New Class Offering: Intro to Dog Agility

We’ve heard from our clients and we know you’re looking for more ways to enjoy your time with your pup. The possibilities are endless with what you can do to teach yourself and your dog, and we hope that Frontier K9 can be part of that journey.

Starting Summer 2021, we are finally offering our first set of agility classes!

Intro to Agility will be a four week course, hosted at Frontier K9’s home base. Classes will be limited to four dog/handler combinations to allow for a more focused lesson plan.

+ Dog must be up-to-date on vaccinations
+ Dog and handler must have previously completed a set of obedience lessons with Frontier K9, or have special permission from the instructor.
+ Handlers must bring their own water bowl, treats, toys and possibly a cage.
+ Absolutely NO reactive/aggressive dogs will be allowed. We will possibly have multiple dogs working off leash.

Class Details:
– We will work on beginner handling skills
– Introduce jumps, tunnels and the start of contact equipment
– Learn basic terminology

Corgi agility
PACH2 Frontier’s HonkyTonkBaDonkADonk RN, NF, AXJ, AX, MJPS, MXPS (“Dally”)

About the Instructor:
Agility at Frontier K9 will be led by Erin’s sister, Megan. Megan has been active with agility since 2007, when she moved to Lexington, Ky. She started learning and competing in agility with her Pembroke Welsh Corgi, Dallas Mae (Call name: “Dally”, registered name: PACH2 Frontier’s HonkyTonkBaDonkADonk RN, NF, PAX). With Dally, Megan qualified and competed in the American Kennel Club’s National Agility Championships three years in a row: Reno in 2012, Tulsa in 2013 and Harrisburg in 2014. Dally earned two Preferred Agility Championships (PACH) prior to her semi-retirement in late 2014 due to Megan’s pregnancy. Dally and Megan also competed at Canine Performance Events (CPE) and AKC Rally (earning her Rally Novice title).

Mill Creek’s Chyna Rust RN, NF, MXS, MJS, CAA (“LaMesa”)

Megan’s second agility partner is LaMesa (Mill Creek’s Chyna Rust, RN, NF, MXS, MXJS, CAA), an 11 year old Swedish Vallhund. LaMesa has, so far, been Megan’s biggest challenge, overcoming training and physical issues. The pair have been in the top 10 for agility Swedish Vallhunds, qualifying for the American Kennel Club Agility Invitational, a special invite sent only to the Top Five agility dogs of each breed, in 2018. Unfortunately, the pair could not travel to Orlando due to LaMesa’s battle with Lyme Disease. Megan is currently working on LaMesa’s conditioning in hopes of launching another comeback to the agility ring in hopes of finishing their Master Agility Championship.

CH Hightower Frontier’s SmoothAsBourbon (“Rhys”)

Finally, Megan’s possible third partner is Rhys (CH Hightower Frontier’s SmoothAsBourbon), her 3 year old Swedish Vallhund male. Rhys recently finished his conformation championship and is currently (casually) working towards his Grand Championship with both Megan and his professional handler at the end of the leash. In May, Rhys took a Group Third in the Herding at the Kokomo Kennel Club with Megan, giving her a huge thrill. Megan has waited for Rhys to mature mentally, and physically, prior to starting his agility training, and is slowly teaching him skills in hopes of adding a new title to his name in the near future.

Agility classes will start Tuesday, June 29.

Tuesdays, 6:30 pm EDT
June 29, July 6, July 13, July 20
$60 per 4-week session

Contact Frontier K9 for more information or to sign up!

National Rescue Dog Day 2021

For all of us at Frontier K9, every day is a celebration of the dog. However, thanks to Lisa Wiehebrink of Tails that Teach, every May 20 is National Rescue Dog Day, and it’s a day where I love to celebrate my clients and their loveable pups.

You know that saying of, “Who rescued whom?” There’s a reason why pup-parents of rescue dogs like to say that. There’s something special about the bond between a rescued dog and their new owner/parent. I wish I could explain it, but it’s like there’s mutual appreciation for giving a new leash on life.

Rescue dogs each have a unique story: their previous owner passed away, their previous family moved away, allergies prevented a relationship from growing, finances meant difficulty to provide… Whatever the reason, rescue dogs only know their worlds have been turned upside down. Some may have behavior issues. Others may have physical health issues. It’s important that we, as their humans, take the time to discover those issues and the why.

This is why I love working with humane societies, rescues and veterinary clinics in Central Indiana. I’m proud to work with Two Bitches Rescue and Tri-County/Town & Country Veterinary Clinic as a training consultant. I love working with the volunteers at Humane Society of Clinton County to learn how to best handle each separate situation.

I take in rescues for retraining and rehab, in hopes of providing them a better route to their new lives.

And, then sometimes I have foster failures. Meet Goose, a Coonhound-mix puppy that I took in after he was relinquished by his previous owner due to some sort of chemical burns on his belly and paws. Her story was that he was “damaged.” Was he injured? Yes. Damaged? No. His spirit is every bit alive. After just one week of rehab with me, including veterinary trips and salves, he has completely healed. And, he has found a new home…ours. That’s right, my husband has a soft spot for a hound dog, and is already planning to train Goose to track deer and use his scent skills, along with our Bloodhound Irish.

That’s Goose’s story, and his new leash on life…the newest member of Frontier K9. I can’t wait to share his story with you as he continues to discover his path with his family.

So, how can you help rescue dogs? You don’t have to necessarily give them a home every time, I understand there are limitations. But, here are a few things you can do to help celebrate National Rescue Dog Day everyday, thanks to

  • ADOPT: If there is room in your life for a dog, consider adopting and giving one a forever home.
  • FOSTER: Many dogs abandoned to shelters benefit from socialization, or would just thrive better away from the shelter environment. Others may be in need of some medical care or rehabilitation in a home setting before an adoption can take place.
  • HELP A SHELTER: Shelters always need support. In addition to financial donations, shelters have a list of much needed items such as blankets, toys, treats, and leashes. You can also host a bake sale, car wash, or other event to raise funds for the shelter.
  • VOLUNTEER: Help out at your local shelter. Taking dogs for walks, grooming, and giving them plenty of affection improves their socialization.
  • SPAY/NEUTER: Be responsible for your pets. Overpopulation is the number one reason shelters exist.
  • EDUCATE: Teach young children the importance of kindness, unconditional love, and responsible care of all animals.

What is Schutzhund? Part 1

Have you ever wondered what exactly Schutzhund is? No it’s not a German delicacy. However, it is one of the longest running sports in Germany, and one that I love.

You can’t talk about Schutzhund without talking about the breed that started it all…the German Shepherd dog. The GSD is what Schutzhund was developed for. Captain Max von Stephanitz was the man that bred the first German Shepherd back in the 1890’s. Captain Max von Stephanitz dedicated his life to the breed and he is the one that created the sport of Schutzhund. With the industrialization of Germany in those years, breeders promoted the use of the breed for military and police work. Captain Max von Stephanitz was concerned that change of GSD’s going from being herding dogs, which they were bred for, to careless breeding of the dogs and promoting traits like mental instability which is a undesired trait.

With those concerns, Stephanitz founded Verein fur Deutsche Schaferhunde (German Shepherd Association) also known as SV. With the SV, he developed the Schutzhund test. The Schutzhund test was developed to emphasize the correct working temperament and the ability in the GSD. The first trial was held in Germany in 1901. Trials continued in Germany because it was believed this was the way to help produce dogs of the highest quality and help eliminate any lines that didn’t have the temperaments that were desired and those that couldn’t/wouldn’t be able to handle the work load the German Shepherd was born to have.

Sine the development of the SV and the first trial, many other countries have adopted Schutzhund as a sport and a test of working dogs. Working dog associations have also adopt it. Due to this reason, International rules were established and they are administered by the Verein fur Deutsche Hundesport, also called VDH (German Shepherd Sports Association). When that GSD arrived in the U. after WWII, Schutzhund didn’t follow it. We didn’t see the first sight of the sport until the 1970’s when a German immigrant made the first Schutzhund club in the U.S.

To be continued…

This History of Frontier K9 Dog Training

The history of Frontier K9 Training is a simple one, really. Let us begin with our name. Frontier K9 comes from my parents’ show kennel name: Frontier Kennels. My parents bred and showed Golden Retrievers, even owning one of the top Golden Retrievers in the nation: Ch. Tempo’s Frontier Bronco.

My dad, Hank Arszman, showing one of our loved Golden Retrievers.

When I decided to start my training business it seemed only fitting to pay homage to the people who instilled the love of dogs into mine and my sister’s lives. My parents, Hank & Michelle Arszman, never pushed us to get into dogs, but they were excited when I became a Search and Rescue (SAR) handler and then a police K9 handler. It was only fitting to have Frontier as part as my name as well.

My dad (center, sitting) was honored for his 40+ years of service with the Hoosier Kennel Club in 2019.

My step-grandfather and my grandmother, Bill and Shirley Worley, owned Sun Dance Kennel in Westfield, which was just down the road from us. They also opened the first two dog obedience training schools in Central Indiana. I remember many nights going with my parents to train show dogs and puppies at their facility. I remember Bill had black German Shepherds–father and son. Condor, the father, never let me out of his sight when I was little. I have no doubt that is where I get my love of working dogs from. I always wanted a black German Shepherd, and now black Belgian Malinois, because of Condor.

Training & handling dogs is in my blood.

My great-grandfather raised and showed English Bulldogs, and yes, I have always wanted one of those as well. My great-grandmother raised Standard Poodles. My family has a long line of handlers, breeders, trainers and AKC judges. However, even with this history, my parents, nor my family, has ever pushed me into the dog world. I chose to follow a passion, a calling that just seemed natural. Not only for me to handle dogs and train my own, but to help others have a great relationship with their dogs.

This is how Frontier K9 Training came to be. The future and the past come together to help you and your canine friend build your bond.

My dad, Hank Arszman, in the early 1980s.

Holiday Puppy Supply Drive

The holidays are all about giving, and I implore you to help a cause near and dear to my heart. I volunteer time as a trainer and evaluator to help the Humane Society of Clinton County in Frankfort, Indiana, and in the past week these two mommas came to the humane society in desperate need for love and care.

Nine Pitbull puppies.

The Pitbull momma was used as a bait dog for dog fights, and has since had nine puppies.

The Pyrenees momma was a stray and had three puppies.

The mommas need help with nutrition to feed their pups. The puppies, as well as lot of the dogs in the shelter, need toys to help them become socialized and get used to sounds and touch.

For these reasons, I’m starting a Holiday Puppy Supply Drive!

I ask that you donate whatever you can:

Three Pyrenees puppies.
  • Old blankets
  • Dog beds
  • Cat litter and old newspapers
  • Dog food, puppy food, cat food
  • Over-abundance of raw chicken eggs (great to help add weight to momma)
  • Canned dog and cat food
  • Squeaky toys or stuffed animals
  • Chew bones
  • Gift cards to be used at the grocery or pet store
  • Whatever you might have lying around the house

Let’s fill the front lobby of HSCC! While I’m working on drop-off locations, but for now you can drop off donations at the following locations:

Frontier K9: 18019 Joliet Road, Sheridan, Indiana

Prancing Ponies: 17873 Joliet Road, Sheridan, Indiana

Humane Society of Clinton County: 825 Izaak Walton Drive, Frankfort, Indiana

Tri-County Veterinary Clinic: 9804 E. State Road 26, Russiaville, Indiana

Town & Country Vet Clinic: 3110 E. Wabash Street, Frankfort, IN

Or, you can even drop off your supplies at Frontier K9! I’ll do a drawing for a special prize from my clients (or soon-to-be clients) that donate! Just send me an email with your photos!

Should You Gift Dog Training this Holiday Season?

Trying to think about the best gift to give the dog owner in your life? May we suggest a gift certificate to Frontier K9 Training?

Of course, any gift that is an experience and educational is a unique choice, but will it be well-received? Here are three questions to ask yourself. We would be happy to discuss options for gift certificates and training sessions to fit any dog owner!

  1. Has your recipient discussed the interest in learning obedience or working with a trainer? This is probably the most important question to as yourself. You do have to be careful giving a gift like obedience lessons because you don’t want to insult the recipient. Perhaps start a conversation about dog training to test out their feelings and intent.
  2. What are your recipient’s training goals? Are you sure that the goals you have in mind are on their mind as well? That can happen if the recipient can’t think of anywhere they would like to go with training. Also, recipients sometimes worry that the gift means there’s undesirable behavior they’ve been ignoring or haven’t noticed. It’s alright to chat with the potential recipient about their dogs openly, and to discern whether or not they see eye to eye with you about their dog’s behavior.
  3. Does the recipient have time to spend on training? We know that time can be a valuable commodity, and while the recipient might have some goals in mind, do they have the time to work on them right now? Check that your recipient has the schedule flexibility for training sessions, and that now is the best time for them to fit them in. This is why Frontier K9 is so unique, because we offer flexible scheduling options for all of our clients.  

We encourage giving the gift of a happier partnership between human and canine, but we also encourage that you discuss the idea of dog training before making the purchase. Dog training works best when both the pup and handler are engaged and interested.

Our gift certificates can be printed out for giving in person or sent to you via PDF so you can email the certificate to the receiver for contactless gift giving. Contact us to discuss your gift certificate option today!

Let Me Reintroduce Myself

Hello everyone! Thank you for checking out my page and my business! We have some of the best supporters and clients, but we also have some new supporters and clients so I thought I’d kind of reintroduce myself for our new followers and clients.

My name is Erin Dean and I might be a little obsessed with dogs lol. I was born into a dog family. My father and mother raised and showed Golden Retrievers and my father was a professional dog handler and trainer. My step-grandfather and my grandma owned 2 dog training schools in Broad Ripple and Indianapolis. They ran their own boarding kennel/training center as well at their farm. They also bred and showed Golden Retrievers as well as English Cockers, Silky Terriers and German Shepherds. My aunt still raises Goldens and has been an AKC judge for many years. So, it kind of became natural for my sister and I to get into the family business so to speak. She with agility and me with working dogs and training. I’m a 5th generation handler, and I’m so thankful for all the knowledge all of the above as others have given me.

My heart dog and forever partner, Cinch.

I am a retired police K9 officer and was lucky enough to work with 2 of the best partners I could have asked for. Tori was my first partner and was a Bloodhound. We did trailing or what some call, man trailing. We started out as a Search and Recovery team and then moved on to my chief at the time putting us on the road as a unit. I learned a lot from, Tori even though at the time some of it didn’t seem like I was learning a lot except that Bloodhounds are very stubborn lol. I owe a lot that pushy girl on making me the handler and trainer I am today. My second partner was a Belgian Malinois named Cinch and we were a dual purpose team. Cinch was trained in narcotic search, area search, aggression, building search and tracking. When I say that boy was my world it is definitely not an exaggeration. I learned so much as a handler and person from that boy that I’ll never be able to count them all. Cinch is actually the logo for Frontier K9 Training, and I continue to train dogs and help others have long lasting relationships with their dogs in his honor and memory.

I love helping people create that lifelong bond with their dogs. Your bond with your dog or dogs is unlike any other bond you will ever have. Sometimes we all need help understanding why our dogs do or don’t do what they are supposed to. Why they have the behavior they do and helping find solutions to that behavior. The moment I see training on a certain action or the light bulb click on when the owner/handler realizes how to teach a certain command or the whole thing clicks together… makes my heart happy. Helping people is something I love doing whether it was as a K9 officer, my job at the ER I work at or helping train dogs and people.

Family means the world to me, and Frontier K9 has given me a way to have my sister involved. My husband, sister, parents and my young niece, all help out when needed. Whether it’s making the website and Facebook page (thank you Megan), holding other dogs to help with trainings or just being supportive and a cheerleader, we are all involved and I couldn’t do it without all of them. I hope that you feel like you might know me a little better than before. Thank you all again for referrals, having training sessions, sharing our page or even just liking posts. All of that means a lot to me and lets me know that I am doing a good job.

“Look into the eyes of a dog and you’ll see their souls and their love.”

Keeping Your Dog Calm During Fireworks Season

Many dog owners have a love-hate relationship with summer and fireworks season. I know I’m one of them. Even way out in the country, we still hear a good amount of fireworks going off. So how do you keep your dog calm while fireworks are going off?

dog scared of fireworks

First of all, and most importantly, please, please, PLEASE keep your dog at home and inside. I can’t tell you how worried I get when I see owners bringing their dogs to fireworks displays. Just imagine what would happen if that dog were to get scared enough to slip out of his collar…

Prior to festivities, take your pup for a walk. This walk will be good to help get any extra nervous energy out of both of you, plus allows him some fresh air and to potty in hopes he won’t need to until after fireworks have completed.

While your dog is home, try to tuck him away somewhere that he’ll be comfortable and feel safe. This is a good time to reinforce crate training–teach him that his crate is a happy place to be.

  • Have his crate located somewhere within the house and not near windows.
  • Have a comfy bed inside with maybe a special treat like a Kong filled with frozen peanut butter.
  • Cover the crate with a blanket, have the radio playing relaxing music or music you usually play at home (as long as it’s not death metal, that is), and even have a fan blowing to keep him cool and for background noise.
  • Be sure to cover windows to block the flash from the fireworks.

When it comes to medications or other options, it’s important to have started using items such as a Thundershirt, CBD oil or anti-anxiety meds in the weeks, and maybe even months, prior to the 4th of July.

Megan, our agility instructor, has two dogs that are very, very afraid of storms, and even more so when it comes to fireworks. While she has tried a Thundershirt on her oldest Swedish Vallhund, LaMesa, it didn’t work very well. This year, she’s trying ProPlan’s newest product: Calming Care.

ProPlan Calming Care

The Calming Care product is a supplement added to your dog’s food. It is a probiotic strain of BL999, which works from the inside out to help a dog maintain a calm behavior. As with this, and any supplement, essential oil or CBD oil, you should consult your veterinarian on what would do best with your dog.

Any supplement, such as the Calming Care, takes a minimum of six weeks to have any affect on your dog. And, as with the Thundershirt and any other supplement, it may not work for every dog.

It’s a trial and error, but one that’s definitely worth attempting to help keep your dog happy and calm. Worried it’s too late for you? Don’t be. Schedule an appointment to speak with your vet, or reach out to Frontier K9, and see what can be done to prepare you and your dog for all the fireworks celebrations this summer.