bannerFranchisee Stories

The Winning Franchisee | From Keeping Homes Secure to Keeping Dogs Secure, Local Opens Dog Training Elite in Richmond

The dog training franchise opened on April 4 and now shares its unique and highly successful training program with the Richmond community.

By Aryanna Cannoy1851 Franchise Contributor
SPONSOREDUpdated 12:12PM 11/10/22

Paul Hearn has been in the business of keeping people safe for 22 years now. As an expert in the electronic security industry, he knows how important it is to feel safe and secure in your own home. Now Hearn is applying that mindset to training dogs with his new business, Dog Training Elite*, so he can help keep dogs safe and happy, all while providing peace of mind for their owners.

Dog Training Elite is a 10-plus-unit dog-training franchise that empowers pet owners with the skills and resources to raise happy, well-mannered pups. Hearn officially opened his new business on April 4 and has been serving the Richmond community since. He’s looking forward to growing his business and helping even more families with their pets, with plans to expand and open a brick-and-mortar location in the future.

1851 Franchise: Frame your personal story for us. What did you do before franchising, and how did you decide franchising made sense for you?

Paul Hearn: I was in the electronic security industry for 22 years. In November of last year, I left the company I was with at the time to pursue different career paths. Franchising appealed to me because having corporate backing and all of their support made me more comfortable starting a business. I could sign and follow their proven directions and find success without having to figure out my own way in an industry.

1851: What was your perception of franchising prior to becoming a franchisee, and what do you want people to know about franchising now that you are in it?

Hearn: The idea of franchising always sounded cool, but I wasn’t sure how legitimate many franchises would be. I also didn’t know if franchising would be realistic, but after researching and signing with Dog Training Elite, I’ve found that franchising can be realistic once you find the right brand for you.

1851: What makes you stand out as business owners in your local community?

Hearn: I think my experience with business and customer service will set me apart. I started as a technician installing security systems in people’s homes. Then I moved to sales and management in that industry. I think I’m well-rounded in my capabilities to provide excellent service to my clients.

1851: What made you pick this brand? What excites you most about this company?

Hearn: I’ve always loved dogs, and I’ve had dogs my entire life. I’ve been a fan of dog training for a while now, but I never imagined getting into the business of dog training. When I discovered Dog Training Elite, I jumped at the opportunity to work with them. I love getting to see the benefits that we provide families. The look on someone’s face when they realize they can communicate with their dogs is priceless.

1851: What do you hope to achieve with your business? What are your plans for growth? 

Hearn: I’d like to have a facility by the end of next year. I would also like to own the territory near Virginia Beach.

1851: What is the one thing about your story you want us to know?

Hearn: I have been helping customers in their homes my entire career, whether installing security systems or being in sales, advising customers and walking them through setups. 

1851: What advice do you have for other people thinking about becoming a franchise owner?

Hearn: Just do it. Don’t second-guess yourself. Franchising, especially with Dog Training Elite, is one of the most fun roles you can have, but you must work hard to succeed. Make sure when going through the research and buying process that you are calling other franchisees in the brand because they have first-hand knowledge of what you are going through.

*This brand is a paid partner of 1851 Franchise. For more information on paid partnerships please click here.