E V C P u p p y P r e s c h o o l

We are very proud to offer socialization and training classes for puppies based on the Karen Pryor Puppy Start Right Curriculum. Between the ages of 3-12 weeks, puppies are similar developmentally to a human preschooler. This is the "socialization" period, and is the most influential learning period of a dog's life. The socialization period forms the foundation for all future learning. What dogs are exposed to during this time in a safe and enjoyable fashion, they are far less likely to develop fear or anxiety towards later in life. Think of socialization as a vaccine towards future bad behavior!

Class Organization: Classes are offered on a drop-in basis - any puppy is able to attend anywhere between 1 and 12 classes (if they attended weekly from 7 week to 18 weeks of age), and you can start attending at any time. Each class will include time for off-leash puppy play, exploration stations, training topics, problem prevention topics, and "pass the puppy" time, where puppies get to meet new people and get comfortable being away from their families!

Every class follows a similar outline, but topic material varies every 5 weeks (i.e. there are 5 classes with completely distinct training and problem prevention topics). Training topics include "sit", "stay", "come", loose-leash walking, and more; problem prevention topics include potty training, crate training, independence training and more.

Who should attend? All puppies between the ages of 7 and 18 weeks of age are welcome, though ideally, the puppy should attend their first class before 12 weeks of age. Puppies attending their first class after 12 weeks old are still able to attend, but their participation in the classes will be tailored during playtimes so as not to overwhelm younger puppies.

Health requirements:
- Vaccines: Must have received a distemper/parvo (DAP/DAPP/DHP/DHPP) vaccine 7 days prior to class, and every 3-4 weeks between ages 6-16 weeks; kennel cough vaccine. All vaccines must be administered by a veterinarian - breeder- or self-administered vaccines are not acceptable!
- Parasite control: Must be free of fleas, and have been treated with a dewormer within the last 30 days. It is highly recommended that all puppies be treated with a high-quality flea preventative lasting at least 30 days.
- Must have been examined by a veterinarian and deemed healthy.
- Must be healthy - no excessive coughing, wheezing, running eyes or noses, evidence of diarrhea or vomiting, skin rashes or bald patches, etc. Use your best judgement - socialization is important, but we want to keep our puppies physically healthy as well!

What people should attend? All family members who will be involved in raising the puppy are encouraged to attend - even kids! However, there must be at least 1 adult per puppy, and at least 1 adult per child 8 or younger.

Cost: Single classes cost $15/puppy; a 5-class pass can be purchased for $60/puppy. A FREE copy of the Puppy Start Right: Foundation Training for the Companion Dog (Karen Pryor Clicker Book) is included with the 5 class package!

Schedule: Classes are offered from 4-5pm on Tuesday evenings at Eldora Veterinary Care. If you are able to organize a group of at least 2 family/puppy pairs who are interested in EVC Puppy Preschool class, we would be happy to set up a mutually convenient time for a special class. Cancellations and new class offerings will be announced on the clinic's Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/eldoravet. Classes are limited to 6 puppies.

Registration: In order to register, please call the clinic at (641) 939-7557. Please register at least 1 day prior to class. There is a brief video you will need to watch before you start attending socialization classes - we wil give you information regarding that at registration. We can also add you to our EVC Puppy Preschool Facebook group where we announce upcoming class topics, discuss any issues or questions that arose during class, and make other special announcements.

Orientation Video: If you would like even more information, please take some time to watch our orientation video.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: I want to attend class, but I don't have a puppy! Is that weird? What should I do? A: Not weird at all - who wouldn't want to hang out with puppies for an hour?? We would love to have you! We have 1-2 slots open each class for an "auditor" - someone who attends classes but doesn't bring a puppy. The cost of auditing is $5/person. Just give us a call to register.

Q: Is my puppy too small/large to attend? A: Definitely not! First, it is important to expose puppies to dogs of other shapes and sizes, so we love variety. Second, we take special care during class to make sure puppies are appropriately matched during off-leash time, so that no one gets overwhelmed.

Q: I want to attend, but I can't make it to the scheduled class. Help! A: If you can find 2 other puppies, we could set up a special class for you. If we set up a special class for others, we will announce that on our Facebook page and would be able to accept a few other attendees. Otherwise, rearrange your schedule - puppy socialization is important!

Q: My puppy is scared of her own shadow...and everything else. Is Puppy Preschool right for her? A: Puppy Preschool is made for her. Absolutely, it is right for her, and really especially important. We will go slow and be careful to ensure she stays calm and content during class, and will tailor the experience according to her responses.