Wada Family - Provo, UT

Kilika was full-grown when I adopted him from a shelter. At his first vet visit, I was amused to learn that he weighed exactly what I do, to the pound. Our size, his size and my lack of size, stopped being funny as soon as he realized he was strong enough to get away from me almost whenever he wanted to. Souvenirs of our first two months included: one broken collar, two bad cases of leash burn, one case of bark burn after being pulled into a tree (but I held on!) and at least five irritated or angry neighbor humans.
Beside the injuries and embarrassment, I was very worried about him being hit by a car or getting into a disastrous altercation with an aggressive dog (or human). He would often run across streets or into other people's yards, completely out of my control (I'd be running behind him, further and further behind, with a panicked helpless feeling that had become sadly familiar).
The first thing Leo taught me, the very first thing-how to hold the leash-made a world of difference by itself. I haven't had an injury since, and my "batting average" for holding onto my dog increased from below the Mendoza line, probably, to nearly 1.000. (With Leo's suggested diet change, I am also proud to report that I now weigh more than my dog)
There were so many individual triumphs, but collectively what Leo gave me were the tools, techniques and training to allow me to COMMUNICATE MY PRESENCE TO MY DOG. Before the training, I was a featherweight floating along behind my dog-soft, light and easily swatted out of mind by any stimulating trigger (mostly other dogs). At Leo and Kilika's first meeting, they went out in front of my house and walked around in circles. I was astonished at how mindful Kilika was of Leo, how much attention my dog paid to Leo immediately after they'd met. I knew I needed Kilika to become that conscious of and attentive to me.
We are still a work in progress: Kilka can still be stubborn, and I can still be too much of a softie ( but one who now knows what I SHOULD do). He will always be stronger than me, and physically able to break away, as he did the other day when he saw another dog, and broke away, and was about to run into a yard, and I called, "Kilika, Come! AND HE IMMEDIATELY TURNED AND CAME.

Carolyn Wada

Adamson Family - Salt Lake City, UT

Hershey is our 9 year old cocker spaniel. He was adopted around 18 months old from a rescue group and has always been anxious, excitable, and nervous. Just before he turned 9, a two year old little girl came - not only into his life, but into his house. He is generally not aggressive, but started to become very territorial around the little girl (mostly over treats and food) and unfortunately became aggressive and bit and scratched the 2 year old. Desperate for help, I contacted Balanced Canines after finding them on the Internet. Leo and his wife responded quickly, and were at our home within 24 hours to offer their assistance and tips. Leo offers a free consultation, and he spent over two hours giving us direct training, and assistance with Hershey, before we had decided to hire him. I was so impressed, not only did I shed some tears about Hershey's positive response to Leo, I immediately wanted more time with Leo and his skills, so we decided to start our training as soon as possible. Leo was attentive, personable, and always professional. Hershey also has a cocker spaniel brother named Bailey. We were able to use the same skills we were learning with Hershey on Bailey. Understanding the pack mentality, we needed to show both dogs that we were the alphas - not Hershey (as we realized we had allowed Hershey to be alpha for years). After weeks of training, both dogs have responded amazingly. Leo called several times after we finished training to "check in" and see how the dogs were doing. I would hire him again and again. Thank you Leo.

Dyana Adamson

Tolman Family - Provo, UT

Henry is our four-year-old Boxer lab mix. We adopted him at about six months old but by that time, he had gone through some tough stuff. He was taken very early from his mom and was kept in a dark plastic kennel for much of that six month. He is a very high-energy dog and has presented some major problems for us in the past. Some of our concerns with Henry were his inability to get along with other dogs, and his aggression towards men on his home turf. We also couldn’t take the guy off leash anywhere for fear he would take off chasing anything that moves. We used two different trainers with very little success and were out a little over $2500 dollars. We love our dog very much, but knew that in his current mental state that he presented a major liability for us. I found Leo in our last effort to save Henrys life. I called Leo to ask a few questions about his training techniques and program. After a very helpful discussion we set up an appointment to have him come and do a free evaluation of our pooch. The evaluation was amazing and extremely helpful! Immediately we decided together on a program that fit our needs most. Our experience and growth has been amazing. Leo not only understood how to communicate with our dog but was able to communicate with us as well. He was able to set us to a schedule and help us to understand what we needed to do to help our dog succeed. Unlike the training we had invested in previously, Leo was not interested in how long it took, but just that it was done right and in the proper time frame for our dog. Always encouraging us to take the appropriate pace for our dog. Needless to say, our dog had become a much more happy confident boy! We can take him hiking with out the fear we might loose him. I can walk him near other dogs and control his emotions from becoming aggressive. He has even been able to play with a few dogs which was something we never thought could happen. When we walk him he heals so perfect and never pulls on the leash, I can even run, or ride my bike with him right along side me. He is excited to have new people over and has not presented the growling or attempts to bite when males come over. Leo went above and beyond to make sure we understood our tasks. He took phone calls, text and e-mails. He made long trips to the dog park, met us on weekends, and even took our boy for boarding at an affordable rate while we were on vacation. We are excited for the future with our happy healthy pup and are so grateful we have Leo to help up along the way!!.

Rebecca and Jeff Tolman

Mock Family - Lehi, UT

Hi Leo,
We just wanted to thank you for the work and help you gave us with Charlie. Trying to take Charlie on a walk when we got him was a nightmare. He would grab at anything in sight, pull on his leash to where he was leaving bruises on our hands. He wouldn't listen and was starting to be dominant with our children. He is a completely changed dog since you came to work with us. He is obedient and he knows where his place is in our family. We can actually go on bike rides with him and he stays right by our side. He is such a joy to be around now since you helped us with him. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts!
Jacob, Amber, Heidi, Cherish and Little Jake Mock

Jenkin's Family - Draper, UT

We were first introduced to Leo through the Creekside Animal Hospital as a referral for dog training services. Wow were we ever happy we called his business card! Leo came over and was amazing with his skills in family interaction and dog handling/training. We were given a great guide and resource booklet that had tons of answers to the what if's and questions of raising and training a puppy. We had just recently acquired a red-nosed pit puppy (Dahlia) and were looking for some direction and education in raising her with good training/habits. We had Ronan, an American Staffordshire Terrier already and Leo was a master at educating our family on the do's and don'ts of training. He was patient with the younger kids as they wanted to learn and participate. He taught us tips that we could immediately see results in and just made each visit a highlight of the week when he came over. Having a large family didn't bother Leo as he interacted with everyone as he instructed and trained us and the dogs together. Leo is a pro and has a wonderful passion for what he does and that is easily seen in the results. We we're blessed to have found him and his Balanced Canines business. Thanks Leo for everything you've done for us, Ronan and Dahlia!!


Dave, Tammy, Cameron, Chloe,
Dillon, Connor, Devin, Dawson,
Colton and Daxton Jenkins :-)

Nicole and Chris - Park City, UT


After nine months of escalating aggression from our dog Bubba, we decided to finally spend the time and money to get a dog trainer. Bubba, our mellow, loving dog suddenly became aggressive toward other dogs and sometimes even people. We tried everything we could think of to help Bubba but nothing worked. He was getting worse by the week and it got so bad we couldn't walk our dogs anymore.

I called Leo and he drove 45 minutes to us a for a free consultation. Not once during the consultation did we feel uncomfortable or pressured by him. He was very personable, sincere and professional. We decided to go ahead with his very reasonably priced package and give it a shot. During our first session I was almost in tears by the amount of change he had already made. He had Bubba calmly listening to him while another dog was within inches. I gained so much hope and followed his schedule until our next session. We had one more great session and then Bubba was off to Leo's house to stay a few nights with his pack. The entire time Leo kept us posted on Bubba's progress and sent us pictures. When we came to Leo's house, his entire family was very warm and welcoming and he took us out back where Bubba was off leash and playing with about six other dogs. We couldn't believe it!!!! He was around other dogs and LOVING it. We returned home with Bubba, and to this day he is doing awesome.

Leo literally changed our lives. We are now able to walk our dogs and allow them to live happy, balanced lives. Not any word or amount of money could express how grateful we are for Leo's sincere help. His passion for dogs is very obvious. He will do whatever it takes to make you and your dog happy, no matter how much it takes or what time of day. Leo is such a sincere and caring person. We would definitely recommend Leo.

Nicole & Chris

Devon and Jacyln - Stansbury Park, UT

Onyx and Topsy

Shortly after we adopted our pet Onyx- we stumbled into some issues where we worried that we would have to give him up for adoption. Leo took care of Onyx for us and then our other dog Topsy while we were on Vacation. We were able to enjoy our vacation knowing that our dogs were in fantastic care. We returned home to find our pets doing phenominal and keeping Onyx is no longer an issue. We've always been able to get in touch with Leo when we need him- even at 2am! Thank you Leo- for giving us and Onyx a chance to continue to be a family.

Alex and Nikki -– Kamas Utah


I am absolutely amazed by the progress our dog has made since Leo came into our lives. My husband and I have a One year old German Short Hair/Chocolate Lab mix. Sakoda became extremely territorial of anything she was laying on at night. She would growl, show teeth and then bite us if we did not back off. This behavior continued for about 2 weeks and was getting progressively worse to the point where she was drawing blood when she bit. Her aggression was out of control, I did not recognize the dog as ours anymore. It was to the point where Alex asked me what we should do with Sakoda and I calmly said “We should get rid of her.” That is when we found Leo and Balanced Canines. Leo drove all the way to Kamas the day after I called him. He came into our home and was extremely professional as well as being very personable. Alex and I felt like we had known him for year by the time our in-home consolation period ended. Leo approached the aggression issue like a pro. By the time he left I felt huge weight taken off my shoulders, We felt like we had our dog back.

The best thing Leo did for Alex and I was giving us the knowledge of how to approach the situation. When we started working with Sakoda the results were insinuations. Leo’s tips, tricks and techniques are simple, easy to follow and gets results. Sakoda is now responsive to every command and is attentive to us. Leo has given us the skills we need to help our dog.

Glenn -– Springville Utah


I have a 3 year old Siberian Husky named Nikki. For the first three years of his life, Nikki and I lived in a remote home in western Montana... our nearest neighbor was 5 miles away, and I worked from home. As a result, Nikki was well trained to be a guard dog but did not have the social skills necessary for city life. I moved to Springville in August of 2009 and immediately realized my poor dog was not adequately suited for communal living. Luckily at this time, I found Leo Garcia of Balenced Canines.

During our first visit, Leo explained his training philosophy and methodology, in addition to answering my questions. I trusted Leo to take my pride and joy and rehabilitate him for City Life. 2 weeks later Leo and I met to witness Nikki's progress. Much to my surprize, Nikki was off leash in a public park and acting the perfect gentlemen. Leo let me try a few commands, and I immediately felt like I owned a "new dog" due to the balanced demeanor Nikki possessed. I left Nikki with Leo for almost 8 weeks in total, part of which was training and part of which was boarding. I have never boarded Nikki before, but I new he would be in competent hands with Balenced Canines. Upon retrieving Nikki, the first thing I did was take him to the mountains for a 5 mile hike. Nikki was excellent! He didn't charge after the deer, he comes when called and the best part of my new dog? I can tell he's filled with joy in his new role.

I want to thank Leo and his family for giving my dog a new angle on life, the result of which was a great improvement in my own life as well. Kind Regards, Glenn

Jennifer - Lehi, Utah


Our sweet dog Chess was almost perfect, but had some issues with dog aggression. After an in-home consultation with Leo and some socialization sessions, she's much closer to being the perfect dog she can be! We're not afraid to take her on walks with other dogs around now. He helped us with every aspect of her life and training, not just the aggression we were worried about, and he's always available for more advice if we have a question. You can really tell he cares about his clients. I would strongly recommend a session with Leo to anyone who is thinking about adding a dog to their home. His advice is priceless, and it has helped Chess become a healthy, happy, balanced dog, and helped us be more responsible dog owners.

Jennifer Christensen

Debbie - Salt Lake City, Utah

Hi Leo,

I just wanted to let you know how grateful I am for your willingness to offer advice after my dog became destructive in my home. It was, as you may remember a trying time for me and I struggled to understand what was happening. Your advice, knowledge, and kindness helped me to get things back on track and to understand what I had been doing wrong. Thank you so very much for taking the time with me. My relationship with Coco has greatly improved!

Thank You Again!

Smith Family - Lehi, Utah

We wanted to say thank you from the bottom of our hearts!

When we first came to Balanced Canines, it was with a significant amount of stress and frustration, but most especially fear. We had adopted a puppy that had been identified as a different breed than she turned out to be, but we didn't care because we loved her so much. As she got older she became more and more intense to the point of seeming vicious, we were not sure if it was the mix of the breed which was known to be two very nippy breeds, or if we were making training mistakes. As time went on we even called the vet to in fear wondering if there was some possible way she might have rabies, despite all her vaccinations and care. We isolated her for 10 days and it seemed that it was unlikely.

This is when we first called Balanced Canines about dog training. We discussed training options, and we found it important to do the most intensive training option possible. I could barely talk through the tears, and immediately I was assured that we could work through the problems and given peace of mind to know that we would have help doing everything possible to help her to be a safe dog for our children, family members, and neighbors.

After 2 months of intensive training, and boarding combined with a significant amount of love and care-- our dog was a very well mannered trained dog. Unfortunately, she was also still a source of danger. She was still experiencing some sort of mental imbalance, and behavioral disorder. She was identified as a threat because of her submissive and luring behavior, and then her quick attack. She would do this to adults, elderly, children, and infants. They say that any dog can be trained if given the opportunity, and in fact she was very well trained thanks to all the energy and time put in by Leo and Balanced Canine, but there was definitely no way to safely care for and keep our beautiful dog. We tried everything, and it was an incredibly heart breaking experience, but we were advised that it was best to put her down. When this came about we were given a significant amount of emotional support through Balanced Canine. After many phone calls calls and tears, after seeking advise from shelters, veterinarians, and of course Balanced Canines, we accepted what needed to be done in the best interest of our dog, and others. We received check up calls on multiple occasions from Balanced Canine, simply checking in to see how we were holding up.

Our experience did not end there. After a period of time, we knew that we wanted our children to have what we had promised previously, and that was a family dog to grow with and love. We sought advice from many sources and we were extremely careful in our selection. Balanced Canines was once again available to guide us in our efforts to choose a safe and compatible dog for our family. Leo was willing to drive all the way to Idaho to help us pick a puppy that would be the appropriate balance for our family. He gave us multiple tips to help us understand behavioral tendencies that would clue us into what kind of puppy we might be choosing. There are never any guarantees, but with his advice and guidance we felt very comfortable in the decision process, and even veered away from a couple puppies that we might have otherwise chosen based on impulse or emotion.

From day one we had training support. We have had a great experience with Miley our new dog. She is everything we could hope for, and more. The children have a friend and companion as we had hoped, and she is able to interact with everyone with manners and most importantly security of safety! Just the other day she was at the park with my daughter, Miley loves to go down the slide with her. Eight Children were playing keep away with Miley and her stuffed monkey. She loved it and the children who had just met Miley were having a blast! I cannot tell you how wonderful it is to have a BIG loving dog that is safe, gentle, and trained! I did not want to have a dog until we could be sure we had the ability to get appropriate training--because of Balanced Canine we were able to affordably enjoy the experiences of a well trained dog. She is nearly 10 months now, and we know that the training is a lifetime support system for our dog, so that if we encounter anything new, like our "new baby" in the upcoming months, we will be able to seek additional guidance as needed for our companion and canine family member Miley.

Thank you Balanced Canines, this road traveled has had a happy ending because of your support, my husband would not have recovered from this experience without you. I know that if we had not had Balanced Canine we would not have been able to try again and we would have lost out on the opportunity of watching our kids lay with, play with, swim with, camp with and experience the irreplaceable joy of growing up with a live in best friend!

Amber and Kynell Smith Family