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We began to foster troubled rescue dogs in 2009. We board and rehabilitate up to four at any given time - around 40 per year.

Most come from local rescue organizations or shelters, straight of Euthanasia Lists. These once hopeless, homeless dogs find comfort and security in our kennels. They thrive on two "square meals" a day and the compassionate care of our dedicated staff.


We teach rescue dogs to trust again. Our training provides the consistency and loving leadership they've always needed.

Using a balanced approach, employing many different dog training techniques, we shut off bad behaviors and establish the good manners required for a forever home. Once training is complete, our foster dogs meet the same high standards as dogs enrolled in our Board and Train programs. You can read some of their stories below.

Ken and Lisa Baechtold having fun with their well-trained rescue dogs
The Final Step: Finding A Forever Home

It’s an honor and privilege to give these dogs a new lease on life. If you’d like to help with our “Philanthropuppy” work, please consider adopting a trained rescue dog from us!

We never charge a training fee when you adopt one of our foster dogs.


  • You pay only the local shelter or rescue group’s adoption fee. (Fees offset the cost of veterinary exams, vaccinations, parasite treatments and preventatives, spaying or neutering, micro chipping, other medical car, etc.)

  • You receive a trained dog, with all the benefits of our Foster and Train package  – at no additional charge. (This package includes all the benefits of our Board and Train for Special Needs packageover a $2,000 value. You receive our training kit and off-leash, gentle remote collar training package PLUS a full year of follow-up – as many private in-studio lessons, refreshers and phone or email consultations as you need.)

We always have dogs who need forever homes. Call us at 913-909-9609 to see if one is a match for yours.

What Local Animal Welfare Organizations Say About Our Philanthropuppy

Before you join our cause, listen to what local shelter and rescue partners think of our work:

MOGS Logo: Missouri German Shepherd Rescue

For many years, we at Missouri German Shepherd Rescue have used Gentle Dog (GDT) to help our rescued dogs with a multitude of behavioral issues.

Several hundred German Shepherds are alive and living in loving homes today because of GDT's expertise.

Ken, Lisa and their staff have an amazing ability to work with dogs, no matter the dog's background - from abuse to lack of training. They understand a dog's background but refuse to let the dog stay "stuck" in old habits. From their very first interaction, they help a dog understand that calm, loving leadership is now the order of the day. More importantly, GDT teaches us humans how to exercise loving, calm, consistent leadership!

We recommend, and are grateful to, GDT for their expertise and huge hearts.

Nancy J. Campbell


Missouri German Shepherd Rescue

A calm German Shepherd awaiting commands from a dog trainer
A German Shepherd rescue dog, trained in time to spend the holidays in a forever home
Logo: Great Plains SPCA

Gentle Dog and its owners, Ken and Lisa Baechtold, have been partnering with Great Plains SPCA since 2010. This relationship started with a dog named Peterbuilt, who had behavioral challenges and was in great need of behavior modification. (Peterbuilt is featured in their "Keys to a Fantastic Dog! video.)

In the last seven years, Gentle Dog has taken on some of Great Plains SPCA's most difficult behavioral cases. Most faced humane euthanasia.

Ken and Lisa have been very successful in rehabilitating and adopting out animals that are hard to place from a shelter environment: long-term residents and dogs displaying various types of aggression. They even added two of our dogs with bite histories to their own pack.


Ken and Lisa are wonderful people with very compassionate hearts for animals with behavior problems. We cannot thank them enough for their support.

Annie Runnion

Kennel Manager

Great Plains SPCA

I have been partnering with Gentle Dog Training for several years now, the first few years while working at a local shelter in the Kansas City area, and now while operating the Jasper County Animal Rescue League in central Iowa.

Gentle Dog Training's balanced training method has proven to be a life saver for dozens of dogs I have worked with. Every time I've partnered with Gentle Dog Training, a dog has left a euthanasia list to live in a wonderful home as a fantastic pet.


I have seen Ken and Lisa work miracles on dogs with resource guarding and dog aggression, as well as with under-socialized and feral dogs. Not only do they train the dogs, but they also provide support for the people who adopt animals that have been through their program. They train both the animal and the handler - which is key.

Logo: Jasper County Animal Rescue League & Humane Society

Ken and Lisa go above and beyond to help dogs facing euthanasia from several shelters and rescue groups across the Midwest. I can't begin to share how thankful I am for all their lifesaving efforts. With them, countless dogs have received a chance at life. Thank you for all that you do!

Rachel Long


Jasper County Animal Rescue League

Dog training brought out the best in Billy
Logo: Diamonds in the Ruff

Gentle Dog has been nothing short of a miracle worker for four of our Diamonds in the Ruff rescue dogs. All had been adopted out several times and returned for a variety of reasons. Gentle Dog saved each from certain death.

Annabelle, a pit mix, was a loveable dog but far too protective of her foster mom. She could be people aggressive and really didn’t like men. People were scared to go near her. After a few weeks with Gentle Dog, Annabelle was the people lover we always knew she could be. She has been in her forever home for almost a year now.

Like Annabelle, Billy could be people aggressive. As with Annabelle, Gentle Dog brought out the good dog in him. Billy has been in his forever home for well over two years.

Baby, a black and white pit mix, couldn’t be trusted around cats and was way too hyper inside a house. Working their magic, Gentle Dog turned Baby into a cat lover as well as a calm presence in the home. Baby has been in her forever home for over two years.

Goldie, a large German Shepherd, loved to jump up on people. She was very protective of her food, which resulted in some bites. In just a few weeks’ time, Gentle Dog taught Goldie to be polite and only give hugs when invited. She also learned not to bite the hand that feeds her. Having graduated from Gentle Dog over a month ago, Goldie has found her forever home, too.

All these dogs and their adoptive families are so thankful for the work done by Gentle Dog Simply put, they are miracle workers. I highly recommend them for your dog training.

Judy K. Moore

Diamonds in the Ruff

Logo: The Rescue Project

Addie, a Jack Russell mix, roamed the streets of Kansas City, MO with a group of canine friends. She was visibly pregnant.

After six months, concerned neighbors called The Recue Project's boots-on-the-ground community outreach team. We help abandoned, neglected and needy animals. Our specialty is safe, humane trapping.

We lured Addie in from the cold in November 2015. We found her a wonderful foster home, in Kearney, MO. There she gave birth to six beautiful, healthy babies.

But Addie remained an untamed, feral dog. She refused to socialize or interact with caregivers. She shied away from their touch – from their concerned looks and reassuring words, too.

Addie, a feral Jack Russell mix, on the loose before her first rescue

Just before Christmas, Addie escaped to the fields surrounding her foster home. She wore a muzzle to prevent biting - which, unfortunately, could prevent eating, too. We feared the worst. Would she starve or freeze to death?

Addie’s many friends scoured area streets, yards and fields. TRP set humane traps throughout the neighborhood, hoping to bring her back to safety.

Nine months of Addie sightings followed. The good news: she’d worked the muzzle off her snout. The bad news: even with the muzzle wrapped through her armpit, she still was too wary and wily to catch.

Our rescue team finally cornered Addie under a deck. We pulled her out wrapped in a sheet, biting and screaming. We hurried her off to a local vet, where the wounds from her twisted muzzle healed.

Then she was off to Gentle Dog We’d contacted Ken and Lisa while Addie was still on the loose. They’d agreed to foster and rehabilitate Addie if we captured her. We were thrilled when they decided to adopt her, too.

Ken and Lisa brought Addie home from our vet in October 2016. From the start, it was clear she'd present major dog training challenges. No one in the vet’s office could come near her with a collar or leash. She had to leave by crate.

Addie, our reluctant rescue dog, before training

Few dog lovers have the skill and patience to reform a canine escape artist. Fewer still can make a feral dog feel at home. But with Ken and Lisa’s calm, deliberate coaching, Addie (now renamed “Misty”) is making real progress. She’s on her way to becoming a happy member of her new pack.

We’re glad to have partners like Ken and Lisa. We rescue dogs from abandonment and neglect. They give the most troubled of these a second – or, in Misty’s case, third – chance. We're thankful for all they do to prepare forgotten dogs for new, forever families.

Andrea Knobbe

Director-The Rescue Project

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