a lot of experience working with dogs. She was able to explain to us how our dog was perceiving things, then quickly correct the action. Our dog has been picking up on everything quickly, but I think the best part of working with Joanne are the learnings you get as an owner!

Joanne really goes above and beyond. Outside of lessons - she gives you homework and is easily available to ask questions or if any other concerns come up with our dog. Each lesson was scheduled for an hour, but Joanne stayed closer to 1.5 or 2 hours on some of the lessons that were more challenging for our dog. I’ve already recommended Joanne to a few of my friends, but if you’re looking for training go with her!

Ashley B, Ft. Collins

~I cannot recommend Joanne more. My dog Olive struggled with meeting new people especially in our home, and general reactivity. During private sessions, Joanne gave us the tools to get over these hurdles and transform our lives. We first worked with Joanne during group classes which additionally provide a great experience for anyone from new dog owners to owners with particularly stubborn pets!

Karin E., Ft. Collins, CO


~Joanne is the sweetest woman alive. She helped me train my pit bull puppy to be the best dog out there. Her pricing is perfect and her training is top notch!! I recommend anyone who needs dog training to her 1000% of the time

Nautica P., Windsor, CO

~I recommend everything! The classes were great and comprehensive for both the owners and the dogs and taught basic obedience at another level (now our dogs don't pull my arm off when I walk them Yay!😁)! Not only are these classes extremely successful, they aren't overly expensive! We'll be enrolling our dogs in the Canine Good Citizen class, and we can't wait to take on the challenge! I highly recommend this class for you and your dog(s)!!!

Sophie M., Ft. Collins, CO

~We loved the outside location of classes at City Park. The class size was perfect so that everyone got the attention they needed. Joanne clearly has a lot of experience and is professional. We couldn’t ask for a better dog trainer and look forward to taking Canine Good Citizen classes from her in the future.

Romie B., Ft. Collins, CO

~I highly recommend Joanne as a trainer. She is no nonsense and gets to the root of any issue you might be having with your dog. We have a 4 year old Greater Swiss who has always pulled on walks and is highly excitable when he sees another dog. We went from me and my husband not being able to walk him easily to my 8 year old being able to walk him! She gave us the tools to help our big boy understand what is and is not okay. We still have work to do but we are excited at the progress that we have seen in such a short time. If you have questions, give Joanne a call, she can help and she is affordable!

Angela D., Ft. Collins, CO

~Joanne has been wonderful with our Belgian Malinois puppy! At 7 months, he had never been inside a house, didn’t like carpet, and had no sense of how to behave indoors. He didn’t know his own name, let alone basic commands. She took him for 2 weeks and laid a foundation of training and obedience that we have kept going. We attend her group classes and stay in touch about his progress. She has offered wisdom and guidance that has helped us on this journey. We really appreciate her!

Eric H., Ft. Collins, CO

~We completed Joanne's six-week basic obedience course with our black lab Mable. Now Mable doesn't pull the leash on walks, she follows commands like sit, stay, and come WAY better than before we took the class. We really benefited from Joanne's relaxed but professional teaching style. She was very observant of us and our dog and was quick to correct things as they happened in class. We will enroll in the Canine Good Citizen training next and recommend The Balanced Dog to anyone.

Colton H., Ft. Collins, CO

~My boy Twain was only 9 weeks old, he is a border collie/australian shepherd mix. I knew that I needed help to give him the best foundation possible. After a lot of research we sent Twain to Joanne for a board and train. I was so nervous, because he was so young. We have had other dogs go to other board and trains before, and there were big negatives. Joanne was amazing! She sent videos and pictures and offered to do FaceTime, but we don't have apple phones. She would answer every text message and made it a point to hear what we needed help with. Twain spent 2 weeks with Joanne and Mike, and not only trained Twain in puppy manners, but also loved him at the same time. It was so comforting to see that Mike and Joanne loved our pup, and that was clear in each video they shared with us. They were both so happy with each milestone Twain accomplished. He came home and Joanne spent a lot of time training us to utilize his training at home. Twain has been home for 2 weeks now, and all of his new skills have transferred without a glitch. Joanne checks in often, and is always willing to troubleshoot ideas that help us teach Twain to progress. I am extremely grateful for Joanne and Mike, they are amazing people and have such an amazing way of communicating with puppies. I have to say that if you are looking to get through the crazy puppy stage and need some help, there are no better people to entrust for your puppy's foundation than Joanne and Mike at The Balanced Dog.

Karen E., Wellington, CO

~Joanne is a great resource! She listens to concerns and works with each dog/trainer based on individual needs. The added distractions of working in a public environment make the training applicable for what to expect in real world situations. We completed one session with our puppy and plan to come back with our older dog for some refresher training. Definitely recommend The Balanced Dog for training needs.

Melanie L., Ft. Collins, CO

~Joanne at the Balanced Dog was incredible! In just a matter of weeks, she was able to help us get a handle on our rambunctious springer puppy. Joanne developed a comprehensive and individualized plan that laid a foundation for our dog’s baseline good behavior, then empowered us to tackle troublesome behavior as it popped up. She came to our home, worked in our environment with our little kids and helped us eliminate any bad behaviors. The group classes she provided were also very impactful - helping our dog interact with other dogs appropriately. After working with Joanne, we have all the tools and tricks to help our dog be her best and we have our sanity back.

Jared R., Fort Collins, CO

~Joanne is wonderful! We have a border collie puppy and a Swiss shepherd rescue dog. Both dogs have very different levels of energy, intelligence, and motivation. Joanne knows how to connect with each dog that she trains. We have been so lucky that her dog training classes are a part of our weekly routine.

Samantha A., Ft. Collins, CO

~Joanne is a top notch trainer with a great amount of skill in dealing with problem behaviors. Applying behavior analysis and concepts, the result is a happy and well behaved pooch that will exceed your expectations!

S. A., Ft. Collins, CO

~Joanne faced the double challenge of me being disabled and a dog breed that, under normal circumstances, has rather independent thinking. I wanted the dog to get her Canine Good Citizen, as she will be my service dog. With patience, kindness, and the amazing ability to adapt, Joanne helped us achieve the goal, and Purdy is now a hardworking member of the family now!

Kris P., Red Feather Lakes, CO

~If you are looking for dog training classes, check out the classes Joanne Thompson teaches through Fort Collins Parks and Rec. If your puppy needs to learn to take walks on a leash and basic commands, or if you have an older dog that needs to unlearn bad habits, Joanne is a wonderful teacher. Her organized, well-delivered classes show her high level of experience and expertise in dog training. Joanne has a calm, laid back style, that helps you learn how to train your dog. She is always willing to answer questions and help solve an individual dog's concerns. Joanne also makes herself available to answer questions outside of class time. Joanne's classes were enjoyable and resulted in observable differences in my dog's behavior.

Ingrid E., Johnstown, CO

~Joanne did a great job training my wild pup to be a service dog while I was in the hospital following a stroke. He went from out of control and not even acknowledging his name, to becoming calm, well-behaved, and actually listening. Joanne has spent countless hours helping train me and my daughter with how to work with him. I would definitely recommend her for training, especially for service dog work.

Sonja L., Ft. Collins, CO


~Joanne at the Balanced Dog did an amazing job with our dog Dixie. She solved a midnight barking problem that we had been suffering through for months. What I liked most about Joanne's work was her willingness to consider several options and plans for how to best solve the problem. As she got to know Dixie and our family, she adapted her plan to what would work best for us. A huge win for all! Joanne's calm demeanor and non-critical approach made her very easy to work with. I highly recommend The Balanced Dog!

Susan C., Ft. Collins, CO

~We enjoyed working with Joanne, who is supportive and warm in addition to being a very effective trainer of dogs and people! I learned a progressive series of skills that I have been able to build on through the weeks.  Joanne built our confidence and also provided great materials that we could review between lessons and after lessons were completed. I would always feel comfortable contacting Joanne for additional advice if a problem were to come up with our pup. She does not cut you off once lessons are over!

Sue D., Ft. Collins, CO

~Joanne from The Balanced Dog did an amazing job and went above and beyond in training!

April H., Ft. Collins, CO

~Joanne and I worked together when I got my first Giant Schnauzer. Despite my research, I was naive to their intelligence and temperament. Joanne stuck by me and helped me through every hurdle. She was patient, knowledgeable and in it for the long haul. Together, she helped me achieve a long lasting, loving and remarkable relationship between me and my beloved furry friend. I could not have done it without her!

Katja C., Denver, CO

~Joanne is an amazing dog trainer! I have known her for almost 20 years as a trainer and would highly recommend her to anyone interested in working with their dog in a positive and fun way. Joanne has a vast knowledge of dogs and various training methods. She is very patient, helpful and has the great ability of seeing what the problem is and how to best address it. Joanne has been active in dog sports for over 20 years and is a great choice for your training needs.

Cindy S., Broomfield, CO

~Isadora is a four year old, high energy pup who drug her owner around whenever she was on a lead. That is until she met Joanne Thompson. After a beginning class and three private sessions, Izzy calmed down and learned enough commands to be my emotional support animal. Now, she walks nicely, sits, stays and lays down on command. You literally changed my life Joanne. Thank you!

Susan E., Ft. Collins, CO

~Thanks for bringing awesome dog training classes to our community!

Susan S., Ft. Collins Park and Recreation

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