Puppy preschool provides an important foundation for a puppy’s behaviour, as well as a fun environment in which you and your little one can bond. At the Illawarra Animal Hospital, we run classes for 8- to 28-week old puppies. These formative months are the perfect time for your new best friend to learn how to interact in a friendly and confident way with other dogs and people.

Here are the 7 key benefits that cover everything you need to know about puppy preschool before you enrol.

1. Early learning

Puppies are very accepting of new experiences, so puppy preschool — think of it as kindergarten for dogs — is the ideal training environment for puppies of this age. It’s a joy to watch as your puppy becomes comfortable around other dogs of different shapes, sizes and furs, and learns social skills about pricked and droopy ears, submissive rollovers, and the wag of tails up and down. Learning the universal body language of dogs aids your puppy’s development in confidence and ease around other dogs, avoiding fear and aggression later on.

2. Bite suppression

It’s normal and healthy for a puppy to bite as it learns how to use its jaws, regulating whether it needs to bite harder or softer, in both play and when eating food. Puppies are the best teachers for each other in this and puppy preschool provides the perfect environment to learn when and how to suppress their bite, as they play.

3. Essential social skills

Puppies love to play and can become over-excited. Our teachers will help you to train your puppy in how to sit, settle, stay, drop, walk on a leash, toilet and show manners around food. We make it a fun learning experience for puppies, with games that help educate the little ones.

4. Preventing future problems

Our puppy school teachers are skilful in teaching your pet good manners, minimising any distressing future behaviours such as out-of-control barking, digging, jumping and chewing. Our experienced vets are also here to aid you in diagnosing any abnormal health-related problems that may be impacting your puppy’s training and development.

5. You are learning as well


The hidden benefit is that you are learning as well – how to communicate with your puppy, how to understand your pet’s responses, how to continue the training at home. Plus, you can ask questions and join in discussions with our friendly puppy-loving instructors.

6. How best to handle and restrain


Your puppy needs to learn that there are times when they need to behave and stay calm and restrained in social situations. This may be for grooming, a vet examination, or perhaps in a situation where your puppy is stressed. We show you the best way to achieve this.

7. Structured, streamlined sessions to fit in with busy lifestyles


You and your puppy will attend a one-hour class, once a week for four weeks, making the course easy to integrate with your regular routines. Be ready for lots of information and lots of laughs! The skills gained during these sessions will last you and your puppy a lifetime.

At the Illawarra Animal Hospital Puppy Preschool, we run small, intimate classes, a maximum of six puppies, all with at least their first vaccination, and we welcome your fur babies to join in with the fun and the learning. Contact us for further information or to make a booking.