About Us


About Hot Dog on a Leash

Hot Dog on a Leash has Trainers/Behavior Specialists with over 15 years of experience with all types of dogs, big or small.

Our trainers are bilingual too!

When a dog learns to make his own decisions based upon his experiences, he becomes able to be reliable off the leash and is more capable of problem solving in unusual or difficult situations. You may notice that this is not so different from your desired results when teaching children. Dog training is similar to raising children but more difficult for people to understand because we must communicate with the dog from a canine point of view. This requires that we have an understanding of how dogs think and perceive their world. We understand that this is an integral part of our job, to teach the client how to best communicate clearly with their dog.

The Myths about training collars: Many people are confused about the use of training collars. There are many collars and leads on the marker that range from gentle leaders, training harnesses, flat collars, partial slip collars, martingales, slip collars, pinch collars, and shock collars. Because of the variety of training methods available, there is no wonder that people are confused.

The best way to get to the truth of the matter is to look at which collar is used throughout the world in competitions. If you care to observe the facts in this matter, you will quickly notice that nearly all of the dogs you see in competition will be wearing some form of slip collar (choke chain). When used properly, this collar is not used to choke the dog. The slip collar is used simply to give to dog a correction with a quick pop and release, and should never be used to actually choke a dog. Novice trainers who have little practical experience with dogs, or who have learned to train from a pet store chain may not know how to use these collars because their use is prevented due to corporate policy.

Professional trainers know that it is the person using the collar, not the collar itself that can cause damage to the dog. For that matter a dog whose head is jerked in the wrong direction using gentle leader can cause neck damage. Again, this is misuse of a piece of equipment. If you speak to a trainer who tells you that training collars are abusive, you should ask them how many titles or certifications they have achieved. We have had hundreds of people attempt to use corporate methods, treats, and no training collars to train their dogs, just to have them come to us afterwards with dogs that are 10-20 percent trained and have to pay for training all over again.

As a consumer, you should know that there are three main training systems available for you. At the lowest levels of training you will find your “click and treat” and “gentle leader of harness” methods. This philosophy is a liberal style that believes that all corrections are bad and you should simply reward good behavior with food and ignore bad behavior. This basic flaw in the style of training is that it does not work for dogs that are not hungry (unless you withhold food), or for dogs with dominant personalities. Since the dog is not being taught ritual behaviors that keeps the owner into responding to its every desire. Although there are many methods that involve treat rewards for dogs, the lack of correction is akin to raising a child without correction. The problem is that some behaviors themselves are rewarding.

The Middle Ground (Centrist Position): The middle ground is what we believe in at Hot Dog On A Leash. Our methods are a blend of positive motivation and mild correction. It is very important to dogs in their own canine psychology that they know where their boundaries of behavior lie. These are established through training which allows you to use “ritual Behaviors” to keep the dog in check. The dog should understand that you are the “alpha” (dominant) in the pack.

We will use whatever motivates your dog to our advantage. This means that we will use food, toy, tactile, and verbal praise. We will eventually wean the dog onto a praise-based system, but scientists have proven that the best reward system is intermittent. This allows the dog to always expect that he could receive a reward at any given time. This has the effect of keeping his performance level high even in the temporary absence of food or toy reward.

If you consider how you would train your child, (treats and no correction vs. compulsion) most people would say neither. There must be some middle ground that is fair to the subject of the training, non-spoiling, but yet non-abusive. There is a mixture between praise, treats, and correction. Our goal is to be able to teach every owner a practical way to train their dog and use it in their everyday life.

The Team

Heather Oakes
Behavior Specialist / Trainer / SAR Instructor / Surfing Instructor

Dustin Bratton
Marketing and Advertising Manager/Co: Owner

Jennifer Quiroz:
Daycare and Boarding Manager

Jairo Vega: Dog Trainer:
Protection Training : Behavioral Modification: Trick Training: Agility Training 

Kyle Cook:
Daycare Attendant

Get in Touch

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5 stars for Hot Dog On A Leash. My golden retriever Jackson had been to many trainers, but the issues were never resolved. I can now walk Jackson with or without a leash and not have to worry about being pulled down. He loves going to Puppy Camp, 5 days a week, and has even gotten over his fear of water. Jackson also went through the Therapy Dog Program that Hot Dog On A Leash offers and gives kisses on a daily basis. Paws up for this amazing company and the trainers!

I know first hand that the Hot Dog on a Leash team is AWESOME.

As an client of Heather and Randy’s, I applaud their dedication to protect a dog they’re pet sitting. I feel extremely comfortable allowing them to come into my home and take my puppy to play for awhile!! Our dogs ALWAYS HAVE FUN and are alwsys return safe and very tired 🙂

When I have the occasion to bring my own dog, he plays with the dogs brought to the park by Heather/Randy and LOVES LOVES LOVES the attention he gets from them as well! An OUTSTANDING team of PROFESSIONALS all around!!!

Hazel is a Carin Terrier. She would run out the door to chase squirrels and rabbits and not come back when called. We always had to walk her on a leash for fear of her running off at our beach house. We were referred to Hot Dog On A Leash and Hazel is now off leash and comes back when called. Thank you to the wonderful trainers at Hot Dog On A Leash.

We rescued a 7 month old cocker/poodle last July. We are his 4th home! Needless to say, he had some definite behavioral issues. After only 5 weeks of training, he has shown remarkable improvement! We are ALL much happier! Randy and Heather are extremely knowledgable, experienced and professional. We are so impressed with the results that we have decided to continue with “therapy and service dog training”.

I couldn’t be happier with the care and attention my 7 month old husky puppy is getting with her training. We started Rogue at 5 months old in Basic Obedience and have since moved up to Advance Obedience training. I have always had prompt replies with all the staff and flexibility with scheduling.

I feel a tremendous amount of pride when my friends tell me I have such a awesome dog. It’s Hot Dog On A Leash’s understanding and enthusiasm that makes them such great trainers. Our daily routine has gone from a disconnected disaster to flawless joy! 5 STARS. Keep up the awesome work!

Heather communicated quickly and followed up on some concerns expeditiously and is working with us to help ensure that our challenges are addressed. The initial training went well and Heather’s professional follow-up on their guarantee is greatly appreciated.

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