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In the News

MAY 7, 2020 @ 7PM

As COVID-19 disrupts our lives and taxes our emotions, our dogs are also feeling the strain. Expert canine behaviorist Chris Onthank, owner and founder of Dog Gone Smart Canine Center, will Zoom with us about what dogs are experiencing right now, and help train us—their humans—on how best to address their issues.

Prior to taking specific questions from our audience, Chris will discuss the importance of safely exercising with our dogs during the shutdown, giving them adequate social and mental stimulation, addressing the changes/disruptions to our routines, preventing negative associations and fear due to social distancing, and—post-pandemic—preventing separation anxiety.

Wilton Magazine Pet Issue: 2019

Dog Gone Smart-a canine training, agility, and boarding facility in Norwalk, which 
also has a pool for pups-to learn more. 

Hamptons Pet Magazine Spring 2016

If one could talk to animals and learn their languages, think   of all the delightful conversations! Chris Onthank does just that. This modern day Dr. Doolittle has found away to communicate with so many species with an ease and trust that is rarely seen when humans infiltrate the animal kingdom. From Dobermans to ducklings, Chris knows the secret handshake to get in to this club of creatures, where he is greeted upon entry as a trusted confidante and caretaker.


The coaches at Dog Gone Smart get to spend their days teaching puppies swim. Not all puppies are comfortable in water. But with proper support, protective gear and some patience these eager swimmers will get it in no time. We can’t help but fall in love with their wet little faces!


NEW YORK, NY - Dan Schachner, chief referee Puppy Bowl XII, David WIcks, Vice President NASDAQ and Melinda Toporoff, Executive Producer, Animal Planet attend the Discovery Communications And Animal Planet attend the Ringing of The Nasdaq Closing Bell To Kick Off Puppy Bowl XII at NASDAQ.

Meredith Vieira Show /NBC Universal

Meredith Vieira's "Pick Me Up Truck" is loaded with our products to help these deserving dogs in need of a home keep cozy and clean while they await their forever families. Thank you Meredith for pulling off a huge surprise to help Pedro and these animals in need!

The View ABC

DGS Director of Training Jaimee Kelsey goes on set at The View with Animal Advocate Jill Rappaport and Florida Little Dog Rescue as part of their team promoting Rescue and Adoption!

Dog Gone Smart's Rescue Pups Star in Animal Planet's Puppy Bowl!


Rescued puppies now living in Fairfield County will be starring in Animal Planet's annual Puppy Bowl. These puppies are part of a group from Florida Little Dog Rescue, and will be featured in the annual event.  Fairfield County's own Dog Gone Smart provided coaching and accommodations to these pups, prepping them for their big day on the field, and their even bigger day of going home to their newly adoptive families! 


The Puppy Bowl, airing on Animal Planet before the Super Bowl, drafts puppies from rescue organizations from across the country. These FC puppies found adoptive families with the assistance of locally owned Dog Gone Smart. 

"Chatting with Chris Onthank Animal Behaviorist and Canine Expert"

Hamptons Pet Fall 2015

How does one become a professional dog trainer? Growing up above a kennel house with Dachshund and Blood Hounds sure helps. With a long family history of breeding, judging and showing dogs, it seems Chris Onthank was born to train.

It's Relevant

Dog Gone Smart fosters five Yorkshire Terrier and Shih Tzu mix puppies and their mother found on the streets of Bridgeport.


The dogs were brought to Dog Gone Smart from non-profit animal welfare organization Shaggy Dog Rescue in Texas and are available for adoption through an application process. 

News 12 CT

NORWALK - Dogs unfamiliar with the water are getting lessons at a special class in Norwalk.

Trainers at the Dog Gone Smart pet center in Norwalk offer daily swimming lessons for all breeds of dogs. The lessons help keep dogs safe in the water, especially if their owners have a pool.

Trainer Chris Onthank says dogs should be introduced to the water and swimming at an early age. Onthank says dog owners should also not believe the misconception that specific dog breeds instinctively know how to swim. The pet center offers daily swimming lessons for dogs.


With July just around the corner, there are many ways beat the heat, but for our friends with fur coats, it may not be as easy. Chris Onthank from Dog Gone Smart says like humans, summer is when dogs are at high risk for neglect, heat stroke, drowning and other dangers.

Dog Gone Smart canine training and boarding center has been working with Shaggy Dog Rescue for about a year to encourage the adoption process at their facility. So far, five dogs have already found permanent homes through the rescue program. Read More....

Fairfield Daily Voice

Dogs, just like humans, need to protect themselves in the winter from extreme weather conditions. There are things you can do to protect your dog from the cold, wind, snow and ice.


It's Relevant - Norwalk Edition

During the holiday season, many elements of your home environment may change temporarily, creating stress for your dog. Canine expert Chris Onthank shares some tips for keeping your pet happy and healthy.

News 12 Connecticut—Pet Talk with Lauren Collier (Thanksgiving Edition)

On this day of thanks, our very own Jaimee Kelsey teams up with Leslie Caruso of Shelley's Angels Saving Strays to promote finding forever homes for rescue dogs.  

Natural Awakenings - Fairfield County Pet Section

How to best enjoy the holidays without worrying about your cats and dogs.

News 12 Connecticut

In the aftermath of a recent news story where a local woman was attacked by a dog, Chris Onthank gives tips on what to do if you find yourself in a similar situation.

The Norwalk Hour

Dog Gone Smart celebrates 20 years of serving dogs in Fairfield County.  Here owner Chris Onthank is working with a group of dogs on obedience training.

News 12 Connecticut

Playful pooches are cooling down in the pool at Dog Gone Smart. Trainers here offer plenty of tips to keep your pooch cool. 

Martha Stewart Hallmark Channel

"Whatever with Alexis and Jennifer"

Alexis Stewart and Jennifer Koppelman Hutt welcome Chris Onthank, a dog trainer at Dog Gone Smart, then talk about how to modify dog behavior through rewards.

Smart Money

The Wall Street Journal Magazine

It’s not so weird a concept. Dog trainers deal with the psychology of shifting power from the dog to the human.

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