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Steve Welch Dog Trainingdog mishandled/fraud

our 3 yo great dane was taken from us by steve welch for training for an unspecified amount of time two months ago (45+ days). we were coersed emotionally into paying 2700 dollars when we met him as he guaranteed us our dog was a good dog who was just nervous and needed training with him. he promised us he would train her to allow our 1 yr old son to be able to safely crawl over our dog and pull her ears etc...

our dog had recently bit our son so we were in the process of rehoming our dog when we met steve.

two weeks later, when we called (he never contacted us once) he said she was in so much pain, he could not train her and we needed to pick her up and take her to a vet. when we picked her up (our inlaws)...our inlaws cried on seeing her. our dog had lost at least 25 lbs in two weeks with him, looked sick and lethargic and had scars all over her body. she drank 7 bowls of water in 20 minutes. we all agreed she could never return.

after seeing 3 vets regarding "the supposed pain"...we were told indie was in no pain in her knee as steve said. but the vets said a nervous great danes cant be trained...its their nature. and she may bite your son again. it is negligent to tell someone they could trust the dog after training.

steve welch refuses to refund our money after not performing the training we paid $2700. furthermore, he tortured our still beloved dog. we have contacted other reputable trainers in the area who have told us he uses starvation techniques to train animals...which explains the gross weight loss our dog suffered.

if you have had a similiar experience or are thinking of using him...please contact us and save your dog.


  • Oc
    Ocnlyf Oct 13, 2017

    I had two dogs, a German Shepherd and a Staffordshire/Dingo mix while I and my girlfriend attended Officer Candidate School during the 90's. Yes, some of the training, i.e. strangling/holding my dog suspended from a chocker chain in mid-air was very disturbing. Steve kept our dogs longer than promised. There is much more to share with regard to shock collars, what I consider submissive "training by fear", and actual results that created additional behavioral challenges. Unfortunately, some of Steve's owners' training impacted the relationship between us and our best friends. We had some retraining and personal awareness recognised. I do not believe in Steve's training methods and my dogs did recovery to include service work in hospitals with seniors and children. Dogs at any age can be rehabilitated. Some of the comments posted here are unfortunate regarding dogs relocated due to behavioral challenges. I have graduate education in behavior in people as well as dogs can change. I'm sad for the displaced dogs. It IS the fault of their ignorant owners, supposed veterinary professionals who think they understand psychology, and others. SAD for everyone on this site. Every dog can be rehabilitated along with every ignorant human regardless of their credentils... always get 2nd and 3rd opinions before training or displacing your dogs. Most of the time is it your fault for not giving the time, training, care and love you'd give to your own child. Most people get parenting wrong with human children thus why expect more from a canine that loves unconditionally?

    1 Votes
  • Ap
    AprilMAYjune1 Jan 09, 2017

    I took my dog to ONE private lesson with Steve. After that, we were done! Our puppy wasn't bad at all so I don't think a prong collar was best! A few times he hit my dog in front of me. I felt so bad. When we got home, he was sad. Tail between his legs, afraid of the leash. Our happy pup turned sad in 1 hour. After reading all these complaints, I'm glad we are not continuing training with him.

    -1 Votes
  • Th
    thrilledascanbe Nov 14, 2014

    I have completely trusted Steve Welch to train not one, but three of my dogs in the last 12 years. He is incredible and gets the results in an extremely efficiency and fair way that the dogs understand. Every dog I've owned is better than the last due to his guidance. I went to Steve with my Labs for obedience and personal protection training. I'm still shocked he trained my Labs to protect me as well as a GSD or Rottie. Clearly the people commenting above have low expectations of their animals and are completely uneducated on all topics concerning dogs and training. The latest dog I went to Steve with has been obedience trained and earned 5 AKC obedience titles, is a tracking dog, explosives detection dog, personal protection dog and mobility support service dog. All of my dogs enjoy working and have more freedom and life experiences than any kindly, soft, tree hugging owner could ever imagine. So, if you want a well trained and behaved dog this is the guy. YES! You have to listen and participate with the training but it's so worth it to have a dog you really can take anywhere.

    -1 Votes
  • Ms
    mstiechick Dec 06, 2013

    Steve Welch took $600 from my parents and housed their rat terrier puppies saying in 5 days they would be well trained. Weeks went by and he was full of excuses of why my parents couldn't collect their dogs. Now, over 3 weeks later, the man chased my parents off his property with a bat and told them, "Give me $2500 cash or I'll kill your dogs." 911 was called but police never showed. (We were told SD County Sheriff Deputy will show up tomorrow.) I don't know if my parents' dogs are still alive, but I worry that there are many more dogs locked up without air and water as well.

    1 Votes
  • Tr
    truth85 Nov 06, 2013

    I briefly used Steve Welch as a trainer for my dog (who was a barely 8 week old puppy at the time). I paid him well over 2k between then and the time my dog turned 4 months of age. Most was "boarded" training (which is why my poor dog stayed there so long). It was only once I started doing group classes that I saw how he really was. He uses old school methods such as "hanging" the dogs, whips the dogs with the end of the leashes (nylon leashes, chain leashes, etc). He fully beat dogs in my presence. I later found out his "boarding" facility was at his home and because the neighbors complained about his dogs barking so much, he rented a uhaul truck and filled it with crates. I saw this with my own eyes. Those dogs were starved when they irritated him. They were not given enough fluids. They were beaten. I have a child and he fully ruined my dog who was a calm puppy (fresh start) and came home aggressive and underweight (I had to have him on IV fluids after he came home - that is how dehydrated and malnourished he was). I had to rehome him at 8 months of age after another trainer suggested he be in a home without children after being around Steve Welch. Apparently he had heard of him before as well.
    P.S. He smokes pot so much (medical, for a good reason - granted) that he "forgets" to feed them sometimes. At least, thats what he told me. Argue all you want - but if you don't believe it go see for yourself. He is not shy whatsoever about beating dogs in front of their owners. Just do the group class before paying for and leaving your dog for in-boarded training blindly trusting - like I did.

    0 Votes
  • Do
    docjynx Oct 03, 2012
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    Same issue here all lies and horible delivery. Would not trust this man or service to dogsit or house anaimls at all more or less train. Well that is the gods
    Truth from my 2000$ down the tube. I am a happy dog owner of a near perfect pet past and my current dog is perfect and complimented constantly. So not me was his lack of care or technique.

    2 Votes
  • Re
    realdoglover Jul 30, 2012

    That is NOT crate training. That is what we in the boarding and training industry call WAREHOUSING. Out 6 times in 24 hours. Even if that is true and the pup was out for an hour at a time that is 18 hours in a crate. NOT ACCEPTABLE!!! If you are teaching other people to do this to their animals and taking their money for it you should be kept in a small crate in a dirty garage. One small A/C unit would not be nearly enough to cool that size of a room. This is wrong on every level and you should never be allowed near an animal. SHAME ON YOU! Money hungry grubber is what you are. Taking in more animals than you can handle just to get that money.

    1 Votes
  • St
    stillastudent Jul 29, 2012

    The picture shown above must have been taken something in 2006 or 2007 considering that it was taken at the Lake Elsinore Training Facility, which officially closed it doors as a training facility sometime in late 2008. I was the kennel manager & Senior trainer at the facility from the 1st day the property was purchased sometime in 2005. I originally started working for Steve Welch in 1998. In the picture above you see the garage (connected to the house that that we trainers would live in 24/7) that what was used to house small dogs, puppies & older dogs & dog that were part of the "in kennel training" program or that were in for "house breaking". As it was made very clear to all our training clients, that part of the training does include the use of a crate & crate training. And as part of the training guarantee, it was the owners responsibility to not only learn, but properly use a crate once the dog returned home from training until such time they were told otherwise by their trainer. And since many of you are uneducated, let me explain something to you all. All canines in the natural world nest. Be they members of the wolf family or fox family or even wild or feral dogs. They all nest. And when a canine builds its nest, its just large enough for it to stand & turn inside of, with single hole providing the only way in or out. A dog crate simulates the natural behavior that still exist in all domesticated dog breeds today.

    Part of the training style in which I learned from Steve Welch & have since passed on to others, taught that a crate is a tool just like a leash or item used in dog training, it has a time & a place for most dogs, but not all. And if used correctly & properly in the beginning of the dogs training can be done away with once the training is complete. Obviously something that the poster who claims to know so much about the "goings on" never took the time to learn, absorbed or just didn't bother to walk a walk away with. Or what is mostly likely closer to the truth thought that dog training would be all fun & games & not some of the most back breaking work that you will encounter in this modern world of computers & instant gratification. If I 100 bill for ever person I saw quit cause it was "too hard" I'd be a million...
    Another thing you don't see in that picture is the air condition unit what was installed before any dogs were being housed on the property to provide the dogs a comfortable environment during Elisnore's scorching summers where temps could reach into the high 90's low hundreds any given summer day. Also what you do not see is the 30 covered individual dog runs that were constructed all over the property to house the mass majority of the large dogs & those in our care for boarding. All set up with my own two hands & many hand build from the ground up staring with digging the hole set he post. Or the required cleaning rules & sterilization policy that at the same time was 100% green & not only safe for the dogs, but for the natural environment around us considering the property was in the middle of the Cleavland national forest. Federally protected lands. Just so you understand how strict, you could be fined & docked pay for not cleaning up dog ### as soon dog ### hit the ground.
    The kennel itself was ran on a extremely strict scheduled that required all dog being housed in crates to be taken out to potty, water, feed twice daily, socialization & exercise time & be worked. This occurred with ever dog no less that 6 times a day starting each morning at 6 am & sometime ending at 11 pm at night for the last let out for the really small breeds or young dogs who were housed in the trainers personally rooms & living areas. This did not include being taken out to be worked during group classes & private lesson held both at the kennel itself & other off site locations depending on the training needs the individual dogs.

    Part of being a Kennel & Training Facility meant that animal control could come knocking at any point in time & come knocking and could & would demand full access to the entire property. And trust me they did. It was not uncommon that we could get phony calls made on us, as we could come to find out once when Animal control got 5 calls in one month after they had just completed a routine inspection on us. Coming out to see us each time. Inspections which we would passed with flying colors by the way. Once I even heard &I quote "I've never seen a dog facility so clean before" from one of the officers. Have any of you ever set foot in the Riverside Animal Shelter? Its like stepping foot inside a third world country. They were getting just as tried of it, as were we. And it was ultimately animal control that lead to the Facility shutting its doors when they demanded $50, 000.00 when licensing came up for county renewal. A far cry I would say from greasing pockets.
    While I will I know for a fact that Steve Welch can rub people the wrong way & may be liked by everyone. What I can tell you is that In the 15 years I have known the man I have never once ever seen him mistreat an animal of any species. And I have never meet a better animal trainer, Ive meet hundreds in my time with. Among the laundry list of things Ive seen with my own eyes this man do for & in the name of animals, including taking on & training countless court ordered vicious dogs & training then & reconditioning them for the Owners & families that loved them that would have otherwise been destroyed without a second though. The most touching was seeing him spend is last dollar & go hungry himself to make sure that rescued dogs wouldn't miss a meal. How many of you have feed an animal before you feeding yourself? I know I have. Because of lesson & examples set forth by him. So until you really you know the truth I suggest you educate yourself & stop speculating. Stop Trolling. Leave an crippled old man alone & stop raising false concerns over a Kennel & Facility that has been closed now for years.

    1 Votes
  • Ha
    happines Jul 28, 2012

    That sorry sob needs to pay for what he has done

    1 Votes
  • Gr
    groovygirl Jul 27, 2012

    There's a major campaign on Facebook to get this guy shut down. Clearly another animal abuser posing as a trainer. Disgusting! The pictures of how he keeps dogs in tiny crates, with no air or water and then hides the crates when animal control comes out. FREAK!! EVIL!!! Don't give your dog to this guy!


    1 Votes
  • Kt
    KTruth Jun 16, 2012

    Ok to anyone who is thinking about having a dog trained by Steve Welch or Steve Welch & Associates please please know the people who are saying that their animals were starved and ABUSED ARE NOT LIEING! I am probably going to start problems for myself by exposing this truth but i am a child of his I am also a vet tech and have been for 12 years i am also an animal rights advocate everything i learned about how NOT to treat animals came from the years of abuse i saw him inflict on animals and his own children. HE IS NOT REPUTABLE AND CANNOT BE TRUSTED! If you have taken the time to research a person who is going to be taking care of your dog as anyone should i hope that you read this and know that there are people who mistreat animals and I am ashamed to be a child of a person who has hurt and abused so many in his lifetime. On his behalf i am sorry for all of you who have been harmed by him and the only way to stop it is to expose it and i can no longer be silent. Good luck to all of you, i hope that there is some justice for what he has done in this life or the other.

    1 Votes
  • Ch
    cheryl hopper Jun 05, 2012

    I contacted Steve Welch about training my rescue dog to walk next to my wheelchair and he assured me he could do that pllus basic obedience. He insisted on being paid in advance(cash of check only) and took my dog to his "facility". First he kept my dog longer than he said he would and I had to threaten to get her back. When I got my dog back she was shut down, terrified, dirty, the bedding in her crate had been urinated on and she was made to sleep on it, she was not trained and was missing a large patch of hair on her neck from being jerked around by a choke chain or worse yet having a shock collar used on her. I was horrified that my dog had been treated like that and I demanded my money back. Steve refused to return my money and so I sued him in small claims court and the judgement was in my favor. Steve has not responded to emails or the judgement. He took my money, abused my dog and yet he is still out there training? This is NOT a dog trainer and should not be anywhere near any animal!

    1 Votes
  • Ki
    Kimberly Park Feb 10, 2012

    I was reading the above complaints and was wondering if they were about the same Steve Welch that I have dealt with.I am handicapped and and was in need of a well trained dog for mobility as well as companionship. The Steve Welch that I met trained me an excellent German Shepard that I feel safe having around my mother-in law who is 83 years old and has late-stage dementia, she also loves the dog and treats him like like a child. He not only trained the dog but he trained me and my family on how to handle him and how to further the dogs training. Any time I have questions he was very willing to answer them or drive over to my house to demonstrate the correct procedure.
    He also showed me how to tell if I am feeding the dog correctly and how to tell if it is getting enough water. Through this not was I able to gain independence but I gained a friendship.

    3 Votes
  • We
    Welch sucks May 31, 2011

    I was going to learn to train dogs from him, and upon getting settled at his facility, discovered that he is a narcissist who absolutely mistreats his clients dogs. They are neglected, and don't get enough water by any stretch of the imagination. Upon seeing how he treated these innocent dogs, I made it a point to stay long enough only to gather photographic evidence for Riverside Animal Control. He should not be allowed near any animals.

    1 Votes
  • Or
    orange24 Jan 09, 2011

    He also uses the shock collars on dogs he feels are too aggressive. Not to mention ask him to take a drug test and then tell you the truth. He beats his dogs starves them and whatever else he can do to them. This is a man that had his kids taken away from him due to he used to treat his kids like dogs, I know this 1st hand because his son had to come live with us for that reason. You need to start a class action law suit against him he says he's worth millions hahaha!

    1 Votes
  • Rw
    rwisenburg Aug 26, 2009

    please contact me asap!!! Im going through the same thing!!! please help me Im desperate!!! STEVE WELCH IS RUNING MY LIFE!!!

    1 Votes
  • Te
    telemarketer1 Oct 18, 2008
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    Ok, why isn't this guy in jail for using such barbaric tactics on animals? Have you reported him to your local ASPCA, the police, or any other authority figure? The guy sounds like a total hack who is either a sociopath or is a complete sadist.

    You know, it's kinda sad... When I worked at the pound we had to put down dogs after a certain number of days due to lack of housing, and these were great dogs who just needed a home.

    I really wish we could put down the humans who are complete sacks of dog ### on the grounds that they are dog ### and deserve no right to continue existing.

    In the end, though, all dogs go to heaven, and all dog torturers go to hell, or at least in the case of Michael Vick, Ft. Leavenworth for a number of years and then us Georgia people get to throw him in jail down here for a while.

    1 Votes

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