Our Dog Training Reviews Are ‘Paw-some’!

Our goal at New Leash on Life is to provide dogs and their humans with the best training experience possible. Judging by our reviews, we’ve accomplished what we set out to do—time and time again. We invite you to read our reviews to find out what it’s like working with Julie and her team.

We rescued Woody and Julie rescued us! Just over a year ago, my husband and I adopted little Woody, as a companion for our dog, Bugg. Working with Julie has been a godsend. She has taught us how to see things from Woody’s perspective, pay attention to his cues and modify his behavior accordingly. 


We rescued Woody and Julie rescued us!  Just over a year ago, my husband and I adopted little Woody, as a companion for our dog, Bugg. Despite having been dog owners for years, we were no match for this 6-pound rescue pup that clearly had experienced quite a bit of trauma in his life.  In terms of personality, Woody was Joe Pesci in Goodfellas.  But then we found Julie.  Working with her has been a godsend. She has taught us how to see things from Woody’s perspective, pay attention to his cues and modify his behavior accordingly.  Woody has become a beloved member of our family, with the added bonus that Bugg’s behavior has improved as well.

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We engaged with Julie as we sought to help Buster, our young, newly adopted hound mix, address some behavioral challenges. Not surprisingly, during a pandemic, he had anxiety about strangers and new people entering our home.


We engaged with Julie as we sought to help Buster, our young, newly adopted hound mix, address some behavioral challenges. Not surprisingly, during a pandemic, he had anxiety about strangers and new people entering our home.

Julie’s philosophy of positive reinforcement aligns with our values and we’ve seen the clear, tangible results with Buster.  He was afraid of the world and many of his behaviors were fear-based. Julie’s patience and warmth is helping Buster to blossom into a more confident dog. As owners, Julie helped us to better understand Buster’s subtle signals, and as a team, we are helping him manage his fears and make good choices.

Foundational lessons of recall were of critical importance when Buster escaped from our fenced in yard due to human error. Just as we’d practiced, he quickly responded to our commands and returned to the safety of our yard.  We are grateful to Julie for this essential teaching. 

We highly recommend Julie without reservation for her deep knowledge, skills and expertise.

Wendy and Norm S.

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We cannot speak highly enough about Julie! The circumstances in how our training started with our 10 year old Welsh terrier shifted dramatically from the time we first contacted Julie. In that time, Julie has been nothing but gracious, supportive and understanding of us and our Chelsea. With very little training and 10 years of anxiety that we didn’t know how to manage, Chelsea has had some struggles. We didn’t realize how much support she—and we needed.


We cannot speak highly enough about Julie! The circumstances in how our training started with our 10 year old Welsh terrier shifted dramatically from the time we first contacted Julie. In that time, Julie has been nothing but gracious, supportive and understanding of us and our Chelsea. With very little training and 10 years of anxiety that we didn’t know how to manage, Chelsea has had some struggles. We didn’t realize how much support she—and we needed.

So much has shifted in our short time with Julie. Not only does Chelsea respond to us; she is much calmer, and we are all communicating much better. Chelsea loves her “work”, is very excited about it, and is quite proud of herself when she does it. Her disposition has changed. She carries herself with confidence and empowerment. She is not guarded or intense. Her eyes are happier and brighter. She actually follows our simple commands! As her family, we feel more empowered and grounded in what we know, how we understand her, and how we communicate.

Our family believes that we are all constantly growing, healing and transforming as we experience more life, to be able to live happy and full lives—even for our pets. Julie has helped us to carry that belief out with Chelsea. You can teach an old dog new tricks. You can heal and grow. You can make your last years your best years. We know Chelsea’s later part of life will be her grandest, and we can thank Julie for playing an essential and special role in that!

The Cozzarelli Family

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Julie came when Juniper was just a little puppy. I thought that her training methods were very unique. She told us when Juniper was first learning the “come” command to put little click sounds, or a shrill sound at the end. She explained that this helps dogs track your voice. I like how Julie always has an experience, and proof behind her statements. I believe that Julie is an exceptional dog trainer because she really takes time to get to know the dog she is training, and their owner(s). I admire that she is willing to try new things and work with the dog in a special way. I am very grateful that my family and I got to spend time with her helping JUniper.

-Sarah Bootwala

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Sadie & Finn

In early 2017 we brought home a tiny ball of fluff. She was an australian labradoodle and she was tiny, sweet and adorable. She also barked at everything and was inexplicably afraid of the dumpster, and didn’t really do a whole lot of anything that you asked her to do, and she wasn’t going to be tiny for long. We knew we had our work cut out for us, but didn’t really know where to start! We were walking her down the street one day, when we were stopped in our tracks by a woman walking a beautiful well behaved dog. She stopped, and the dog stopped and looked at her, waiting patiently. “That’s amazing,” I said. “How do you get him to watch you like that?” “Do you work with a trainer yet?” she asked me “She’s going to be a very big dog – you HAVE to call Julie – we call her ‘Aunt Julie’. She’s the absolute best.” She put a number in my phone and I called it that day.

Aunt Julie came to meet Sadie and gave us her philosophy. Training is mainly for the people, not for dogs. It was on us to stop yelling no and to actually teach Sadie what we DID want her to do. And if we really practiced and made training a priority, we’d have a sweet and adorable puppy who also knew how to sitdownstaydropitleaveitgettyourfurrybuttoverhere on command forever and ever amen.

Sadie excelled in training, and it was all thanks to Julie’s positive reinforcement and ability to train US to communicate with her. She mastered the basics in a few months and passed her AKC Canine Good Citizen test at just two years old and her therapy dog test shortly after. She is repeatedly called out as the best behaved dog in any room. She’s calm and centered because she knows what is expected of her in any situation and she trusts us to give her guidance if she’s unsure. Julie gave us that bond.

We brought bernedoodle puppy Finn home a few months ago and he’s just started training with Aunt Julie, but we’re already seeing the same results. We know we’ll be able to build a bond that will make him the best dog in the room (maybe second if Sadie’s there) thanks to Aunt Julie. Marisa Gilbert

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Maddie & Mackenzie

When we first met Julie, our dogs who had been together for 3 years had started seriously fighting with each other. Julie’s words to me on that day, as I sat in tears, thinking we would have to give one up, were “you can do this”. She also told me to keep in mind a photo of our dogs laying next to each other, and that we would get back there one day. And we have, over the past three months. Through Julie’s guidance, training and support, along with the direction and support of our vet and hard work, our girls have done a 180. We have established new house rules, new training regimens and are constantly working to bring calm, happiness and peace back to our home. I see “Aunt Julie” as the one who saved our family and we all look forward to her visits. Here are our girls today! Michele St.Clair

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Pepper & Abby

Julie’s gentle training techniques worked like magic on our fearful rescue dog, Pepper. The training sessions quickly became the highlight of his week – and ours! As he gained confidence, we learned how to teach new behaviors by being consistent and properly timing rewards for maximum impact. Working with Pepper through the sessions gave us better insight into all aspects of canine behavior. This helped us forge a closer and more profound human-animal connection. When we decided to add a second rescue, Abbey, to our household, Julie’s specific instructions and interventions were the key to helping Pepper accept his sister with no drama. Julie trained us to be better pet owners at the same time she taught us to train our dogs to be better pets.

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We only have amazing things to say about Julie and her team. Four years ago, we reached out to Julie desperately seeking help to improve our 2-year-old Maltipoo’s quality of life. At the time, our dog struggled with severe anxiety around new people, other dogs, and new situations despite being socialized and previously working with three other trainers. From the initial “how can I help you phone call”, we knew Julie was the trainer we had been searching for. Four years later, we are beyond thankful that Julie continues to be a part of our dog’s team. Julie is the most patient, knowledgeable, caring, and passionate trainer we have ever worked with.

Over the past four years, Julie has not only helped us become better listeners, but ensured our maltipoo transitioned successfully through several major life events; including a big move and a new little (human) brother. From day one, Julie explained the importance of being in tune with your dog’s needs and how to decode/identify them. We cannot express how life changing this was for us and our dog. All of a sudden everything clicked, we now had an open line of communication with our maltipoo and no longer had to guess or predict what he was feeling or trying to tell us. This was not only empowering but relieving.

After we became better listeners and communicators with our dog (which definitely did not happen overnight and took a lot of hard work, but definitely paid off big time), Julie helped us empower our now 6-year-old dog and build his confidence through controlled training sessions with his anxiety triggers. Through these sessions, Julie has given our family different tools/techniques to help our dog overcome his triggers out in the real world. While the training sessions may not always be a perfect science, Julie has always brought a holistic approach to training and boundless creativity to always keep our dog engaged throughout the sessions. Julie is truly the best of the best, we are beyond grateful that she is a part of our lives. The Martellacci Clan

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My wife and I, two senior citizens, in a moment of madness decided to adopt a rescue dog. Off to the shelter we went to find a small lap dog. We found Googie. Googie has languished for more than a year at the shelter. No one wanted her. She was a Pitbull. However, she was beloved by the staff and the volunteers. They begged me to consider adopting her. By the time they were finished with me, tears were running down my cheeks. We fell in love with her and brought her home.

Once at home we discovered Googie was high strung, nervous, and skittish. On walks if Googie spotted a squirrel, a cat, or another dog she would lunge at them. Being 65 pounds of muscle, she often would pull us to the ground. At home Googie would jump on any visitors scaring them half to death. In our backyard Googie would try to jump the fences. We were starting to have doubts that we could handle her.

Happily, along came Julie. Julie Wassell is a dog trainer’s dog trainer. Julie was overwhelmingly recommended to us by the staff at the shelter. She has the most up-to-date cutting edge dog training education. She studied with all the masters in her profession. She also has a PhD in people skills.

Julie began not by training Googie but by training me and my wife. She calmed us. She was going to show us how to become Googie’s handlers. As she taught Googie to sit, to stay, and to come, under her guidance we took over. Julie’s interactions with Googie were a wonder to behold. Googie was mesmerized by her, Julie truly loves dogs and uses only the most humane training techniques. There is absolutely no yelling, choking, shaking of the scruff, alpha male dominance, or any other actions that frighten or inflict pain.

Julie has been with us for three years now. Googie loves her and looks forward to her visits. We believe that Googie’s education should never cease. Because of Julie, we can now take Googie on pleasant walks in the park. Because of Julie, Googie politely greets our guests. Because of Julie, Googie wakes me by jumping on the bed, giving me a big slurpy kiss. Julie Wassell has become a valued member of our family.

If St. Francis of Assissi needed a dog trainer he would choose Julie Wassell. If Mother Teressa of India needed a dog trainer she would use Julie Wassell. They didn’t need a dog trainer, but thank God we chose Julie Wassell.

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You can teach an old dog (even a greyhound!) new tricks… if you have a Teacher like Julie! I contacted Julie to work with me and my greyhound, Velma when Velma was 10. Greyhounds are not known for their intelligence. Even though Velma is definitely not as smart as Lassie, she has amazed me with what she has learned and retained. Through Julie’s methods of repetition and reward, Velma’s outside behavior with other animals and dogs is much more appropriate. I also have learned what my role is part of the team with Velma; I am an equal partner to guide Velma to appropriate behavior. I found that our work together has strengthened our bond. Now that Velma is 12, and an old girl, she is still learning, and loves Julie coming to work with us. Julie also had an an assistant Teacher (I was a Teacher for 33 years, I call them Teacher, and I definitely like their Teaching) , Lou, who is also very good. He and Julie work well together to work with me (also an old girl) and Velma. Velma also loves to see Lou whenever he comes, and Lou knows how to work with Velma. I and Velma are very grateful for Julie and Lou, many thanks, and in appreciation, Denise and Velma Cathro

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We are a family with lots of animals–cats, bunny, chickens, hamster….but never a dog. When we got our lovable, energetic golden retriever puppy, he needed to be trained quickly, so we could manage him with all the other animals (and kids) in the house. Julie was kind and gentle with Chappy and us, teaching us how to manage him and train him to be a well behaved dog, yet still be his goofy self. She has a tremendous amount of patience, knows everything there is to know about dogs and is a truly kind soul. Chappy is now nearly 70 pounds and without all of Julie’s help when he was a puppy, we never would have been able to handle him now. Thank you, Julie!

Chappy loves you and so do we,

Andrea and Risa

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We adopted Henry when he was about 6 months old. He had been well-trained by his foster family to know his basic commands, and he constantly wanted to show off what he knew. He breezed through a basic group class and clearly needed more of a challenge. Not only did he need more of a challenge, but I needed guidance on how to give him what he needed. Then we found Julie! As we’ve worked with Julie over the past several months, Henry has learned not only some new commands, but also how to better focus for whichever member of the family is working with him. I’ve learned new ways to interact with Henry to help him be the happiest pup he can be. Henry loves our sessions with Julie!

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Buzz & Zeb

Julie was such a help from initial contact, when I reached out to several dog trainers about my lovable and looney dogs, Buzz and Zeb. They are a tightly bonded pair who have a solid amount of anxiety, one more than the other. Other dogs terrify one and entice the other, and that plus a set of other behaviors made walking them and welcoming guests into our home very stressful. Julie was the only one to respond who had read my email, and the only one who said with calm confidence, “I can help you.” Her technique of important skill building with positive reinforcement, shaping behavior, and gently teaching preferred behavior worked wonderfully with both. They looked forward to training, and to her visits, and were very eager to please. Now we have some tools to manage their behavior and anxiety and it’s made such a difference.

We miss you – and so do Buzz & Zeb. 🙂

Sarah & Adam

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Floyd is a sweet little mush. When we first rescued him, he didn’t know much but was a playful yet skittish 9 month old. We knew we needed help from a trainer who would be loving, positive, patient and calm. We couldn’t have found a better trainer than Julie!

Floyd was not happy listening to anyone other than me at first, but quickly warmed up to “Aunt Julie” and now absolutely adores her. The way she can read dogs and adjust her methods around their individual personalities is amazing. In such a short time, he became a more confident and happier dog. Of course he has learned some basic commands, but more importantly, his door charging and barking has largely diminished – even with the mailman! It’s pretty amazing for all of us. Floyd was a sweet boy when he came to us, but he has become a more relaxed and super happy dog. He wants to learn with Julie. And she continues to bring out the best in him.

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I’ll never forget the Halloween evening I called Julie. I had absolutely no idea of how to manage Sammy, our newly adopted older rescue. After we adopted him, we found out that Sammy was afraid of anyone outside of the family. He barked at everyone else, both inside and outside of the house. We loved him and he got along so well with Fritzi, our Norwich terrier, from the very beginning – we just wanted to help him and to make his being a part of the family “work” for all of us. When Julie first came to our house, Sammy would bark if Julie made any kind of movement, even if it was just to get up from sitting on a chair. He cried when we took him in the car to go to the vet or to go out on walks around town. Now, even if he is still apprehensive, Sammy really looks forward to getting into the car and going out for walks all over town, and has made “friends” whom he sees as a part of the family and accepts when they come into the house.

Sammy and I have become a “team” and, more and more often, he looks to see what I am thinking before he reacts to strange people or a potentially stressful situations. With Julie’s help, I am learning to “read” Sammy’s behavioral cues to figure out how he is reacting to what’s going on in his environment. I am working to de-sensitize Sammy to the everyday situations he faces, such as seeing people he doesn’t know, and to train him to substitute more positive behaviors for behaviors that won’t help him. For example, having Sammy quietly go to “his place” in the morning when my husband leaves for work is a lot better than having Sammy bark at him to send out the “he’s leaving” alarm.

Julie is a wonderful trainer and a wonderful person. She has made all the difference in the world both for Sammy and for us. Thanks, too, to Julie’s assistant trainer, Lou, for all of his help and moral support.

Carol Gamm

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Before working with Julie Wassell we thought of dog training as learning a series of commands and being consistent. The truth is far more comprehensive. Julie has been teaching us to see the world through our dog’s eyes and to help her learn based on that knowledge with a big helping of love and respect. Rita is a one-year-old Apricot Standard Poodle. She is very high spirited and very athletic and energetic and very eager almost all the time. Our previous Standard Poodle, Lyla, was really a person in a dog’s body. She wanted to be with, and act like, people. When we got Rita as a three-month-old puppy I guess we expected the same. Rita’s needs and desires are very different. We call her a “dog’s dog.” She was very jumpy, and somewhat relentless. This quality combined with being extremely nervous and skittish mainly around sounds and fast moving things like cars and trains which made walking her pretty tough. With help from Julie we have been learning how to give Rita what she needs to be happy and content. This makes for a calmer dog and a wonderful companion. What Rita needs are lots of activities and play and to play with other dogs in a safe environment. Rita needs to work. This is very lucky because it makes her easy to train. She really wants to be useful and really wants to do things right. We have been amazed how quickly bad habits like jumping on the counter and annoying people at the table fall away with the proper training. We hope to continue to learn to be better parents for Rita so that she can live up to her potential and have a fun and happy life. Training with Julie is key to this.

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Bolo is a white lab puppy going on 16 months old. I’m not sure which of us is happier to see Julie when she arrives at our front door. Julie is warm, funny, and so gentle. Her love of animals comes through on the phone and in person that energy is charismatic. She has an enormous capacity for understanding Bolo’s physical, mental, and emotional needs. Truth be told Bolo is a better student than I am, and Julie is patient with both of us! I would recommend her to anyone and everyone looking to protect their four legged loved ones and create healthy boundaries to enable a relationship that flourishes.

With Love,

Penni Feiner

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Julie Wassell saved my dog! If it wasn’t for her compassionate, knowledgeable, positive way of training I would have given up out of frustration and likely brought him to a shelter. She guided me every step of the way to turn my crazy energetic lunging jumping biting barking German Shepherd puppy into a dog that waits until I release him, sits when I ask him to, goes “home” happily to his crate and greets people in a friendly way.

He has made huge progress under Julie’s experienced training mostly because she was successful at teaching me what I needed to do beyond our sessions to continue his learning. I now have the tools to deal with my dog and continually guide him towards being a well behaved dog. I couldn’t be more thankful to have found Julie.

– BobbiJo

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Sam O'Malley & Annie

After our beloved Gina left us for greener pastures, it took a very long time for our family, Matt (two-legged) and Sam O’Malley (a shelter cocker spaniel who came to us as a puppy), to consider another four-legged companion. Sam was pushing 10 years-old, set in his ways, and totally bonded to and protective of Matt. When a friend called about a “pocket pittie” who was going to be put down in two days at a nearby high-kill shelter I couldn’t resist those oversized ears and huge grin. BUT we would only keep her if Sam O’Malley would accept her.

This story would not have had a happily ever after ending if not for Julie’s extraordinary love of dogs and exceptional training skills. With a lot of love, time and insight from Julie, Sam O’Malley and Annie went from wanting nothing to do with each other to being best friends forever. We began with sessions at home and moved on to group classes to create a bond. And the rest is history, including Annie’s growth spurt that left the pocket pittie label in the dirt months and months ago.

Julie is the most instinctive dog trainer I have ever known. She can read dogs AND humans and know just what to do and say to make the training work for everybody. She adjusts her training to the individual needs of the families she works with. And it works. Our dogs adore Julie, and so do we!

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Dear Julie, We want to thank you for guiding us through the training process. You have given us insight and guidance so that we could understand Princess’s thoughts and behaviors. When we first started with group lessons we were able to build a relationship with her that has grown over time. When problems arose later you were able to work with us at our home to address our specific needs. The “drop it” command has paid off in more ways than one.

While playing in the back yard we noticed Princess with a dead squirrel in her mouth. My mother told her to drop it and come and Princess responded right away! Princess was rewarded with treats for her positive reaction. Through our training with you we were able to find solutions to any problems we were experiencing with Princess and now have the tools to continue to grow in the future.

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Julie is a very gifted and experienced Dog Trainer! Her Mindful Dog Training classes are great for both, dogs and most importantly their “housekeepers”! HIGHLY recommended!!!

When I adopted my beautiful Harmony, I had no idea what I was getting into…I have never had a dog before and did not know how to handle my own one year old, full of energy 70 pounds of pure muscle pit bull. To give myself a credit- I realized that quickly and signed up for Julie’s classes. it was a year ago and since then we have completed three sessions with Julie and her talented assistant Amy. We are currently int the fourth session preparing for Canine Good Citizen Title.

The results are stunning !!! Let me give you just one real life example. It was a beautiful summer day and I took Harmony for a walk in the park. On the way back home we visited her friend Cody a 100+ pound Newfy who lives by the park. As usual myself and Cody’s owner took the dogs off the leash and let them play on the lawn. Shortly after Cody’s cousin Cosmo (also Newfy) joined in. All three dogs seem to have a great time together…. when Cosmo decides that she needed to take a bath in the public pool across from Cody’s house. On that hot Sunday afternoon the pool was packed and the traffic in front of the pool was very busy. So Cosmo took off running through the parking lot towards the pool her playmates right behind. Get the picture? All three dog owners commanded their dogs to come back but only mine stopped, turned around and came back after hearing my command “Harmony Here”! The two other dogs ended up in the public pool and in much trouble!

Thank you Julie and Amy!!

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We noticed almost immediately that Copi was much more like a rescue dog behaviorally than most rescue dogs regardless of his pedigree and papers. Copi was not just shy, he was fearful of life. The first several weeks we had him he simply shivered uncontrollably for hours at a time especially when approached. He wasn’t mean. He wasn’t aggressive. He was just frightened. He didn’t play, wag his tail (ever!), and was not interested in food or premium treats. He just wanted to be left alone. After evaluating different possibilities such as mixed group sessions, puppy sessions, and several private trainers we decided on Julie because of her specialization in dealing with special needs pets coupled with her holistic approach to behavior modification. She diagnosed Copi as having neophobia, a fear of all things new. In poor Copi’s world everything that we introduced, which we thought a puppy would love, was actually introducing a new fear into the mix.

Fast forward to four months later…

The same dog who was so scared out of his wits he couldn’t stand up straight in her training room is now playing indoors, following me without a leash, interacting with others, and demonstrating his ability to learn quickly. The same dog that used to spend close to 10 hours a day either in his open crate or huddled up alone in a back room now chooses to sit at my side all day long when I’m home. He wags his tail, interacts with toys, and even displays an anthropomorphic doggie smile when I let him know it’s ok to play. He knows most of his basic commands and is now letting me put on his leash without playing run and hide. We now have witnessed Copi’s potential and with Julie’s fine coaching we see a light at the end of the tunnel. We’re lucky to have found her, and I would highly recommend her services to anyone with a special needs case.

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This is Itchy. She’s smart, sassy, stubborn, and has a heart bigger than the world. But for a while she was truly a lost soul. She was a long-time resident of a shelter (over 2 years) and was breaking down. Itchy began snapping (presumably without warning) and developed several triggers that manifested in seriously dangerous behaviors. We finally found a dog-friendly apartment and took her home. Julie, who we met volunteering when she trained volunteers with shelter dogs, gave a few helpful pointers and told us first, take her home and just love her. Don’t push. We did. Gradually Itchy’s trust grew and in many ways Itchy had made great strides. BUT Itchy was still fearful and therefore unpredictable around strangers. And she was a handful when she saw another dog: lunging, growling, and baring her teeth. She looked like an attack dog. We tried many of the traditional methods recommended to little avail. Then we called Julie. The difference, after only a few sessions, is already amazing. Julie evaluated Itchy as we worked together. She showed me how Itchy was communicating and is helping us to work in sync. Julie’s knowledge is extensive and she is combining methodologies and revising them or developing new ones just for us. And, she is explaining WHY we are doing what we are doing, which is invaluable, especially with wonderful dogs who have complex issues. Now Itchy is able to walk on the sidewalk and ignore dogs in cars and on the other side of the street. She is stepping aside when a human is walking toward us. This avoids her panic and a negative reaction. Itchy is learning to make better choices and a world of possibilities is opening up to my husband, Itchy, and me. So, onward! A heartfelt thanks to Julie Wassel.

Love, Itchy, Janet Matasic & Louis Plumey

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In the spring of 2012, Sam and I decided to extend our family to include a furry companion. We applied through New Life Boxer Rescue and, on June 30, we welcomed Gryff into our home. Soon after, we decided to enroll in some training classes to help build our bond as a family. After asking around a bit, we were led to New Leash on Life and Julie. It has been the single best decision we have made with regards to Gryff.

Julie is an excellent teacher. She takes the time to explain, not only what we are doing, but why we are doing it. She demonstrates what we, her human students, should do in order to elicit the desired response from Gryff, her fur student. Then, she allows us the opportunity to test it out. While we are practicing, Julie offers suggestions and constructive criticism in a positive and encouraging manner.  If something isn’t working out or if Gryff isn’t responding, she modifies her instruction to suit his needs.

Once our sessions have concluded, we are always excited to “do our homework” and try out what we have learned. We cannot wait to continue training and, hopefully, guide Gryff to becoming a Canine Good Citizen graduate.

Thank you Julie, for everything you do!!!!

Aimee, Sam, & Gryff

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Bogart & Brooks

Sometimes luck plays a role in finding the best things in our lives.  It was blind luck that brought me to Julie and New Leash On Life.  After our older dog past away, my heart was broken and my home empty.  I adopted a beautiful, scared little puppy named Bogart from a rescue and all hopes of an ‘easy’ dog went out the window but the pieces of my heart were immediately put back together.  I wandered into a pet store and met Julie as she was starting up New Leash On Life.  Julie saw this little wide eyed pup in the basket and recognized that she was needed.  Bogart and I were part of her first puppy class and haven’t looked back.

Julie has made all the difference in Bogart’s life and for that I am truly grateful.  She has given me what I need to understand my dog, how to teach him, and more importantly how to build that strong loving relationship with him.  I know Bogart could have had a tough lot in life if we hadn’t found each other.  Julie knows Bogart’s fears and how to help him deal with them not only because she lives with a dog with similar problems but she just knows dogs.  This will be his lifelong struggle but I believe that Julie has given me what I need to make him stronger.  We started with puppy training and are now working past Advanced and Bogart has even earned his Canine Good Citizen.  He loves his trips to the ‘purple room’ for training and when he gets to stay with ‘Aunt Julie’.
But the ‘tail’ doesn’t stop there; luck has brought us another member of our family, Brooks.  We adopted Brooks when we met him at the park wearing a vest that said ‘Adopt Me’.  His story is sad as so many are but his needs the same as any dog.  We take our responsibility as dog parents seriously so Brooks immediately enrolled in his first classes and had his first graduation. Brooks is hoping to catch up with his big brother in training someday soon with Julie and genuinely looks forward to spending time training with her. 

Julie brings not only patience and knowledge to her approach to dog and owner but also a passion and desire to really help.  Both my dogs love her and consider her a ‘high value’ friend and so do I.   Sometimes people adopt a puppy thinking they will have no problems to train out because they are afraid that if they adopt an older dog there will be problems to overcome.  Bogart and Brooks have taught us to not judge any dog by age or situation.  Julie once told me that I will spend his lifetime helping Bogart deal with his problems and I accept that especially with Julie on my side.  I am thankful to the support of all my friends at New Leash On life including staff, dogs, and other owner/parents.

Sincerely, Linda Martinez

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We adopted our second Cavapoo, Zavi, and knew we had to find the right place and trainer for him. Zavi started his classes and met “Aunt Julie” as we loving refer to her. After the first class we were hooked.

Zavi graduated puppy class, continued through “advanced beginner and “intermediate” classes. We followed Julie to the new site; Zavi was one of the first students at “New Leash on Life” and is now in the “advanced level” class. Class is more challenging each week and we are continuously amazed at our accomplishments. In a few short moments, Julie demonstrates with our dogs new skills building upon those we learned previously, while reinforcing the old. Each time she explains what we will be learning and why we will be learning it. We are far beyond doggy “parlor tricks”; we are learning life skills. As a teacher, I see the correlation of everything taught.

We are so pleased to work with “Aunt Cindy” another member of our training team. She is with us during our play sessions and shares her insight and understanding as she watches and narrates the social dynamics of canine interactions. Her acute comprehension of these animals is evident. Do you think I would recommend “New Leash on Life” training? Absolutely! What I can tell you is that it has enriched our lives with our “baby”. I believe he is happier because he understands this crazy world a little bit better, knows what is expected of him, and is safer because of it. We are able to take him to business establishments, people’s homes, and with other dogs comfortably. It surely increases the quality of our lives.

We chose to adopt this little puppy who gives us unconditional love and brings us so much joy. It is our responsibility to raise him as best we can and with the help of these extraordinary women, we plan to do just that. ~ Barbara Sack

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Behavior modification by positive reinforcement does wonders!

Captain, is in his second class with Julie, she has been the very best thing that could have happened for him. I appreciate learning to train my dog in the most humane way. Understanding my dog has been one of the greatest assets from these classes. It’s like learning another language. I am grateful to have met such a powerful source like Julie and Danielle.

Thank you.


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When we first brought Samurai home he was a very energetic puppy. It was hard to calm him and get him to listen to us, so we knew we had to get him into training. The first day of class with Aunt Julie was great. Her energetic personality gave me the confidence that I could not only train Sam, but have a blast doing it. She made us feel like we would be able to teach Sam anything. Sam graduated puppy class and went through all of the other classes. He learned all the basic commands, “Sit”, “Stay”, “Down”, “Come”, and many others. Through private lessons we also taught him other tricks and even taught him how to play baseball! Julie teaches positive reinforcement with praise and rewards. We not only learned how to train our dog, but form a bond with him. She is very patient (with both the dogs and people.) If a dog is having problems learning a new command one way, she comes up with new ways to adapt to each dog. We have been training with Aunt Julie for almost 2 years now and we consider her not only our trainer but our friend as well. We also just got a new puppy and plan on training with Aunt Julie! She is the BEST 🙂

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Our Toy Poodle Gibson was just under 2 years old and a puppy mill rescue when we adopted him. A darling little man, but very fearful. Men, sharp noises, thunderstorms, even nail clippers were enough to start him shivering! Our first Beginner’s Obedience Class he was in a total panic – shaking so hard that Julie had us swaddle him and take him to the back of the room to try and calm down. These few months have seen a remarkable change. Julie’s caring, patience and extra help with some one-on-one lessons have given us a different dog. No more blind panic attacks and is able to work even when he is nervous. We will continue to work with Julie and bring Gibson along to the wonderful, smart and loving dog he is. ~Judy & Vince Bevilacqua

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Tyke & Bo

I don’t think there are enough words to describe the type of instructor Julie is. Her love and compassion for her job is extraordinary. She has always gone above and beyond what is expected. Not only would I recommend Julie to others but rather insist they tap into her knowledge about dog training. I am incredibly fortunate to have been able to work with Julie.

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Hi, my name is Stephanie and my dog Benji and I started training with Julie 2 years ago. Training with Julie is the best, I learned how to work with Benji to focus on him and now our relationship is much better. Benji went from acting like a hyper puppy to a more settled in adult doggie. Julie uses positive training which will never hurt any dog just reward their good behavior. I hope to train with Julie again in the near future, Benji has come a long way and I hope to learn more about dog behaviors in order to understand my dog and his needs.

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