Puppy Foundations

(21 customer reviews)


Puppies are learning in every moment, and are like little fast moving toddlers with teeth! This program covers and expertly supports all aspects of raising a physically healthy and mentally well-adjusted puppy. In Puppy Foundations you will establish expert-lead routines prior to and from day one with your puppy, prevent common lifelong challenges, experience invaluable and fast-tracked early learning, and receive one-on-one 24/7 guidance on every aspect of raising your puppy. Set yourself and yourself and your pup up for a lifetime of success. Full details here.

21 reviews for Puppy Foundations

  1. Katherine McGonigle (Verified Student)

    My spouse and I are lifetime dog people, and previously raised a Welsh Terrier from puppy-hood through to old age. He was the most challenging (and special!) dog I had ever known. After he passed, he left a enormous hole in our lives, but we did not feel totally up to the task of raising another Welsh. We also have a senior Wire Fox Terrier, and we were concerned about how she might adjust to having a puppy in the house.

    That’s when I found Emma’s blog and her Terrier Academy. I contacted her with the intent of maybe adopting a puppy, and she was so enormously kind and helpful. We started talking about a year before we even adopted. She worked with our Wire Fox to prepare her for puppy life, and put us in touch with an amazing WT breeder. Contacting her in advance (before our puppy was even whelped!) set us up for total success, and was the best thing we could have done.

    We had so many issues with our previous WT that we raised on our own (including digestive, potty training, and behavioral); Emma is well aware of all of these, and has detailed plans for how to *prevent* them (prevention is key!). We aren’t experiencing ANY of these issues with our new puppy.

    Puppy-hood is never easy, but with Emma on your side, you can learn to truly understand your developing pup and build important habits that will carry on into adulthood. If you’re considering adopting a terrier, especially a Welsh Terrier, don’t hesitate to reach out to Emma in advance; I am so, SO glad that we did. She is truly the Terrier Oracle, and we cannot recommend her more highly. Thank you so much, Emma and Miles!

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  2. Hugh Hollister

    We are so pleased and fortunate to be working with Emma Kesler (and Miles 🐾). We have always had a dog but in the past failed to get serious about training. This time around, with Griffin, our Welsh Terrier puppy, we are learning so much more about a dog’s behavior as well as our own behavior towards dogs. Emma shares insights that make so much sense, that are so logical from a dog’s perspective it only makes the lessons that much more enjoyable for ourselves and Griffin. Emma has helped us realize just how smart Griffin is and the potential she has. We truly understand how important this short period of time we have, during Griffin’s time as a puppy, to shape her behaviors and skills. Emma has provided us the knowledge and guidance to be successful in training and bonding with Griffin. A true joy and rewarding adventure Emma has embarked us on.

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  3. Christabelle Pausey (Verified Student)

    We did Emma’s Puppy Foundations program for our new Border Terrier, Mila. We knew we needed some guidance as I’d had terriers in the past and there were always some difficulties. Little did we know this would turn out to be the most worthwhile thing we could have done for our dog, and the best money I’ve ever spent on a service. Emma teaches you not only to train your dog, but understand them. She teaches you how to raise a happy, healthy dog whose needs are met, specifically terrier needs. Our puppy is 5 months now and the early training we did has already paid off immensely. I only wish I had done this work with my previous terriers. I can’t recommend Emma’s services enough and we will definitely be working with her again in the future.

    -Christabelle & Xavier

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  4. Cynthia Lee (Verified Student)

    Turns out you can teach old dogs new tricks. Steve and I have had Welsh Terriers in our life for 25 years and are starting again with our new puppy, Rowdy. We will be pushing 80 years of age if this puppy lives as long as our last Welshies and we are determined to have a dog that brings us our slippers at that point in life. Emma came recommended to us by our breeder. Who knew there was such a thing as a Terrier Trainer? We immediately made arrangements with Emma to help us before we even knew a dog would be available.

    Our first appointment with Emma, before the dog came home, was filled with preparation suggestions that just made so much sense. This was the help we needed. We got busy preparing for puppyhood and soon our little Rowdy arrived. Emma was there to meet us each week. During the one on one Zoom sessions our concerns were addressed and new material was introduced. Her website is so easy to use and an exceptional support to the classes. The included demonstration videos were referred to frequently as we checked in on our techniques for training Rowdy. During the week, training questions or various other issues would arise. Emma encouraged us to text and/or send video of those moments. She would thoughtfully reply and provide us with the help we needed at that time.

    The Puppy Foundations course has taught these old dogs new tricks. For the first time we feel prepared, equipped, and relaxed raising a new puppy. Our heightened sense of observation is teaching us how to communicate with our dog and Rowdy is showing us her eagerness to learn. Emma’s sincere care and support has been the key that has us all developing a warm relationship based on trust. We look forward to having a dog that is as crazy about us as we are about her, even if she steals the slippers as quickly as they are delivered.

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  5. Danielle Smith (Verified Student)

    I had lost my sweet terrier last year and it was time to bring another pup into our home. We knew we loved the intelligence and bond we experienced with our last terrier… but did we really want to go through all the neurotic behaviors again? I deep dived into researching the type of terrier we wanted. We settled on a welsh terrier. I turned to many who owned the breed asking for recommendations on books for training a terrier. That is when I learned about Emma’s terrier academy. We were initially unsure of the cost and it not being “in person.,” but we knew there had to be a better way then putting our dog through what our last terrier had gone through in training (3 different dog training programs in the first 4 years of her life). I became convinced after combing through the reviews and reading Emma’s blog.that it was worth the investment. So we submitted our application. The puppy foundations really helped prepare us. The setup she recommends and diet helped us know the best path to go down. Our boy has yet to destroy anything in our house, he is potty training well, loves his pen area, and he seems very content in his surroundings. I feel like through this training we are able to set him up for the best possible life in our family. He is learning so quickly how to work with his humans. So far no neurotic behaviors. My heart feels so thankful to have found Emma and her training methods. I feel like we are honoring our last terrier by knowing better and doing better by our current puppy. If you on the fence about doing this training so soon, just do it! You will be saving yourself and puppy from so many issues ahead.

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  6. Jim BOWER

    My wife and I absolutely love working with Emma! She has given us skills, and an understanding of the Terrier mind that will benefit our family (Including our little Oliver) for ever. We couldn’t be happier!

  7. Cristina Cruz LeFebvre (Verified Student)

    Emma is amazing. She is a wonderful trainer with an innate love of terriers. She is also simply a wonderful human. She guided us through the early days of working with our Welsh Terrier puppy. Her holistic system works and prepares you for all of the adventure a terrier pup brings. We learned so much about our pup and ourselves. We had some serious issues to work through and Emma not only assisted us, but also took incredible time and care to listen and hear our concerns. Her care for her clients, human and canine, is extraordinary. Honestly, Terrier Academy & Puppy Foundations, was the best investment!

  8. Samantha Kobor

    We adopted a four month old, scruffy terrier-type puppy and immediately knew that he was very smart but also, that he would need solid training. We did a lot of research and mainly found trainers who were either wildly expensive, used inhumane methods, or only offered training basics that our puppy largely already seemed to know, like recognizing his name and sitting on command. I found Emma online and was skeptical of dog training over Zoom, but really appreciated that she focused on terrier specific behaviors and being a team with your dog.

    We loved our experience with Emma. It ended up being more expensive than we had anticipated once we got all the supplies, but her methods were a perfect match for our special rescue puppy; virtual training was absolutely right call to build trust and communication with him. We appreciated Emma’s patience, deep knowledge, responsiveness, and engagement when we had tough questions. Now that our puppy has graduated, we have the tools we need to continue to train him ourselves. We would absolutely consider returning for another class with Emma.

    For anyone skeptical about taking a rescue puppy to train with Emma when you’re not 100% sure of its breed mix, I would say our experience was overwhelmingly positive even if our puppy didn’t ultimately exhibit every single trait that a terrier might. We recently learned our puppy is half yorkie, half pitbull-lab mix. And he did great training with Emma.

  9. Emilie Vasu (Verified Student)

    Where to begin! Emma was recommended to us via our amazing Welsh Terrier breeder as an imperative, and puppy foundations is a MUST! My husband and I are busy working people (me a terrier fanatic since birth) and Emma’s support and guidance has allowed us to carve out time to do the crucial training that does wonders for stimulating the mind (both ours and our pup’s!), and creating a balanced relationship with our Welshie. All the supplies Emma recommends are fantastic. We transitioned to the diet pretty quickly after seeing the joy it brought to our furry guy. We’d also like to commend Emma on the conciseness and ease of the homework. Thanks to her, building a connection with our new companion has been a joy. YES to Emma and Miles! 🐾💙✨

  10. Deborah Leadingham (Verified Student)

    We have just completed Puppy Foundations training with Emma (and Miles). It has been a fun and insightful experience. We made plans to start training as soon as our Toy Fox Terrier came home. At 12 weeks she was already a handful. With Emma’s help we found exactly what Gracie needed to become a happy and well rounded puppy. Gracie loves the homework sessions and it has been fun to watch her think through a situation and then resolve the problem. I have attended many training classes and this is by far the best way to train a terrier. Emma has great ideas (including Puppy Parfait) and Gracie loves all of it. We are seeing great results and look forward to Advanced Foundations. Thanks Emma for sharing your insight. It is making a difference!

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  11. Vincent Sagisi

    I don’t think there’s more I could add to the already stellar reviews. If you want a healthy, working relationship with your terrier, Emma is the person to work with. Game changer!

  12. judith faraone (Verified Student)

    Emma Kesler and Terrier Academy Puppy Foundations are AMAZING!!

    My breeder recommended Emma and I contacted her as soon as I knew we were getting our Welsh. We signed up for Puppy Foundations which was terrific!! Emma”s website made things “easy peasy” because there were links for the right crate, pen, leashes, treats, food, toys……..everything you need. I resisted buying the specific toy she recommended, but Emma convinced me, and the toy is worth it’s weight in gold. Beau loves it and it tires him out.

    Terrier pups have more energy than any other dog. I’ve had 3 pups in the past (one Welsh) and never used a pen. I did this time upon Emma’s recommendation and set up instructions, and it sure makes things easy and it is Beau’s safe space. Our first meeting with Emma was before Beau arrived, and Emma really prepared us, even convincing us to try a raw diet. Emma is extremely supportive and gives a lot of encouragement because raising a puppy is not easy. I now make puppy milkshakes and dehydrate meat for Beau’s treats. You always have access to her well written student website which contains videos, tips, lessons, and recipes. The most important stage of life in kids and dogs is the very beginning. What you do now will pay off in the long run and you will have a well behaved, loyal companion for many years. Hiring Emma was a wise choice and we are glad we did.

  13. Anna Weible (Verified Student)

    Emma’s Puppy Foundations course was highly recommended to me by my breeder so I came in with already high expectations, and they were more than exceeded! Emma and Miles really know their stuff. Her training sessions along with her helpful setup and behavior guides have taken what I know to be a stressful time period (bringing a puppy home) to a very enjoyable one. Emma is so patient and kind, and genuinely excited to see you and your puppy succeed. My puppy is easily redirected with all of Emma’s teachings and my older dog is VERY thankful for all the other ways we’ve learned to keep her busy (rather than her favorite pastime of dangling from his beard). We are all very thankful for Emma at our house!

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  14. Crystal Stephenson (Verified Student)

    While we’ve had three Welsh Terriers in the past, this is our first time with a puppy less than 6-months old. As new parents we were excited but also anxious about raising a little WT. Emma’s methods have helped all three of us adjust to the new experience and things have gone far better than what we ever expected. I’m so glad we chose terrier specific training and I especially like our private online sessions. I would recommend this course for all WT owners.

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  15. Karen Prater (Verified Student)

    Puppies are sweet, adorable and full of promise. Within 24 hours, your new puppy will start to challenge your sleep and your sanity. You need Emma to guide you. Artie was 8 weeks when we brought him home on a Monday. Artie had his first training session 24 hours later.

    Emma has a proven plan that starts before you bring puppy home. If you work with Emma, not only will you have a template to follow and weekly zoom lessons, but you can text Emma with questions. For example, it was really cute the first time Artie scooped all the water out of his water bucket and started playing ‘slip & slide’ inside his puppy palace. He was having a great time, but we could see that left unchecked, this was going to lead to future challenges. Fortunately, Emma has seen it all before. She helped us test out a few solutions until we found what worked for us. No matter what Artie threw at us, we could count on Emma to guide us through it.

    Now that Artie is 10 months, I can whole heartedly say Emma’s program works. Artie is a confident dog. He is well socialized, and is on his way to being our dream dog.

    We’ve had 3 Airedales in the past. Our first Airedale we brought home at 8 weeks. She was a wonderful and amazing dog, who fit into our lifestyle despite the traditional dog training class we attended, and officially failed. The next two we adopted as adults through rescue. Both were also sweet dogs, but each had significant behavioral challenges that limited their ability to enjoy the world. We spent most of their years with us controlling their environment while trying to re-condition them to be more comfortable and confident. For our fourth dog, we decided to raise a puppy again.

    I am so grateful we found Emma, a Terrier specialist and a great person. We’ve worked with a lot of other trainers with our terriers over the past 30 years. Emma is the kind of dog trainer who likes humans too. She provides information verbally, and in writing after each weekly lesson. Emma is patient and sympathetic. Emma will not ‘grab the leash’ from you, have your dog execute a command, and then ridicule you in front of the class for not being able to replicate it. Emma will listen to you, watch how you interact with your dog, and provide feedback that you can put into action. I often joke that Artie already knows how to do most things, he is just waiting for us to learn how to ask him. Emma is the kind of trainer who understands teaching humans how to communicate is the key to partnering with a Terrier.
    You can turn a terrier puppy into your dream dog too. Just follow these steps:

    1. Contact Emma

    2. Invest in success. Set up the Puppy Palace. Don’t cut corners: get the tarp, get the fluffy squid tug toy, get the leash with the light weight weight buckle. Order a bunch of Toppls. Everything has been Terrier tested & approved. The dividends may roll in slowly, but they grow over a lifetime.

    3. Bring puppy home and enjoy the journey! One day, you will look out the door and realize that little ball of frenetic fluff is turning into your dream dog.

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  16. Lindsey Riggs (Verified Student)

    Emma set us up for success before our Frankie even arrived. The puppy supply list and set up she recommends are easy, well thought out, and great for the puppy and their person. Puppy Foundations is a gem of a program. I love that it helped me understand what Frankie is thinking when she behaves a certain way so that I can train her in more loving and affective ways. The class provided me with excellent training techniques but even better helped to establish a wonderful bond and trust between my puppy and me. Thank you, Emma and Miles!

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  17. Elise Achenbach (Verified Student)

    This is our 2d terrier puppy, our 4th terrier companion, but our FIRST Welsh terrier. We won’t repeat what’s already been said above, except yes, yes, and YES. One of the many things we have really valued about Emma’s program is that it anticipates common issues (nipping, guarding, body sensitivity, to mention a few) & instills proactive preventive measures with the goal of (1)educating us about our dog’s needs and (2)ultimately avoiding the issues from the get-go. Three cheers for Puppy Foundations!

  18. Susan Crawford

    When we got Fiona, our Welsh puppy, I really wanted to avoid issues we’d had with our Airedales. (Our last Airedale dropped out of group classes after repeating puppy kindergarten twice and I hadn’t learned much at all.) I know what it’s like to constantly butt heads with a terrier and I wanted to be able to enjoy Fiona from the beginning and not wait until she’s an old dog for her to be a good dog. Emma helped us so much and now, at almost six months, Fiona is a joy. I can successfully redirect all kinds of puppy energy that would otherwise go toward biting and mayhem. I can keep her little brain busy figuring out what I want her to do instead of how she can be naughty. Working with her delightful little terrier personality is so much better than bucking it, or waiting for her to get old. Thank you, Emma!

  19. PAUL WALES (Verified Student)

    Emma has been an incredible help in understanding our puppy’s behavior and needs, as well as teaching us how to deal with the inevitable issues that arise in the training of a healthy, happy, well-adjusted Welsh Terrier. For guiding you and your pup through the crucial first weeks of what will become a lifelong relationship, Emma’s the ultimate teacher, coach, therapist and confidence-builder every family needs needs!

  20. Chip Signorino (Verified Student)

    This was our first experience having a puppy and Emma was a Godsend. She gave us so many ideas and tips for dealing with a puppy and her potty issues and how to handle her tendency to nip when we play with her. Emma also advised us to start feeding her raw food and that was so helpful in getting our puppy not to pee so much in the house. We are so grateful for Emma’s help and encouragement and she has made our first experience with a puppy so much easier and so much fun for the whole family and our new puppy.

  21. Amber Tsai (Verified Student)

    This is my first time having a terrier puppy, and I was so nervous about taking care of a wild terrier puppy even before she came. Thanks to Emma, I was able to prepare from the very beginning and understand my puppy’s behavior. My puppy and I had a lot of fun working through the homework every week together. Emma gave concrete feedback on our every single video, and I did see progression under her coaching. Emma is so encouraging and never rejects my questions about anything terrier. I learned so much and feel more confident after taking the puppy foundations, and I believe my puppy feels the same!

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