How Puppy Group Training Classes Work

Hey there, fellow puppy parents! Remember those first days of school, the jitters mixed with excitement, and making lifelong friends? Well, think of puppy group training classes as kindergarten for our furry little ones. Not only do these classes offer a fantastic space for your pup to learn essential skills, but they’re also the perfect playground for socialization. Imagine a room full of wagging tails, playful barks, and the occasional squeaky toy mishap. Trust me, it’s as adorable as it sounds, and it’s the perfect start to your puppy’s journey to becoming a well-mannered adult dog. Let’s dive into what these classes offer, shall we?

What will I learn at Puppy School?

Puppy programs are often based on using a reward-based training method that teaches pet parents:

  • How to communicate with your puppy or dog
  • How to develop solid foundation obedience in all environments
  • The importance of socialization and mental and physical stimulation
  • Ways to help curb any behavioral problems
  • How to find the correct equipment for your dog
  • The appropriate rewards for best results

They offer a safe environment that will see you and your dog or puppy thrive together under the skilled guidance of a friendly, professional training team.

Week-by-Week Skills in Puppy Group Training Classes

You ever notice how kids seem to grasp new concepts better when they’re given a bit at a time? Puppies are a lot like that. In puppy training classes, we usually focus on teaching them one thing each week, and there’s a good reason for it. These little furballs have a lot of energy, but what about their attention spans?

Well, they can be shorter than the leash you’re using! By introducing one concept or command per week, it allows our puppies to truly absorb and practice without feeling overwhelmed. Think of it as building a foundation; each brick needs time to set before you place another one on top. It’s all about keeping things positive, fun, and manageable for our four-legged students! Here is an example of how classes are broken down:


  • Week 1
    • Bridge/marker and release word
    • Focus, sit and recall exercises
    • Building a bond with your puppy
    • Toilet training, socialization, nutrition information

    Week 2

    • Mat exercise
    • Down exercise
    • Social interaction
    • Sit for a pat
    • Health, jumping, digging information

    Week 3

    • Loose lead walking
    • Social interaction
    • Sit & Down stay
    • Complex skill
    • Training equipment information

    Week 4

    • Stand exercise
    • Social interaction
    • Sit & wait for food
    • Basic first aid
    • Grooming information

    Week 5

    • Graduation
    • Where to from here
    • Responsible pet ownership


  • Week 1
    • Calming/massage techniques
    • Engagement exercises
    • Training techniques
    • Social interaction (all weeks)
    • Motivation information

    Week 2

    • Bridge/marker words/release words
    • Target training (Teaching phase)
    • Recall with wait
    • Mat exercises
    • Behavioural issues information

    Week 3

    • Stand exercise (stand stay for preschool grads)
    • How to check your dog
    • Loose lead walking with exercises
    • Targeting
    • Health requirements

    Week 4

    • Leave it/ food refusal
    • Stay exercise on and off mat
    • Party tricks – having fun
    • Give, take, fetch

    Week 5

    • Graduation
    • Q & A

Is my puppy or dog suitable for Puppy School classes?

Whether your pup is a good fit for puppy school classes depends on a few factors. Let’s chat about it!

  1. Age: Most puppy school classes are designed for younger dogs. The typical age range is often between 8 weeks and 6 months. If your dog is older, you might want to consider basic obedience classes or other types of training tailored for adult dogs.
  2. Vaccination Status: Many schools require puppies to have received their first round of vaccinations at the very least. This is to ensure the safety of all the puppies in the class.
  3. Temperament: If your pup is overly aggressive or fearful, group settings might not be ideal initially. However, don’t get discouraged! Individual training or behavioral consultations could be a good starting point to eventually get them ready for group sessions.
  4. Health: Make sure your puppy is in good health. If they’re showing signs of illness, it’s best to wait until they’re better before exposing them to other dogs.
  5. Your Commitment: Puppy school isn’t just about dropping your dog off for lessons. You’ll need to be involved, practice at home, and be consistent with training.
  6. Class Size and Quality: Ensure the class isn’t too big so that your puppy gets enough attention. Also, check reviews or ask for recommendations to ensure you’re picking a quality school.

Remember, the aim of puppy school is to provide socialization and foundational training in a safe and controlled environment. Even if your pup isn’t suitable for group classes right now, there are plenty of other training options and resources available. Every dog is unique, so it’s all about finding the right fit for your furry friend!

What to expect from your dog at Puppy School

Just like humans, dogs learn at different rates, and each dog will often behave differently from the others during class. You may find that your dog is active, a barker, shy, boisterous, or even timid.

These behaviors are all normal, and it’s likely your buddy’s behavior will change as the program continues. It is important to concentrate on your dog’s development and not compare them to others in the class. Your trainer will ensure that each dog receives individual attention throughout the course.

What to bring to Puppy School

  • Your puppy or dog!
  • Your dog’s current vaccination certificate
  • Flat collar and lead
  • Mat or towel
  • Treat pouch and high-value treats (in pieces which are no larger than your small fingernail)
  • Your dog’s favorite toy

Tip: To help grab your pooch’s continued attention, don’t feed your puppy or dog prior to class.

Keep in mind:

Here are some tips to keep in mind before attending puppy group training classes:

  • Arrive 10 minutes before class
  • Wear suitable attire and closed footwear
  • Family involvement in your dog’s or puppy’s training is highly encouraged! However, please keep in mind that the minimum age for owner-trainers is 10 years old, and then only under full adult supervision
  • Keep your puppy or dog on their leash at all times, unless instructed otherwise by your trainer

The value of homework

Each week, our Puppy School trainers provide participants with recommended activities to complete with their dogs before the next week’s class. The work you do at home with your dog is a vital part of achieving success in Puppy School!

Investing In Your Pup’s Life

Alright, to wrap things up, let’s think of puppy group training classes as the ultimate prep school for our fur babies. Just like how our early school days shaped us, these classes mold our puppies into well-rounded adult dogs. They learn not just commands, but also essential life skills like patience, socialization, and how to behave in different scenarios.

Plus, being around other puppies and new humans? It’s like their version of the playground – fun and educational! In the long run, investing in these classes is like setting the foundation for a house; it ensures that everything built on top is solid. So, if you’re dreaming of future days with a well-mannered, sociable, and happy adult dog by your side, puppy group training classes are your golden ticket!

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