General Information

When is your next session of classes?
We offer classes quarterly. Usually, the classes start in January, March or April, Jun or July, and September. Check the website frequently for the next registration date or call 505-920-8205.

Why don’t you offer all classes every session?
Our instructors are also usually our club competitors. Many simply cannot teach all the time as they have their own competition and training sessions to go do. Our instructors are also volunteers. LADOC is a non-profit, volunteer organization. If we have just a few instructors available for a session, then our priority is teaching puppy and basic classes as the greater need is there.

Can my child take the dog to class?
If you child is under 14, the answer is not without instructor permission. Training a dog requires patience, discipline and consistency. Children often have many other activities to take their attention away from training. Often they get impatient when the dog does not comply readily with their wishes and do not have the skill set to be innovative in their problem solving approaches to training. Children also tend to take more of the instructors time than adults do which is not fair to the adult students. If you want your child to train the dog, we offer a class for children called paRENT free club. Check that out

Are all your classes in the evening?
Occasionally we offer a day time or weekend class, depending on instructor availabiclity and interest.

I cannot come to registration night. Can I pre-register?
We do not have a pre-registration policy. Our classes fill on a first-come-first-served basis. If you cannot come to registration night, you have a couple of options. You can send a friend or relative in your place to register for you. Or, you can email or phone in your name and we will call you if there is room in the class after registration night. Most classes do fill, so the first option is the better choice.

What type of training do you do?
Exercises are taught inducively. We use food to induce the desired behaviour in the dog, then the food and praise is given in reward. As the behaviour is learned the food reward is faded. Corrections are given ONLY after the dog knows what is expected of it.

What type of collar should I use?
Benefits and disadvantages of various types of training collars should be discussed the first night of training. What will determine what you use will be what you are comfortable with and what will work best for your dog. The instructor should advise a particular collar for you based on his or her expertise and your dogs personality, but the collar choice is ultimately YOURS.

I have to miss a class. What do I do?
Inform your instructor when you are going to miss a class. The instructor can give you homework outlines and instruction for the class you will miss.

I heard you have a discount for shelter dogs. Is this true?
Yes. To get you and your new friend off too a good start, and to help encourage shelter adoptions, you will receive a 30% discount on your first class with LADOC with that particular dog. This is a one time offer. Should you take another class with LADOC with that dog, you will need to pay the full fee. However, should you adopt another dog from the shelter, you are again eligible for the first class discount with your new dog.

My husband (or wife) and I want to take the same class with both our dogs. Can we do this?
This can be done, but often the dogs are so fixated on each other that they, nor you, get the full benefit of the class. If it is possible it is best for each of you to attend classes of different nights.

Can I bring two dogs to the same class myself?

My puppy is 5 months old. He already knows his basic commands. Can I go right into basic manners?
If your puppy is under 6 full months old, even though he knows his basic commands he really should go into Puppy Kindergarten. Many people think their puppy is ready for the Basic Manners class, but there is a maturity issue here. And the puppies all need the socializing and the confidence building that takes place in puppy class. Often times those commands your puppy ‘knew’ are forgotten with the stimulation of a class situation and will need to be relearned in that environment.

My dog knows his basic commands and doesn’t need the basic manners class. Can I enroll in Agility?
No. You have to have completed a Basic Manners class from some organization before you can enroll in Agility. Many times a dog is reliable on his commands at home or a familiar environment. Training is fun and exciting. Off-lead work is often performed in agility. You dog needs to be trained to perform in a highly distractable environment, such as a basic manners class, before going onto agility.

My dog is in season. Can I bring her to class?

No. Do not bring dogs in season to class. That is too much of a distraction to the other dogs in class. We encourage you to come and watch class, ask questions, and get the homework assignments then practice with your dog at home until your dog is out of season.

My dog is scheduled to be spayed or neutered during the class. What do I do?
We encourage you to come and watch class while your dog is recovering, ask questions, and get the homework assignments then practice with your dog at home when he or she is feeling better. Dogs recover quickly and will be able to perform the basic exercises within a few days.

What do I need to bring to registration night?
First do NOT bring your dog. Registration night is hectic and crowded. Dogs toes tend to get stepped on, or the dog may be uncomfortable being under the feet of so many people. It is for the safety of the animal that we request you do not bring them to registration night. What you do need to bring is: your dogs vaccination records, proof of adoption if you are requesting the shelter dog discount for your first class, and, of course, the class fee.

I can’t find my documentation for my dog for registration. What do I do?
If you don’t have your documentation for you dog on registration night, don’t panic. Go ahead and go to registration, you will need to bring the required documents and/or fee to the first night of class and show it to your instructor.

What should I wear to class?
Wear comfortable shoes and loose clothing that will allow you to squat down, bend over, stretch and possibly jump. You are going to be active with your dog, wear clothes that will give you full range of movement and that you don’t mind getting dirty.

Should I bring food to class?
Yes! Bring lots of delicious treats for your dog in class. Bring hot dog slices, small cubes of chicken, cheese, liver, or left over pot roast. Many dogs work well for cat kibble or treats. Small moist treats though work best as they don’t require chewing by the dog. Do not feed your dog before class and you may need to reduce your dinner rations during training to prevent weight gain.
If you have a fanny pack or nail apron to wear during class that you can put the treats in that you can easily put your hand in and out of, that is great. It saves fumbling around for treats in your pocket.

I have a complaint or suggestion for the class. Who do I tell?
By all means let us know what is wrong, right, or any suggestions you have for our classes. You can write a letter, phone, or send email to either or both the President of the Club or the Director of Training. We need to know what we are doing right and what we are doing wrong so we can improve.

Can you recommend any books for me to help me with my dog until classes start?
See our link to recommended reading.

I have a problem with my dog and I don’t want to take it to class. Can LADOC help me?
Maybe. If you are having a specific problem with your dog and can’t bring it to obedience class, call the LADOC number and leave a message describing your problem. Someone from LADOC will call you back and either refer you to a LADOC member that may be able to help you with your problem, or refer you to someone who can.

A LADOC member helped me so much I would like to pay them. Can I?
LADOC members are not compensated for helping people with their dogs and dog related problems. If you wish to make a donation to LADOC for the members assistance you may do. The donation will be added to LADOCs general fund so that we may continue our work in the community by offering classes, materials for public education, improving our building, equipment, and grounds and making donations to other dog organizations and buying books for the library.

I’ve taken Basic Manners, what should I do next?
Many people take Basic Manners several times. Each time they learn something different or improve their training skills. Each instructor teaches things slightly differently there is good benefit from repeating a class. If you feel you and your dog are ready to move on the club offers a wide variety of continuing education classes including: Canine Good Citizen, Agility, Rally, Scent work and Recall.  Check the class schedule for current offerings

I want some more advanced training, what do I do?
From time to time we offer more advanced training. Our instructors can tell you if such a class is on the horizon, or we can direct you to more advanced or competitive classes in  Santa Fe and Albuquerque. Visit our resources page for other dog training organizations you might be interested in.