Some people believe that once a dog attacks it’s too late to change.
Not “Eddie the Dog Guy.” He has made it his mission to fix bad dogs.
Eddie Simon has saved hundreds of dogs from the brink of euthanasia – dogs that were written off as too vicious to be around, let alone be alive.
His methods may be unorthodox, but you can’t knock his results.
Eddie the Dog Guy might be more canine than human, which helps – since he basically talks to dogs.
“I call myself a behavior specialist. It sounds good. I’m half dog. I scratch the ground after I pee,” says Simon, jokingly.
His goal? To get biters to stop biting and attackers to stop attacking.
He’s a self-proclaimed “dog whisperer.”
“I have 18 dogs that were all formerly ‘killers’ – dangerous to society,” says Simon.
He partners with Danbury dog rescue Tails of Courage” and also does house calls like Friday night in Naugatuck.
He’s tutoring Laura Barkowski’s doberman pinscher named Soleil, who struggles with separation anxiety.
“It’s simple. This is why I like working with dogs,” Simon tells Barkowski.
His secret is shaping dogs’ behavior. Not just teaching them commands, but talking to them deep down and establishing roles.
“The question isn’t, ‘how do I stop the dog from jumping?’ the question is, ‘How do I make the dog want to listen to me,’ ” says Simon.
After just a couple hours with Soleil, her behavior changed noticeably.
But she wasn’t a vicious dog. Those cases take 30 days or more to correct, in Simon’s canine boot camp.
Brooklyn is a dog that marks one success story out of dozens.
“Brooklyn was a severe human-aggressive case, who was unable to be helped by a number of trainers, and the ultimate decision was to euthanize her because she’s unsafe. Which, there’s no question, she was unsafe … then,” says Simon.
Brooklyn isn’t finished, but she’s on the road to recovery.
By the looks of it, so is Soleil.
It’s the latest instance of Eddie separating himself from the pack when it comes to training and proving he really is “a dog guy.”
“It worked really well when I was up here working on my own with her. She was fine … a lot better than she’s been,” says Barkowski.