Diamonds in the Ruff
Sessions are 4 weeks in length
1-1/2 hour classes, held once per week.
A total of six hours of instruction, includes written beginning handbook & weekly online homework assignments.
Group classes - $175 - Beginning, Intermediate, and Advanced
Discount packages are available!
There are three basic levels of classes offered at Diamonds in the Ruff:
Beginning Classes for dogs of all ages who have not attended a previous group class.
Puppy Preschool, Puppy Kindergarten and Headstart are identical classes, divided by age. We also offer a Beginning all ages class. This is a great option for families who may have a new puppy and want to include their adult dog, too. Choose which beginning class based on your dog's age on the start date of class. Once you complete a beginning class, you will move on to the Intermediate Prep class.
Intermediate Beginning students go on to "Prep" class.
Think of it as part two of your first class where we continue to build on the core exercises taught in the beginning classes. We introduce clicker training. If you have taken a reward-based class at another training school, you may begin classes at the Prep level, although many prefer to start at the beginning.
Advanced Continue to have fun training and expand your dog's skills.
For all intermediate grads and clicker-savvy dogs. Various classes are offered each month. Go here for class descriptions of all of our advanced class offerings.
For dogs with reactivity to other dogs/people we offer private evaluations, behavior modification and one-on-one private training lessons. Please contact us if you have any behavior concerns about your dog around other dogs or people.
Private lessons and behavior modification. One-on-one training for you and your dog. For in-depth help and advice tailored to your specific needs and goals.
Distance Learning. If you are out of area or a group class isn't a good option for you or your dog, we also offer home schooling and online options.
Which beginning class you choose will depend on how old your dog is today.
The beginning classes are identical curriculum, divided by developmental age. Choose the class that best matches your dog's age.
Under 4 1/2 months?
Start in Puppy Preschool or Puppy K
Puppies may begin as early as your veterinarian gives permission. House training, mouthing and optimal socialization are popular topics in Preschool. (If Mondays don't work for you, choose Puppy K!)
Under 6 months?
Start in Puppy Kindergarten
Missed the primary socialization window? Don't wait! Start your puppy in classes right away! Pre-adolescent puppies under 6 months of age start in Puppy Kindergarten. Can't make the Puppy K dates? Start in Headstart.
6 months to adult of any age?
Start in Headstart
The Headstart class is the best place to start if your rowdy adolescent missed puppy class, you have a newly adopted dog, or just want to have fun teaching your family dog new skills, no matter what your future goals.
How early? As early as your veterinarian gives the okay. You will download a veterinary permission slip to be signed by your veterinarian assuring that your puppy is deemed healthy and current on vaccinations. Puppies do not have to have "all their shots" - we leave the advice of what and how many vaccinations up to the expertise of your veterinarian. If you are taking advantage of our Puppy Confidence Building sessions, you may begin the supplemental sessions prior to the start date of your puppy class as long as your vet permission slip is signed. Please contact your veterinarian prior to registering to get their recommendation for when your puppy will be ready to start classes. Article on early puppy socialization.
Beginning level classes are for puppies or adult dogs who have not previously attended a group training class at Diamonds in the Ruff or other training school. If either end of the leash has not attended a group class before, this is the best place to start your training journey. Classes sessions are 4 weeks in length. Week one is people training - dogs do not attend the first week orientation. We will invite a couple of outgoing, hungry dogs who are willing to work with the instructor in front of the class for demonstrations. Please ask if you think your dog would be a good candidate to be a demo dog at orientation.
What will we learn? We will build a foundation of basic skills, focusing on good manners in a group class setting with the distractions of other dogs and people. You will learn how to teach sit, down, stand on hand signal and verbal cue. And of course, come when called, stay, leave-it and sit for petting, plus techniques to build loose leash walking skills. We will use a verbal marker "yes!" to mark appropriate behavior while teaching the dog to work to earn rewards such as attention, praise, petting, food, and access to games and activities the dog wants.
All three of our beginning level classes advance on to the Prep class.
Build on the foundation skills laid in Puppy or Headstart, learn how to shape behavior.
Intermediate class schedule.
Teach your dog to target a mat or bed and stay until released.
Teach any behavior you want. It's all tricks to them!
Moving attention becomes loose leash walking!
Increasing duration, distractions, distance and location.
Problem solving and team work, create a dog who can't wait to train. Put your dog's natural abilities to work!
Raise criteria, create behavior exactly the way you want it.
What will we learn? We will build on the foundation that you laid in your beginning class, adding an amazing communication tool called the clicker to mark behavior. The clicker is a "power tool" when it comes to helping your dog understand exactly what you like about his behavior, so he is better able to give you the perfect response you are looking for. The clicker is not forever, it's for building new behavior, for polishing and perfecting, and getting behaviors cleanly on cue. We will build longer stays, more consistent leash work, attention and will work on expanding beyond food and on to real life rewards. New exercises will be go to bed and stay, fast moving recalls from distraction, leashwork, as well as all-around good manners.
There is a wide selection of classes to choose from for our Prep class grads!
What are your personal goals? Once you have completed the Intermediate Prep class, you may choose from many fun classes to meet your personal goals. Finishing School and Pooches in the Park cover all the basic skills your dog needs to be a great companion. Do you have specific training challenges? Distractable dogs can get extra help in Dastardly Distractions and Control Yourself. Dogs who run away can learn to come when called -even away from distractions- in our Total Recall class. Do you want a dog who will be a joy to take on long walks? Check out Loose Leash Walking and Tails & Trails! Learn the skills necessary to pass the Canine Good Citizen test. If you entertain a lot, the Holiday Manners class is the perfect class for you!
Dogs just wanna have fun! Don't miss the Agility for Fun classes during the summer months, Rally and Tricks classes! Want to learn ways to keep your dog's life more interesting during the winter? Enroll in Scent Games and Brain Games.