About John Van Olden – CEO/President 

John Van Olden has been working with dogs his entire professional life.  His first job, at age 14, was working with a local dog groomer, and while being far from easy, it was a job he kept through High School. He had an 8-year military career as a Military Police Dog Handler and Trainer (of course!). After the military, while still attending college, John started his first business, Golden State K-9 Training in the San Francisco Bay Area. His clients included veterinarians, professional athletes, other high-profile clients, and increasingly, the former clients of other dog trainers.

John and members of Canine Trade Group from Pittsburgh, Richmond, and Columbus.
John and members of Canine Trade Group from Pittsburgh, Richmond, and Columbus.

John soon realized that he had developed a training and business system superior to the majority of what was currently being offered. This led him to form K-9 Advantage (“Where Dogs Send Their People For Training”), the first dog training franchise in the United States.  Through that experience John came in contact with hundreds of people who were investigating how to get into the dog training business so they could turn their passion for dogs into a career. During this time, he visited several schools for dog trainers across the United States and met with the operators of several others to learn about their programs and approaches.

PAWSitive Solutions, his third business, was started with Alex Hehmeyer, a seasoned business professional with extensive experience in both franchising and career colleges.  PAWSitive Solutions quickly grew to become the largest private dog training company on the West Coast, relying primarily on professional referral, and employing 36 professional, and highly successful dog trainers.

John is a founding member of the International Association of Canine Professionals and has served on their Board of Directors. He has consulted with some of the largest pet care and dog training companies in the United States, helping them develop their dog training programs as well as improve their marketing efforts. John has personally trained over 60 professional dog trainers, many of whom are highly respected and recognized as the most successful in their communities.

John was inspired to organize the Canine Trade Group network after spending nearly 30 years witnessing the dog training profession trend away from high standards and results-based training. Today, John is proud to mentor the dedicated trainers of Canine Trade Group, a network of professional dog trainers committed to the highest standards of professionalism, ethics, and results.