You want the best for your new best friend, and that means taking care of their growing mind as well as their growing body!
Level Up's positive puppy training classes can help build good manners that will last a lifetime. Start off learning foundation skills like come, sit and leave it, then work up to more advanced skills as training progresses.
Puppyhood is also the perfect time to address any common behavior problems like play-biting, inappropriate chewing, potty accidents and jumping on people.
Our curriculum is formulated exclusively for young puppies with their developmental needs in mind. We welcome puppies of all breeds and sizes from age eight weeks to six months old in any of our puppy programs. (But we offer a full range of training classes for dogs over six months old too!)
Veterinarians and trainers agree that early, positive socialization is crucial for a puppy’s development. For owners who want the socialization value of a puppy kindergarten without traveling to a group obedience class, Level Up's in-home training courses bring socialization and enrichment to you.
Ready to choose the right training program for your puppy?
Level Up's initial Puppy Training Consultation is absolutely free. You can meet our trainer, learn more about Level Up's puppy class options and ask questions about your dog's behavior.
Or learn more about our programs below:
We understand that each puppy and family face unique training challenges. That's why we've designed multiple puppy training programs to fit a wide range of needs, ensuring that every family can find a plan that fits.
Our Most Popular Program
The Best Value Over Time
Our Deluxe Training Program
Top 5 Benefits Of Level Up's Puppy Training Programs:
Puppies can start training at a very young age. Level Up safely teaches puppies from age six weeks to six months with age-appropriate vaccinations. But don't just take our word for it -- ask these puppy socialization experts!
Veterinarians specializing in behavior recommend that owners take advantage of every safe opportunity to expose young puppies to the great variety of stimuli that they will experience in their lives. Enrolling in puppy classes prior to three months of age can be an excellent means of improving training, strengthening the human-animal bond, and socializing puppies in an environment where risk of illness can be minimized.
-- The American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior
Position Statement on Puppy Socialization
Socialization should include gently exposing a puppy to new people and other safe vaccinated healthy dogs on a daily basis with numerous sights, sounds smells and textures (pavement, grass, sand, gravel, etc.) including children of various ages. Puppy Socialization should always be a fun process that is always free of any force.
-- The Pet Professional Guild
Position Statement on Puppy Socialization
Because we believe in rewarding good behavior on both ends of the leash. You deserve a treat for starting puppy training early!
Puppy Socialization Checklist
Worried that you will miss a critical element in your puppy's socialization plan? We can fix that! Level Up will work with you to create a rock-solid socialization plan for your puppy to make sure you cover all your bases.
Unlimited Lifetime Support
Five minutes later or five years later, we're here to help. Level Up offers unlimited training support by email for current students and graduates. If you need to troubleshoot something we covered in your lessons, we can help!
Access To Our Training Library
Customized homework handouts, free training tracker templates, potty training schedules, educational infographics and more! Students have access to all of Level Up's articles and handouts, as well as customized homework plans.
Natalie Bridger Watson, CPDT-KA has worked with more than a thousand different dogs in the past eight years, spanning nearly every age, size and temperament imaginable! She is proud to be a full member of the Pet Professional Guild and one of only two Certified Professional Dog Trainers serving Jacksonville, NC.
As a passionate all-around dog nerd, Natalie loves any excuse to dive into the nitty-gritty science behind positive reinforcement dog training! She travels the east coast for dog sports and training competitions with her four dogs, competing in Barn Hunt, Nosework, Lure Coursing, Tricks, Dog Parkour and more. She shares her life with Haven (australian shepherd), Indi (shetland sheepdog), Pan (belgian tervuren) and Bright (german shepherd/belgian malinois mix).
Still have questions? We have answers!
The answer to this is almost always yes. If your puppy is over six weeks old and under six months old (26 weeks), they are welcome in puppy classes. If they are currently over six months old, they are already eligible for our adolescent and adult dog classes.
Since we offer only private training classes and the majority are held in the owner's home, the risk of infectious disease is very low.
We follow the American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior's position, which means that Level Up requires all puppies to have at least one round of vaccines at least seven days before the first lesson. Puppies must stay up-to-date on vaccines throughout their enrollment. North Carolina law requires us to collect proof of rabies vaccination for any puppy over 16 weeks.
If you have concerns about your puppy's health while attending training class, always consult your veterinarian.
Typically 1-2 hours.
Ideally, all adults in the home should be present for in-home training lessons in the Real-World Ready Program and the Superstar Puppy Unlimited Pass. In these programs, we teach you to train your dog, so you do need to be present.
In our Walk-And-Train programs, we will train your dog while you are busy or at work -- you do not need to be present during our regular Walk-And-Train lessons. Once a week, we will have a Mini Lesson (typically 30-60 minutes) to go over what your dog has learned and show you how to maintain the training.
Children are welcome in lessons at the parents' discretion. Please have a backup plan if they begin to disrupt the lesson.
Other pets are often a difficult distraction for a young puppy who is trying to focus on their lesson. Please have a plan for where your other dogs will be while we train (e.g. in another room, crated, in the yard, with another family member).
Level Up trains with positive reinforcement. The main tools in our training "arsenal" are food, toys, play, praise, a clicker and a solid understanding of learning theory.
Unlike many other Jacksonville-area trainers, Level Up can proudly guarantee that we will never recommend choke, prong or shock collars for any of our client dogs, at any stage of their training, period. (Not sure if the other trainer you're looking at falls into this category? Be sure to ask explicitly).
Typically 5-10 minutes a day for most homework games, in addition to your 1-2 hour weekly lessons with Level Up.
We do not believe it is ethical to place performance guarantees on the behavior of another living creature -- in fact, we would lose our training certification due to unethical conduct if we did.
Why? Simply put, we can't guarantee that you will do your homework or that your puppy's brain and body are healthy. The only person whose behavior we can guarantee is our own.
Things we can happily guarantee:
-- We will use only force-free, positive training methods with you and your puppy. We will never recommend training methods that require you to startle, frighten, yell at, pinch, push, strike, jerk, shock ("stim," "tickle," "tap"), hold down, scruff shake, alpha roll or "dominate" your puppy.
-- You will have access to lifetime email support for any follow-up questions after your training program.
-- We will always pursue continuing education in order to stay up-to-date on the most current behavioral science.
-- We will maintain membership in at least one professional association for dog trainers in order to stay up-to-date on best practices in the field.
No, we do not offer refunds for unused training lessons. We have spent years fine-tuning our curriculum to ensure the best possible experience for our students and to ensure their puppies' behavior meets their high standards at the end of the program. Ending training early jeopardizes those results.
Dog training is a commitment. If you don't feel comfortable committing to a full dog training program at this time, please choose a smaller program you feel comfortable committing to, or wait to enroll until you do.
We do offer a free 1-2 hour in-home consultation so you can get to know Level Up and our training methods before enrolling. This allows you and your trainer to meet to talk about your goals and expectations, as well as your puppy's current behavior.
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