Bobby Dorafshar started training dogs in the late 1980’s, but his passion for animals began at an early age, growing up in Tehran, Iran. Bobby was known in his small community as the animal avenger. He was often seen chasing away the “Animal Control” trucks that decrease the overpopulation of strays by shooting dogs on sight because no shelter existed in the community. Bobby would use his BB gun to covertly distract the animal killers, giving the dogs in jeopardy a chance to flea. Many of the strays found their way into Bobby’s heart and home, thanks to his loving and understanding father.
In 1979, Bobby adopted two adorable Rottweiler puppies, Shadow and Baron. His goal was to raise the most obedient and protective dogs possible, and to do the work himself. Hiring multiple “trainers” to assist him, Bobby gleaned much information, some good, but mostly bad. He realized that training dogs is a lot like raising children; patience, perseverance, repetition, compassion, and positive reinforcement get the best result. However, approach and methods vary depending on personality. Shadow and Baron were star pupils and were soon doing advanced Schutzhund work. Friends and neighbors saw Bobby’s success with the Rotties and were soon asking Bobby to train their dogs for them. Bobby’s knack for understanding dogs and their problems, and his keen ability to instruct people, soon lead him to devote his life to the training of dogs and their guardians.
In 1990, Bobby opened Advanced K-9 Services, a training/boarding business he operated out of his home. During the aftermath of the Northridge Earthquake in 1994, the city shelters were inundated with lost dogs. Bobby responded to the cry for volunteers and began to devote most of his time helping place dogs from the shelter and evaluating dogs’ temperaments for the staff. Soon after, Bobby and two other volunteers started the city’s first Mobile Pet Adoption program, placing 60 dogs during their first event. Bobby’s role as Volunteer Coordinator of Los Angeles Animal Services taught him that many people really care and want to do right by their dog. He also learned most people don’t understand how a dog’s brain works. Therefore, frustration overrules the heart, and dogs end up in the shelter. Bobby used his training experience to teach the volunteers and the public, changing the climate of the shelter system and its approach to placing dogs in for ever homes.
Bobby’s training business grew, and in 1997, he met his wife, Kelly, whose passion for animals matched Bobby’s. Together, they decided to take Bobby’s expert knowledge and use it to help save lives. Founding New Leash On Life Animal Rescue in December of 1997, this nonprofit organization’s mission was to stop the influx of dogs coming into the shelters by providing educational seminars and free dog training group classes. Bobby and Kelly truly believed that if dogs’ guardians built a bond with their dogs through obedience and understood the methods to teach and raise their dogs, they would be less likely to give up and turn their dogs into the shelter system. Still, educating the public was not enough, and Bobby and Kelly were soon fostering dogs and holding Mobile Pet Adoptions across Los Angeles. Bobby’s passion lead him to rush to help in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina and Rita, offering search and rescue for the hundreds of trapped, abandoned, and homeless animals left behind. With their nonprofit rescue organization making a difference in the community, Bobby and Kelly decided to expand their training business, but wanted to offer everything THEY would want in a Boarding and Training facility for their own dogs. They wanted every dog that stayed with them to feel like they were at home, whether they were boarding for a few days or staying for three weeks of training. It was just as important to them that all clients were treated as friends, and that they felt comfortable and happy with the personal attention and care that was given to their pets.
In 2006, Bobby and Kelly moved their business out of their home and opened the Tarzana K9s Only facility. Demand was high for expert training and care, and in 2011, they opened their second location in West Los Angeles. We encourage you to stop by for a tour and meet our staff! Bobby, Kelly, and the entire K9s Only staff look forward to welcoming you to the K9s Only Family!