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Puppy or Piranha? Interactive Strategies for Raising, Training, and Enjoying High Drive, Enthusiastically Biting Dogs

May 8

6:00 pm PT


A common reaction to one’s first working breed dog is, “What did I get myself into?!” Yet, handlers who choose to stick with these dogs fall in love with them; they love their intensity, energy, phenomenal rate of learning and sheer enthusiasm for working, at which point they cannot imagine having any other type of dog. How does one go from feeling like you are living with an angry piranha to embracing the best dog you’ve ever had? This talk will offer specific advice to help you (and your clients) learn how to play with and manage high drive dogs. Denise will emphasize specific strategies for developing personal and toy play, handling tantrums, recognizing where these dogs will be particularly challenging and give hope to even the most discouraged handler!

Presented By:

Denise Fenzi

Denise Fenzi (she/her) has titled dogs in obedience (AKC and UKC), tracking (AKC and schutzhund), schutzhund (USA), mondioring (MRSA), herding (AKC), conformation (AKC), and agility (AKC). She has two AKC obedience champions, perfect scores in both schutzhund and mondio ring sport obedience, and is well known for her flashy and precise obedience work.

While a successful competitor, Denise’s real passion lies in training dogs and solving the problems that her own dogs and her students’ dogs present. She is a recognized expert in developing drive, motivation, and focus in competition dogs, and is known internationally as an engaging speaker and an expert in no-force training for sport dogs. She has consistently demonstrated the ability to train and compete with dogs using motivational methods in sports where compulsion is the norm.

In addition to training and speaking, Denise is a prolific writer. You can find her at where she maintains an active blog on all things related to dog training. She is also an active writer on Facebook, where you can follow her to learn more about her range of interests in addition to dog training. Several of her books have won Maxwell awards such as the Best Training and Behavior Book from the Dog Writers of America. Her latest book, Conversations with Raika, chronicles the final years of her retired competition dog’s life and has been recently released worldwide.

Denise thoughtfully and persistently works to break down the barriers that prevent people from obtaining a truly interactive and mutually enjoyable sports relationship with their dogs. Fenzi Academy is the culmination of her efforts as a forward step in providing progressive information to any trainer who wishes to learn.

Denise is currently focused on training for the dog sport of mondioring with her canine partner, Dice.