Ohio ó The first night of a puppy class can be hectic
as excited little ones age 8 weeks to 4 months begin to
learn acceptable behavior and how to properly socialize
with other dogs.
for two 10-week-old pups, it was a night of
rediscovering the kinship of being littermates.
owners of two Labrador retriever-mix pups were shocked
at the resemblance of the two canines when they arrived
at Pappís Dog Services in Akron, Ohio, recently for
their first puppy class.
have to be brother and sister," remarked Pappís
owner Susan Jenkins, who has more than 30 years of
experience in animal obedience training.
a little sleuthing, pet parents Naomi and James Bryant
and Pat Doane realized that little Maxx and Roxie came
from the same Barberton, Ohio, home within the last
other remarkable thing is that both sets of owners
realized their puppies needed a few training sessions to
learn how to behave.
getting some "grown-up" help from Jenkinsí
dog Caleb, who has been ranked one of the top obedience
Labrador retrievers in the nation, instructor Jennifer
Durst began the class by talking to owners about what is
considered acceptable behaviors and what they could
expect to learn in the four-week, hour-long sessions.
is the key," Durst told them. When not supervised,
puppies should be in a totally empty crate to prevent
them from choking on toys, blankets or chew strips.
are an earned privilege," said Jenkins. Toys should
be given only while the puppy is supervised to make sure
it canít break off pieces of rubber or fabric, she
the first class, puppies and their owners focused on
behavior issues they are dealing with, such as
housebreaking and biting, a puppyís way of
communicating. The joyful pups were having a great time
and had no idea they were actually absorbing new
owners in the class said they were having issues with
housebreaking their pups.
you are supervising your puppy properly, you will pick
up on the signals when they need a potty break,"
a member of Cuyahoga County, Ohioís Public Animal
Welfare Society, explained that getting angry or
frustrated with a misbehaving puppy is
of our goals here is to make your puppy comfortable in
any situation and help you learn to be comfortable,
too," Durst said.
four-week curriculum is geared to helping owners raise
the ideal pet. Jenkins has worked with veterinarians,
vet assistants, groomers and therapy dog testers for the
Delta Society, the largest national group that certifies
therapy dogs in the U.S., to develop her curriculum.
insists puppies begin learning limited recall ó to
come when called each and every time they are called.
my opinion, (it is) one of the most important things you
can teach a dog," Jenkins said.
wasnít long into the session that Durst and Jenkins
thought it was time for the puppies to take a break from
the classroom and expend some pent-up energy by
introducing them to a strange new game of walking
through a tunnel. Starting with encouragement from their
owners and a treat waiting at the end of the opening,
some of the pups were chasing each other through the
tunnel on their own by the end of the class.
each session, puppies will continue to learn how to get
along with each other as well as the manners they need
to keep their families happy.
who get a good foundation with early training stand a
better chance of a good life. Trained dogs are more
welcome in homes and donít end up abandoned in a
shelter for bad behavior, Jenkins said.
gotten a 5-year-old shepherd that was a biter that would
probably never have gotten to that point if they had
brought him to me sooner," Jenkins said.
much more difficult to recondition that behavior after
an animal has been doing it for a long time," she