Family Dog School

Family Dog School LogoCLASS UPDATES
We are enrolling students now for the September/October session and Tuesday nights is already filled. Only a few spots remain for the Saturday morning session. Don’t delay register now!

Puppy Play and Learn is on Saturdays at 12:00.  Join us for this educational 4 week course that has rolling enrollment, never wait for the start of a session, jump in at any week. This class is for puppies age 8  to 16 weeks. Students must pre-register by calling at 413-447-7878 ext 139 or email (Students will have a start date confirmed by instructor to attend)

People often ask, “When should I start training my dog?”
The answer is… “Now!”

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Solvable behavior problems are the number-one reason why dogs are surrendered to shelters. To foster human-canine relations and ensure that more dogs have forever homes, the BHS Family Dog School offers a variety of training classes.

Because each class has a maximum of eight dogs taught by two trainers, students receive a great deal of personal attention. Sessions are eight weeks long; participants may choose either Tuesday evenings from 6:30 – 7:30 or Saturday mornings from 9:30 – 10:30.

Continuing Education
These two basic courses provide a good foundation for owners who want to go further in training, either on their own, or in more advanced classes. For owners of mixed and purebred dogs interested in formal competition at obedience trials, instructors can provide information about local training classes.

Why should I train my dog?
To make him happy and well-behaved; to form a bond with him; to establish leadership; to have fun!

Who in the household should work with my dog?
Everyone! For your dog to respect each family member, it’s important that they all participate in the training.

How much time will it take?
In addition to the weekly class, you’ll have to practice several times a day – but only for a few minutes at a time. A training session takes no more time than a TV commercial break or a cup of coffee.

When is it too late to start training?
Never! If you’ve adopted an older dog, training is a great way for you to bond with him. Or if you haven’t yet taught your pet how to behave, now is the time to start. You CAN teach an old dog new tricks!

Level 1 Manners
Open to dogs over four months old. Basic obedience commands are taught, including heel, sit, down, stay and come. The class also deals with solving canine behavior problems, with the goal of teaching the dog to be a polite member of the household. Agility obstacles are introduced, and owners will learn how to interpret their dogs communication signals. Keep in mind: we don’t train your dog – we teach you how to train him!

How much does it cost?
Tuition varies per course. Please refer to our brochure for our current pricing.

CLASS SIZE IS LIMITED. Sessions fill up quickly, so reserve your space by sending in your payment and registration form now. A letter confirming the date and time of the first class will be mailed one week in advance.


Lisa Corbett is the principal instructor at the BHS Family Dog School, has been a member of the shelter staff since 1986. She is an experienced adoption counselor and enjoys matching people with the right dogs for them. Lisa is a lifelong dog owner; she has two current canine companions, both BHS alumni. A believer in continuing education, she regularly attends clinics and seminars to stay up-to-date with the latest techniques.

The Family Dog School faculty also includes several assistant instructors – either staff or BHS members who have extensive experience in dog training.