Prep SchoolReserve Now
With our Prep School option, you drop off your dog at our training facility three days per week for three weeks, and one of our trainers will work one-on-one with your dog to instill a full set of manners, listening, and self-control skills. This includes walking with a loose leash, coming immediately when called, listening the first time, staying in place when you walk away, leaving objects alone, and much more. We work both indoors and outdoors, depending on the weather, and spend a lot of time walking your dog in the neighborhood.
Once per week, you meet with your trainer at our training facility for a progress meeting, so you can learn how to keep using the exercises at home. We also answer your questions and make sure that we're all on the same page.
Prep School also includes daycare each day that your dog is here. This socialization is a crucial factor for a dog's behavior. In our daycare environment, we separate the dogs into groups based on size and temperament, we have the nicest outdoor area in Chicago, and staff monitor the dogs at all times.
By the end of the program, most dogs have made massive progress, and our customers are delighted that they have a great listener.
Space is limited, and reservations are required.
Prep School can be effective because our trainers work with your dog in a highly-focused manner, day after day, to create great listening. Learning new behaviors takes repetition, and we have the time and energy to put in these repetitions. Typically, when we work with a dog in this manner, it becomes very responsive to our methods, and we can train it very rapidly. Your dog can make massive strides in a three-week period. This rapid development is not as realistic in other training formats. Therefore, we're giving you a head start and overcoming frustrating behaviors that your dog may be exhibiting. Most of our Prep School customers don't have the time, energy, patience, or knowledge to make this progress in such a short period of time.
I enrolled Charlie (our doodle) in the Prep School program and was impressed from my initial conversation with Kim through graduation day. I cannot say enough great things about my experience.
Susy, our trainer, far exceeded our expectations in all regards. Susy seemed to form an instant connection with Charlie and they formed a great rapport that continued to develop each day he worked with her! She was upmost professional and has helped Charlie learn some amazing things and overcome others in a short amount of time (three weeks)! Seeing how excited he was to work with her and how well he responded to her mentorship was phenomenal!
- Chad Parrish
Included in your tuition:
- Initial in-person consultation with a trainer at our facility, to review your goals, answer your questions, and discuss the plan.
- Nine days of training at our facility (three days per week, on weekdays). You drop off and pick up your dog each day. Multiple sessions each day with a trainer.
- Multiple daycare sessions per day while here for training. This helps with socialization, which is an important part of training.
- Free trial daycare day for your dog, to get him acclimated to our play environment.
- Starter set of treats that we recommend
- Treat pouch
- Walking harness
- Optional clicker
- Three progress meetings with your trainer, once per weekend for one hour each, at our facility. We will show you what we've been working on and how to be consistent at home.
- Credit card, including over the phone or in person
- PayPal Credit, where you can pay over time, and pay no interest if paid in full within six months. Learn more
- Cash or check
In Prep School, we try to implement the same curriculum and behaviors that we use in our classes.
Basic manners / listening:
- Loose leash walking
- Coming to you (recall)
- Waiting for permission
- Focus and attention
- Leaving items alone
- Staying in place
- Minor leash reactivity
Intermediate / advanced manners: (normally for dogs who have already gone through Prep School, and want to do another session
- All of the behaviors mentioned above, plus:
- Add distractions to all behaviors above
- Off-leash heeling (walking at your side while staying very focused on you)
- Go to a place, such as a crate or mat
- Finish (end up at your side after coming to you)
- Sit, down and stand from a distance
- Emergency stop
- Front command (come directly to my feet and give me eye contact, in the sit position)
- Basic tricks
We CANNOT work on the following, as these are specific to your home. These would require private lessons.
- Potty training
- Dog-human aggression or reactivity
- Separation anxiety
- Major leash reactivity
- Correcting off-leash play behaviors such as biting or playing roughly
If you are trying to resolve behaviors not mentioned above, just let us know. It's very possible that we can work it in for your dog.
- Our Prep School program is run by our Senior Trainer, who has over 20 years of dog training experience, numerous industry-standard credentials, and leads a full team of trainers here. He's not someone who just calls himself a trainer.
- We also have other staff members who help our Senior Trainer, so your dog would also gain exposure to other staff members, which is important for socialization purposes.
- We only use positive reinforcement. No choke chains, shock collars, prong collars, or dominance methods. We are very transparent and have nothing to hide. The fact that some call it "Boot Camp" should be your first red flag that they may be using domination, which is not necessary and is very outdated.
- Your dog does not need to stay overnight - in fact, most people drop off each day. For places that offer a "Boot Camp" where your dog is gone for 2-3 weeks (or longer) this can be very stressful and demoralizing for them. In our format, your dog will go home each night, building his relationship with you and sleeping in his own bed at night. They typically come bounding through the door the next day and are happy to be here.
- Training is a major component of our business and we take it very seriously. We have the largest and most comprehensive dog training program in Chicago, including with classes, private lessons, puppy socials, and more. This is not something we just happen to do on the side.
- Your dog would be in play for a portion of each day, for socialization purposes. The play includes our outdoor play area, which is the nicest in Chicago and includes grass meant for dogs, pools, and playground equipment.
- We train indoors and outdoors, including on walks around the neighborhood. Our training facility is spacious and is great for indoor exercises, such as with the use of cones.
- We have a very structured system, where exercises build on each other and get more and more difficult, so that by the end of the program, your dog should be able to perform a wide range of skills very reliably.
- We include several retail items in our package, such as a walking harness and treat pouch.
- You meet with your trainer once per week at our training facility for progress meetings, so you can stay consistent at home and have a deep understanding of what we are working on. In many other businesses, you only have a brief meeting at the end, if at all, and it can be very overwhelming to take it all in.
Having said that, you will need to continue using our methods after Prep School ends. This would be true of any training business, and would be true if you were to go to a class or any other training format. Anyone who tries to say that you won't have to do anything differently after going through their training program is simply not being honest or realistic with you. Even the most highly-trained championship dogs need consistency, motivation, and practice.
This does not mean you have to spend hours and hours with your dog each day after going through our program. It does mean you have to use the right commands, rewards, equipment, posture, and voice each day going forward in order to achieve the behaviors you want. This doesn't necessarily take any extra time, and you can weave them into your dog's daily routine, such as when you go on walks, feed your dog, go through doorways, and more.
On the contrary, we instill behaviors into your dog through the use of positive reinforcement and repetitions. We then show you how to keep achieving these behaviors, in meetings during the program and once the program is finished. This will still require proper techniques on your behalf. If you have questions after the program ends, we can help answer them. Every dog is different in how they respond. Many show remarkable improvement immediately, and some may take longer before their behavior is changed in every category. This progress can be affected by their background, socialization, genetics, medical conditions, anxiety level, lack of grooming, and more.
Tucker Pup's Training Center
1044 W Fulton Street
Chicago, IL 60607
This is where we work on exercises indoors.
Tucker Pup's Pet Resort
219 N Carpenter Street
Chicago, IL 60607
This is where you will drop off your dog, and where we have daycare and the boarding suites.
- At least three months old
- All vaccinations up-to-date, including canine influenza, bordatella, distemper, and parvovirus. Rabies is required for dogs 7 months and older
- Spayed / neutered if 7 months or older
- Not reactive towards people
- No crate / kennel aggression or reactivity
- Able to be in play with other dogs
- No contagious conditions, including but not limited to giardia and coughing
- Sign our Liability Waiver and Prep School Agreement
- More defined curriculum and structure, with a minimum of 9 training sessions.
- Pay in advance.
- Multiple private sessions included, at our training facility.
- Treats and equipment included.
- We work on a few behaviors, but not a full curriculum like in Prep School.
- Less training time per day than Prep School.
- Pay when you check out.
- If your dog is boarding with us, there is a minimum of three training days. If here for daycare, we can train just on that day. For Prep School, there is a minimum of nine training days.
- Private session available at our training facility, after your boarding stay, in order to review what we worked on. This is at a reduced rate from our normal private lesson fee.
- Treats and equipment sold separately.