The Best Dog Trainers in Sacramento, CA of 2022

Welcome to the Sacramento, CA Sniffspot top dog trainer list for 2022. This is a list of the top dog trainers in Sacramento based on votes from the Sniffspot community and the general public. Over 45,000 votes were used in compiling this list. We have only included the top trainers with sufficient votes and the trainers are ordered in terms of the number of votes received. Trainers that tied are ranked in reverse alphabetical order based on first name. All dog trainers on this list are positive reinforcement only, as defined by no force, fear, intimidation, or aversive methods used. This list is a subset of the broader Top Trainers in California list.

Dog training is one of the most important activities someone can do with their dog. Many come to dog training through a specific issue they want addressed, anything from barking to separation anxiety. Some have adopted dogs from animal shelters with an abusive experience and some just have happy puppies looking for everyday life skills. Trainers can help with all kinds of specific skills and issues, from leash manners to territorial aggression to anxiety around skateboards to common puppy challenges. However, what many discover is that working with a trainer is actually a way for a pet owner to deepen their relationship with their dog. The enhanced communication skills that result can increase quality of life, be a rewarding experience, be a social experience and lead to more harmonious relationships. Knowing that one’s dog is having a happier life can dramatically improve peace of mind. As the saying goes: happy dog, happy life. And it extends further than just the dog, to the pet owners. Owner empowerment can actually improve the relationship between owners. And finding the right trainer can make all the difference in the experience.

This list is sponsored by Sniffspot, which is the largest network of private dog parks for rent in the world. Each of the thousands of Sniffspot dog parks are hosted by locals on private land with 100% private bookings to maximize safety for guests and their dogs. Sniffspot offers various types of dog parks, including fenced, water parks, indoor dog parks, dog beaches and more. Sniffspot has worked closely with dog trainers to create safe spaces for dogs and our top trainer lists are a natural extension of that relationship. You can browse Sniffspot's local dog parks here.

The Best Sacramento, CA Dog Trainers in 2022

Cindy Smith

 Cindy has loved animals her entire life and at a very young age made training animals her lifelong goal. She always seemed to have a natural ability to understand and communicate with animals. Her Husband calls her the "Pied Piper of Animals" as "everywhere she goes they follow her". Animals seem naturally drawn to her personality, true love of animals, and her voice. Her Human Clients are also drawn to her easy going and fun, yet intense and straight forward approach to communication and training.

Services include:

  • In home training
Behavioral issue focus:

Fear Issues, House/Potty Training, Play Biting, Jumping, Humping, Leash Manners, Management, Owner Training to work on patience, consistency, putting the time in, setting the puppy/dog up for success not failure.

Training methods:

Positive Reinforcement and Force Free. Only Humane Equipment is utilized. Rewards are always used (Treats, Food, Toys, Praise).

Service area:

Sacramento County, Placer County, and El Dorado County


Marie Turner-Bailie

I have 15 years of experience in the industry, both as a trainer, and as a trainer mentor, helping educate junior trainers, expanding their skill sets and knowledge base. I am passionate about helping people shape their dog's behavior, and helping people and their dogs communicate better together. She continues her education on a routine basis with a mix of conferences, workshops, and trusted online resources.

Services include:

  • In home training
  • Reactive dog training


Allison Daack

Allison Daack is the founder of Daack Pack Dog Training, and has been working with and training dogs, along with other species since 2008. She is also a member of APTD, PPG, and IAABC. In the beginning of her career, Allison was a Kennel Technician working closely with a Veterinarian where she learned all about developmental periods of dogs, handling skills and how to prevent behavior issues.

From there she spent several years working with exotic animals at numerous wildlife facilities and reserves, first in North Carolina, then California. She did everything from educating the public, rehabilitation, and using training to help animals cope with life in captivity, usually due to injury or illness. Her passion for behavior modification began with teaching cooperative care cues to a Black Vulture in the raptor / avian exhibits. Allison then had a long career with Petco, where she became a Dog Training Mentor.

Not only did she train other dog trainers to be dog trainers, she taught group classes, and was an integral part of a corporate team that created continuing education materials for trainers, and updated Petco's dog training program. However, Petco does not take behavior modification clients, so on June 1, 2016, Allison founded Daack Pack Dog Training as a way to better support the needs of her clients whose dogs might struggle with fear, anxiety, or display aggression. Through this company she has been able to provide the community with custom, in-home training to support their specific needs and the needs of their pets.

Certifications: CPDT-KA and FFCP

Services include:

  • Aggressive dog training
  • In home training
  • Deaf dog training
  • Reactive dog training
  • Off leash training


Marieka Schrader

Marieka Schrader, KPA-CTP, is the founder of Karuna K9 in West Sacramento, California. As a Karen Pryor Academy Certified Training Partner, Marieka's focus is providing Sacramento area dog guardians with the tools they need to live fulfilling lives with their dogs through the use of positive & force-free dog training methods.

Certifications: Karen Pryor Academy Certified Training Partner

Services include:
  • In home training
  • Reactive dog training
Behavioral issue focus:

Reactivity in dogs is one of the most common behavioral challenges we work with. We help teach people and their dogs real-life skills to manage these situations with confidence and work to reduce existing sensitivities. Resource guarding, while it may be a completely natural behavior, can also create conflicts in households. We work with people to manage resources and show their dogs that sharing can be a good thing.

Training methods:

Our goal is to help dogs and their guardians live their best lives possible together by building strong relationships based on communication and trust. We use only positive training methods that are free from coercion, fear, and punishment. We are a certified Karen Pryor Academy Training Partner, as well as Fear-Free Certified.

The first step in the training process is an initial consultation. During this 90-minute meeting, we discuss current challenges and goals, as well as training options that will best fit each unique situation. Our training options are flexible, and we offer discounted packages.

Service area:

We provide in-person services to dog owners in West Sacramento, Woodland, Davis, Citrus Heights, Carmichael, Elk Grove, Sacramento, and Natomas. We also offer remote services where appropriate.


Kayla Block

Kayla Block, MA, CTC, provides dog training in Sacramento and El Dorado Counties as well as online training anywhere! She has an MA in Clinical Psychology and is a graduate of the Academy for Dog Trainers (2 year comprehensive program)Specialized knowledge of dog reactivity, dog aggression, and fearful dog problems.

Passionate about dog bite prevention, offering programs for families with kids of all ages, and expectant parents.

Certifications: CTC from the Academy for Dog Trainers; Aggression in Dogs Masterclass

Services include:

  • Aggressive dog training
  • Reactive dog training


Sniffspot Sacramento Top Trainer Frequently Asked Questions

How are Sacramento dog trainers selected for this list?

These are the top dog trainers in Sacramento as selected by broad voting from the Sniffspot community and the general public. These trainers are expert dog trainers, who received votes from their delighted customers, due to their excellent dedication to customer service, excellent results and general care they exhibit for their clients. Many have worked with thousands of dogs and are highly experienced trainers.

How can I get in touch with dog trainers?

Each of the trainer profiles contains a link to their website. You can click through to their website where you can find more contact information.

Are these Sacramento dog trainers certified professionals?

Dog training is not regulated at the federal or state level, so there is no standard dog training certification and professional trainers are not required to be certified. However, certifications are important to show that a professional dog trainer has a standard of expertise to help train your dog. Each trainer’s certifications are listed on their profile.

What are the top certifications for Dog Trainers in Sacramento?

Some of the top certifications in the dog training industry are CPDT- KA, IAABC, Karen Pryor Academy - KPA certification, Jean Donaldson's Academy - CTC certification and Fear Free Certification. You can review the dog trainer certifications for each specific dog trainer on their profile on this page.

What methods are used in the dog training sessions?

There are many methods for teaching dogs and a lot of disagreement about the correct training approach. All of the Sacramento trainers included on this list use positive reinforcement training only, as defined by no force, fear, intimidation, or aversive methods used. This includes not using any specifically aversive approach to training or training aid, such as a prong or electronic dog training collar (also called remote dog training collar or shock collars). As for specific training programs and specialties, such as day training / doggie daycare or obedience training, you can see more information in each trainer’s profile.

Are dog training lessons in a training facility or are virtual options available?

Some dog trainers operate exclusively from a training facility, some do house calls and some offer video calls or other virtual options. There are pros and cons to each option and the most efficient behavioral training option depends on specific circumstances, for instance, what hours work best for you. A training center or training ranch can be a good option if your training plan requires facilities, training equipment or dedicated space. We recommend reaching out to the specific trainer you are interested in or browsing their website for more information.

Are dog training lessons private or in a group setting?

Every different circumstance of dog and owners may require a different setting, whether it’s housebreaking issues, anxiety issues, lack of proper socialization, food aggression or just bad habits. Each trainer has different offerings as far as whether they can offer clients a private training session or a group class. Trainers provide information about their private class and group class offerings in their profiles and you can browse their website for more information as well. It may make sense for your specific circumstance to reach out to the trainer to ask if they recommend group or private dog training classes. Some trainers also have a team of specialists that can provide even higher levels of service, or provide specialized sessions, such as pack walks.

How much does dog training in Sacramento cost?

Sacramento dog trainers have a wide range of costs for different services and phases of training. For instance behavioral modification that involves boarding is often more expensive than day training, and private lessons are generally more expensive than group lessons. Prices can also vary depending on specific behavioral issues. Lastly, some trainers have more overhead than others, We recommend first picking a trainer that provides the services that you are looking for, then reaching out to them to get up to date pricing.

Is training a dog good for the dog?

Yes! Training has many benefits for dogs. Whether with basic training skills or complex training techniques, going through behavior training with your dog can improve the bond that you share with them. Also, training can do a lot to improve the level of confidence enabling of a dog (and it can also help with building customer confidence!). Rather than being about exerting maximum control over them, it gives them more certainty that they understand how the world around them works. For instance, crate training can help a dog feel safe and at home in a crate vs fearful and uncertain. Dog training can teach important skills, such as leash control, potty training or a general level of obedience skills. And lastly, it’s just fun for the dog to learn life skills and for their family. Training can be very stimulating and enriching for a dog and serve them throughout their entire healthy life!

Can an aggressive dog be trained?

Yes! Any dog behavior can be worked on through training and coaching. Aggression in dogs is a serious issue, but it is also a term that is used very broadly. Many dogs that are thought to be aggressive are actually reactive, which is a different behavior altogether. A trainer can help you interpret signs of aggression, such as excessive barking, fear aggression and leash aggression, and type of aggression. If you believe you have a dog with aggressive behaviors, we recommend reaching out to one of your local top trainers to get their diagnosis and advice.

I am a Sacramento dog trainer. How can I get listed here?

As long as you have a training facility or do in person training in Sacramento you can be considered for this list. We update this list once per year, normally starting in January. Make sure to keep an eye on our social media and sign up for email updates with Sniffspot in order to be in the loop on the next round of nominations.

How much do dog trainers make in Sacramento?

Dog trainer earnings vary widely depending on many factors, such as whether a dog trainer is an employee or owns their own full-service professional dog training business. According to ZipRecruiter, the average dog trainer salary in California was $33,714 per year and $16.21 per hour. It is impossible to say how much a dog trainer can earn with a full-service professional dog training company, because the size and profitability of companies can vary widely.

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