If you’ve never owned a puppy before or want to give your new puppy the very best start in life, then puppy school could be for you! Puppy school is where you and your puppy will be given the tools and skills needed to ensure they will grow into a well behaved, sociable dog.
Classes are designed for puppies between 8 to 16 weeks of age, as it is much easier to teach a puppy the correct behaviour at this young age than it is to correct bad behaviour later in life.
Each course consists of a number of one-hour classes conducted over four to six weeks and teaches owners positive reinforcement methods for training their puppy as well as covering socialisation, general health care, nutrition and more. Each course will usually also dedicate time to covering any individual problems and questions from owners.
Generally a puppy school course will include:
- Dog nature – Background information about dogs’ natural “pack” behaviour and how this can help you to understand many of the behaviours displayed by your new puppy.
- Socialisation – Why socialisation is so important to your puppy’s development and how to safely go about ensuring that your puppy is well socalised.
- Toilet training – Effective techniques for toilet training your puppy at home.
- Managing problem behaviours – Why they can occur and how to use positive reinforcement to minimise problem behaviours such as chewing, digging, jumping up etc.
- Training – The importance of training your puppy’s development. Where, when and how to train your puppy.
- Preventative medicine – An outline of the preventative medicines currently available and which ones are important for your puppy.
- Fleas – What’s effective, what’s not and how to avoid a flea explosion in your household.
- Diet and feeding – Recommendations for when, where, how often and what to feed your new puppy.
- Grooming – Brushing, bathing, nail clipping. When to start and what needs to be done for your individual puppy. How to introduce your puppy to being groomed without them becoming afraid.
- Council Laws – Advice on what’s legally required for your puppy and dog friendly exercise areas in your local district.
- Missing dogs – What to do if your new puppy goes missing. Effective ways of locating a lost puppy.
You can find puppy schools through your local vet or council with varying costs involved, usually between $50-$100 for the whole course.
Krissy Hacker is a wife and SAHM of 2, expecting a 3rd whose arrival is eagerly awaited so she can return to drinking wine and have a husband who speaks to her again. A mad gardening, crafting and baking lady, she loves reviving old school ways of doing things and would do anything to get out of housework!