One of the services we provide at Karingal Animal Hospital is a five-week puppy school program for dogs aged between 8 and 14 weeks.
Puppy school is an important part of a dog’s development and can help reduce problem behaviour. Our puppy school will help your puppy live a healthy, well-balanced life by focusing on four main areas:
Ultimately, attending puppy school will improve your dog’s relationship with you and the world.
Socialisation is an important part of puppy school. During each session, puppies will be allowed off the lead in a controlled, safe and nurturing environment. This way, they can learn safely how to interact with other animals, including humans.
By socialising early, you reduce the chances of problem behaviour later in the dog’s life. Aggression is often borne out of fear and misunderstanding. Through play and socialisation, puppies learn the right social behaviours and problems such as biting and aggression are less likely later in life.
Puppy school is for the owners too. The first session is a puppy-free event the night before the first animal-inclusive lesson. During this hour-long session, we talk you through common issues dog owners face, such as when to punish or reward, how to handle fleas, digging, barking, biting and toilet training.
During this session, we also give the owners a copy of our Puppy School Companion, with advice on training, exercise, nutrition and a list of dog parks and dog-friendly areas.
During the first session, we also discuss some life decisions you will have to make for your new pal, such as whether to de-sex. We also discuss microchipping and how to prevent parasites and disease. At Karingal Pet Hospital, we believe education is vital for pet health. We will provide you with the relevant information to help you come to a decision regarding the health of your pet. The majority of this information can be found in the Puppy School Companion, a 100-page document covering all you need to know about raising puppies into healthy, happy dogs.
Of course, no puppy school would be complete without training. Training your pet improves their safety and mood. How to walk on the lead or knowing to stop before crossing the road can save your pet’s life. Waiting for the food bowl, for example, helps reduce food-related anxieties your pet may develop, which later in life may turn into aggression.
Puppy training also fosters a strong bond between owner and pet. Using positive reinforcement, pets are rewarded for doing the right thing. Your pet wants to please you and by training them, you let them know how they can. By obeying your commands, they are rewarded, first with treats and then with the feeling that they have helped someone they love. Training improves communication between you and your pet, reducing your frustrations and anxieties around them as well.
Over the four puppy sessions, we help you train your dog in the basic commands, such as sit, stay, come and wait for the food bowl.
Our trainers are vet nurses with a Certificate IV in Veterinary Nursing and/or qualified dog trainers in their own right. We follow the philosophies of The Delta Institute, a nationally-accredited training course that focuses on positive reward reinforcement, and Dr Sophia Yin. Both Delta and Dr Yin focus on positive, reward-based training programs that buoy a dog’s self-esteem, trust and confidence.