Shelly has been covered wide and varied in print and on the television. The Asbury Park Press has turned to him both as subject matter for feature stories and as Dog Expert. The Jewish State found him compelling both professionally and culturally. This page includes a series of snippets and examples of press about Shelly, including the full text of his Jersey Pet Magazine article. Enjoy.
From the Asbury Park Press: No matter how stressed we become, how many bad days we have or how often we take out our workplace frustrations on them, our dogs are always there for us with tales wagging and tongues flapping. How better to thank them than with some healthy rest & relaxation, a little canine R & R?
Shelly Leibowitz, expert trainer and founder of the popular training school Shelly’s School for Dogs in Freehold, is building a state-of-the-art 23,000 square foot dog hotel, spa, and training facility to open in late 2011. Nestled on a 56.5 acre former blueberry farm in Millstone Township, the new facility is a carefully designed canine country retreat replete with a manmade lake, fountain, plush landscaping, sitting benches, toe paths and acres of green fields and trees.
The resort will offer longterm and short term pet boarding, doggy day care (for the working owner!), obedience training, grooming and spa treatments. Special pick-up and drop-off arrangements will be available for even the most complex schedules. Amenities will include a 4,500 sq ft indoor play arena with stress free flooring, 7,000 sq ft of private bedroom suites (with plush bedding, relaxing surround sound, and ‘doggy cinema’ on flat screens), a 1,500 sq ft grooming room and spa, a 3,500 sq ft training center, a 3,000 sq ft indoor canine aquatic center and a 500 sq ft puppy socialization suite. Each visitor will enter through a beautiful sunlit lobby where they’ll be met personally by a dog care concierge.
Shelly and his partners have made sure to meet and exceed all kennel industry standards at every step of the way. To keep guests healthy they’re installing hospital-grade air filtration, constant clean air exchanges, vacuum cleaned central air and a central hydro-cleaning system with high level sanitizers. The building itself is green and energy efficient, with ample direct and indirect sunlight pouring in at every turn. The spa will offer everything from hypo-allergenic baths to canine massage and luxury ‘pet-i-cures’. All dogs will be walked and exercised repeatedly throughout the day by a dedicated staff of dog walkers. To keep the environment natural and organic, the owners have preserved a section of the blueberry farm. Lucky visitors will leave with a bag of fresh-picked blueberries, which incidentally make for fantastic healthy dog treats.
This article is a repost of a column Shelly originally wrote in December of 2001 for Jersey Pet Magazine
Pets, it’s perhaps the most loved and hated of four letter words. When one of us develops a bond with a dog, it goes beyond all human to human experiences. It’s different, not better or worse, but different. Dogs provide a special relationship, a kind of unconditional love that can only be found in those seemingly innocent eyes. With this in mind, it comes to no surprise that dogs are in fact man’s best friend. They love, they lick, they pant, they wag their tails, and they use those manipulative eyes that get us every time. In a perfect world 6very dog would be like this. Who do you call when your dog won’t listen, lick, or love? The answer is Shelly’s School For Dogs, a school to which you can send your dog to learn all of the above, as well as a list of other commands.
The school gets its name from the founder and owner, Shelly Leibowitz, a trainer with enough credentials to make any intelligent dog owner think twice. For more than thirty-two years Shelly has been professionally training dogs. Throughout his career, Shelly has successfully employed his dog training skills with pet owners, private dog clubs, municipal departments, law-enforcement agencies and private businesses.
Shelly has acted as Training Director for many dog clubs featuring tracking, obedience, and protection. Currently, he is the President and Training Director of the Garden State Schutzhund Club, a not for profit organization. Shelly has appeared on TV numerous occasions demonstrating and discussing his expertise. He has also been the subject of many newspaper articles. One article featured Shelly and one of his expert drug detection dogs, Bastian, who where the first private man-canine team to enter New Jersey schools for the purpose of detecting drugs within the school premises. Shelly and his drug detecting dogs also worked within Nuclear plants and with various municipalities. Most recently Shelly’s has discussed how dog and baby can bond and successfully live together. Shelly also serves as a private mentor teaching others to become professional dog trainers.
Shelly’s theory on dog training is praise over punishment. He teaches respect rather than fear, and by all accounts his method is very effective. Shelly’s training involves four important aspects referred to as the four Ps of dog training-
Praising a dog for doing the correct thing is extremely important. Praise gives a dog confidence and enhances their self esteem. Being patience while training a dog is vital to his/her progress. Like people some dogs may be faster learners than others. It is important not to rush but to always devote the necessary time for each dog in accordance to their ability. As the saying goes; practice makes perfect. Once your dog is trained, you need to persist with the training, continuously reinforcing their good behavior. This will ensure a well behaved canine for the long term.
Shelly has experience in just about every form of canine training. He has successfully trained thousands of domestic and working dogs for:
• correcting behavioral problems
• drug and explosive detection
• the sport of Schutzhund
• police and security work
• show presentation
Most importantly Shelly has resolved numerous dog behavioral problems resulting in a happy relationship between the pet and his/her owner. Shelly’s skill in correcting behavioral problems is most notably recognized by veterinarians and other dog trainers. He is often recommended by other trainers to correct the most difficult canine behavioral cases such as severe biting and aggression. Shelly also works with dogs in many other behavioral areas, including bolting out the door, house breaking, jumping, chewing, mouthing, fear of thunder and other sounds, separation anxiety, just to name a few. Shelly is capable of correcting just about any problem your dog can have. “Rather it’s the owners who are the most difficult to train,” Shelly says with a bit of a chuckle. In resolving any behavioral problems, Shelly will emphasize to his clients that it is of utmost importance to have respect and control of their dog, which is accomplished by training the dog in obedience. Once the control and respect is achieved than the individual behavioral problem can be resolved.
Upon entrance into Shelly’s School For Dogs, Shelly’s success can be seen first hand, with his walls decorated with client testimonials, numerous awards and news articles. Shelly’s success is easily understood when you witness him working with a dog. With each and every dog he develops a personal relationship and begins teaching not only with his head but with his heart.
Because of his expertise, love and understanding for dogs, Shelly has the unique ability to evaluate and identify the perfect domestic or working dog for his clients. Over the past three decades Shelly has successfully be involved in obtaining dogs from Europe and within the United States for his clients. He has worked extensively with police departments in the discovery and training of police dogs. In the sport of Schutzhund, Shelly has imported many excellent dogs from Europe for his clients; who have gone on to compete and win in regional and national trials. As for the domestic pet, Shelly has obtained many wonderful loving dogs for his clients. Additionally, Shelly has obtained dogs for people for protection, breeding, drug and explosive detection work, as well as show dogs.
One of the true loves and hobby of this dog trainer remains a dog sport called “Schutzhund.” The sport is the training of dogs so they can excel and compete in three main categories- tracking a scent, obedience to the owner (handler) and a series of police dog type techniques summed up in a category known as protection. Shelly and his dogs have received many Schutzhund awards. Recently, his dog Sultan vom Burenswaid obtained the highest tracking score (99 out of 100 points) among 90 dogs in the 2000 National Schutzhund USA trial which took place in Wisconsin. Currently, Shelly is the President and Training director of the Garden State Schutzhund Club.
Shelly’s School For Dogs well established training programs are the key to peace of mind with your dog, and a strong bond that will make both of your lives better. Shelly’s school offers three basic training plans. The first is a group class to which you come once a week for eight weeks. In this class your dog interacts with and becomes comfortable with other canines and their handlers, as well as learns how to heel, sit, come, stay and down. Within the group setting Shelly offers three levels, basic obedience, intermediate and advance obedience training. The more advance levels teaches the dogs to listen and obey off leash.
The next possible and most popular training program in Shelly’s curriculum is day school. In this program your dog is dropped off at Shelly’s School For Dogs daily four days a week, during which your dog receives intensive personal training. This program is very successful because as Shelly states dogs have a very short attention span. By being at the day school this allows the dog to be worked approximately 10 to 15 minutes per training session. After your dog has learned all of the basic commands (usually within three weeks), a series of unlimited private lessons are arranged between you, your dog and trainer. This ensures that you achieve respect and total control of your dog. Both on lead and a more advanced program of off lead training are offered through the day school.
It should be noted that Shelly’s School For Dogs has a successful plan that accommodates for the owner’s working schedules.
The third and final program choice is boarding school. For a recommended period of around 4 weeks your dog is sent to Shelly’s personal boarding facility, where your dog is trained and cared for constantly. This program which is usually limited to three dogs at a time, is highly effective since the dog receives continuos teaching, as well as an abundance of love. Like day school once the dog completes the training the owner than learns how to be a successful handler.
Shelly’s School For Dogs also has an excellent full time groomer. So while attending school your dog can also be pampered by the groomer.
-Jersey Pet Magazine