PET TRAINING: Puppy Kindergarten:For puppies eight weeks to five months of age. Don't believe the old cliche which advises waiting until your dog is six months or a year old before starting to train him! Doing so will only lead to a young adult dog with unstructured behavior and many problems which could have been avoided. By starting your puppy early, you will establish proper behavior right from the start. In this class, puppies are taught to walk on a leash, sit, come, down, stand, and stay. They will also learn to socialize with one another, an important but often neglected part of proper canine development. This class makes the puppy's first introduction to obedience training non-stressful and fun. Housebreaking and problem behaviors also will be addressed. Beginners:For dogs over five months of age with no formal training. This class will cover controlled walking and the sit, down, stay, and come commands, as well as dealing with common problem behaviors. Advanced Beginners: For graduates of the Beginners class. This class will further enhance the relationship between dog and owner. The dog's response to commands will become more consistent and reliable, and the training will build up to off-leash recalls and stays. Dog and owner will learn the necessary skills to pass the AKC's Canine Good Citizen test, which is offered periodically at Top Dog. Off-Leash Obedience: For graduates of the Advanced Beginners class. This class focuses on obtaining off-leash control of the dog using the controlled walking, recall, and stay skills which are taught in the Beginners and Advanced Beginners classes. Rally: For graduates of the Advanced Beginners or Off-Leash Obedience class. This class will begin to train dogs and handlers for the American Kennel Club's Rally competitions. This is also a fun class to continue your dog's education even if you don't have any plans to compete! Pet Tricks: This class is a fun addition to your dog's training. It teaches a variety of tricks using motivational methods including clicker training and shaping. It provides an entertaining break for competition obedience dogs, as well as for pet dogs. Give paw, speak, roll over, play dead, beg, crawl, wave, and twist are just some of the tricks covered. This class is typically offered every-other class session. Dog Training for Kids: For children nine years of age and up and their dogs! Therapy Dog Training: For graduates of the Advanced Beginners class. This class will focus on training dogs and handlers for pet therapy. Graduates of Beginners may take this course with the approval of their instructor.
COMPETITION OBEDIENCE CLASSES: Attention and Handling: This class is the foundation for the competition obedience program at Top Dog. All students planning to show their dogs for obedience titles must start here. A six week course on attention will be presented along with distance attention and attention games. Part of the class each night will be spent without the dog, working on handling and footwork (so please bring a crate or plan to leave your dog in the car for the last 15 minutes of class each week). Competition Puppy Class: This class is for handlers with prior competition experience. An excellent start of puppies 8 weeks to five months of age who are destined for competition obedience. Puppies will be introduced to exercises from all levels of obedience training, including the basics of sit, down, and walking, as well as heeling, retrieving, and go outs. Advanced Attention, Heeling and Handling: For dogs working at the Novice II level or above. This is an intensive class which will focus on attention work and distractions in attention exercises and in heeling. At least 15 minutes of each class will be spent working on handling without the dogs. This is a great refresher course for those working in open and utility also! Rally: The suggested prerequisite for this class is the Novice I class, but any dogs who have completed at least the Advanced Beginners class my attend. This class will introduce students to AKC rally competition. Rally is a fun way to begin competing with your dog! Novice I: This class is for graduates of the Attention and Handling class. More emphasis is placed on heeling with attention. Turns and figure eights are introduced. Distance and distractions are increased for recalls and sit and down stays in preparation for off-leash work. Hand signals, the stand, and fronts and finishes are taught. Novice II: The Novice II class takes graduates of Novice I and polishes and prepares them to compete in Novice obedience. Heeling, fronts and finishes, stand-stays, figure eights, and all aspects of Novice obedience will be proofed and polished. Dogs will be working off-leash for recalls and stays. Novice III: The Novice III class, for graduates of Novice II, continues to refine their Novice skills, while beginning to teach Open skills. Novice Ring Prep: This class brings together all of the Novice skills and prepares students to compete in obedience trials. Rules for AKC and UKC Novice classes will be discussed. Tips and strategy for competing in obedience will be presented. Students in this class will be attending match shows. Beginning Open: For dogs with reliable Novice skills. Dogs are introduced to retrieving, jumping, drop on recall and out-of-sight sit and down stays. Open Ring Prep: For dogs who know all of the Open exercises. We will work on proofing and polishing the Open exercises, as well as sequencing exercises for the ring and developing strategies for match shows and obedience trials. Heeling: Heeling class is an intensive half-hour class to proof and polish heeling. The class is geared toward dogs in the Open and Utility classes. Open and Utility: These are advanced classes in competition obedience. They cover such exercises as the retrieve on flat, retrieve over the high jump, the drop on recall, and the broad jump, as well as signals, scent discriminations, the directed retrieve, moving stand, and directed jumping.
Rally Novice/Advanced: This class is for those looking to learn AKC Rally or are ready to compete at the Advance/intermediate level. We will cover Rally rules and the Novice and Advanced signs. It is recommended that students complete the Attention and Handling class prior to taking this class, but any dog who has completed at least the Advanced Beginners or Off Leash class may attend. Rally is a fun way to begin competing with your dog!
Rally Excellent/Master: This class is for those dogs moving on to the Excellent or Masters level of AKC Rally. We will cover those signs as well as strategies to improve in-ring performance.
Agility Classes: Agility consists of many obstacles that dogs are taught to negotiate safely. Obstacles include a tire jump, A-frame, dog walk, seesaw, weave poles, and a pause table. Agility class is offered to dogs who have had off-lead training or have attended a Beginners obedience class. There are three class levels that are offered: Introduction to Agility: An introduction to the sport of Dog Agility for the pet or competition dog or puppy. Skills will be taught with an emphasis on safety. Dogs will be introduced to all of the agility equipment. Beginners is for dogs and owners who are just starting out in the sport of Agility. The dogs are introduced to individual obstacles which instills confidence and develops proper technique. Intermediate-- Levels I, II and III are a progressive series of classes for owners and dogs that have completed a Beginners Agility class. The dogs are taught combinations of obstacles and the owners learn handling techniques. Please check with the instructor and/or training director to determine which class is right for you and your dog. Advanced is for owners and dogs who have completed Intermediate Agility. Handlers and dogs perfect their skills, practice more advanced courses, and prepare for competition.