Tag Archives: training classes

Puppy Party: Socialization & Play Group Drop-off

THIS is what you get to bring home from a Puppy Party!

A Puppy Party: Socialization & Play Drop-off is the ideal way to socialize your puppy while social distancing!

Drop your pup off at our door, and we’ll take your puppy for 90min of play, fun, socialization, confidence building and more. At the end of the Puppy Party, come back to our door for a no-contact pick up of your zonked out puppy.

Wondering about letting your 8wk old pup out to play? Check out this position statement from the American Veterinary Society of Animal Behaviour.

Meet Braxton, Mila, Lucy, Walnut and Willow in the Small Pup Group…
and Hank, Hazel, Bowie and Theodore in the Large Pup group!

The Details:

  • For puppies to start between 8-18wks, until they age out of the program (dependant on size, development, and play skills)
  • Puppies must:
    • be up-to-date on age-appropriate vaccinations
    • be appropriately dewormed
    • have appropriate documentation, as outlined below
    • have been adopted/home at least 7 days prior to the Puppy Party

Important Health Requirement:

Before your puppy can attend her first Puppy Party, health documentation is STRICTLY required. The following must be in place:

  • Vaccination of at least ONE set of age appropriate vaccines, including Parvo-Distemper
  • Deworming

We can accept the following forms of documentation:

  • An email from your local vet clinic stating that your puppy has received the above
  • A clear photo or scan of your puppy’s vet papers, showing vaccination and deworming

Take note that if this isn’t received prior to your first Puppy Party, your puppy will not be able to attend and credit cannot be transferred.

Schedule and Pricing

You can find the schedule at the bottom of this page.

Standard Pricing: $30+HST per session

Special price for puppies in our training classes: $20+HST per session
Join the All-Ages Life Skills Program (Virtual or in-person), or Private Training to access this discount!

Register Here!

Follow the below steps to register for Puppy Parties!

  1. Email the required Health Documentation (above) to the office.
  2. Book your Play Group below! Select the group based on the size of your puppy. If you’re unsure, contact the office for guidance.
  3. Send payment to the office via email money transfer to complete registration. Your booking is only tentative until payment is received.
  4. Check your email for instructions.

Select Your Puppy Party:

Click here if you have a small or shy puppy!

Click here if you have a medium or large puppy!

VIRTUAL All-Ages Life Skills

Dog training in the age of Social Distancing…
it CAN be done!

The COVID-19 pandemic has closed down our in-person classes, but we can achieve the same great results with the wonders of modern technology!

Virtual Life Skills is an all-ages manners and obedience program, appropriate for puppies and adult dogs alike – with a BONUS Puppy Package for Puppies under 6mo!

Who says learning can’t happen on the couch?

We will cover topics including:

  • Come when called
  • Settle and stay on a mat
  • Polite leash walking
  • Dealing with distractions
  • Polite greetings with people
  • Prevent running out the front door
  • Impulse control around food
  • Preventing “Counter surfing”
  • And more!

See what students say about virtual training!

How Does Virtual Training Work?

Using a virtual classroom called Google Classrooms, you will be have a weekly introduction to new exercises with video demonstrations, verbal descriptions and written instructions.

Each exercise is broken down into easy-to-follow steps, and you will receive personalized support and guidance as you train your dog.

  • Work at your own pace and on your own schedule!
  • Join class any time
  • Lessons are posted weekly and homework is reviewed on week days
  • Eight+ weeks access to dynamic content and personal guidance and training support
  • Access program content after your program is completed

Technology requirements are:

  • A basic understanding of computer/internet use, including recording a video
  • Internet capacity that allows for watching and uploading videos
  • A computer, phone or tablet that:
    • Has a microphone
    • Has a camera
    • Can connect to the internet

Read the FAQ for more important details

The Puppy Package

Puppy students get a special discount on Puppy Parties: Socialization and Play Group Drop-off!

Puppy students receive FREE access to the All Things Puppy Classroom for information on socialization and problem prevention that is specific to puppies – including guidance on nipping, house training, crate training and more!

Want to test out Google Classroom?

You’re welcome to access the test classroom and familiarize yourself with how the platform works. Simply:

Watch this demo of Virtual Life Skills!

Register here!

$239+HST $209+HST until June 1st!

Select your start date and complete the registration form

Notice: There will be a holiday closure from July 25th through Aug 9th. Feedback will be on hold during this time, and you will maintain access to the course materials. This will not affect students in the June 1st course start date, all other students will have an additional two weeks on their programs.

IN-PERSON All-Ages Life Skills

Life Skills is an all-ages manners and obedience program, appropriate for puppies, adolescents and adult dogs alike. Take a look below for details on the Puppy Socialization Life Skills Package!

We will cover topics such as:

  • Come when called
  • Settle and stay on a mat
  • Polite leash walking
  • Dealing with distractions
  • Polite greetings with people
  • Prevent running out the front door
  • Impulse control around food
  • Preventing “Counter surfing”
  • And more!

Package Options

Life Skills Package:

  • Orientation Webinar to watch before getting started
  • Six group classes with a flexible start date
  • Life Skills Program Manual including videos of training exercises
  • If you need a make-up class, stay caught up with Virtual Life Skills

Puppy Socialization Life Skills Package:

Available to pups aged 16wks and under. You get all of the above PLUS:

  • Access to the All Things Puppy Classroom for quick reference on common puppy issues, such as house training, nipping, crate training and more
  • Puppy Play & Socialization A discount on the Puppy Party: Socialization and Play Drop-off for your puppy to attend during your program and until s/he ages out

Flexible Start Date

You can start class any time space is available! No need to wait for a new session. All you need to do is:

  1. Choose your start date with the office
  2. Submit full registration and payment within 24hrs to confirm your start date
  3. Attend 6 consecutive weeks of in-person training classes with your dog

Join the Virtual Life Skills Program, and transfer into the In-Person Life Skills program as soon as the program starts!

COVID-19 Precautions

  • Small group class size and limited attendance as recommended by Public Health recommendations
  • Frequent cleaning and disinfection of the premises
  • Increased ventilation for indoor classes
  • Social/Physical Distancing in effect
  • Puppy Party Drop-offs prevent contact between owners during high-contact play, while maintaining socialization benefits for your puppy. Drop off your pup, play and socialization will be managed by your trainer, and you bring home a tired puppy!
  • In the event of a shutdown or illness, all students will transition seamlessly into the Virtual Life Skills Program

Schedule and Pricing

TBA when the facility reopens. Join the Virtual Life Skills Program, and transfer into the In-Person Life Skills program as soon as the program starts!

Join class ANY TIME and attend 6 consecutive classes to complete your program. Access your program manual and webinar(s) any time.

Register Here!

  1. Submit the intake form below by clicking on the 30th/31st (NOTE: this date does not represent your start date)
  2. We’ll be in touch shortly with instructions!

Join the newsletter for an alert when the In-Person Life Skills Program begins enrolment – OR join the Virtual Life Skills Program, and transfer into the In-Person Life Skills program as soon as the program starts!

Orientation Webinar

The Orientation Webinar is a free, no-obligation webinar that is open to everyone.

View as the prerequisite for group classes and private training – or simply to see what we’re all about!

Register below to receive an email immediately with details and links to view, and you can get started in class immediately!

Get Started!

Register below by clicking on the bold date and receive full instructions via auto-email.  Contact the office if you don’t immediately see an email.

Note: The date noted is for admin purposes only. Select the bolded date and register to receive an email with full instructions on how to get started in class.

Training for (Socially Distanced) Distractions

The Training for Distractions Program is perfect for your dog if you:

  • Have a dog who is distracted by food/toys/environment, and other dogs and people, but is friendly and is not reactive (see below)
  • Want better reliability and compliance in the face of distractions
  • Want your dog to make better choices without nagging her
  • Want training strategies that are applicable to all distractions

Requirements and Prerequisites:

  • Dogs must be comfortable with other dogs and humans. This class is not for dogs with significant social difficulties including: barking/lunging, snarking/snapping upon greeting a dog,  etc. If this describes your dog, please see below for options.
  • This class requires a consistent handler to attend all classes. Pairs of handlers are welcome.
  • Dogs must be up-to-date on all vaccinations as recommended by your veterinarian
  • Completion of a foundation program at Scratch and Sniff Canine Services OR an equivalent from another school if owners/dogs have a solid understanding of clicker training and prerequisite behaviours.
  • Owners who have not trained at Scratch and Sniff Canine Services previously may be required to attend a free assessment and Orientation Webinar session prior to class
  • Experience with positive training (both dog and human), and at least an introduction of the following:
        • Zen or Leave it (impulse control around food in hand)
        • Sit and Down (verbal cue or hand signal)
        • Stay basics
        • Loose leash walking basics
        • Hand target/touch
        • If you have most but not all prerequisites, please contact the office to discuss

Does your dog have “Big Feelings”? Is she reactive, worried, or intense in her reactions? Check out our Private Training and Behaviour Consulting. If you’re unsure, contact the office to set up a free assessment.

Pricing and Schedule

$275+HST
Starting Monday June 8, 6-7pm

7 Consecutive weeks, virtual/in-person combined format
VIRTUAL Lessons: June 8, 15, 22, 29
IN-PERSON Lessons: July 6, 13, 20 (rain date Aug 10th, or decided upon as a group)

Note: This program is a combined virtual and in-person class. The in-person portion will take place at the facility likely outdoors, located at 340 Southgate Drive Guelph. 

Make up classes: During the ZOOM lessons, absent students will receive a link to watch the recorded lesson. Read the Virtual Training FAQ for important information about technology requirements.

Alternately, make-up sessions are offered at a discounted rate of $30/half hour and must be completed the same week as the class that is missed (subject to private session policy).

Book your spot now!

Group Training FAQ

Click the arrow to learn more.

I’ve reviewed the Orientation Webinar and want to register for a group class… how do I do that?

Ensure that you are making the correct class selection, and contact the office if you have any questions. Make your purchase from the online store and start booking your program! You’re welcome to send an EMT to info@scratchandsniff.ca if you prefer that to credit card payments in the store. Cash and cheque payments must be received in person prior to your first class.

When is group training the best option?

Group classes are ideal for dogs who are friendly/tolerant of people and other dogs and require training in manners/obedience. (The only exception is any program where behaviour modification is a primary focus.) There is an assortment of training programs offered at Scratch and Sniff Canine Services. The two foundation programs, Puppy Socialization and Life Skills, run in a “modular” enrolment format and are constantly on the calendar (see below). Students may join these classes at any time. Specialty classes are offered routinely and on a rotating basis. Use the drop-down menu to view more information on the program that most interests you.

How do “Mix and Match”/modular classes work?

Click here for full details on how this unique and flexible enrolment works – including booking, cancellation and puppy class age limits.

When do group classes run?

Foundation group classes run constantly in several time slots each week, Monday/Wednesday/Saturday. Viewing the Orientation Webinar is required in advance of joining class. Specialty Class start dates are specified on each webpage.

What happens when the school is closed?

All scheduled closures, for example holidays and continuing education events, will be blocked off on the schedule and noted on the side menu on the webpage.

Individuals affected will be contacted if there’s an unscheduled closure. The unique and flexible enrolment format means you’ll always be able to make up classes.

Do you cancel classes in bad weather?

Very rarely! Unless the roads are dire (e.g. heavy freezing rain), classes will run. All students affected will be contacted when this is the case. If you haven’t heard from the office, assume classes will run.

How do I find out more about a program?

You will find detailed descriptions on each program in the Group Class drop down menu in the side menu bar.

Do you offer a guarantee?

In order to remain in compliance with the CCPDT Code of Ethics, I do not offer a guarantee.  A trainer teaches an owner how to train their dog; thus, asking a trainer for a guarantee isn’t asking for a guarantee on training methods, it’s asking for a guarantee on the one’s own behaviour inasmuch as it affects the dog. A guarantee is simply a marketing tactic – buyer beware!

What is the owner’s role in training?

Your role is invaluable! Your job will be to assure that you understand the information given to you and adhere to the training protocols laid out for you and your dog. The most successful owner is engaged, actively listens and assimilates information, asks lots of on-topic questions and requests clarification when necessary, frequently gives and requests feedback, and is overall an active partner in training. I want to work with you to help you and your dog – your dog and I can’t do it without you!

What methods of training do you use in group classes?

Respect for the dog’s physical, mental and emotional well-being is a top priority in any training at Scratch and Sniff Canine Services. Positive Reinforcement refers to a type of consequence: offering the dog something they want in order to increase the frequency of a behaviour. This is not a bribe because the dog is not shown up-front the “thing” they want. Consequences occur after the behaviour has happened, as opposed to a lure (or “bribe”) which is used in order to prompt a behaviour. Lures have their place, however must be used properly and must be faded out of training as soon as possible.

In class, students will learn how to “shape” behaviour, to properly use and fade a lure, to add a cue (the word “sit” for example), to capture behaviour, to properly reinforce a behaviour and to effectively manage and prevent reinforcement for undesirable behaviours. Rather than resorting to corrections to stop unwanted behaviours, owners will be coached thorough how to effectively teach an incompatible behaviour that will have the added benefit of preventing unwanted behaviours (for example, a dog cannot simultaneously sit and jump). Specific behaviours or issues addressed in each class are detailed on program webpages, found in the drop down menu above.