We had the good fortune of connecting with Garret Wing and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Garret, is there something that you feel is most responsible for your success?
The most important factor behind the success of our business is ultimately the long-term success of our clients and their dogs. In other words, the quality, reliability and lifetime guarantee of the product we provide to our clients through the training we instill in their pet dogs is what has created an amazing experience that lasts a lifetime. This has resulted in a seemingly endless supply of referrals from an ever-growing base of highly satisfied clients who are also seeking quality over affordability. Good dog training is not cheap and cheap dog training is not good!
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
What sets us apart from others in our industry is knowledge and experience in dog training which transfers directly into the overall quality of the final end product. I have over 20 years’ experience in law enforcement canine training and grew up surrounded by police canine training as my father was a police canine handler for nearly 30 years. Growing up with highly trained police dogs living in our home as part of the family was normal for me. We would often skip the traditional family summer vacation to Disney World instead opting to attend and watch my father compete in police canine competitions in various locations across the country. At 8 years old, my father was putting on a K9 demonstration for a class of kindergartners and asked me to put on a bite sleeve and go hide in the bushes so he could show the kids how the dog used both his nose and mouth to find and apprehend criminal suspects hiding from the police. I told him hesitantly that I had never done it before and wasn’t sure what to do. He looked genuinely surprised that his second oldest son (at only 8 years old) was not already proficient in or prepared to take a bite from a 100lbs+ police dog. His response in the moment was “Well, you’ve seen it enough times. Go ahead. You’ll be fine.” He was right. It was both terrifying and exhilarating. This is just one example of other “norms” in our police canine household which is often and correctly described as a lifestyle and not a profession.
We are best described as a premium dog training experience specializing in reliable on and off-leash obedience for our clients’ pet canines. We offer an amazing experience to our customers by providing quality results, a lifetime-guarantee and an VIP level of service. Keep in mind, most dog trainers are training out of a van, a warehouse or some other commercial building. They are training upwards of 10-30 dogs per month and have built their business on turning and burning from one client to the next. They spend a lot of their money on advertising in order to bring in the number of clients they need to hit their quota. In comparison, our position from the very beginning has always been to focus on quality over quantity. Each dog has their own unique personality, and each family has their particular requirements to fit their lifestyle. Therefore, each dog needs a very customized and individualized training approach that can only be achieved by the same trainer working on the same dog all day every day for the duration of the training. We believe that quality and the overall experience degrades when you’re turning out 30 dogs per month. Therefore, we focus our efforts on training only 3-4 dogs per month to a very high level in a home environment. A ton of attention and personalized care is given not only to the dogs and puppies in our program but also to the clients. To be honest, it’s almost always the clients that need more training than the dogs.
We have never focused on building the company through paid advertising. We simply focused on the task at hand: the client’s dog that is right here, right now, and needs the training that only you can deliver in this exact moment. I’ve never considered this before and how it might affect how we conduct our business but consider the following. Dogs live in the moment. They don’t plan out their future or reflect on the past. They are all in on the here and now. Looking back, as a trainer and business owner I have done the same. Sometimes to a fault possibly as I have been known to grind away for days on end with no particular direction other than what feels like the right direction. Bringing a laser focus on what’s needed right in the moment, whether it’s the training of a particular dog or a potential client interviewing you on the phone, is one of the keys to our success. When you focus on what’s right in front of you and make it the best that it can be, the rest will likely fall into place. We focus on the work and make every dog a reflection of our work- a living, breathing walking example of your work. It’s incredibly hard to teach someone else how to train a dog to a high level. What separates a great dog trainer from an average dog trainer is all in timing. Sometimes being a millisecond late makes all the difference in the world. It requires being able to make fine and gross adjustments in the moment. In fact, prior to the moment. Therefore, it requires the ability to read the dog’s behavior, anticipate what it is thinking and more importantly what it’s going to do before it’s ever even thought about doing it. adjustment can be very quickly thought (please remove the underlined) Dog training is very much both an Art and a Science. You can read about it in a book or study it online, however, the ability to read a dog and within mere seconds consider all possible options, plan the appropriate response for each possible outcome, and execute with perfect timing the next repetition is beyond any explanation found in a book. It can only come from intuition which requires tens of thousands of hours of practice.
Social media has been an absolute blessing to our business and is the gift that keeps on giving. Where we have completely foregone the focus and spending on traditional advertising, we have devoted our time, money and effort on growing our brand on social media. Our social media presence in our industry is growing at a fast pace and has provided us an amazing opportunity to help people from literally all over the world! We get a ton of fan email, comments and DMs telling us how our dog training videos have helped people train their dogs and improve the life with their furry companions. I’m always super excited to see when our fans post from different countries and talk about how we were able to help them where others have failed.
The next part of our journey!
We are super excited that the next stage of our business involves the recent opening of our new website DIYK9.com which is dedicated to providing the best online dog training courses available on the interwebs! We just dropped the BETA version of our first course “UNLEASHED! 5 Steps to E-Collar Mastery!” at the time of this writing. We have many exciting courses that will be released in the coming months from Puppy Essentials, Leash Pressure, Loose Leash Walking, Potty Training, The Secrets of Food Training and so much more! This platform will allow us to reach out across the globe and help anyone anywhere that is serious about training their own dog the right way! We are looking at this as a great opportunity to receive passive income which should hopefully free up more time to spend with my family when I’m not grinding away training dogs here, there and everywhere!
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
In my freetime, I love going to car shows all throughout Broward County and beyond. Supercar Saturdays at Pembroke Gardens Mall and the always exciting motorcycle action at Cafe 27 Biker Bar along US27 in Broward is great on bike night and the weekends where they always have live music. It’s close to our house so we often load up a dog in our golf cart and roll up to the location to expose the dogs to all the activity and build up their confidence and reliability in obedience.
A motorcycle or convertible drop top trip down to the keys is always nice on a beatiful day! Going for a walk with a dog to a park, or going to the numerous outdoor restaurants that allow dogs is always a weekly thing for us. We try to combine work with fun as much as possible so anywhere we can take one of the dogs in our program is always a bonus.
The World Famous Jose’s Uncle Al’s in Weston is a great local spot for beer and wings and they allow dogs in their outdoor seating.
On date night our favorite spots to go are Angelo Elia in Weston and Casa Di’Angelo in Fort Lauderdale.
For a fun date night or couples date we love ESCAPETOPIA in Fort Lauderdale is an amazing haunted themed escape room that is both very challenging and legitimately scary. It’s like being trapped in a haunted house for an hour. Lots of fun though!
We also really like the new Improv Comedy Club in Dania Pointe
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I want to thank my beautiful and amazing wife for her patience, endless love, understanding and support she provides every day despite the many sacrifices we make as a family to continue to grow and build the business. My two young daughters who are so brave, smart and talented but unfortunately are put in a position to have to ask way too often “Why do you have to work so much Daddy?” To my father, who left big shoes to fill, instilled a passion for police K9 work and was an excellent role model. To my mother, who has never stopped believing in me and somehow managed to work full-time and raise four rambunctious boys into men without tiring. I want to thank my mentor and friend Roberto for giving me valuable advice and helping focus my efforts. To all of my team members have helped build, maintain and grow our incredible business. Finally, I want to thank all of my clients past, present and future for allowing us the incredible opportunity to train your beloved pets which has brought us the ability to build an amazing family business which is an incredible source of pride for our family.
Images courtesy of LowFro Photography