Puppy courses offered at shelter

The Santa Fe Animal Shelter has revamped its popular puppy classes and will now offer six-week puppy training courses.

The new series of classes start Tuesday, April 26, and will be held in the shelter’s Roddey Burdine Rehabiliation Center, located behind the shelter’s main buildings. The course is based on the American Kennel Club’s STAR certification, which offers incentives to dog owners.

The STAR program, led by the shelter’s lead trainer, Emily Burlingame, offers organized training classes aimed at socializing puppies to other dogs, people and everyday situations. Dog owners also get information about puppy-raising questions, such as housetraining, chewing and practical skills.

The certification is a natural lead in to the AKC Good Citizen Program.

The classes will no longer be on a drop-in basis. The six-week long course costs $150, but dogs adopted from a shelter are eligible for 50 percent. Scholarships are available. Additional courses will be scheduled throughout the year. The classes are open to dogs 16 weeks of age and younger.

“We don’t want to turn anyone away,” Burlingame said. “Puppy classes are critical to a dog’s development.”

For more information or to reserve a spot, please call 505-983-4309, ext. 152.