Puppy Preschool socialization at Animal Hospital of North Asheville teaches puppies healthy social skills through positive activities aimed at encouraging investigation and interaction in a positive and supervised environment.
*In accordance to regulations to prevent COVID-19, we are unable to hold in hospital Preschool Sessions. We are currently offering Puppy Preschool Support online for puppy families. To sign up, please email us.
The experiences your puppy has between three to sixteen weeks of age form lasting social behaviors. For this reason, it is critical for puppies to have many positive experiences with new people, sights, smells, sounds, and other dogs during this period.
Puppy Preschool classes are designed to help create more of these positive experiences. We'll work with you to socialize your puppy with other people, other puppies, and common situations, and to strengthen your bond with your new best friend at the same time.Puppy Preschool is for puppies who are 8-16 weeks of age and have fulfilled the requirements
Puppy Preschool is open enrollment, meaning you and your puppy can sign up week to week while they are in the age range. Just be sure to contact us ahead of time to book a space in the next available class.
Once signed up, please arrive for your Puppy Preschool session 5 minutes before your session.
The session begins with the puppies practicing “sit” or other focused commands, to let them know they need to be settled before they get to play.
After that, each class has four basic elements.
During puppy-to-puppy socialization, your puppy will meet and get to know other pups of various breeds and sizes and with different play styles.
These interactions will help teach your puppy important canine communication skills, and how to get along with other dogs.
We will introduce you to positive training methods and explain how to teach your pup simple behaviors. Topics include clicker training, leave it/drop it, hand targeting, polite greetings, nail trimming, dental care and more.
For more in depth obedience training, we recommend signing up for a basic manners class with one of these recommended trainers.
We will introduce your puppy to a variety of stimuli, to build confidence, including obstacle courses, different surface textures, people in different costumes, scent games, puzzle toys, household items, sounds and toys.
It is crucial that your puppy meets lots of different, unfamiliar people. Your pup will have the chance to socialize with other puppy parents in a low stress setting.
There is a variety of benefits, both for you and for your dog, ensuring that your puppy is properly socialized from an early age.
With good socialization, your dog will learn how to properly interact with other dogs and humans, as well as how to behave in a variety of social situations. This helps your dog establish healthier relationships with you and his or her canine friends, which leads to a happier life.
As the family of a well socialized dog, you'll have a pet that knows how to behave, that is well adjusted and pleasant to interact with. This will reduce your stress levels and keeps you and your dog safer.
Learning to feel at ease with humans and other dogs, and to understand social cues, will make your dog more confident and relaxed in social situations.
Dogs that know how to behave in social situations are less likely to become scared and bolt, and they are also less likely to have negative interactions with other dogs.
Puppy Preschool is held on Thursday nights the Education Room at Animal Hospital of North Asheville. We have an area for the larger puppies and another area for the smaller puppies. Each class is structured to meet the ages and sizes of the puppies.
We offer weekly sessions from 7:00pm-8:00pm. Depending on the number of puppies who are signed up, we may open an additional class from 5:30-6:30pm on Thursday nights. Each class will have the same topic. When you sign up, you will be given options of what classes are offered with open spaces.
Please have your puppy wear a regular (flat nylon or leather) collar or harness to class. Please keep your puppy on a short four to six-foot leash when entering class until instructed otherwise. Please, no Flexi/retractable leashes, choke collars, chains or shock collars. We will supply treats for positive reinforcement during preschool, but please feel free to bring your puppy's normal food/treats as young puppies may get an upset tummy after new foods.
Each puppy adjusts differently to puppy preschool. Many puppies may be a little shy or even a little overwhelmed at first by all the new puppies and people. This is normal. Your puppy may need to sit on your lap and observe for a while or maybe even for the whole first play session. Please allow your puppy to enter into playing and to explore at his own pace.
At this time AHNA does not offer training sessions. Here is a list of trainers in the surrounding areas that use positive force free methods.
Kim Brophey, CDBC, CPDT-KA, BA
Puppy training packages; behavior consultations (incl. aggression and complex problems); private obedience training; service and therapy dog training, and enrichment. Located: 1 Battle Square, 1-A, (across from the Grove Arcade)
Heather Polechio, CPDT-KA, CTC, FPPE Licensed
Puppy Foundations, Family Paws Education Courses geared to help young families and expectant parents safely navigate life with dogs and young children., Manners and Problem Solving, Rescue/Shelter Dog Support, Enrichment Outings, Behavior Consults (Anxiety, Aggression, Leash Reactivity, Multi-Dog Issues, Handling Problems or Sensitivities (discomfort in areas when being touched, especially at the vet or groomers) Extreme Phobias, Finding Harmonious Balance with Dogs and Children, Quality of Life issues.
Trish McMillan, MSc, CDBC, CPDT-KA
Puppy and dog one-on-one obedience lessons, in-home consultations for dog (fearful, housetraining, separation anxiety, reactivity/aggression to other dogs, aggression towards humans, territorial behavior, resource guarding, handlings issues) and cat behavior problems (litter box, aggression fearful, scratching and more), dog group classes and workshops, in-home board and train, day training, clicker training for dogs and cats, adoption Animal Behavior consulting, socialization and horse behavior issues.
Phone: (828) 575-8373
Caitlin Morrow CPDT-KA, RVT
Behavior Consulting for Dogs & Cats with follow up training, Private Training, Puppy Training, Group Classes, Behavior Modification, Seminars, Workshops, Day Training, Cooperative Care, Consulting and Staff Training for Veterinary Offices. We help owners with Obedience, Manners, Problem Solving, Aggression, Anxiety, Tricks, Nose work, and so much more Serves WNC and Haywood County.
Phone: (828) 565-1050
Dog agility training, dog behavior training available in private lessons by appointment. Group classes offered. Online video training available
Pia Silvani, CPDT-KA, Fear Free Certified Trainer
Private training: cat and dog behavior problems, training, games, socialization training, phone consults.
Offering Group classes at Asheville Humane Society: Puppy Kindergarten (8-16 weeks of age),Canine Manners Course (over 16 weeks of age), Beyond Basic Manners Classes. To sign up: www.eventbrite.com
Phone: : (973) 698-2748