The Allen Family

My experience with Sandra's dog training was beneficial as well as enjoyable. With Sandra's structured training techniques, I was able to change a few of my dog’s bad habits that were annoying and undesirable. This re-training process was successful with dedication, patience and consistency. Sandra has a professional, yet personable approach with the owner/pet relationship. She has a knowledge about animals that is impressive. Her ability to “read” dog behavior is very useful in helping the owner know how to react to correct problems or introduce/teach new behaviors. I highly recommend Sandra Elvenholl to anyone with dogs of any breed, age, or problem!

The Brinnon Family

What an incredible joy it has been to work with Sandra, owner and trainer of Family Dog U.  Our eight week Bernese Mountain dog, Tess, came home in June of 2004 and began to grow rapidly.  Because of the large size of the breed, my husband and I were determined to find the “best trainer” to ensure that we would have an obedient little girl.  Sandra has truly proven to be the “best”.  Sandra not only commits to private and personal training, she becomes part of the family.  Sandra makes herself available 24 hours a day.  We have consulted her late at night when Tess has swallowed an occasional greenie whole or a chocolate bar left out by one of my children.  Sandra has made training our Tess seem so easy.  Her techniques are gentle yet firm.  She is consistent and presents her training methods in an understandable manner.  Sandra has also helped us with changes in Tess’s diet and successful outdoor litter box training techniques.    Thanks Sandra for your commitment to our beloved animals.

The Miller Family

Our golden retriever puppy, Maggie, was spirited and well, basically, a wild, uncontrolled puppy last year.  With Sandra's gentle, yet firm, guiding hand and training philosophy, we now have a still spirited, but very well-behaved young lady.  Maggie can even anticipate what is expected of her because of Sandra's training.  Sandra's students learn "Who's Boss," but they always know they're loved as well.  Maggie and her mom and dad are forever grateful to Sandra.

The Lopez Family

When I first got Cocoa he had SO many issues- barking, biting, chewing & strangers to name a few. Sandra gave me the skills and confidence I needed to take control of a dog that wanted to run the house. Her “call me anytime” policy was a godsend when I felt like pulling my hair out. That’s something I definitely would not get in any group puppy class! Her home is the only place that I will board Cocoa when we go away on vacation. I never could have made it through the puppy years without her!

The Montez Family

I am grateful to Sandra Elvenholl for bringing us closer to our dog Genni.  Sandra was referred to me by a work colleague and she has not only lived up to her raving reviews, but exceeded them.  Sandra has worked closely with my dog Genni, who we adopted from the Tri Valley Animal Rescue, and with me since I first contacted her almost a year ago.  Through consistent training and observation, she was able to not only bring my shy and fearful shepherd mix "out of her shell", but Genni is now well trained, obedient and loving.

Jean & Mac Shields

When we adopted our dog from the Tri-Valley Animal Rescue, we were warned he had some "possession issues," and that we were the third family to take him in 2 years. He growled at everyone who walked by, and snapped at us - he was a lot to handle. The best thing we did was call Sandra at Family Dog U. She worked with us one-on-one, teaching us how to reward the behavior we wanted, and how to correct him when he got out of line. Her system is easy to use, and it works.

Danielle Cue

I have been deciding how to handle my chihuahua's, Taz, antisocial and bad behavior. Nobody wanted to come over because he barked so much. For over a year, I've thought I could handle it on  my own by watching tv shows and researching online. Finally, I saw Sandra's ad and decided to call. It was the best call I could've made. She was really friendly, straight forward, and I saw amazing results within 24 hours. I felt like I had a new dog! He isn't barking as much and listens to me. My boyfriend and I are in awe and we look forward to continuing our training with Sandra, as well as having all our friends and family see what a wonderful dog Taz is now!

The Glenn Family

We purchased a very sick and dirty puppy from a breeder we knew nothing about.  Murphy turned out to be two weeks younger than the breeder said he was.  He was also sick with a bacterial infection.  Unfortunately, the breeder was dishonest and misleading.  We wish we would have known somebody like Sandra to help us find a reputable breeder before we made the mistake of buying from a puppy mill.  We got Murphy not realizing what we were in for!  He was crying constantly, biting everything, and going potty everywhere.  After two weeks of tears and frustration, our neighbor told us about Sandra.  What a FIND!  Sandra immediately helped us get Murphy on a schedule and taught us about leadership roles.  Within days of our first session, we had the confidence and knowledge to begin a training program that would help Murphy become a loved member of our family.  We can’t say enough positive things about Sandra, and have recommended her to friends and family.  We have taken full advantage of all the services Sandra offers – from the invaluable training sessions to countless phone calls for just about anything relating to the puppy.  Her knowledge about dogs and her ability to share this knowledge with others is truly a special gift.  Sandra has put together a training program that is easy to follow and Murphy’s behavior is a testament to the results that can be achieved.  Sandra is not only an outstanding dog trainer, but also an exceptional person.  Thanks to Sandra, we are looking forward to many happy years with Murphy.

The Horne Family

Sandra Elvenholl is a first rate trainer!  We interviewed several trainers; Sandra demonstrated care and professionalism beyond any other trainer with whom we spoke.  She guided our family through our first weeks as a new dog owner, showing patience and enthusiasm for us and her work.  She is always punctual for appointments and follows-through on every promise.  Sandra supplements her instruction with great articles and other resources, demonstrating her superior knowledge and client flexibility.  She knows animals too, easily building rapport with our pet.  We have a busy family life, and Sandra graciously accommodated us with a gentle and caring touch.  We whole-heartedly recommend Sandra to all pet owners with families!

The Vellinger Family

We would never have made it through puppy-hood without Sandra. She knows all the tricks of the trade and they all work! She helped us to train our dog so that we are in control of our lives, not the other way around. Plus, we had no damage to our house from chewing or bathroom blunders. And she was always available to help when we were getting discouraged and off track. The other benefit about using Sandra was that we were able to start training right away, instead of having to wait till all the shots were completed at 4 months, so our dog didn't develop any bad habits. Plus, she came to our house! How great is that?! I've recommended her to many of my friends and they've all loved her.

Kelly Palmer

I have had a wonderful experience with Sandra at Family Dog U. I adopted a five month old mix from the Pleasanton Rescue and found Sandra through a local resident. My dog "Sasha" needed puppy training as well as some special socialization training for her shyness issues.  Sandra was excellent from day one and worked with Sasha and I at our home to establish some basic training. Sasha responded extremely well to Sandra and her training methods and I found her an absolute pleasure to work with.  Sasha completed her puppy training and learned sit, stay, down, settle, and heel in just a few sessions. In addition, I have a three year old Coton De Tulear who needed some refresher lessons regarding her dominant attitude. Sandy worked with us to get "Sassy" back on a good training program as well as help her adjust to the new puppy.  I can't say enough about Sandra and Family Dog U.  Sandra is professional, compassionate, and personable and she provided personalized training that fit my specific needs.  I highly recommend Sandra to anyone who thinks training their dog is impossible.


Denise Davidson

Fendi was attacked a few months ago by 2 dogs . I was out walking her , and she thought every dog was her friend . She was never fearful or aggressive . After the attack she developed fear aggression . I have been working with a great trainer that lives here in the Valley . Thankfully, I now should be able to walk her again without her growling and being afraid ! Sandra I can't thank-you enough ! If anyone needs a trainer , you have a real gem right here !

The Chen Family

For all you dog owners or soon to be dog owners out there... I can not recommend  Sandra Elvenholl with Family Dog U highly enough! We got a puppy around Christmas this year and she has done wonders with him over the past month+. He was timid, shy and a little skittish in the beginning. She nipped that in the bud right away and gave us great tips for overcoming that early. Her daytime visits with him when we're not home include training reinforcement, and we left him with her while on vacation and it was a great mini bootcamp for him where he learned so much! I have no doubt that he is well on his way to being a well adjusted, confident dog thanks to her. I know we couldn't have done it without her. If you have any issues with your dogs, or want to get started on the right foot with a new pup, contact her now!! Fitz loves you Sandy!!