Bark Busters Reviews

Bark Busters
( 39 reviews )

Bark Busters Review: What to Know

Reviewopedia staff  -  Updated:  July 18, 2023


Bark Busters is a global dog training company providing in-home training services for over 30 years.

How Does it Work?

The Bark Busters training programs focus on addressing various behavioral issues, including aggression, barking, jumping, separation anxiety, and other behavioral issues.

The company's primary offering is in-home dog training, which allows trainers to work with dogs in their natural environment.

In addition to in-home training, Bark Busters also offers virtual training services, puppy management, and socialization programs.

Bark Busters' pricing is typically higher than group classes, but this can be attributed to the customized nature of their training and the lifetime support guarantee.

Customer Reviews & Complaints

Bark Busters receives mixed reviews from customers.  

While some dog owners commend the company for its effective, personalized training methods, others have had less positive experiences.

Positive customer reviews appreciate the in-home training, which they believe helps address the root causes of their dogs' behavioral issues.

Satisfied customers also appreciated the lifetime support guarantee, which ensures continued assistance for the dog's entire life.

On the other hand, some customers have raised concerns about the company's training techniques, believing that certain methods may be outdated or overly harsh.

Still other customers have complained about inconsistent results and high costs.

Below we take a look at some of the most common concerns customers had about Bark Busters.

Harsh Training Methods

Some customers have raised concerns about Bark Busters' training methods, describing them as outdated or overly harsh.

Critics argue that the company's approach relies too heavily on outdated dominance-based techniques, which have been widely debated in the dog training community.

They argue that the company's focus on establishing the owner as the "pack leader" may not be the most effective way to address behavioral issues.

There's concern that some of the correction techniques used, such as loud vocal cues or physical touch, may cause fear or discomfort in dogs and may not be the most compassionate approach to dog training.

Modern dog training has shifted towards positive reinforcement methods, and some customers feel that Bark Busters has not adequately adapted to these changes.

However, it is important to note that individual trainers' methods may vary, and not all Bark Busters trainers may employ the same techniques.

Inconsistent Results

Some customers have reported inconsistent results after working with Bark Busters trainers, stating that the training methods did not work for their dogs or that the results were inconsistent.

They believed that the company's techniques may not be suitable for their dog or that the trainers they worked with were not able to effectively address their pets' specific issues.

These inconsistencies may be attributed to differences in individual dogs, trainers, or the specific techniques used.

Trainer Quality and Experience

While Bark Busters has a comprehensive training program for its trainers, the quality and experience of individual trainers may vary.

While some customers have praised the skills and enthusiasm of Bark Busters trainers, others customers have expressed dissatisfaction with their assigned trainer's expertise, communication skills, or overall professionalism.

High Costs

Bark Busters' in-home training services are typically more expensive than group classes or other training programs.

While the company justifies the higher price due to the personalized nature of their services and the lifetime support guarantee, some customers feel that the costs are excessive, particularly when they do not see immediate or consistent results.

Limited Refund Policy

Bark Busters' refund policy has also been a point of concern for some customers.  The company offers a lifetime support guarantee, which ensures ongoing assistance for the dog's entire life.

However, this does not include a money-back guarantee, and customers who are unhappy with the services may find it difficult to obtain a refund.

The Bottom Line

While Bark Busters has helped many dog owners improve their pets' behavior and overall well-being, it is essential to consider the concerns and complaints that have arisen.

Potential customers should weigh these factors, research their local Bark Busters trainer, and assess their specific needs to determine if Bark Busters is the right choice for them.

Despite some concerns regarding training methods and cost, Bark Busters remains a popular choice for those seeking an individualized approach to dog training.

If you are considering using Bark Busters for your dog's training needs, it's important to do thorough research, read reviews from various sources, and consider alternative training methods to determine which approach is best suited for you and your pet.

If you have any experience with Bark Busters or their services, please leave your review below.

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Bark Busters Customer Reviews

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Counter-productive and damaging
May 26, 2024
I was surprised to find Barkbusters are still operating, I thought those dominance methods had long been debunked and rejected. Years ago, I had a big boofy dog and no idea, so asked Barkbusters to help train him. They taught me to throw chains in front of his feet, and use a check chain. Within two sessions, my outgoing, friendly, relaxed dog became frightened of me and didn't want to go for a walk any more. He cowered at the check chain. Their techniques only taught him anxiety and avoidance, and damaged our previously happy bond. I deeply regret going along with it. I found and stuck to positive training methods since. 6 years ago, my neighbour's dog started going on walks with his ears back and tail between his legs, and jumping at noises. It was so upsetting to see, people thought the owner must be a bully. He'd got a Barkbusters trainer. I hope BB updates to positive training soon.

BarkBusters May 28, 2024

Hi KJ, we are sorry to reach your comments as our mission is to help improve relationships between dogs and their owners in a positive way. If you're open to discussing your experience we would welcome your feedback as we value continued learning and feedback from client experiences. You can contact us at [email protected] and please reference this conversation. Thank you!

They will ruin your dog.
October 24, 2023

The company's methodology is extremely outdated and borderline cruel, and these trainers choose to carry on teaching and promoting their methods. Also, just a side note, it appears that anyone with or without experience can open their own franchise under the Bark Busters title.

We worked with Brenda in Ontario, Canada starting in fall of 2022 and stopped using her services in April 2023, but after speaking to various people, trainers, and a registered canine behaviourist, I feel obligated to warn others.

It's apparent that Bark Busters training methods are essentially fear tactics that rely on dominance theory which has been disproven across the board. Their tactics instill fear in your pet, and in our case, made our puppy's aggression and resource guarding much worse.

We had a few sessions with Brenda, and stayed very consistently on top of her recommendations - which include spraying your dogs with water, whipping chain bags near your dog to startle them, and yelling 'BAH' to deter them as well. We were taken aback by these tactics but felt obligated to try and were reassured that they would work and build trust with our dog. Over the first few months, we had 2-3 sessions and called Brenda to arrange another as we were still struggling. Brenda stated that she doesn't typically have to revisit a client that frequently and that we must not be trying hard enough or staying on top of the training - this was a major red flag as we obviously hired the support because of concerning behaviours and had paid for their 'lifetime guarantee'. It's clear that the behaviour was getting worse because we have a very smart dog that would act out instead of hiding in fear.

Looking back, we're filled with regret, as all of their tactics have a reverse effect and ultimately made our dog fear us and act out more aggressively as a result. It does NOT work.

I recommend doing your research and working with a trainer that uses positive reinforcement and relationship building. The 'lifetime guarantee' bundled cost is what draws people in - don't fall for this. You'll spend so much more trying to help your dog after they scar them for life. Bark Busters will RUIN your your dog.

BarkBusters Office November 01, 2023

Hi Eden,

We are sorry to read this message and learn about your feelings towards your training and the experience of our trainers. It is hard to put into words the hurt this causes as our mission is to help our clients overcome behavioral issues, often helping clients overcome issues with their dogs to save them from surrender and premature euthanasia. That was the mission of our founders when they started the business more than 30 years ago, and it remains core to how we operate today. We want nothing but improved lives together between our clients and their dogs, and we would welcome the opportunity to speak further about this with you if you can kindly contact our office at [email protected]

Don't work with them if you like your dog
August 27, 2023
This company use aversive and harmful training methods while misleading people via their website claiming to be 'gentle', Aversive methods harm the relationship between dogs and their guardians. Anyone who sells 'Quick fixes' (there are none that are kind and humane - dog training takes time) are trying to get your money not help you and your dog.

BarkBusters Office August 28, 2023

Hi Steven B,

Our trainers throughout the country and beyond care deeply about our clients' relationships with their dogs. Our mission is to help our clients live happier lives together with their dogs, and we are incredibly saddened to read your comment that implies otherwise and that we're in business to sell a quick-fix. If anyone ever feels this way we strongly encourage you to reach out directly to our national office at [email protected].

Thank you

They are the real deal
August 9, 2023

My dogs are showing progress. Bark Busters will come to your home for a lifetime fee (or a one time fee). I was speaking with my neighbor who paid far more., and she had to drive to go to their establishment. For a set amount of appointments. It takes work and diligence on my part, once instruction and education has been given. I’m glad I reached out to Holly at Bark Busters.

They are not a magic wand to wave over our puppies. They instruct and educate, but the majority of the effort relies solely on us the owner. Shout out to Holly and to the customer service team that answer the phones. Everyone has shown me care and has taken time to listen and give their recommendations!!! Very thankful for your help❤️❤️❤️Blessings

BarkBusters Office August 14, 2023

Hi Jodie,

We are glad to hear about your positive training experience with Holly and sincerely appreciate you sharing the feedback!

Thank you

Lack of care from dog trainer
August 8, 2023

My experience with Bark Busters has not been positive.

You pay up front for the whole experience and after a couple.of sessions you don't hear from them again.

Had two dogs in two different locations, paid the fee and neither dog has improved.

In fact one is considerably worse.

BarkBusters Office August 14, 2023

Hi Narelle,

We are sorry to hear about your experience and want to help you if you're still having concerns. We tried finding you in our client records but do not have enough information to identify where you're located or who you have trained with, so if you can contact us directly by email at [email protected] we will look forward to hearing from you and assisting you further.

Thank you

Lack of care from dog trainer
August 8, 2023

My experience with Bark Busters has not been positive.

You pay up front for the whole experience and after a couple of sessions you don't hear from them again.

Had two dogs in two different locations, paid the fee and neither dog has improved.

In fact one is considerably worse.

BarkBusters Office August 14, 2023

Hi Narelle,

We are sorry to hear about your experience and want to help you if you're still having concerns. We tried finding you in our client records but do not have enough information to identify where you're located or who you have trained with, so if you can contact us directly by email at [email protected] we will look forward to hearing from you and assisting you further.

Thank you

Jacqueline September 21, 2023

Thoroughly agree - had to chase up for a 2nd date with Lynne and was spoken to like a child for not following instructions that to me where totally outdated.

To block my windows so the dog couldn’t see out to stop her from barking!!

Being strict and harsh with my puppy.

Not the best approach I felt - also she was very abrupt with me.

don't waste your money
June 21, 2023

This company is not at all what is advertised and is a total waste of money. They are not behavioral therapists, which is what they advertise.

It's one guy who has his girlfriend and his best friend, with no formal canine education or training, working for him. I paid 2.5 grand and the guy that was assigned to me had no training or experience whatsoever and didn't feel comfortable with my dog and had me walk the dog because of his inexperience.

After that, he had the main guy come to the lesson who proceeded to insult me and make me feel so bad about how my dog is too much for me to handle as a woman who doesn't have the physical strength of man (after also asking me about my personal life and whether or not I have a partner) that I did not use them again, despite their "life time guarantee," which is essentially fraudulent. Their business plan is to have customers pay a ton of money for a lifetime of training and then make you feel so bad about yourself that you never use them again.

BarkBusters Office June 26, 2023

Hi Jenny,

We are very concerned to read these comments you've shared and would like to look into this further to identify where this occurred and help get it resolved. Please contact us directly at [email protected] and we will follow up to address this with you.

Thank you

Not worth the money
May 16, 2023

$1,800 lighter, two visits and not much else. Been at least a year and a half since we've even heard from the guy. Only thing we got from him that works at all was a small bag with chain or something in it. Gets the dogs attention beautifully when you whack it on surfaces. This dog has bitten both of us and was quite literally days from euthanization without changes.

Thankfully we were put in touch with a non Barkbusters trainer that has helped immensely. This young lady has come to the house, invited us to hers, evaluated him, taught us, and helped us modify the dogs behavior. The dog has rebounded beautifully for less than HALF of the money we wasted with BB and is now a different dog. I wish I had found her first.

BarkBusters Office May 22, 2023

Hi Mike,

We are sorry to hear about your experience and would appreciate hearing from you directly at [email protected] if you are able to reach out to us.

Thank you

“Alpha dog” methods are bogus
May 14, 2023
We were very disappointed in bark busters. They made a bunch of promises they couldn’t keep, cost a fortune, and their methods ended up increasing our dog’s anxiety. They focus on training owners to be the scary “alpha dog” but science debunked that idea decades ago. Positive reinforcement is much more effective.

BarkBusters Office May 15, 2023

Hi Eric,

We are sorry to hear about your experience and would like to learn more about this if you can kindly contact us directly at [email protected]

Thank you

Embarrassed that I was ripped off
May 11, 2023

Don’t waste your money. I have 3 Dogs and he came out one time and I complained and he came out again. He told me I had a pack of dogs and hard to train. So I wasted my money and he charged me $3,000. I’m embarrassed that I was ripped off.

BarkBusters Office May 15, 2023

Hi l n,

If you can reach out to us directly at [email protected] we would like to help get your concerns addressed.

Thank you

Stay away from bark busters
April 5, 2023

One word horrible. Got little or no training for my leash aggressive dog.

If you don’t call them they will ignore you.

Don’t think they have the training for high anxiety dogs.

A lot of talk. But no solutions.

Run the other way. There are better trainers.

Called corporate. “Oh sorry you feel that way “ once they get your money , you’re pretty much on your own.

I would give them 0 stars if possible.

BarkBusters Office April 12, 2023

Hi Dan, if you can kindly reach out to us by email at [email protected] we will have someone contact you to help address your concerns. Thanks, Bark Busters

BobS. April 20, 2023

Seems to be a pattern here. Thanks for the review. It more than gives me concern.

BarkBusters Office April 20, 2023

We are sorry to hear this Bob. If you have any interest in learning more about our services we would welcome the opportunity to connect with you and can be reached at [email protected]

Jacqueline September 21, 2023

Definitely a lot of talking and no positive and productive training-

Waste of time and money

JohnBeagle December 07, 2023

This review uses cyber bullying therefore according to guidelines and standards it should be removed.

Do not engage with this company
April 3, 2023

This company is virtually a pyramid scheme. They convinced me that training could be done virtually, even though I had reached out due to volatile dog aggression issues.

When I tried to ask for a different trainer, it got escalated to someone a bit higher in the pyramid that basically told me no, and promised to check in, which never occurred.

BarkBusters Office April 12, 2023

Hi Kathryn, if you can contact us directly by email at [email protected] we will try our best to help you further, thank you

BobS. April 20, 2023

Very useful insight. Appreciate the care in your detail.

JohnBeagle December 07, 2023

This review uses cyber bullying therefore according to guidelines and standards it should be removed.

Female dogs fighting
January 12, 2023
I am so grateful we hired Bark Busters. We brought home a second female and our first female was territorial of all her toys and food and starting fighting our new puppy. We thought we needed to rehome her but we didn’t want to. A friend recommended Bark Busters because they come to your home. This made the most sense to us because we could show them what was actually going on. Our first dog went to daycare and got along great with other dogs so that is why we thought having trainers come to our home made the most sense. After the first session we new what to do. We had our daily homework and knew how to handle situations. We could reach out to our trainer at any time. After a couple of months our dogs became best of friends! Playing and cuddling! If you need any help with your dogs I can’t recommend the Bark Busters methods enough!

BarkBusters Office April 12, 2023

Hi Diane, thank you for sharing your positive experience with Bark Busters. We are glad our trainer has been able to help you with your dogs!

Awesome Results…. So Happy!
January 9, 2023

I rescued a Pitbull a few months ago who would pull on the leash strongly go crazy when he saw other dogs when we were out walking. I tried a bunch of techniques I saw on YouTube and nothing worked till I got help from my Bark Buster trainer. In just one session I learned a few training techniques to employ in the house and on leash which completely changed my dog’s reactive behavior on leash.

In addition, his overall obedience and temperament is so much better and he has become my best Buddy and not my stressful project. I thought at first training exercises in the house were a waste given my main issues were on leash, but I learned the key to all issues is my relationship with my dog, daily routines and how I communicate with him.

So far I have had and needed just one follow up session as the reality of the situation is my dog is now acting awesome and I am totally happy. I am super glad though the lifetime training allows me to get more help if I should ever need it. Kind of like an insurance policy.

Overall, yes the training is not cheap, but you get what you pay for. I had a totally out of control dog who was driving me crazy and now I have an absolutely awesome dog and I have peace of mind knowing I have a resource for his entire life should I need it even for simple questions that will probably come up.

BarkBusters Office April 12, 2023

Hi Max, we are very appreciative to hear about your experience and glad the relationship you have with your dog has taken a turn for the better!

Great behavioral trainers!
January 9, 2023
WOW! I’m so impressed with how they worked and did things. My dog needed help with separation anxiety and I saw immediate improvements in her, even though I know it will take time. I’ve called my trainer and texted her and she replies the same day with enthusiasm and wanting to help. I love that I can fall back on her whenever I need to. Thank you so much! I highly recommend Bark Busters

BarkBusters Office April 12, 2023

Hi Kara, thanks for sharing this feedback about your experience, we are glad to hear you are well supported by your Bark Busters trainer

Best dog trainers
January 7, 2023
Speaking dog is the way to go, my dogs now understand that I’m the leader and there is peace in my house . What a change and so knowledgeable on posture , understanding voice tones and body language and nutrition. Highly recommend.

BarkBusters Office April 12, 2023

Hi Linnette, thank you for providing this feedback - we are glad to hear you're having success with your training!

Fantastic Training!
January 6, 2023
Wish we had started with Bark Busters from the beginning! Our local trainer was super experienced and helped us manage our dogs barking - especially at other animals and help get him under control. We spent a lot of money with other training programs that just didn't work before we found Bark Busters and wish we had found their program sooner!

BarkBusters Office April 12, 2023

Hi John, thank you for sharing the kind words and insights on the success you are having with your Bark Busters training!

Super impressive!!!
January 6, 2023
I worked with Bark Busters three years ago for my cava poo named Frank. After three sessions, my dogs, jumping, barking, running out the door behavior and walking were significantly turned around and completely resolved. I love the fact that we didn’t have to use any shock, collars or inhumane devices, and it was all through the language of the dog Through body language and vocalizations. At the end of the day, it really comes down to training the human and rehabilitating the dog. I was so impressed with their professionalism and their prompt response to all of my calls and text. They offer a lifetime of the dog service guarantee with unlimited training support , anywhere I go in the country. I would highly recommend a service to anybody looking to train their dog with permanent results using a very effective technique.

BarkBusters Office April 12, 2023

Hi Mark, thank you for your kind words - we are glad to hear you appreciate our approach to training at Bark Busters.

1000 times yes yes yes!
January 6, 2023

My dog is 13 years old and has always been nothing short of neurotic. She barks at literally everything. I've hired dog trainers in the past and was told that there's nothing that could be done, shock collars, citronella collars, keeping the curtains closed all the time. Any time my front door would open my dog would go off. I finally got to a point where I just couldn't do it anymore with working from home so I reached out to Bark Busters for help. In less than seven days, I've only heard my dog bark two times. Their training methods are nothing short of mind blowing. More importantly they give me the tools as the dog owner to take control and demonstrate that I am the leader and they need to look to me for guidance and support. They always say that you can't teach an old dog new tricks but my 13-year-old little girl is proof that not only can you teach them new tricks, but you can establish new behavioral patterns with gentle and effective correction in a very short amount of time.

I will also say that the lifetime guarantee of support for training, I know that if anything crops up or some new behavior arises that I have Bark Busters to come save the day. We have no more leash aggression, I can keep my curtains open and the house is quiet and peaceful. Packages even get delivered and the doorbell rings and my dog sits and doesn't react. I'm so grateful for Jenna and her experience and awesome support literally words cannot describe

BarkBusters Office April 12, 2023

Hi Pamela, thank you for providing this feedback. We are excited to hear you've been able to get positive results that are helping you with your dog.

Horrible expensive ripoff
January 2, 2023

We are definitely not impressed with this service. I find it interesting that you can't even leave a review on their page...maybe because it's a joke....and very expensive. Never ever have I ever heard of basically barking at your dog, which is what the recommend.

They came once, we paid them a buttload of money and that was basically it. No follow-up, no weekly visit, not squat. Basically if you want them to follow-up, you have to call them and keep calling. Terrible. Got their money and disappeared. We are very annoyed. Total waste....DO NOT USE THESE DOG TRAINERS!!

KevinM February 24, 2023

I had the same experience. Paid $2,000 for lifetime support, got 3 visits, no plan, no follow up, and no real change in the aggressive behavior. Ended up paying for another trainer who helped my dog 10x more than barkbusters did. DONT WASTE YOUR MONEY! Use a different training system.

BarkBusters Office April 12, 2023

Hi Mlbph and Kevin, we are sorry to hear about your experiences and would like to help address them if you can kindly email our office at [email protected]. Thank you

BobS. April 20, 2023

This is great to know about. On top of that, this company didn't even care to respond for 2 months. Says a lot.

BarkBusters Office May 08, 2023

We are sorry about the delay responding as we were not made aware of this website review prior. If anyone has a more immediate concern our office can be contacted at [email protected]