about Denise

Denise Fenzi is a prolific writer, story teller, dog trainer, problem solver, philosopher, business owner, and advocate for people and animals – in no particular order.

As a competitor, Denise is best known for her flashy and precise obedience work, as demonstrated by two AKC OTCH dogs and perfect scores in both schutzhund and Mondio Ringsport obedience.

She has titled dogs in obedience, tracking, schutzhund, mondioring, herding, conformation, and agility.

Scroll down to learn more about Denise.

While a successful competitor, Denise’s real passion lies in training dogs and solving the problems that her own dogs and her students’ dogs present.

She is a recognized expert in developing play, motivation, and engagement in competition dogs, and is known internationally as an engaging speaker and an expert in no-force training for sport dogs.

Denise has consistently demonstrated the ability to train and compete with dogs using motivational methods in sports where compulsion is the norm.

Denise and OTCH Raika SchH2, MR1 in Mondioring
Photo credit: Jason Roberts.

Denise and Lyra TEAM3 play during a training session.

Denise is highly active on Facebook; follow her there to engage in lively well moderated discussion, watch Facebook live presentations on various topics, and learn more about training dogs!
Denise and Deb Jones have recently finished a four-book series, “Dog Sports Skills,” which has received widespread acclaim in the dog sports community.  Several of these titles have won Maxwell awards for Best Training and Behavior book from the Dog Writers of America

Denise has written several additional books on her own..

Denise works tirelessly to break down barriers that prevent people from obtaining a truly interactive and enjoyable sport relationship with their dogs.  As a result, she created both the Fenzi Dog Sports Academy (FDSA) and the Training Excellence Assessment Modules (TEAM) program.

Denise with her dog, OTCH Cisu SchH3 FH

Latest Blog Posts

Concept (goals) or Criteria (process)?

The majority of behaviors that I teach are accomplished via reinforcing specific criteria. I know exactly how I want the dog to look at each step of the process as they move towards the final behavior. This is a process-driven approach. Other things I teach as...

read more

What Happens If

A few years ago I had a student in a class who had spent a fair amount of time trying to teach her dog to pick up an object by shaping it. For various reasons she had not succeeded. Since the purpose of the class was not to teach the retrieve, nor was it to discuss...

read more

Handling errors by making the dog ‘more wrong’

Here's an entire video of my dog making errors finding front, mostly due to loss of attention. I am primarily demonstrating the technique of making the dog "more wrong".     The basic sequence is that he returns to me, drops his toy for another repetition of...

read more