dog obedience classes

A well-mannered, socialized dog is a joy to live with. Teaching helps you and your dog communicate, ensuring that he/she becomes a well-behaved family member. Our classes address not just basic cues but socializing, house training, chewing, barking, play biting and other behavior concerns.

Our teaching method is based on kindness and respect. We use positive reinforcement such as praise, toys, playtime or treats to motivate, reward and correct behaviors.

Here at the Humane Society we offer a wide variety of canine courses for you and your dog's needs. To learn about each of these unique opportunities read the descriptions below.

For more information please contact Customer Service at Phone: 616.453.8900 or

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Puppy Preschool

Get your puppy off to a good start with this puppy class!  Learn to safely socialize your puppy with people and other puppies. Begin to train your puppy in good manners and how to be calm and relaxed. Owners will also learn to recognize canine body language and communication. This class is a great way to prevent some behavior issues from happening while you learn effective ways to teach your puppy!  


Puppy Kindergarten

This six week course is designed by the American Kennel Club for puppies from 16 weeks to 1 year old. Learn how to communicate and teach your puppy with positive reinforcement. Your puppy will socialize and play with other puppies as well as learning sit, down, polite leash walking, and come. Upon completion of this course your puppy will be eligible to test for the AKC S.T.A.R Puppy Medal. 


Elementary School: Manners Matter

This class is designed for dogs 5 months and older who have never had a previous training class and for those who will benefit by taking the class again. The focus of the class is on good doggy manners and the basic cues of sit, stay, down, come, "leave it," and walking on a loose leash.


High School Jocks: Find the Beauty in Your Beast (Reactive dog class)

This unique class is designed to help you better understand your dog's reactivity and how to best manage their impulses. The basic manners focus, sit, polite walking, recall, down, stay, and leave it are emphasized. You will learn how to recognize and reward behaviors you want to keep as well as devlop skills to change your K9's undesirable behaviors. 


High School Wallflowers: Find the Courage in Your Canine (Cautious K9 class)

Your dog a little shy around new people and dogs?  This class is designed to teach basic manners and cues while building your dog's confidence by acquiring new skills.  

This class will help you teach your dog to blossom.



In this class you'll expand on your dog's skills so that he can visit the public places showing his good manners. You will work towards passing the AKC's Canine Good Citizen evaluation.  Canine Good Citizen is often a pre-requisite to becoming a therapy dog and is a must for anyone interested in activities with your dog.