Puppy Academy is a 4-week puppy school course, carefully designed for puppies from 6 to 14 weeks of age. We are running our classes in Baldivis, Golden Bay and Mandurah in Western Australia.
Why Choose Us?
Our puppy school has been designed by Dr Cathy Lau (BSc BVMS), an experienced veterinarian with extensive evidence-based knowledge of canine behaviour. As such, Dr Cathy and our Instructors Rehina, Kristy and Emily, use modern and ethical techniques to ensure your puppy has the best start to life.
At Positive Elements, we are passionate about creating the best experience for you and your puppy!
Key Learning Experiences:
Good social skills: Your puppy will learn to watch and listen to other dogs, respond, and interact appropriately
Socialisation: We will show you how to socialise your puppy safely and appropriately to prepare them for life living with humans
Emotional self-control: Your puppy will learn to regulate their emotions, ensuring they are calm and enjoyable to spend time with
Impulse control: Teaching your puppy to be calm and polite
Confidence: We will introduce your puppy to a variety of environmental stimulation in a way that builds their confidence
Canine body language: We will teach you to understand what your puppy is communicating
Communication: We will teach you how to respond to your puppy to create clear communication and understanding
Building relationships: We will teach you how to build trust with your puppy and create a lasting bond where they look to you for guidance
Appropriate training methods: We will show you how to apply the methods taught in puppy school in the future when issues may arise, or if you wish to teach your puppy new behaviours
We understand that every puppy and household is different. In addition to foundation techniques and knowledge, we customise your learning experience to you and your puppy. For this reason, we ask clients to complete a one page questionnaire before commencing the course to enable us to help you achieve your goals.
We keep class sizes small so you and your puppy will receive guidance and hands on assistance where required. At the end of each class, we provide homework checklists to simplify practice at home.
Course materials and homework
At the end of each class, you will receive a homework checklist.
At Positive Elements Behaviour Vet, we are committed to environmental policy and as such, course material is provided digitally.
What do I need to bring to the class?
A mat, a bed, or a crate that your puppy likes
Your puppy should wear a collar or harness and be tethered to a fixed length lead (no retractable leads). The standard 1.2 to 1.8 metre leads are suitable
Some dog food that your puppy is familiar with and likes
Some high value treats such as dry liver and cheese
A treat bag or pocket
A picnic mat
Dip VN, Post Grad Vet Tech
Rehina is a Veterinary Nurse with 12 years' experience in the field. She has run puppy school for many years. She has worked in emergency, general practice and even training of future Veterinary Nurses! Rehina is currently working in a practice where fear-free and low-stress handling are very important. She also loves giving pet-parents and puppies with the best advice and techniques to set them up for life-long success.
Rehina runs Puppy Academy classes in Baldivis.
Kristy is a Qualified and Registered Veterinary Nurse with over 10 years experience working with companion animals in veterinary hospitals. This experience has led to Kristy taking an interest in canine behaviour and researching different ways to lower their stress levels not only in a veterinarian setting but also in their homes. Kristy has a deep understanding of canine body language and animal handling techniques. She is an advocate for ensuring that all dogs have a happy and healthy life that allows their personalities to shine through.
Kristy runs Puppy Academy classes in Mandurah.
Emily is a Qualified Veterinary Nurse who is a massive advocate for animal wellbeing. She has a passion for canine training and is experienced in running puppy school classes and also training others in the field. Emily believes in helping owners build an unbreakable bond with their pets to ensure a happy and enjoyable life together. She will ease any frustration of training your dog and make it a fun and enjoyable experience for you both using positive training techniques and bonding exercises.
Emily runs Puppy Academy classes in Golden Bay.
At what age do you recommend puppies begin Puppy Academy?
Your puppy should begin Puppy Academy as soon as they arrive in their new home. For most puppies, they are usually 8 weeks old at this time. Puppies learn essential social skills from their mother and littermates in the first 8 weeks of life. If your puppy left the litter earlier, do not wait to attend Puppy Academy as limited positive social interactions at this age can have a detrimental effect upon future behaviour.
When your puppy arrives, they begin to learn and form habits. Every interaction they have with you and their environment results in learning. Coming to Puppy Academy will help you and your new puppy to develop a foundation of good habits and behaviours.
The most important period for socialising your puppy is the first 4 months of their life. The experiences that they have during this time are incredibly influential upon their developing personality and ability to interact with the world. As such, it is very important for puppies to have regular, positive social experiences during this period to help prevent the development of behaviour problems. An under socialised puppy may develop irreversible fears which can lead to timidity or aggression. It is important to remember that socialisation does not end at 4 months, and continued exposure to a variety of people, animals and environments is essential to maintaining good social skills.
How long is the course?
The course lasts 5 weeks, with one class per week.
It is important to remember that socialisation and learning does not end at 4 months, and continued exposure to a variety of people, animals and environments is essential to maintaining good social skills.
Does my puppy have to be fully vaccinated?
Puppies at our Puppy Academy have received at least 1 vaccination. Most puppies receive their first vaccination at 6-8 weeks of age and have completed vaccination by 10-16 weeks (depending on your veterinarian’s policy). Evidence has shown that the benefits of socialisation far outweigh the risks of catching an infectious disease as long as proper hygiene precautions are taken.
Please contact us if you have any concerns surrounding your puppy’s vaccination status.
I have attended puppy school in the past with a previous puppy – can I train my new puppy at home? Do we need to attend Puppy Academy?
Our understanding of canine behaviour constantly evolves as new scientific evidence is discovered. As this happens, we update and improve our training approach and techniques. As such, what you were taught a few years ago may now be outdated. Choosing a puppy school and instructors that practice using a modern, evidence-based approach is incredibly important. Additionally, exposure to different people, dogs and environmental stimuli during Puppy Academy is a valuable experience for your puppy. All interactions are supervised and instructors will intervene if needed to ensure each interaction is a positive experience for your puppy.