In Buffalo, New York, Tyler Muto and Josh Moran are turning canine lives around and folks are noticing:
Bernie Wagner had just been told by her dog trainer that her border collie, Breaker, could not be saved, ascribing three words that she desperately tried to avoid hearing: “Put him down.” Breaker had a history of severe aggression toward both people and other dogs, yet Wagner remained confident that with the right trainer at the helm, he could be turned into an obedient, lovable pet. She contemplated the few options available to her until, on a routine shopping trip to the Target on Niagara Falls Boulevard, she saw two men performing dog tricks in the snow-covered parking lot. Wagner approached them and told them about Breaker’s situation. “Tyler told me he’d train him for $800 and that it would cover the lifetime of the dog. I didn’t bat an eye,” said Wagner.
Tyler Muto and Josh Moran have come a long way since their days of eliciting potential customers in wintery parking lots. The two dog trainers now occupy a 10,000 square foot state-of-the-art and internationally recognized training facility on Niagara Street known as K9 Connection. Muto and his training staff utilize programs that integrate the most modern techniques from the various schools of dog behaviorism in order to create prime conditions for rehabilitating dogs with behavioral problems. While K9 Connection offers private lessons and group training sessions as well as a training “boot camp” that lasts anywhere from six days to four weeks, Muto, who serves as training director, notes that the company’s real legacy lay in its ability to reconnect owners with dogs they previously might have given up on. “We’re extremely passionate not just about dealing with canine behavioral issues, but improving the lives of the people. I mean, that’s really what it really boils down to for us,” he said.