Classes for Children

Children can reap great benefit from having a dog in the family. A family dog can be a friend and companion, a therapist, a task master, a responsibility, a life science teacher, and might even double as a bed warmer in winter.

A lack of knowledge and understanding can however lead to heartache and sometimes tragedy. Our classes seek to address this shortcoming to help ensure a safe, enjoyable and rewarding relationship between children and dogs.

Our children's activities are currently demand-driven and can be divided into three categories:
  • Education about dogs and interaction with dogs
  • Puppy classes for children
  • Animal-Assisted activities  
  • Childrens education
  • Puppy classes for children
  • Animal-Assisted Activities
This course of classes, broken up into four sessions, is suitable for children from Grade 1 through 7. We can accommodate groups of up to eight children at a time to allow for personal attention.

The classes are given a practical application with the use of adult dogs that are used in therapy dog applications or have proven themselves to be non-reactive to the attention of children.

These Children's Classes are aimed at educating children about:
  • meeting dogs
  • interacting with dogs
  • the basic habits of dogs
  • how to behave around dogs
  • basic commands around the house (for dogs that are involved in puppy or obedience classes)
  • what not to do to, and around, dogs
  • what does a dog like and what not
  • how to tell if a dog is unhappy or angry and, what to do when that happens
  • hygiene
  • helping with doggy tasks
  • what dogs eat and why they shouldn't eat certain things
Should you have any questions or would like to arrange a course for a group of children, please contact us.
Children and teenagers can get involved in puppy training, or even training an older well behaved dog. It is a great activity to get involved in and can even be taken to competitive level.

This is the ideal way to get your children involved in the care and management of your family dog. Regular dog training can be used as a development tool to:
  • pixlr boy pup walk 6ad95instil a sense of responsibility
  • develop confidence
  • develop coordination and motor skills
  • experience achievement and pride
  • improve communication skills

We can accommodate accompanied small children in our normal puppy classes or make provision for more individual training by prior arrangement. Older children and teenagers generally fit in well with our general classes.

We currently have a dedicated childrens' puppy class on a Sunday morning at 09:00. Parents are encouraged to join the class.

Should you have any questions or would like to arrange a course for a group of children, please contact us.
Manderston Owner Charlene Kruger is one of a handful of practising Animal-assisted activities practitioners in Gauteng. Her therapy dogs are part of an ongoing programme at a leading Johannesburg Acute Rehabilitation Facility. 
Animal-assisted activities can play a particularly powerful therapeutic role in children. Charlene's expertise is available to children with special needs. We have assisted individuals with a variety of disabilities. If required, we can work with your occupational therapist to achieve specific goals. 
We can assist you with:
  • Selecting a suitable dog, taking the individual's special needs into consideration. This is particularly important as an incorrect choice may lead to disappointment - something that can be particularly devastating to people with special needs.
  • Puppy training. While we deal with the standard puppy training curriculum, we provide one-on-one training where required and adapt to each individual's needs. In many cases a person with special needs will use different language to communicate with the dog than other family members. While most dogs are quite capable to learn different commands for the same action, it can be confusing for a puppy. This is thus the time for the family to decide on how they will communicate with the dog and agree on a 'common language' where it is called for.
  • Obedience training. A well chosen and trained puppy will usually develop into a balanced and respectful dog, but there will be hurdles to overcome. Ongoing training is not only the best way to deal with problems or difficulties as they arise. Young adult dogs, for instance, seldom realise their strength and they can be clumsy. This can be dangerous for individuals with physical disabilities if the dog is not taught how to move and behave around the person. There may also be some very specific things you may want to teach your dog. We can help you with these as part of an ongoing maintenance programme.
Should you have any questions or would like to arrange a course for a group of children, please contact us.
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