Animals have always been part of Ciarra Elle’s life. Growing up in Kauai, Hawaii, Ciarra began her love of animals among the brilliant array of animal life that call the tropical islands home.
“I grew up with dogs, cats, chameleons, snakes, birds and more - my home was like a small wildlife sanctuary!” Ciarra said. “I spent my weekends volunteering at animal shelters and during my free time I was often watching my idol, Steve Irwin on television.”
In 2012, Ciarra sought out Off Leash K9 Training in Virginia and worked under the organization’s creator Nick White. What originally began as a learning journey became her full-time passion, as Ciarra discovered this method of training brought her lasting.
“Now, every day, I get to wake up and experience the joy of working with a wide range of amazing dogs and their owners,” Ciarra said. “For me, training dogs is not a job - it's a lifestyle that allows me to create happier lives for dogs and their humans alike.”
Ciarra moved from her Hawaiian home to the Emerald Coast and launched Off Leash K9 Training 30A (OLK9) in 2019. As fate would have it, the global pandemic followed shortly after, but Ciarra said the commitment of their trainers to providing a quality program and the trust of their clients in the 30A area carried them through.
“We've remained consistently booked months in advance, even during those testing times,” Ciarra said. “We're extremely grateful for the ongoing support from our local community. It's an honor to contribute to a community that values and promotes responsible dog ownership.”
OLK9 30A offers a range of training programs from basic obedience training for puppies to advanced obedience training, and from therapy dog training to aggression and reactivity behavior modification. When it comes to their most popular program, Ciarra said their two and three-week board and train programs have proven the most impact.
“During this program, dogs stay in the trainer's home and receive daily training sessions along with socialization experiences in a variety of environments,” Ciarra said. “One of the standout features of our board and train programs is that we provide daily picture and video updates. This way, owners can closely follow their dog's progress and see how they are doing throughout the program.”
In addition to the training programs, OLK9 30A also offers lifetime guarantees and free training refreshers for all of their programs.
“This commitment to continued support underscores our belief in the effectiveness of our training and our dedication to ensuring lasting results for every dog that goes through our programs,” Ciarra said. “Ultimately, our goal at Off Leash K9 Training 30A is not just to train dogs, but also to educate owners by teaching them how to effectively communicate with their canine companions.”
Ciarra said one of the most rewarding parts of her job is when she watches a dog have a breakthrough moment of mastering a new command or overcoming a previous fear. The appreciation on the owner's face when witnessing the change in their dog's behavior is what OLK9 30A strives for.
"What truly amazes me is that regardless of their size or breed, all dogs can learn and follow this training," Ciarra said. "It is a beautiful reminder that with patience, consistency, and effective communication, every dog can develop into a confident and well-mannered companion. This is the heart and soul of our work at Off Leash K9 Training 30A."