Our Story - What a Great Dog! Training Center
April 17, 2018

Our Story

What a Great Dog! Training Center 

In 2007, Maureen Patin resigned from her twenty-two year career with PepsiCo in order to launch her own business.  She was already a life-long dog enthusiast with experience in competitive obedience, and she had also taught basic obedience classes for a local parks and rec department.  A dream started to form of building a dog training business that would ignite a passion for training in pet owners.  Maureen made the decision to train dogs full-time – in whatever form that might take.

Patin Barn where WAGD started

Patin Barn where WAGD started

Maureen founded What a Good Dog! Training in 2007, and the family business was launched in the Patin’s horse barn in Prosper.  Maureen also completed the required education and testing to earn the title of Certified Professional Dog Trainer that year.  She spent the next three years doing in-home private lessons, group classes in the horse barn, and board & train, both in the barn and at Rover Resort in McKinney.

Prosper WAGD Training Center

Prosper WAGD Training Center

In 2010, Maureen and her husband, Harold, purchased a 3,700 sq.ft. commercial building in old downtown Prosper.  Major renovations were required to convert the building to a suitable new home for the training business.  Along with this big expansion the name was changed to What a Great Dog! Training Center.  Harold and Maureen renovated the building with the “barn theme” in mind.  Harold became proficient at building barn doors and rustic retail displays.  With a check-in desk, tiny retail shop, one indoor training ring and a small outdoor agility course, they opened for business in April 2010.  Maureen’s sister, Kenna Sloan, moved back to the Dallas area from North Carolina to jump on board as the Business Manager in 2011.  Several fabulous trainers joined WAGD during the Prosper days.  In chronological order, they were Ryan Lockard, Victoria Hynes, Jody Lolich and Meaghan Cassell.  WAGD had the good fortune to quickly be bursting at the seams with clients ready to take classes from the talented staff.  It became obvious that more space was needed!

Frisco Facility Buildout

Frisco Facility Prior to Buildout

After a great deal of searching, the new space was found in early 2012.  At 16,164 sq.ft, the empty warehouse space in Frisco was more than four times larger than the previous facility.  At that time, there were very few examples around the United States of large-scale dog training centers.  Most facilities that offered training classes did it as an afterthought, with boarding and daycare being the primary business.  Maureen and Harold felt strongly that  WAGD should stay focused on training.  It was huge leap of faith to make such a big expansion, while maintaining the singular focus on training.  After much discussion and a few sleepless nights, the decision was made to go for it!

Kenna and Maureen

Kenna and Maureen

The build-out on that big empty space transformed it into a state of the art 3 ring training center.  The Patin’s son, Mitch, developed a new business website, and word spread quickly.  Classes filled with clients eager to train and have fun with their pups and other dog lovers.  The vision to create a training center that caters to both experienced training enthusiasts and typical pet owners was a reality!

Harold, Sharon, and Maureen

Harold, Sharon, and Maureen

In early 2016, it became clear there was demand for even more WAGD in the Dallas Fort Worth Metroplex.  Harold left his corporate job and joined the team full-time.  The fun doubled when Kenna Sloan and Sharon Lacaze also joined the WAGD ownership team.  These changes enabled the opening of the second WAGD facility, in Richardson, Texas in January 2017.  The newest location is also 16,000 sq.ft. and has quickly become busy with activity as more people discover the joy of learning about dog behavior and training.

Maureen’s passion for igniting a fire in typical pet owners to train their dogs with positive training methods set the tone for the WAGD company.  The company continues to be fueled by the central theme that when people get hooked on training and participating in dog sports and activities, their lives are enhanced and their dog’s lives are too!

Inside view of Patin barn where Maureen began dog training.

Inside view of Patin barn where Maureen began dog training.