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Classes will start on time. Clients should arrive 10 minutes prior to scheduled start of class. 

Time should be allowed for dogs to relieve themselves before entering the building.  

If unable to attend scheduled class, it is requested that the trainer be informed by text, phone or email prior to class.  

Dogs will use specified area on premises for potty use.  Dog waste will be collected and deposited in assigned garbage container behind building.  Poop bags are the responsibility of the owner.

Dogs enrolled in this course will be on leashes entering and exiting the  facility and at all times inside unless instructed otherwise by the trainer.

Dogs should be on leads no longer than 4 feet in length,  so that owners have total control. No retractable leashes are permitted.

Flat collars, harnesses and Martingale collars are permitted.  No prong, slip or choke collars are to be used in class.

Dress for working with your dog. Please avoid sandals or open toed shoes to prevent tripping or injury.

Food treats and toys are permitted for luring or training except when instructed by trainer to remove items or during testing which does not allow their use. Have them ready, on your body before entering the building. 

No harsh corrections or aversive methods will be permitted in class.

Dogs will not socialize with other dogs or other owners in the class unless instructed by the trainer.

Owners are responsible for total control and supervision of their dogs at all times

Water will be available for dogs during class as needed. Use of Settle mats is strongly encouraged during class.

Before and after class clients may socialize. During class full attention should be given to their dogs and the activities at hand.

An aggressive dog that threatens the safety of either clients or other dogs will be asked to leave class. Another class or private lesson may be more appropriate.

Dogs that are showing signs of illness should not be brought to class.

If a dog fight occurs, an incident report will be completed and kept on file. 

To hold a place in a class, payment is due prior to the first meeting. Since class size is very small, the cancellation policy permits only a partial refund if client cancels prior to the start of class.  No refunds will be provided for missed classes.  Clients may have the opportunity to observe other classes prior to joining the program.

The trainers will do their best to help owners accomplish the activities as outlined in the course description but cannot guarantee results.

For dogs to succeed in this class, short training sessions need to be incorporated into daily activities at home.

All dogs must be current on vaccinations. A copy of the most current medical records must accompany the application.

Junior handlers under the age of 18 must have written permission by parent or guardian to participate in the training class; under the age of 16, parent or guardian must be present during class.

All dogs  and handlers will be given equal time during class. If the trainer determines that the dog needs more personal attention than can be provided by this class, she will speak privately with the owner about other arrangements.




There is just street parking on Bridges St so be careful getting out of your car with your dog.  Take your dog to potty in front of building or down along the side of building and around back. There is a trash can located behind the building. Don’t forget potty bags- I do have potty bags on the fence behind the building.


If other dogs are attending class, please don’t assume that all dogs want to meet and greet. This class is for you and your dog to have a focused relationship with each other and act appropriately around other dogs. Enter the building into the waiting area or training area as directed by me.


Your dog should have a flat collar, martingale collar or harness. Also a leash of 4 feet is required – leather or fabric.


Dog must be leashed at all times entering and exiting the building and on grounds- no off-leash. Bridges St is busy and we don’t want any accidents. SAFETY FIRST


Try not to feed your dog his full meal before coming to class. The dogs will be nervous and excited and that can cause upset stomachs. We also want a  hungry dog so that you can hold the dog’s attention with your special treats.


Bring about 40 little treats (about the size of a pea) – Vary the type such as some dog food/kibble, maybe cheerios, cut up mozzarella, cut up beef or chicken (very small) and maybe some other type of food that your dog really likes. We don’t want upset stomachs though. Keep in a little container. Pants with large pockets or a carpenter's apron are good or a treat bag attached to you will make it easy to get out treats. Treat bags are available for purchase.


If you have not sent all your paperwork, please bring to this class. Remember that I need the proof of vaccinations. Rabies vaccine is a state requirement. (Not for puppies)

Please do not bring a sick dog to class – vomiting/diarrheas. Call me and we can discuss.


I will provide water for them; they do need breaks and will be thirsty due to the treats.


If you dog has a favorite little toy, please bring. Some dogs work better with toys than treats. Chew toys are suggested for puppies or feisty dogs.


Actual working time in class varies. The class is 1 hour in length.


When you enter the building with your dogs let them sniff and check everything out if there are no other dogs in place. This is a new place and lots of good smells. If other dogs are arriving, go to your spot and set up. 


If you are attending a group class and I find that there are some special issues that your dog may need addressed I will save that for after class. I try to give equal time to everyone during class time.


If there are any questions that you have before class or during class please ask. Probably the other dog owners have the same questions.


You will receive the lesson plan for each class and homework assignments. – YES you have homework!


Look over the Class rules and policies on the website for anything that I might have missed.


Please turn off cell phones before entering the building. This is special time for you and your pup.


What else??? If I think of anything else I’ll let you know. MOST IMPORTANT THING IS TO HAVE FUN.



Lifelong care of the pet. This means committing to the relationship for your pet’s entire life.


Selecting a pet that is suited to your home and lifestyle and avoiding impulsive decisions.


Recognizing that owning a pet(s) requires an investment of time and money.


Keeping only the type and number of pets for which you can provide an appropriate and safe environment. This includes appropriate food, water, shelter, health care and companionship.


Ensuring pets are properly identified (i.e., tags, microchips, or tattoos) and that their registration information in associated databases is kept up-to-date


Adhering to local ordinances, including licensing and leash requirements.


Helping to manage overpopulation by controlling your pet(s)' reproduction through managed breeding, containment, or spay/neuter. Establishing and maintaining a veterinarian-client-patient relationship.


Providing preventive (e.g. vaccinations, parasite control) and therapeutic health care for the life of your pet(s) in consultation with, and as recommended by your veterinarian.


Socialization and appropriate training for your pet(s) to facilitate their well-being and the well-being of other animals and people.


Preventing your pet(s) from negatively impacting other people, animals and the environment. This includes proper waste disposal, noise control, and not allowing pet(s) to stray or become feral.


Providing exercise and mental stimulation appropriate to your pet(s)' age, breed, and health status.


Include your pets in your planning for an emergency or disaster, including assembling an evacuation kit.


Making arrangements for the care of your pet when or if you are unable to do so.


Recognizing declines in your pet(s)' quality of life and making decisions in consultation with your veterinarian regarding appropriate end-of-life care (e.g., palliative care, hospice, euthanasia).




° Have fun with your dog. Play alot and train in short time frames 3-4 times every day.

° Always end a training session on a positive note.

° If distractions are overwhelming for your dog, add distance between you and the distraction.

° Your dog does not need to play with every dog he/she meets. You are his partner.

° If your dog won't do a behavior for you, ask yourself how can I better communicate? Does my dog understand what I am asking?

° Before taking your dog on a walk, if possible, let him run off some energy in a secure area. Your walk will be much more enjoyable.




If you are in a bad mood or irritated at someone, don’t train your dog.  It will be too tempting to take it out on your dog.

If you dog is too full of energy to concentrate, exercise him before training.

Make sure your dog is hungry when you start training.

If you feel yourself losing your temper, stop training.

Read your dog carefully so you know when he is becoming stressed.  Signs of stress might be looking away from you, partially closing his eyes, a droopy tail, lips pressed tightly together, and trying to get away from you.  IF you see these signs, back up and make the exercise easier.

If you are having trouble with one part of the training, move onto something else and come back to the trouble spot later.

Be more stubborn than your dog is.

Be 100 percent sure that your dog understands what you want before assuming he is choosing not to obey you.

Pay as much attention to your dog as you expect him to pay to you.

Always end your practice session by playing with your dog for a few minutes.




These are rules that kids in Teresa’s dog obedience classes call the “bad rules” because they don’t like some of them.

Following these dos and don’ts will help promote child safety around dogs and prevent dog bits.

  1. Do not hug a dog, put your face close to his face or lie on him. Do sit beside your dog, rub his chest or scratch him on the side of the neck.

  2. Do not play chase-me games with a dog. Do play hide and seek – where the dog has to find you or an object that you hide.

  3. Do not play tug-of-war games with a dog/child. Do play fetch with the dog – teach the dog to trade the object for a treat so he won’t try to tug.

  4. Do not lean over or step over a dog. Do respect a dog’s resting place – go around him or ask an adult to move the dog.

  5. Do not bother a dog who is sleeping, eating, has a toy or bone, is hurt or has puppies. Do wait for the dog to come to you for attention.

  6. Do not dress a dog up in ply clothes. Do dress up you stuffed animals.

  7. Do not hit a dog or poke him with a stick. Do be gentle with dogs.

  8. Do not pull a dog’s ears, tail or fur. Do scratch the dog’s chest or the side of her neck-most dogs enjoy this.

  9. Do not stick fingers or hands into the dog’s crate. Do ask an adult to let the dog out of the crate if you want to pet her.

  10. Do not play in the dog’s crate. Do play “in and out of the crate” with the dog- toss a treat in – dog goes in to get it – dog comes back out – toss another treat in etc. (with adult supervision).

  11. If your dog does not welcome you with wagging and panting – leave him alone. Do wait for the dog to come to you for attention.

  12. If your dog gets too rough or excited, be a tree (stand still with your hands folded in front and look at your feet) until he gets bored and goes away.

  13. Do not run and shout around a dog that is not in a crate. Do be calm around dogs; involve the dog in activity such as chewing on a bone or playing fetch so he doesn’t feel that he needs to chase you to have fun.

  14. Engage in calm activities rather than rough-housing. 

Joan Orr and Teresa Lewin 2002




Be sure to take great effort to socialize your puppy to other puppies, older dogs, and a variety of people in a safe, controlled environment.


Teach a Gentle Mouth: teach your puppy how to be gentle with her mouth with other dogs and people.


Dogs are learning the most from the time they are 4 weeks to 16 weeks old.


Take your puppy everywhere to get them socialized to both people and dogs immediately.  Let them meet all kinds of people from the elderly to babies.


Have your new puppy checked by your vet.


Enroll your puppy in a training class just for puppies to learn basic skills as well as socialization. Instructor should use only reward based training.


Don’t give your new puppy free run of the house.


Teach the behaviors and manners you want from the moment your puppy comes into your home.


Learn about management-have a private lesson at your home, set the puppy up for success and enroll in puppy classes. 


Introduce crate training, condition puppy to love her crate. Crate training your puppy is a great way to control her environment.  Controlling her environment means when you cannot properly supervise her, put her in her crate with a toy she can chew on.  


Do not leave puppy in her crate for more than 4 hours at a time.


House train and set up a schedule.


As soon as your vet OKs it, get your puppy outside.


Toys that you can put small treats in that she has to work for, will stimulate her physically and mentally.


Put your puppy on a feeding schedule.  This will help in house training as well. Put her food down for 15 minutes, anything she does not finish should be picked up, covered and put away until her next scheduled feeding time.  When your puppy is finished eating, she will need to eliminate anywhere from 5 to 15 minutes afterward.  


Put your puppy on a 6 foot leash, put a few treats in your pocket to reward her  and take her to the designated elimination area.  Stand there and wait for her to eliminate, giving her a 6 foot radius to sniff in.  The second she finishes eliminating, mark the correct behavior (eliminating where you wanted her to) in a soft voice with a word like “yes” or a “click” from your clicker.  Then, reinforce her good behavior by giving her a tiny treat as a reward immediately where she did her business.


Most trainers will start puppy training as early as 8 or 9 weeks of age.  The earlier you start, the sooner you’ll be able to communicate effectively with your dog, which will reduce tension and conflict.


Know what to expect.  Puppies are growing fast, they have a lot of energy, haven’t learned how to live in a human family yet and have poor impulse control. 


Puppyhood usually lasts until 5 or 6 months and adolescence can last until 1 ½ or 2 years or longer.


In conclusion, good management leads to good habits that will help you and your new pup get off on the right paw!

Cancellation Policy


Hole in the Wall Dog Training Academy


The following policy is in effect regarding sequential courses such as Puppy Start Right, Doggie Manners, Fun with Tricks and Introduction to Scent work:

All clients are expected to commit to the length of the course, be it 4 weeks or 6 weeks.

Since these classes build on the previous week’s assignments it is advantageous that classes are not missed.

Please check your personal schedules and schedule your classes when you have the time commitment for the full course.  It is recommended that dogs are spayed or neutered before the course begins or after the course is complete. If you are planning a trip, please consider choosing another time frame for classes or consider taking private lessons when you can arrange your  schedule.

It is understandable that an emergency will arise such as family illness or dog illness.  We will work with you to find a makeup class that is in the same week number as the one you have missed.  If that is not feasible, you may schedule a private makeup that works with your schedule and mine.  A charge of $25 will cover a 45-minute catch-up session. 

All makeups must be completed within a 2-week period after the missed class.



With courses other than the sequential classes, a 4 or 6 week set of classes needs to be used within a 10/12-week period.  If you are unable to attend a class on your set date and time, please contact no later than 8 hours prior to the start time of the class. If classes are not completed by the end of the 10-week period you will forfeit the rest of the classes and you will be charged again to begin a new set of classes. 

Arrangements may be made if you need to put the class on hold due to health issues, travel or other approved reasons.



If you choose to buy a package of 5 private classes, these classes need to be used within a 3-month period unless arrangements have been discussed prior to signing up for the lessons.  Please give a 24-hour notice if an appointment needs to be canceled.

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