Our Training Philosophy

The Art

Watching a happy, well behaved dog enjoy time with their person or family is an amazing thing to experience and most of us have seen it,  The Art of Dog Training continues to evolve, it takes some work but when you see the bond you develop with your dog... well, it doesn't feel like work.

The Science

Science is constantly improving and changing the way we do things and dealing with dogs is a perfect example.  Our method incorporates science-based training principles combined with time tested techniques providing our clients with both peace of mind and results.

The Top Dog Approach

Like other things Kentucky is known for (namely good Bourbon and Horseracing) we combine the Art and the Science into an approach that limits conflict, sets your dog up for success, creates a well behaved and well mannered dog and alleviates the stress of just "managing" behaviors.

About John

I’m John Imler, owner of Top Dog Training. I walked away from a successful position at a Fortune 500 company and turned a lifelong passion for working with dogs into a career. I use a common-sense, non-militant, judgment-free approach to help clients build the bond and have the dream dog they thought they would never have.


I am recommended by a number of local veterinarians and currently handle specialized behavior issues for both the Louisville Dog Run Association (an organization numbering over 5000 members) as well as The Arrow Fund (an animal rescue group that handles the most severe of cases) and GRRAND a local Golden Retriever Rescue organization.


What inspired me to start Top Dog? After watching frustrated people being pulled around parks and neighborhoods by their misunderstood dogs and seeing people at their wit's end trying to just “live” with their dogs, I knew I could help. I am a graduate of one of the country’s top live-in dog training schools, National K9. While there, I worked alongside trainers from all over and as far away as Greece.


I am a member of the two leading dog training professional organizations, the International Association of Canine Professionals (IACP) and the Association of Professional Dog Trainers (APDT). I’m a UofL grad and veteran.  I live in Lagrange with my wife, Caroline our 2 girls and 2 dogs… Ava, a rescued large breed mix and Scout, a Rhodesian Ridgeback.