5 Dog Trainers in the DC, MD, VA

Having a dog is fulfilling and joyous but also requires great responsibility. In fact, owning a dog is like parenting a child in many ways – you must protect, love, teach, and care for your dog. Otherwise, your pup will not live a safe, happy, structured life. Importantly, teaching your dog obedience is another valuable facet of training your furry friend. Teaching obedience is more than teaching right and wrong and specific commands. The right trainer will not only teach obedience but will provide guidance and assistance in pointing your dog in the right direction regarding choices and behaviors as well as promoting a healthy reward system and avoidance of problematic actions. Thankfully, the DC area has several experienced trainers that provide stellar services for your four-legged friends, and the following five businesses are some of the top in the DC area.

Name: Ruff House Dog Training

Location: Services the DC and VA area


About: Ruff House Dog Training (RHDT) is veteran-owned and operated. RHDT utilizes different tools and techniques to fit your dog’s needs to ensure a great relationship for the dog and respective human, ultimately helping owners connect with their dogs in addition to understanding how the owner’s behavior can positively or negatively affect their furry companion. This facility lays the foundation for building a trusting, positive relationship between the owner and pet, guiding the dog to behave respectably so that the relationship can be enjoyable.

Services/Specializations: Ruff House Dog Training offers dog training and private lessons.

Name: Off Leash K9 Training

Location: Washington, DC

Established: Nine years in business

About: Nick White, Master Dog Trainer, works with all breeds, issues, and ages. He won the 2014, 2015, 2016, and 2017 “Best of Northern Virginia” dog training award by Northern Virginia Magazine in addition to holding two official world records in obedience. In 2018, Off Leash K9 Training was featured on Cesar Milan’s documentary “Love my Pit Bull.” Recently, Off Leash K9 Training was added to Wikipedia’s “List of the 17 Most Notable Dog Trainers in the World.”

Services/Specializations: In one week’s time, Nick’s custom, intense training sessions not only teach your dog commands but provide an off-leash dog that responds with military/law enforcement K9 speed and precision. All lessons are private.

Name: Paw Patrol of VA, LLC

Location: Travels to Centreville, Lake Ridge, Chantilly, Herndon, Bristow, Gainesville, Haymarket, and the Manassas area

About: Paw Patrol of VA is passionate about animals, especially dogs, and their family staff of four handle dog walks, training, and custom care requests. Each staff member is licensed, insured, and pet first aid certified, and they welcome dogs of all sizes and ages.

Services/Specializations: Paw Patrol of VA offers dog walking and running, at-home care services, and private obedience training based on dog and owner evaluation and the owner’s goals and objectives.

Name: Social Tailwaggers, LLC

Location: Travels to your home

About: Social Tailwaggers believers there is a better way to work with your dog to create a fun, loving, and humane bond. Jody Broughton, owner of Social Tailwaggers, is a certified professional dog trainer (CPDT-KA) and behavior consultant. Jody believes early socialization with puppies and positive enforcement training will have an everlasting effect on the dog-human relationship and will prevent behavior problems.

Services/Specializations: Social Tailwaggers offers overnight dog sitting; in-home consultations to teach puppy socialization, how to handle nipping, housebreaking, chewing, and other normal puppy behaviors; in-home basic training such as sit, down, stay, and loose leash walking; training classes; and behavior issue training such as jumping, housebreaking, and pulling on the leash.

Name: Pack Fit

Location: Services Northern VA and Washington DC Metro area

About: Pack Fit takes a holistic approach to training and behavior, seeking to meet the underlying needs of dogs (stress, frustration, insecurity, and anxiety). Pack Fit’s goal is to teach and empower the human end of the leash, guiding them on how to best show up, meet instinctual needs, communicate and follow through.

Services/Specializations: Pack Fit offers in-home private training, the “Stay and Learn” program, and workshops for dog owners.