Testimonials from our clients


"I've had the privilege of working with Sara for decades. With incomparable dedication and a natural love for dogs, she has helped my family achieve tail-wagging-happiness! She's truly dog's best friend!"  -- Kim W.

"Sara is top notch. I have seen her work with all sorts of dogs and address a wide variety of behavioral issues at the Iowa City Care and Adoption Center and have sought out her advice for my own resident dog and past foster dogs. Sara helps you understand the underlying causes of a dog's particular behavior and how you can improve your own dog language skills to better communicate with your pup. She uses positive reinforcement techniques which are supported by extensive research in dog behavior so that you not only encourage your dog to behave in a certain way, but you also build your dog's self confidence and trust in you!"   -- Colleen O.


“Sara is truly an expert! The "Welcome Home Puppy" class is a great value considering all of the great tips from Sara and socialization opportunities for the dog. I plan to utilize her other classes in the future.” -- Emily N.


“Liz was profoundly helpful in the basic skills class. Everything we learned made for a perfect transition into life with our first adopted dog! Taking the class with other dogs is beneficial, but you still get the individualized attention and tips for you and your dog. We will definitely be taking more classes in the future. I know our dog really enjoyed them too!” -- Tiffany J.


“My now 10 month Great Dane Korra and I have taken 3 different classes at Best Friends Dog Academy, after being referred by a friend. I have really learned a lot about training and enjoy bonding with her. Sara and Liz  are great at personalizing the process for your dog. Plus the class sizes are so small you can get great individual attention and feedback! I highly recommend and will take more classes at Best Friends Dog Academy.” -- Kevin K.


“Both Sara and Liz are experts in dog behavior and training. I have taken two classes with my one year old lab and, with their help, he has bonded to me and become much calmer. He is getting better about loose leash walking, not jumping up on people and recalls.They always have helpful tips and know that each dog is different. I cannot recommend them enough and will be taking another class soon.”  -- Amy P


“It was our first class at Best Friend's, but won't be our last. We had a lot of fun and learned a lot. Sara was our trainer and genuinely wants our dogs to succeed. We loved it…” -- Peggy M.


“Sara is a knowledgeable and enthusiastic instructor. She has great advice and skills for turning a rowdy puppy into a fantastic adult dog.  We had so much fun socializing in the puppy class and are looking forward to continuing in Nosework .”  -- Chanda H.


“Liz was wonderful with our 12 month old lab!  Her enthusiasm for Belle is infectious. We came out of each session with a new understanding for our puppy's needs as well as a  fresh perspective of how to make her (and us) more comfortable during those few "tough times". Thank you Liz and Best Friends Dog Academy!” -- Erik T.


“What is special about the trainers associated with Best Friends Dog Academy is their considerable background and advanced education in working with dogs who have a past. They start with where the dog is at (e.g.,training, temperament, experiences, socialization) and go forward with an end goal of helping that, specific, dog live peaceably and non-destructively with humans.” -- K.J.


“I love the smaller sized classes which I feel gives us more focused, personal attention. With my 2 Standard Poodles we've taken classes with both Sara and Liz with excellent results, I highly recommend both!” -- Lynelle M.


“Best Friends trained our very scared dog how to deal with new experiences with positive training.

Liz Ford is a skilled dog trainer.  Thanks to her knowledge, we know how to teach our dog great behaviors and how to keep learning new skills.”  -- Donna G.


“My chihuahua/poodle mix was in need of working on his manners. We just finished our first 6 week session with Sara and are trying to decide on our next one! Sara did amazing with meeting my Gibbs where he was and the difference he made in just 6 weeks was amazing. I cannot stress enough how amazing these classes are. We have lots of things in our toolbox to help us develop his skills at home.” --  Skye S.


“Sara was and is a gentle being with all of her dogs. Under difficult circumstances we got Sasha through Puppy School and are excited for the next chapter. Sara is so soft spoken and her heart is made of love for all the dogs she handles and cares for. We thank her for all her help with Sasha and hope we can continue with her to make our little girl a well behaved puppy. Thank you Sara for all you have done for us.” --N Beuter