Welcome to Paws Abilities!

Do you want…

A happy dog who always comes when called?

a happy dog who always comes when called?

A lifelong companion you can be proud to take anywhere?

a lifelong companion you can be proud to take anywhere?

A polite pup who greets others appropriately?

a polite pup who greets others appropriately?

We can show you how!

We are a collective of professional dog trainers who are committed to serving Rochester, Southeastern Minnesota, and the Twin Cities metro area with the finest instruction available. Sign up for our newsletter here if you’d like to receive regular dog training tips, updates on classes, and news about upcoming events.

Our training techniques are humane, effective, and fun for dog and owner. We use the same scientifically sound training methods that professional animal trainers use in zoos and aquariums worldwide.

We offer something for everyone!

  • Start your dog off on the right paw with Beginning Obedience classes for a lifetime of companionship and good habits. Puppies under a year are invited to join our Puppy Social Club, a supportive (and competitive) Facebook group that competes for monthly prizes by earning points on your puppy’s daily adventures!
  • Looking for more personal help or dealing with a serious behavior issue? A Private Training Consult may be the answer.
  • We offer a wide range of classes for every dog and person. Check out Canine Agility or Tricks Class for maximum fun, or enroll in a Canine Good Citizen course to improve obedience skills. We can even help aggressive dogs learn to be calm and non-reactive on walks with our Reactive Dog classes! Check out our Classes page for a full listing of all the options.

Learn from the Best: our instructors are credentialed by the Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers and are members of the Association of Pet Dog Trainers. We attend and host seminars and conferences on a regular basis in order to bring the best new techniques and learning to you. Instructors regularly attend classes, seminars, and competitions with their own dogs in order to gain experience in all areas of training and behavior.

Learn More about what makes Paws Abilities Dog Training unique, or check out the Schedule page to find out which classes are starting soon!

Facebook Posts

Training Tip Tuesday: How do I get my dog to stop.....xyz

Friends and family members often ask me, "how do I stop my dog from barking?"

I respond by telling them that this is actually a loaded question. We are only seeing one aspect of the problem. Do you remember your algebra? A + B = C? Yeah, it's something like that!


The antecedent is what precedes the behavior.
Then we have the behavior, which in this particular case it is barking.
Then we have the consequence, which is what follows the behavior.

If we want to truly get to the root of resolving a barking issue (the behavior), we have to look at what is causing the dog's barking (the antecedent), and how it is being reinforced (the consequence). Once we can establish what motivates the dog to bark, we can then alter the consequence in order to reduce the behavior.
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Did you know if your dog is under a year of age and is or has been enrolled in beginning obedience through Paws Abilities, he/she is eligible to be a part of our Social Puppy Club!

On this special Facebook group, you get to virtually meet others who are going through similar puppy experiences: teething, fear periods, potty training, and new adventures! Set up a puppy play date with one another or enjoy all of the adorable pictures, as you socialize your puppy as much as possible and have a chance to earn prizes!
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Instructor spotlight: Michelle Daiss

We are excited to have Michelle Daiss on board as one of our trainers! She started out at Paws Abilities as a client in our Beginning Reactive Rehab class, and became fascinated with the world of behavioral science! While Michelle often teaches Beginning Obedience and Beginning Reactive Rehab, she has also become enamored with the world of K9 Nosework. Her dog Maggie Mae has passed her Birch ORT, while her other dogs enjoy scent games as well, especially her blind dog Shirley and her senior citizen Bandit.

We are so lucky to have Michelle on our team. Her warm and vibrant personality really enhances the classroom culture. Here is what her clients have to say:

“I think the instructors did very well tailoring homework and class activities to our specific needs. The dogs in the class were all very young, so much of the class was focused on how to teach young puppies how to relax.” -Tamara D. and her Brittany Chewie, reviewing their Beginning Focus & Control class with Tara & Michelle

“I really end up enjoying the class. I wasn’t use to the slow pace of this class at first but it picked up during week three. Very patient instructors. Great job. I know this was Michelle’s first time assisting with this class but she worked well with Tara and this kept the class on task. Nice small class, which is great. Love the newsletters and emails too. You do a great job listening to our goals, working with different personalities, and individual plans for the dogs.” -Jean M. and her German Shepherd Chili B. Lewis, reviewing their Beginning Focus & Control class with Tara and Michelle

“Sara and Michelle were very helpful with any questions I had about training or any additional questions I had about training. Very helpful in showing us how to do each training exercise and also gave us enough time to work on the exercise so if we need help they were able to help us.” -Sarah J. with her Cavapoo Maizie reviewing their Beginning Obedience class with Sara and Michelle
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Snapshot Saturday: Ozzie let his hair down during his Outdoor Adventures class- then proceeded to bathe in the mud. He had a great time!

What are your dogs up to today? Share a pic in the comments!
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