Diamonds in the Ruff
Can I skip a grade?
The simple answer is, no, you probably shouldn't.
Why not? Because there are probably important pieces of your dog's foundation training that you have missed by not having attended a Diamonds in the Ruff beginning class.
If he's never been in a group class, he should start in the beginning level.
Even if he can follow cues in your kitchen, he's never been asked to while surrounded by other dogs and their families in an unfamiliar environment. Learning to focus on you and settle in a group setting will take time. In the beginning class you will learn how to help your dog settle and relax so he can learn.
He took a class with his previous owner, just not with me.
You need to catch up and learn what he knows and how he learned it.
We attended a beginning class at another school.
If it was a positive reinforcement (reward based, not correction based) training school and you attended together, you may skip beginning and go on to Intermediate Prep. However, you may wish to purchase a copy of our handbook to fill in any information you may have missed. Add a student handbook for $15.
Beginning classes cover:
The philosophy of positive reinforcement training, selection and use of rewards, and the timing of a verbal marker "yes!"
The dog learns how to make "yes!" happen and how to work to earn rewards. He learns how to feel comfortable working in a busy classroom.
The handler learns how to redirect and keep his dog's focus around distractions.
Dog and handler learn hand signals and verbal cues for sit, down, stand, come, wait, settle on your mat, off, leave-it and intro to loose leash walking. [What will we learn?]