Relationship Centered Training

Suzanne Clothier’s Relationship Centered Training (RCT) blends heart and science with a deep appreciation for each dog as an individual, and each relationship as unique and dynamic. RCT is for anyone seeking deeper understanding of dogs and our relationships with them.

Learn more about us

Coming Soon!

+ The RCT Reference Collection - access to all of Suzanne's amazing webinars!

+ Upcoming mentorship opportunities

The heart & soul of connection

Do you wish you had new ways to see dogs and understand them more deeply?

Are you passionate about doing your best to help dogs and the people who love them?

Do you want to dive deeper into what’s possible in relationships with dogs?

Join us, and discover why Suzanne Clothier has been described as “an artist in a lab coat” for her innovative blend of heart and science.

Well grounded in science and research, Suzanne’s work is open-hearted and joyful, with a deep appreciation for each dog as an individual. She understands that each relationship as unique and dynamic, and has created techniques and tools to help each relationship develop to its full potential.

Suzanne Clothier and her Relationship Centered Training (RCT) approach will help you find your way to richly satisfying relationships. For more than 30 years, “trainer of trainers” Suzanne Clothier has kept the dog-human relationship central to all she does.

RCT has helped countless people and dogs around the world find their way to the profound connections possible when we put the dog first. Humane, practical and effective, RCT opens new depths of understanding. Whether you are working with your first dog or have spent a lifetime with dogs, RCT will inspire and inform you. Welcome!


Latest Post

Podcast: Beyond Commands: Creating Meaningful Relationships with Dogs from Suzanne Clothier

Suzanne Clothier – Beyond Commands: Creating Meaningful Relationships with Dogs from Suzanne Clothier It was a pleasure to be on...

Positively Hopeful for the Future

The online dog training community is not a particularly nice place to be these days. The Us vs Them mentality...

Repeat After Me (If you can!)

There is nothing like hands-on learning with your fellow dog enthusiasts. At this workshop held at Good Choice Dog Training...

Upcoming Events

CLINTON, NJ – Sept 21 & 22, 2024

Once again, hosted by the great folks at West Jersey K9 SAR. Cannot wait to be back for another amazing weekend. Two days chock full of important information that will help you deepen your understanding of dogs, relationships, RCT techniques, and your own actions as a handler. Join us for WHO ARE YOU - AND HOW CAN WE HELP? on Saturday, and on Sunday TALKS WITH DOGS How Our Body Language Affects Our Communication with Dogs.

CHICAGO, IL – Nov 2-3, 2024 For Your K9

SO excited to be back in Chicagoland at my mid-West home away from home: For Your K9. Details to come. Save the dates!

What our customers say about us

RCT Skills for Reactive Dogs - helping him blossom!

Very useful and applicable even for the non-professional trainer. Lots of helpful tips and ideas to help us with our adopted Australian Shepherd who is defensively aggressive and a little unsure of how to deal with the world at times. These techniques along with lots of patience are helping him to really blossom and it is very rewarding to see him relaxing and enjoying life. He was about 7 years old when we brought him home – it’s never too late to help!

Chantelle Beare

A Suzanne Clothier seminar is must-have experience for all dog lovers.

Suzanne Clothier is the best. She has been a regular presenter at For Your K9 for nearly two decades. Her knowledge about everything dog with her quick wit makes any Suzanne Clothier Seminar a wonderful experience of learning and laughing. After her first visit many years ago, we revamped our training program to incorporate Suzanne’s teachings and now For Your K9 is known for solving behavior issues and great training in our area. A Suzanne Clothier seminar is must-have experience for all dog lovers.

Nancy Reyes, For Your K9, Chicago, IL

Really Real Relaxation Pro - Incredibly helpful!

Incredibly helpful for reactive, high-energy, and dogs that need and on/off switch! I love this exercise and describe it to dog owners as a team meditation exercise. It’s an exercise every reactive dog should have the the opportunity to learn, for sure. I find this approach helps the dog their chill more independently and organically. The requirement of the handler to also regulate themselves helps to keep my tendency to micromanage in check. I have made dramatically better progress helping a dog find relaxation and self-regulate using this protocol after a single session than with weeks of daily drills with another protocol. (That sounds cliche, but it is true.) It is very integration-into-your-life-friendly. So great!

Laura Fennel

Inspirational, engaging and thought-provoking

I first met Suzanne through her insightful, wonderful book Bones Would Rain From The Sky. The book alone had me hooked and I wanted to meet this amazing author in person. I was delighted to host her for a series of 4 seminars in the UK. She didn’t disappoint! The woman that I met through the pages of her book, was even more inspirational in person and was an engaging and thought-provoking speaker. Suzanne is a consummate professional and delivered a world-class service for the lucky people who were able to attend. She had our audience spellbound from the beginning, right through to the end. I can’t wait to have you come back again!

Gemma Fisher, Fisher Fix Dogs, UK

Really Real Relaxation Pro - "jewels" to add to my toolbox


I enjoyed the course but more importantly, as a pro trainer, and I always look for new modalities and ideas to bring to my private training practice. This methodology is one of those “jewels” I will incorporate into my behavior modification toolbox to help my clients help their dogs relax in “real world” scenarios. Suzanne does a terrific job in delivering the information by providing clear examples of her protocol and what is not. However, do not be fooled by the simplicity of the exercise/protocol! There is much more nuance to the steps involved. From my perspective, there is a secondary benefit for dog parents to learn when engaging in Suzanne’s RRR. They will learn to look for small changes in their dog’s body language and demeanor, which supports their dogs in learning how to lower their arousal level.

Almudena Ortiz Cué C.H.A.C.O. Dog Training & Behavior Consulting LLC

Evidence-informed, master of creativity

Suzanne Clothier is an excellent speaker. Her work is evidence-informed from both empirical literature and case studies. She has great rapport with the audience speaking from her head and heart – grounding her work in stories that are funny and breathtaking. She is a master of creativity and communication with her animal partners. Suzanne is a “go-to” expert in the field.

Dr. Jean Larson, University of Minnesota, Nature Based Therapeutics Programs

RCT Skills for Reactive Dogs - Invaluable!

LOVED THIS COURSE! This course is exactly what I was looking for. There is so much helpful information provided to help out our reactive dogs and their handlers. The specific training techniques, spelled out in detail, are invaluable. In addition to all the training techniques. The bonus material is much more than I ever expected. Well worth the price and I am excited to put these principles & techniques into action with my clients and add to my class curriculum. Thank You!

Bev Oliver

RAT (Relationship Assessment Tool) - Helping Clients Achieve Their Goals

Using R.A.T. helps me as a psychotherapist examine and identify essential elements of relationship quickly and clearly with my clients. And relationships are at the heart of most human issues. R.A.T. helps me point out therapeutic issues in a fundamental way that is often easier for clients to absorb because their interactions with an animal seem removed from their “real life,” with all the emotional landmines real life contains. The information I get from R.A.T. then helps me structure interventions that have a greater likelihood of helping clients achieve their goals. It helps me work on the issue rather than the symptoms of the issue.

Ann Howie, LISCW, ASCW, CCA, CCFT, Human-Animal Solutions, author Teaming With Your Therapy Dog

Observation Skills Part 1 - Exceed my expectations!

OBS Part 1

The course that keeps on giving. Having taken many of Suzanne’s courses and webinars, I know they are always going to exceed my expectations. This course is not a checklist. It is training your brain to be a better observer. You’ll have several aha-moments during the course and course work, but it continues way beyond that. You will observe everything differently, and continue to improve your observation skills after this course. It doesn’t happen overnight, but the road to improvement is fascinating once you know the limitations of your own mind and how to better overcome those limitations. I can’t wait for part 2 of this course.

Vibeke Alstad Jagne

RAT (Relationship Assessment Tool)

RAT has added some powerful skills to my professional trainer toolbox. RAT helps me identify what skills & support are needed for dog & handler The RAT score sheet provides each client with great clarity and the opportunity to dig into a specific, well though-out training plan that meets their needs.

Cindy Knowlton CPDT-KA, CNWI, CCA, CRA See Spot Grin