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CLASSES AT KEYSTONE CANINE TRAINING CLUB

Keystone Canine Training Club offers a wide variety of training classes, as listed below.  Not every class is offered every session. Please check Keystone's Class Schedule for the latest information on classes currently offered, and their start dates and times.  Classes are seven weeks unless otherwise stated on the Schedule of Classes. Classes are 50 minutes.  See the Class Prices page for the cost for each class.  Most seven-week classes are $100 for non-members and $30 for members.

Click on the link at the end of this preamble for the suggested sequence of classes to take.

For all classes except "Drop-in" classes, registration and payment are required by the closing date on the homepage for each session of classes.  There is an additional $10 fee if you pay at the door as a walk-in. Drop-ins and walk-ins cannot be accepted if a "FULL" or "WAITLIST" notice is posted on the Class Schedule.  If you walk in, bring your payment and a copy of your dog's vaccination records.  We recommend that you bring own water bowl for your dog. If you bring more than one dog to an obedience class, each dog must have a separate handler.

What is taught in each class will be tailored to the skill level of the majority of dogs in the class.  Enrollment in all classes is subject to the approval of the Instructor.  All puppies and dogs must be up to date on their vaccinations. Proof of vaccinations must be provided to KCTC. 

All dogs must be on leash or crated when not working. For most classes, a six-foot lead is the preferable length.  Also, for most classes, flat buckle, martingale, slip or chain collars, and harnesses may be used. When dogs are actively working during class, the following restrictions apply:  Flexible leashes such as "Flexi-leads" cannot be used, and we discourage the use of prong collars. For Agility classes, only flat buckle collars may be used (for safety). Additional restrictions may apply to specific classes, based on dog safety or competition rules for that venue. If appropriate, your instructor may suggest a collar different from the one you have in order to help you with handling/teaching your dog.

If you have any questions about which is the right class for you and your dog, please call us at 412-833-2211.

Please Click Here for Information on Preparing for Your First Class (PDF)

 

Go to the Forms Page for an Enrollment Form

 

Click here for the KCTC Suggested Sequence of Classes

 


OUR CLASSES:  Below is a list of classes offered in each discipline (Obedience, Agility, or Miscellaneous), with a description of the class, and with prerequisites for each class. 

OBEDIENCE

Puppy Pre-School

This class provides vital socialization to other puppies and people, and offers training in basic obedience exercises.  Well teach you to teach your puppy how to sit, down, come when called, walk nicely on leash, not jump on people, drop items on cue, and stay, as well as exercises to stop that annoying nipping and biting.  Supervised playtime and socialization is part of every class.

Puppies that attend Puppy Pre-School are eligible to be tested for the AKC S.T.A.R. Puppy Award, by demonstrating the skills learned in class.  Please bring a mat or towel for your dog to lie on.

Prerequisites:  Puppies must have had their first set of vaccinations. Pre-School is for pups from 8 to 14 weeks old as of the date of the first class. Only flat buckle collars and harnesses may be used in this class.

Building Puppy Confidence

This class is intended for puppies that are 15 - 24 weeks old.  It will be a mixture of obedience and other activities meant to expose the dog new experiences.  We will use inflatable pods, ladders on the floor, an agility table, and a variety of other things to give the puppies experiences, in a safe environment, that will help them become more confident in new situations.   We will also teach you the beginning of basic obedience to help you get your puppy on the road to becoming a well behaved dog.

Prerequisites:  Puppies must have had their second set of vaccinations.  This class is for pups from 15 to 24 weeks old as of the date of the first class.  Only flat buckle collars and harnesses may be used in this class. Please bring a mat or towel that your dog lies on at home.   

Young Dog Family Manners Obedience

This class is very similar to the Family Manners Foundation obedience class. However, it is for puppies that may not be ready for more dominant adult dogs in a regular basic obedience class. Please bring a small blanket or mat or towel for your dog to lie on.

Prerequisites:  Puppies must have had their second set of vaccinations and be at least 24 weeks old but 12 months old or less as of the date of the first class.  Only flat buckle collars and harnesses may be use in this class.

Family Manners Obedience

This class will teach your dog basic obedience, and how to be a welcome and appreciated home companion.  This course is many dogs' first experience with formal training.  The material that dogs and handlers learn in this class is the foundation upon which any further obedience, agility, or other training class builds.  We cover basic commands such as "Sit," "Stay," "Down," "Come When Called," "Walk on a Leash Without Pulling," "Do Not Jump on People" and "Pay Attention to Your Handler."

Prerequisites:  Dogs must be at least one year old.

Family Manners Obedience II

Family Manners II is designed for dogs and their handlers who have completed a Family Manners I Obedience course at KCTC and who already know sit, down, stand, stay, come, and heel.   The course is intended for those dogs and handlers that aren't quite ready for Family Manners III, but need something more challenging than repeating Family Manners I.   Approximately half of the class time is devoted to improving and polishing the basic skills. The other half is devoted to learning new skills, while introducing competition basics for obedience, rally obedience, or CGC testing.

Prerequisites:  Family Manners Obedience I at KCTC, or equivalent 6 or 7-week class.  If you are not sure about a previous class you have taken, please call us at 412-833-2211.

Canine Good Citizen (CGC), Advanced CGC and Therapy Dog Training

This class concentrates on practicing the skills that are included in the American Kennel Club (AKC) Canine Good Citizen (CGC) test, the Advanced CGC test (called the AKC Community Canine [CGCA] test), and the Therapy Dog International (TDI) test. The CGC, CGCA and TDI tests (optional) are normally given between class sessions, at regular intervals. The CGC and CGCA programs are designed to recognize dogs who have good manners at home and in public. AKC now issues Title Certificates to dogs that pass the CGC and CGCA tests.

The CGC and CGCA part of the class covers ten primary skills. The TDI program includes additional skills such as reactions to children, medical equipment and food.

To receive either AKC or TDI certification, dogs must take the respective AKC and TDI tests.  The test itself is not part of the class.

Prerequisites:  Dogs must be well-mannered around people and other dogs, be under control at all times, must like people, and not jump on people.  Dogs also must have successfully completed a Family Manners Obedience class (or reliably obey the following commands: sit, down, stay, and come).  They must also be able to walk easily on a loose leash.  Prong collars are not allowed in this class.

K9 Etiquette

In this class you will learn in a controlled environment about different situations you and your dog may encounter either in your home or in public. A different theme setting will take place each week. Handlers will learn how to control their dog in each given environment and how certain behaviors can be prevented and managed.

Perquisite:  Must have taken at least a Family Manners I or II class and know how to sit, down, stay, come, and heel.    

Obedience Reinforcement

This class is for the dog/handler team who have learned the basics of obedience (sit, down, stand, stay, recall, heeling) but would like to go on, either for competition or to improve the behavior of the family pet.  The class is based on the skill level and goals of the participants.   It is not meant to replace Family Manners I or II but to build on the skills learned in those classes.  The basics commands are not taught in this class. 

Prerequisite:  Family Manners II

Family Manners Obedience III

Family Manners III is designed for dogs and their handlers who have completed a Family Manners II Obedience course at KCTC and who already know targeting, sit, down, stand, come, heel and stay for at least 45 seconds. This course is intended to come after Basic Obedience II but before Novice Obedience for those dogs and handlers that aren't quite ready for Novice but need something more challenging than repeating Basic II.   Approximately half of the class time is devoted to improving and polishing those skills.   The other half is devoted to learning new skills such as off leash heeling, while introducing competition basics for obedience and rally obedience. Bring a 6-foot leash.

Prerequisites:  Family Manners Obedience II at KCTC

Games and More Games

This is a fun (and educational) class for dogs who want to use their obedience skills in a fun and challenging way.  This class will have a variety of games each night to let you to have fun while improving your obedience skills.

Prerequisite:  Family Manners Obedience II at KCTC

AKC Beginners Novice, Pre-Novice, and Novice Obedience (Companion Dog [CD])

This class will build upon and expand your knowledge of Basic Obedience and prepare you to compete in AKC Novice, Beginner Novice and Pre Novice Trials, including understanding the AKC Rules and Regulations. Dog and handlers will need a strong understanding of advanced obedience skills such as on and off leash heeling, 60 second sit-stays, three minute down-stays, off leash recalls, and sit/stand for exam. We will also build on exercises such as Off Leash Heeling, Recalls, Fronts, Finishes, and Group Stays to prepare for Novice Level competition. You will also learn proofing exercises that you can do at home to help ensure that your dog understands commands.

Prerequisites:  Dog and handler teams must possess a strong working knowledge of the skills taught in Family Manners II (see above).   If you have not completed this class, you must obtain instructor approval prior to enrolling.  Dog/Handler teams are not required to be on a competition path provided they possess the required skills.  

AKC Open Obedience

The AKC Open Obedience Class is intended for dogs and handlers who would like to work for their AKC Open/CDX title.  In addition to the Novice level skills, this class will introduce students to retrieving, jumping, and out-of-sight stays.

There are two classes offered:  Class 1 is a drop-in class, and the cost is $10 per class.  Class 1 is offered most weeks, but check the homepage for specific dates.  Class 2 is a regular 7-week class.

Prerequisites:  Family Manners II and AKC Novice level skills, but a Novice title is not required

Introduction to AKC Utility Obedience

The Introduction to AKC Utility Obedience Class is intended for dogs and handlers who would like to work for their AKC Pre-Utility (PUTD) or Utility (UD) title.  In addition to the Open level skills, this class will introduce students to signal exercises, moving stand and exam, scent discrimination, directed retrieving, and directed jumping.

This is a regular 7-week class, not a drop-in class. 

Prerequisites:  AKC Open level skills, but an Open title is not required.

Rally Obedience Classes (AKC and WCRL)

Rally allows the dog and handler to proceed at their own pace through a course of designated stations.  Each station has a sign providing instructions regarding the next skill that is to be performed. Scoring is not as rigorous as traditional obedience and a perfect "heel position" is not required.  Handlers are permitted to talk and encourage but may not touch the dog or make physical corrections.  Rally is for any level of dogs.  We have separate AKC and WCRL (formerly APDT) classes.

Prerequisite for AKC Rally:  KCTC Family Manners II class (or comparable skills).

Prerequisites for WCRL Rally:  For Level 1: Family Manners II class (or equivalent).  For Level 2/3:  WCRL Rally Level 1 class.

AGILITY

Foundations of Agility I

This class is for dogs with no prior agility experience, and is intended to introduce this fun sport to you and your dog. It will work on focus, control, and motivation, with groundwork for motion and turns. It will also introduce many of the obstacles used in agility, such as jumps, tunnels, tire, and table. 

 Prerequisites:  Dogs must be non-aggressive and must have successfully completed a Family Manners I Obedience class.

Foundations of Agility II

This class continues to work on focus, control, and motivation, and adds more work on obstacle familiarity.

Prerequisite:  Foundations of Agility I, or instructor approval.

Teeters and Weaves

This class is for dogs who wish to learn or improve their teeter and weave pole performance.

Prerequisites:  Dogs must be at least one year old and have completed Foundations of Agility II (or have taken Foundations of Agility I at least twice), unless otherwise approved by the Instructor. 

Sequencing with Dog Walk and A-Frame

This class will highlight the Dog Walk, A-Frame, and the Single, Double, Triple, and Broad jumps.  It is designed to improve the dogs agility to do these obstacles, as well as learning to complete short sequences.  The Teeter and Weave Poles will not be used in this class.

Prerequisites:  Dogs must be at least one year old, and must have taken Foundations of Agility II.

Beginners Agility

This class is intended to provide additional sequencing instruction in agility for dogs who are reasonably proficient with all obstacles.

Prerequisites:  Dogs must be at least one year old and must have successfully completed a Family Manners Obedience class, and both the Teeters and Weaves and Sequencing with Dog Walk and A-Frame classes, or demonstrate to the Instructor a reasonable proficiency in running short sequences with all obstacles. 

Intermediate Agility

This class is intended to provide intermediate level instruction for dogs who have successfully completed the Beginners Agility class, are familiar with all the obstacles, and can work off leash. It will introduce dogs to multiple-obstacle sequences.

Prerequisites:  Dogs must be at least 15 months old and must have successfully completed the Beginners Agility class. 

Flatwork Agility Competition Handling (replacing Flatwork I and II)

This class is intended to answer the question What do I need to do between obstacles? It is also intended for teams that are interested in competition trialing. We will be working on call offs, acceleration, deceleration, forward and lateral sends, along with incorporating front, rear and blind crosses. It will be a fast paced class with jumps, tunnels, barrels and weave poles. Bring your running shoes and get ready to take your team to the next level.

Prerequisites:

Dogs must be able to run a numbered course, must have taken at least a years worth of agility classes including Intermediate Agility and intend to (or have) competed in agility trials. Attendance is subject to the approval of the instructor, after observing the skill of the dog and handler.

*** CLASS STRUCTURE CHANGES ***

     a.)  Only one dog per handler is permitted during each class. You may alternate dogs     from week to week with prior approval from the instructor and provided all dogs meet   the prerequisites.

     b.)   Crating within the training ring vicinity is to be used for dogs taking the class. Additional dogs that you may have brought with you because they were in a class before  or after this one are to be crated in the back rooms or back hallway. If a dog that is taking the class BARKS EXCESSIVELY  you will be asked to crate that dog in another room. 

 Alphabet Drills (Regular or Beginners)

This class concentrates on handling skills using mostly jumps arranged in the shape of the letters of the alphabet.  A fun approach to handling! 

Prerequisite:  Beginners Agility (for Regular), or Foundations of Agility II (for Beginners).

Advanced Agility

This class is for dogs that are proficient on all obstacles, and must be able to run a multi-obstacle sequence.  This is a competition-level class, intended for dogs competing at the Masters or Premier level.

Prerequisites:  Dogs must be at least 15 months old and must have successfully completed an Intermediate Agility class (or equivalent), and must be capable of running a multi-obstacle agility sequence. This class is intended for dogs that are competing at the AKC Master or Premier level, or their equivalents in other venues.  In addition to typical Masters course features, it will include more challenging features such as threadles, back-side jumps, pull-throughs, layering, challenging weave pole entries, and longer running passes. 

Prerequisite:  Intermediate Agility

Agility Games

This is a fun class is for dogs that are reasonably proficient on most obstacles off-lead. Each week, a different agility game sequence is set up, to simulate the types of games used in agility venues such as CPE, NADAA, or TDAA (Teacup) competitions.  In addition to the agility skills used in regular agility classes, this class will address strategy for point accumulation; rules as they apply to specific games, and planning your sequences to maximize your score.

Prerequisites:  Dogs must be at least 15 months old and must have successfully completed a Basic Obedience class and a Beginners Agility class.

Teacup Agility

This class is for little dogs (under 17" high), and will use official Teacup equipment (smaller than regular agility equipment). It is intended for both an active Teacup trialing team or for the team who just wants to have a lighthearted approach to agility for their little pooch.

Prerequisites:  Dogs must be at least 15 months old and must have successfully completed a Family Manners Obedience class and a Foundations of Agility II class. 

MISCELLANEOUS

Canine Conditioning

This class will show you how to improve your dogs fitness, through a combination of balance, strength, endurance, and stretching.  The goals are to help your dog achieve health at any age or stage of life, get body systems working at optimal levels with conditioning, improve body awareness, maintain mobility, decrease risk of injury, build confidence, and improve quality of life. It is for all dogs, not just those who compete in strenuous activities.

Prerequisites:  Family Manners Obedience I at KCTC

Gym Night

This class is for dogs who have previously taken the Canine Conditioning class and would like to continue to practice the exercises taught in that class.  It is intended to improve your dogs fitness, through a combination of balance, strength, endurance, and stretching.

Prerequisites:  Both the dog and handler must have previously taken the Canine Conditioning class at KCTC.

Conformation and Introduction to Conformation

The Conformation Class is designed to prepare both handler and dog for the show ring. Come and learn how to properly show your dog for conformation. It is an ongoing drop-in class.  The Introduction class is a 5-week class for dogs and/or handlers who have little or no previous experience with conformation competition.  You will learn about the basics of conformation, what classes to enter, individual ring procedures for handling your dog, and the point system for working up to a championship. It is by appointment only. If you are interested in the Introduction to Conformation class, please send an email to info@keystonecanine.com.

Prerequisites:  None

Beginning Scent Work

This class focuses on teaching you how to encourage and develop your dogs natural scenting abilities by using their desire to hunt and their love of toys, food and exercise.  Its a great class for your dog to have fun, build confidence, and burn lots of mental and physical energy.   

Only flat buckle collars and harnesses that are not designed to prevent pulling are permitted in this class. 

Bring a long leash (10 feet is recommended). 

Bring lots of high value treats. Its recommended that you not feed your dog before class.

All dogs must be crated during class until it is their time to work.  Owners can bring their own crate or use one already at KCTC. 

Please come prepared to learn by participation, observation and class discussion. Only 1 dog working at a time.

Due to the nature of this training, handlers may need to expect to repeat levels until their team is ready to move on.  We do not send teams on if they are not ready. 

Students will be required to purchase a nose work kit by the second class. Your instructors will provide you with information about this purchase.

The class is limited to one dog per handler.

Prerequisites Dogs must be at least four months old and must have had all their shots.

Intermediate Scent Work

This class advances the dogs scent discrimination skills taught in the basic scent work class.  All dogs are taught to identify the same scent, a natural essential oil.  Additionally, we introduce techniques and tactics for building better dog/handler teamwork.  

Only flat buckle collars and harnesses that are not designed to prevent pulling are permitted in this class. 

Bring a long leash (10 feet is recommended). 

Bring lots of high value treats. Its recommended that you not feed your dog before class.

All dogs must be crated during class until it is their time to work.  Owners can bring their own crate or use one already at KCTC. 

Please come prepared to learn by participation, observation and class discussion. Only 1 dog working at a time.

Due to the nature of this training, handlers may need to expect to repeat levels until their team is ready to move on.  We do not send teams on if they are not ready. 

The class is limited to one dog per handler.

Prerequisites:  Beginning Scent Work or instructor approval.

Advanced Scent Work

This class is for dogs that have completed the Intermediate Scent Work class and have met minimum proficiency in finding their initial target odor. This class will continue to develop handler skills and will introduce the teams to additional target odor(s). 

Only flat buckle collars and harnesses that are not designed to prevent pulling are permitted in this class. 

Bring a long leash (10 feet is recommended). 

Bring lots of high value treats. Its recommended that you not feed your dog before class.

All dogs must be crated during class until it is their time to work.  Owners can bring their own crate or use one already at KCTC. 

Please come prepared to learn by participation, observation and class discussion. Only 1 dog working at a time.

Due to the nature of this training, handlers may need to expect to repeat levels until their team is ready to move on.  We do not send teams on if they are not ready. 

The class is limited to one dog per handler.

Prerequisites:  Intermediate Scent Work class or or instructor approval.

Exterior and Vehicle Nose Work

This class is given in the summer months only, in South Park. The instructor will email directions to the grove we will be using for each class. Searches will be outside on uneven ground and in parking lots for vehicle searches. If there should be inclement weather you will be notified 2 hours before class, and the class will meet at the KCTC building. The class is limited to 10 dogs, and is limited to one working dog per person.

Prerequisite:  This class is for intermediate to advanced level dogs. No beginners.

Treibball

Does your dog need a job?  Do you think he might like to herd, but you don't have sheep?  Then Treibball is for you and your dog!  Dogs must "herd" 8 exercise balls from the center of an area, driving them into a net or "pen" within a designated time period.  It is great physical and metal stimulation for any dog, not just herding breeds!  Lessons will start with teaching your dog to move away from you to a mat, then learning to push one ball towards you.  It is good training problem solving for the owner too!  

Prerequisites: Family Manners I. Your dog should be able to work off leash in an area with other dogs and have a good sit, down, stay and come.  

Tricks Class

Yes you can teach old (or younger) dog new tricks!  This class will teach you and your dog how to perform a number of tricks from simple to difficult (for the more experienced dogs).  This is a fun class and offers a lot of exercise for you and your dog.  Students may choose to attend the seven week class just for fun or to earn dog tricks titles during the classes.  We start with basic obedience skills; then introduce tricks using no props and finally practice tricks using a variety of props such as hoops, target sticks/mats, tap lights, pianos, platforms, etc.  A variety of props will be available to each student to use or you can bring your own.

Prerequisites:  Dog and handler must have successfully completed a Family Manners I and/or Family Manners II Obedience class at KCTC, unless approved by the instructor.  Some experience in agility is essential for proper execution of higher level tricks.

Intro to Flyball

This class is designed for the inexperienced dog and/or handler. The class will receive an introduction to flyball box work and jumps, foundation games, motivation and safety, all in a positive learning environment.


Prerequisites: Family Manners I.  Bring soft treats and a harness for your dog.

Revision 4-25-16