Your Dog's Best Friend Minneapolis, MN - Max Bitterman Dog Training
Lake of the Isles Dog Park is a perfect place for great dogs and great people to come together.
To be the best you have to learn from the best. Cesar Millan’s Dog Psychology Center is a great place to learn the art of dog whispering.
Studying dog pack behavior at Minnehaha Dog Park in Mpls. is a great way to learn from our dogs.
At the Wolf Center we enlist the wisdom of Mother Nature to teach us how to create balance and peace for our dogs.
We love to help dogs and their families enjoy all of the summer fun MN has to offer. Lake Harriet Bandstand

What People Say About Us

Doggy transformations chronicled

Our teaching philosophy relies on the ability for one to "believe it, in order to see it." This can be a challenge for new clients. It is easy to "see it to believe it," but to be the source of positive change, one must believe first. You can help others by sharing your story.

Kim C.

A frictionless approach to understanding and communicating with our dog.

Leon W.

An amazing way to teach dog owners to train dogs that transcends dog training.

Sandy R.

Dog rescue took the dog out of the mill, Your Dog's Best Friend took the mill out of the dog. That's teamwork!

Marco M.

Dog aggressive to dog impressive, thank you for helping us recover our instincts! Trust, Respect, Loyalty, Love!

Ryan B.

Truly the dog whisperers of Minneapolis, every new situation with our dogs is an exciting new opportunity for me to show them how to succeed!

Amy T.

The instant I got it, my dog looked at me the way I would have looked at her if she had said, "Good morning, how are you today?" I will never forget that moment!

Keep up the great work guys. Thank you for being a part of our pack!
Max Bitterman - Dog Trainer/Founder

What Do We Help With?

Rehabilitation of dog behavior problems:

Dog Socialization Issues - Dog Aggression - Fearful dogs - Puppy Mill Dogs - Shy Dogs - Rowdy Dogs - Anxious Dogs - Disobedient Dogs - Stubborn Dogs

Prevention of dog behavior problems:

Puppy Training - New Dog Introductions - Doggie Match Making (finding the right dog for your family)

What are the results?

More fun and freedom and trust with the family!

Fun 1
Fun 2
Fun 3

Where are they now?

TherapyTherapy - Buster used to be nervous about being touched by new people, sometimes biting, sometimes slinking away. Now Buster loves his hospice visits and his visits with terminally ill dogs. Sometimes a puppy is our first friend but it takes a special puppy to be someone's last friend.

ServiceService - Frodo lost his job as a Seeing Eye dog due to explosive outbursts as trucks and other loud vehicles passed by on the walk. Now he has his job back and not only provides Seeing Eye services but gets to go to Minneapolis schools to show off to the kids how special he is!

TeacherTeacher - Buddy holds a notorious title as the most human aggressive dog in the history of Your Dog's Best Friend. That was years ago. Today he spends his days teaching at risk dogs how to follow house rules. He is a perfect example for how dogs should treat humans and their homes.

CoachingCoaching - Cajun was a smart, young, happy go lucky pup. He has developed into a pack leader for our new dogs. He helps the timid ones grow their confidence, the reactive ones try a more social approach to relating with other dogs and with his brother Oakland on his team they have served as "first friends" to many rescue dogs as they begin their new life.

HuntingHunting - Duke, the bird dog developed a fear of loud noises. He was forced to sit out hunting weekends for over three years. Now he is back in the field and doing what he loves and was born to do! He is currently training his puppy brother Zipper to become a great bird dog too.

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    Our Programs

    Learn how to dog whisper!

    Private Training

    Private Training
    • One-on-one mentorship and coaching for you and your dog.

    Puppy Head Start Program

    Puppy Head Start Program
    • Did you know there is a huge difference between what a puppy needs at 2-4 months, 4-6 months and 6-10 months? Let us show you how to support their development and nurture their natural gifts.

    Boot Camp

    Boot Camp
    • We say we offer the best board and train programs in the state because we consistantly create durable and powerful transformation in dogs and their families.

    Continual Education

    Group classes are a great way to work with other owners, trainers & dogs who are in agreement with how to build trust, respect, loyalty & love with your dog. We are always here for you as you progress as a pack leader. Our clients have us for a lifetime!

    Pack Walk

    Pace Walk
    • A mindful and connected experience to bond & build trust with your dog and the community.
    • Weekly: Inquire For Date/Times

    Shy Dog Class

    Shy Dog
    • Puppy mill dogs, hoarder rescues and dogs that need extra help learning to trust people.
    • Weekly: Inquire For Date/Times

    Reactive & Rowdy Dog Class

    Rowdy Dog
    • Dogs without boundaries and limits lose privileges, get isolated & often end up at risk. Learn how to set rules, boundaries and limitations that will allow your canine companion to feel proud and confident because they know just what to do!
    • Weekly: Inquire For Date/Times

    Dog Rescue Seminars

    Empower your staff - Keep fosters supported - Keep dogs in their homes
    We love to help you fulfull your mission!

    Stop The Drop

    • Preparing rescue volunteers to give struggling dog owners info, resources & belief in a positive outcome to avoid surrendering in the first place.

    New Dog Intros

    • Empowering rescue volunteers to empower fosters and adopters to build a good relationship with new fosters and adopted dogs to maximize successes and minimize returns.

    Puppy Stages

    • How to fulfill puppy needs from 2-4, 4-6 & 6-10 months to prevent dog behavior issues.


    • Talking dog to help traumatized dogs, nurture sensitivity in frustrated dogs and build the ultimate connection and bond with any dog.

    Our Training Is Positive

    Don't you mean positive reinforcement?

    No, it's just positive!


    When our dog does the right thing, we can use our approval, toys, treats or privileges to support the behavior. This is positive reinforcement, a vital part of a balanced training approach. When our dog does something that can hurt them, such as snapping at another dog or bolting out the door towards a busy street we do not positively reinforce it, instead we use positive disagreement.

    There is a technique we share with our dogs to get followership in any situation no matter how many distractions or obstacles. We show our dogs that being told no and being corrected comes with the same trust, respect & love that we share when they are doing the right thing. Your dog can associate mistakes with a fun and happy opportunity to be shown a better way. Wrong and stupid or wrong and bad are conditioned responses our dogs do not need to feel to become 100% trustworthy.

    In fact, teaching this way blocks the process of building 100% trust. Intimidation & shame are shortcuts that a frustrated follower in a leadership position utilizes to compensate for their lack of leadership ability. This is done at the expense of the self-esteem of the other, in this case the dog. As an instinctual pack leader for your dog, you will never even feel the urge to handle things that way!

    If you take a baby from its mom, replace her with a parent, not an owner. That is why we teach dog raising as a foundation rather than dog training. That is why we teach dog relating for relationship building rather than dog training. This is why we are your dog's best friend.

    About Us

    Meet Our Pack!

    Every member of our team has a unique experience



    Specialties: In home training - Private sessions - Dog owners with disabilities - Customized training programs for any dog owner

    Neil Kapphahn has been working with and training dogs for many years. Over the last several years he has taken his knowledge and experience in behavior rehabilitation to the highest of levels. Neil has consistently shown an aptitude for helping rescue dogs who have gotten off to a rough start and need a second chance to become well adjusted, playful and confident canine companions.

    Day to day, Neil does private sessions to help local dog owners with the most stubborn and difficult dogs find a powerful way to connect and communicate with their dogs. He loves the opportunity to teach instinctual dog communication to MN dog owners so they can experience the frictionless and fulfilling approach of relating to and loving a dog in terms the dog was born to understand.



    Specialties: Private training - Boot camp - Socialization class for puppies and dogs

    Teresa is our most experience trainer. Her gift is relating to dog owners dealing with frustration, confusion & scary situations. Having dog behavior problems can be disarming for a loving dog owner and polarizing in their relationships with friends and family. Feelings of failure, anger and frustration are common and relatable for all of us. Teresa loves the opportunity to share her dog psychology knowledge and work with dog owners so that they can visualize a positive future and carry a trusting and supported state of mind to create an amazing relationship with their dogs. Many of her past clients are not only models for fulfilling and responsible dog ownership, but most have also become great teachers for their friends and family who are dealing with difficult situations with their dog.



    Specialties: Private Training - Dog pack management (leadership and impactful relationship training)

    For those who train dogs, walk dogs, work at doggie daycares, breed dogs or own multiple dogs this one is for you! Even if you just have one dog or do not even have a dog but only a thirst for knowledge you will love this! Observing and studying packs of dogs allows us to tap into the instinctual conversations that create the social environment we see. Just like us, their social structures are defined by trust, respect, loyalty & love. Their friendships are based on similar interests, complimentary needs or attractive energy. By learning and understanding who our sensitive dogs are, who our happy go lucky dogs are, who our selfless protection and direction dogs are and who is feeling unstable and needs extra help finding their place we can get involved in an influential way to create peace and harmony for the pack. There is nothing more rewarding for a dog lover than the feeling you get from your dogs' clear communications of loyalty and support when you learn how to play the true pack leader role.



    Specialties: Puppy Class Director - Private training - Boot camp - Therapy dog prep

    Often times we get along great with our dog but certain key situations just never seem to go right. Our dog does not listen, does not settle down or just does not know how behave at important times. This is when most dogs lose privileges and connection to the family and their community. Blair has a fun and easy to follow approach for teaching dogs practical commands and coaching dog owners to make sure that their dog knows when they are getting a command versus a suggestion! Understanding the real world challenges that dog owners face allows Blair to team up with her clients to find custom solutions to help the family dog truly become a source of pride and confidence for the family. Blair manages our puppy training programs & teams up with her therapy dog Dominic to run our therapy dog preparation course.



    Program: Fit for a dog

    Local personal trainer and founder of the brand, Alpha Fitness, teaches dog owners how to lose weight, get in shape and use your dog as your motivator! One of the fundamentals laws of the dog world is that they need exercise, discipline & affection (in that order) to build trust, respect & love. The foundation of a successful dog/human relationship is trust. This is built through the walk and other team activities. Dogs have a natural enthusiasm for exercising and challenging themselves physically. Through a mindful and confident approach to fitness with your dog, you and your dog can feed off of each other's energy to create a connected and elevated experience that is transformative!



    Specialties: Seminars, Work Shops, Private Training, Board ‘n Train Programs

    Ari may have the most diverse training experience of us all. Her monthly workshops on nurturing sensitivity into dogs towards babies at Babies R Us are both captivating & enlightening for expecting parents with dogs. At Animal Ark Sanctuary she does staff training to help them empower dogs who lost their home to become exceptional domestic pets and family members who will no longer be at risk. As an owner of six dogs, she has a natural gift with dog owners who feel their issues are insurmountable & do not know where to start. Ari has been an exceptional trainer for years: aiding clients in rehabilitating fearful puppy mill, hoarder & feral dogs, working with reactive & rowdy dogs as well as providing a great puppy raising session for dog parents with a new dog or puppy. However, it is her patience, compassion and drive to help people overcome personal obstacles in training that make her not only a great dog trainer, but a great transformational partner for people. Her approach to board 'n train as a concept of her holistic training programs allows her to work with dog owners on even ground. Understanding what it is like to have your dog in her family allows for a great exchange of insight & opens the door to great progress in helping dogs find balance and harmony.



    Impact the Pack: Volunteer opportunities - Puppy training - An instinctual approach to obedience & commands

    Dogs do not vote, they do not have property rights & they have no outlet to report abuse or to seek refuge. However, you do! Daniel has served as a voice for those who cannot speak for themselves and he is always ready to help someone like you find opportunities to do the same. Daniel works with local MN foster based rescue organizations & MN Animal Control to help support the dogs who need to be heard and supported. He also puts his knowledge where his heart is. Not only has he dedicated his life to rescue dogs, but he has also dedicated himself to learning and practicing "pack leadership lifestyle". This enables him to help fosters and adopters train their new dogs and work on behavior problems that arise so that the cycle of coming up short for the dog at the dog's expense will truly be broken by you!



    Career opportunities

    Are you one of us? Great! Call me, let's talk about it!

    What I Learned From Cesar Millan

    When we learn to quiet our mind, trust our instincts and fully submit to the narrative that reality provides us, the person we allow ourselves to be is more comfortable, powerful & impactful than we had ever before dreamed we could be. This is when you become your dog's best friend.

    Gracias Cesar, por tu apoyo y orientacion, Max :)

    Enjoy a Complimentary Dog Behavior Consultation!

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