​​Susan Ward, CPDT-KSA

Certified Professional Dog Trainer - Knowledge & Skills Assessed

Thank you for choosing pupDOGS Training for your dog training needs!  Please read our Group Class Policies and Procedures carefully.

You are welcome and encouraged to observe a class prior to enrolling.


  • Masks are optional.  This policy may change at a moment's notice and is dependent on Minnesota's test positivity rate and the CDC guidelines.  
  • We ask that only two members of the family attend.  You are more than welcome to utilize your phone or tablet (with its own internet access) to have your other family members join you in class remotely via video chat.  We can’t wait to welcome the whole family once we get to the other side of the pandemic!
  • Please do not congregate in the lobby area.  Wait in your car until five minutes before class is scheduled to start. 
  • Please maintain a social distance of 6 feet.  
  • We will direct you to your designated training space when you arrive.
  • ​Bathroom facilities are not available, so plan accordingly.
  • We are maintaining our reduced class sizes of 6 dogs.
  • If you, or someone in your household, is feeling sick or unwell we ask that you remain home.
    • If you, or someone in your household, was recently exposed to someone who is sick, we ask that you remain home.
    • If you or anyone in your household has tested positive for COVID-19, or been exposed to COVID-19, please notify Susan Ward immediately.
  • With the evolving Covid situation, these policies may change at a moment's notice.

It is important to us that we continue to protect the health of our community and maintain our exceptional training services. Thank you so much for following our safety guidelines! If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact Susan Ward at susan@pupdogs.com

Your dog must be current on vaccinations as recommended by your veterinarian.  Your dog’s current vaccination history must be added to your dog’s online pupDOGS account and a copy e-mailed to susan@pupdogs.com prior to his/her first class.

All puppies (under four months old) must have their first set of vaccinations at least 72 hours prior to attending class.
All dogs over four months must have at least two distemper combinations, rabies, and Bordetella vaccinations.

Young puppies may attend class before receiving all of their vaccinations as long as they are following their veterinarian’s recommended schedule.  For more information about puppies and group classes:  https://avsab.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Puppy-Socialization-Position-Statement-FINAL.pdf

Plan spays or neuters carefully around your intended class schedule. Dogs that have just been spayed or neutered are typically not allowed full activity for 7 to 14 days (or more in some cases) from the day of surgery.  No refunds or make-up classes will be available for missed classes.

Your pet needs to be free of signs of communicable diseases to attend class.  Even if your vaccinations are current, it is possible to pass minor illnesses among other dogs.  Please watch for signs of coughing, sneezing, discharge from the eyes or nose, lethargy, vomiting, diarrhea, or fever, and do not bring a dog with these symptoms to class.  You are encouraged to come to class without your dog to observe the training that day and get the week’s homework. 

Due to high demand, full payment is required to reserve your space in a training class. Unpaid registrations do not hold a space in the class.  Payment can be made online with a debit or credit card via PayPal or can be mailed. A PayPal account is not required to pay online.  You may also pay be check and send it to the address provided on your class invoice.

Please understand that we keep class sizes small so that you get more personalized attention. Reserving your spot means someone else misses out. No refunds will be given for cancellations within 14 days of your class start date.  So please plan carefully.  No exceptions.  We appreciate your cooperation to help keep our classes small and effective for you.

Why two weeks notice? We are different from a tangible product in that we can't just put our services back on the shelf to resell like you would if returning a pair of shoes. Without ample notice, we can't resell your training package. We only have a small number of spots in each class. Sometimes we have a waiting list for classes, but those people need time to rearrange their schedules.  Thank you for understanding.

Weather Cancellations:  In the event of bad weather, please check for an email notification of cancelled classes before leaving home. When cancellations occur, due to weather or unforeseen emergencies, an additional class session will be added.

In order to get the full benefits of class, your regular attendance is crucial. There are no make-up classes available for missed classes; however, you will receive the homework.  If your dog is ill, you are encouraged to come to class without your dog to observe the training that day and get the week’s homework. 

Rolling Admission Puppy Classes:  Your registration fee guarantees you a spot for six weeks.  There are no make-up classes available for missed classes.

No refunds will be given for missed classes.

Not all dogs are suitable for group classes.  If your dog shows aggression towards people or other dogs, or is disruptive to the class, they may be dismissed from class without a refund.  If you are not sure if your dog is suitable for a group class, please schedule a private training consult prior to enrollment. Having not met your dog prior to the start of the class, we rely on you for this information.  You may contact Susan Ward at susan@pupdogs.com with any questions.


  • High value treats:  These are not the treats that you regularly use.  We want something special.  For small dogs, the treats should be about the size of a pea.  For larger dogs, the treats should be about the size of a jelly bean. 
    • Some possibilities include chicken, cheese, hot dogs, lunch meats (not ham). 
    • The following are my favorites.  They are available at most pet stores and online:
      • ​​Instinct Freeze-Dried Boosters 
      • Wellness Soft Well Bites  
      • Any kind of freeze-dried treats.  Size and consistency vary, so you'll want to find a variety that you like.
  • Dog Food:  Please bring this in addition to the above-mentioned treats.
  • Treat Bag:  You need something that holds treats and allows you easy access.  A Ziploc bag or pants pocket is cumbersome at best and will throw your treat timing off.  Fanny packs can work, but I prefer a treat bag that I can clip to my pants and has a magnetic opening (vs a drawstring).  My favorite is the “Trek-n-Train” by Doggone Good.
  • Dog Training Clicker
  • Mat or Rug for your dog
  • Collar or Harness and a Leash:  You will need a buckle or martingale collar or harness.  We do not allow the use of metal collars including choke chains or prong collars nor electronic collars.  Have a regular 6-foot leash, not a retractable long line.