Why puppy school is crucial

Have you ever wondered what is the rave about puppy schools and why puppies should attend these classes? Behaviourist Samantha Walpole explains why it is important for your puppy.

The general socialisation stage for a puppy is between three and 16 weeks. This is a critical one-time window of opportunity. We never get this period back! Attending a well-run puppy socialisation school is not negotiable. Exposure and experiences during this period will shape the dog’s behaviour forever. The puppy learns about his social world, allowing him to become a functioning member of our society. Home socialisation is not enough – the puppy classes expose the pups to all types of novel stimuli and experiences we take for granted.

Opportunities to play off lead with other pups of different sizes, breeds and dispositions teach a puppy to ‘speak dog’ so he can function in a canine society. It is not enough if the puppy lives with resident dogs. Puppies need to learn from playing with other puppies and interacting with carefully chosen, well-socialised adult dogs. Puppy play teaches bite inhibition (learning to control bite intensity). Not only are these classes crucial for the puppy, it also builds a relationship and bond between the handler and their pup.

A typical syllabus in a well-run school would be:

  • Loose-leash walking.
  • Activities teaching body awareness and sensory stimulation, and negotiating different obstacles, which build confidence.
  • Basic manners: sit, lie down, recall, back up, mock vet check handling and leave/take it.
  • Practical and theoretical information on typical puppy behaviours such as nipping; toilet training; digging; chewing; jumping; boisterous behaviour; basic medical and health care information.


Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on pinterest
Share on linkedin
Get The Latest Updates

Subscribe To Our Monthly Newsletter

No spam, notifications only about new products, updates.
On Key

Related Posts

What to do with a jealous dog

Do you also struggle with a dog who is seemingly jealous? Without knowing the specifics of what ‘jealous’ behaviour is being displayed, here are a

Q & A: Tearing up furniture

Q: What should I do if my puppy tears up my furniture? A: Puppies need to be actively taught what they can and cannot chew

Plan that holiday

For me, there is something magical about planning a holiday, especially if the year has been hard, like this one has been, with various lockdowns,