One of the most difficult, necessary and rewarding behaviors to correct in a dog is anxiety and aggression. Anxiety and aggression is a behavior that can be learned, genetic or innate. When a dog feels threatened, the two natural responses will be fight or flight. Most dogs will attempt to put as much distance between themselves and the threat, if the threat remains they will then turn to aggression or submit. Other dogs are overly confident pack leaders and will turn first to aggression. Both of these reactions stem from anxiety and can be fixed with a balanced positive dog training approach. 

John Mestas

Experience: 35+ years

Dog Training Elite was founded by John Mestas who has over 35 years of dog training experience. Arrow Kennels dba Dog Training Elite was named after John's first obedience trial dog, a golden retriever named Arrow.

John Mestas is a professional and experienced dog seminar instructor. He is the Owner and Training Director of Dog Training Elite dog training facility in Utah. He has served on the boards of Utah Valley Kennel Club, Great Salt Lake Retriever Club and Northern Utah Retriever Club. He has also worked with guide dog puppies, for the blind, in San Rafael, California.

He has trained with excellent trainers such Bill Totten, President, Professional Retriever Trainers Association.

He has worked with and coached members of the Utah Task Force 1 Search and Rescue Team and coached various police department canine. He has coached and trained many dogs and their owners to Junior, Senior and Master Hunter titles. John has trained dogs and their owners to Companion Dog Excellence and Utility Dog titles, including seven high in trial.

John has donated his time to those with special needs in training their service dogs.

John has judged American Kennel Club (AKC) field trial events in the open, amateur, qualifying and derby. He has donated his time to train dogs for special needs children and offers free seminars for boys and girls at Juvenile Detention centers.

Contact John Mestas

John Mestas

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I thought I had made a terrible mistake after adopting my 80 pound, Leonberger puppy. He was destroying my home and yard. He wouldn't come to me when called and he was terrible to walk. Being such a strong dog made it impossible for me to handle him. Aiden, my trainer, worked miracles with him. He is a great dog tr...
— Patricia Moorhead, Posted March 6th 2018 on Google Local
Neal, Chris and Lee are freaking amazing! My rottie is like night and day with his behavior. I searched for months to find the right trainer and they have not disappointed. I’m extremely impressed and would recommend to anyone!
— Simone Thomma, Posted February 26th 2018 on Facebook
Great training! They really helped us to work with our dog to help him build confidence! Great experience!
— Raine CSA, Posted February 20th 2018 on Google Local
Neal and Bailey came to my house to meet my 6 month rescue lab mix Elle, and I was FLOORED with the level of obedience, love, companionship and a mutual respect there was. Neal gave commands in a calm normal inside talking voice and Bailey obeyed then from about 50ft + away!!!
— Jigar Patel, Posted February 7th 2018 on Facebook
I took my miniature dachshund to traditional puppy training classes and was disappointed when our home program failed. With months of training under our belt, at 6 months old my dog spent hours a day barking at anything going by, was still having difficulty with potty training and didn’t consistently follow any comma...
— Darci Hebenstreit, Posted February 6th 2018 on Google Local
The expertise and friendliness of the trainers is amazing! We love training with them and can highy recommend their excellent service!
— Simone De Keizer-Fink, Posted January 28th 2018 on Facebook
Excellent training!! Working with my rescue dog that we have no idea of her history and she has been coming along so quickly! Could not be more pleased with the trainers that have been working with my dog. 4 year old Shepard Mix.
— Darrell Moore, Posted January 13th 2018 on Google Local
Before purchasing our puppy, I read many training books and I thought I knew how to train her. However, our puppy didn’t do what the books said she would. We couldn’t have kept our dog without Dog Training Elite. Hiring them was money well spent so that we can enjoy our dog for years to come. We appreciate their cu...
— Cindy S, Posted January 13th 2018 on Google Local
Very impressive in home evaluation today! I am very excited to start the training classes with you soon!
— Kierra Salsbery, Posted January 6th 2018 on Facebook
Excellent service and my buddy knows it's time to work.
— John Reyes, Posted December 31st 2017 on Facebook
All due respect, i start a pup like a pup, the nature of the dog you get, and the breeds used have genetic predisposition and habitual behaivor comes easy. At a show advertising a product and how you use it in your training are two different topics, and certainly not grounds to bash these folks with pure nonsense. I ca...
— JT Franke, Posted November 4th 2017 on Facebook
— Carrie Mueller Edwards, Posted October 16th 2017 on Facebook
— Tracy Swanson, Posted September 10th 2017 on Facebook
— Christine Kopp, Posted September 9th 2017 on Facebook
We first saw DTE working at The Phoenix Home Show. I was convinced at that moment, when I was ready for a dog, DTE was going to be my trainer. I've had eight previous dogs but was never able to...
— John C., Posted August 13th 2017 on Yahoo! Local
We first saw DTE working at The Phoenix Home Show. I was convinced at that moment, when I was ready for a dog, DTE was going to be my trainer.  I've had eight previous dogs but was never able to get the dogs trained properly.  I've tried group lessons, reading books etc., but working with Neal and Chris at DTE delive...
— John C., Posted August 13th 2017 on Yelp
Neal the owner of dog training elite has done a masterful job training our dogs. My wife has seizures and needed a service dog to assist her. He trained the perfect dog (a chocolate lab...
— Maynard J., Posted June 7th 2017 on Yahoo! Local
Neal the owner of dog training elite has done a masterful job training our dogs.  My wife has seizures and needed a service dog to assist her.  He trained the perfect dog (a chocolate lab Ghiraradelli) for my wife and he has been a wonderful help for my wife. We have enjoyed having our dog go with us everywhere and o...
— Maynard J., Posted June 7th 2017 on Yelp
I have to give Neal and his crew much thanks. Rosy, my wife, and I started training with them at the first week of May pretty much as a last resort to get our dog trained on just basic obedience, before thinking about maybe having to take her back to the shelter which we were very hesitant on doing because of what coul...
— Juan Galvez, Posted May 26th 2017 on Facebook
— Maal Galvez, Posted May 25th 2017 on Facebook
Our 2 yr old yellow lab Kailani had been to a few trainers and still did not listen to us when there were "distractions" (which is often). She wanted to play with every thing that moved around her (bunnies, other dogs, people walking, kids playing). Neal came for our first session and we saw results immediately. The...
— Beth Correa, Posted March 11th 2017 on Facebook
Neal has taught our Aussie so much in a few sessions, we cannot believe the improvement! Of course, he has also taught us so much! AMAZING trainer! Highly recommend Dog Training Elite!
— Lisa Marie Denslow, Posted January 21st 2017 on Facebook
— Mary Profeta Lopez, Posted November 6th 2016 on Facebook
Could not be happier with Dog Training Elite. We have a 3 year old bloodhound that could not leave the house without pulling, howling and acting insane. He also couldn't be around crowds, because...
— Michael D., Posted August 22nd 2016 on Yahoo! Local
Could not be happier with Dog Training Elite. We have a 3 year old bloodhound that could not leave the house without pulling, howling and acting insane. He also couldn't be around crowds, because he would pull us everywhere. We saw them at the home show and hired a few months later. After only 2 weeks of training we we...
— Michael D., Posted August 22nd 2016 on Yelp

Dog Training Elite Behavior Modification Process

Dog Training Elite behavior modification process is highly personalized, we work to empower owners as they work alongside our professional your local area trainers to build confidence and understanding in their dogs. We work with owners in their home to slowly retrain a dog’s reactions to stressful situations and then work to integrate them back into the community. 

We will first meet the dog in a free in-home assessment to gain an understanding of the reasons for the aggression, anxiety or fears. We will asses triggers and build a personalized training program for each unique dog and targeting their specific behavior. For anxious dogs, our trainers will work alongside owners to build confidence. 

For overly aggressive dog training we will help owners establish a packleader position in the home.  We will work to desensitize a dog to their biggest triggers and anxiety and when the dog has reached a safe baseline obedience level in these situations we then introduce them to our class settings.  A muzzle is required for class settings to ensure the safety of all dog as these classroom settings are designed to integrate the dog back into social settings successfully.

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Anxiety and Aggression Dog Trainer your local area

Dog Training Elite Franchise works closely with your dog and your family to create the most successful positive service dog training programs.

Our processes allow for us to easily complete our dog aggression training at your home or within the environment where behaviors manifest— such as in the park or around other dogs while you walk through the neighborhood!

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Our Balanced Theory

We base our training around the "Classical Conditioning" model (aka "Pavlovian"or "respondent conditioning"). This includes developing conditioned or automatic reflexes to commands. In it's simplest form (after proper conditioning) -- when owner says 'sit', dog automatically sits without thinking about it. Our unique techniques ensure our program is a success no matter the behavior we encounter.

  • Empowering Owners

    We empower owners to train so dog knows who to obey at all times.
  • Personalized

    We deal with problem behaviors on a personal basis.
  • Environment Specific

    We train wherever issues tend to arise (i.e. jogging, park, home).
  • Supportive

    We support owners in the off-hours (when training is "not in session").
  • Involved

    We work with all members of household.
  • Simplified & Customized

    We plan training around owner's schedule and require only 15 min/day follow-up practice.
  • Continued Training

    Additional programs / group sessions offered after in-home training.
  • Lifetime Investment

    We follow-up & are invested in owner's success long-term.
  • Satisfaction Ratings

    Our high client satisfaction rating sets us apart from competitors.