Dog Training at Paws4ever

Paws4ever offers training classes for dogs of all ages at our Learning Center in Mebane, NC. Whether it is behavioral training or competitive success, our knowledgeable staff and volunteer instructors will help you achieve all your dog-training goals. All training is reward-based, using gentle, effective techniques. We do not use any forceful methods such as chokes, prongs, electronic training collars and verbal mistreatment.

Please note that our Life Skills class, an ongoing class on Saturdays, is offered for FREE to anyone adopting a dog from Paws4ever!

Most of our group classes are taught in 6-week terms and we have 4 terms per year. Preregistration is required.

Winter (starting in mid-January)
Spring (starting in mid-March)
Summer (starting in mid-June)
Fall (starting in mid-September)

Class Descriptions

  • Life Skills Class

    Welcome your new dog into your world. Paws4ever recognizes the need to get dogs into classes as soon as possible to help them transition into their new homes. Life Skills is an ongoing class on Saturdays that is offered for FREE to anyone adopting a dog from Paws4ever and open to all other dogs if room is available. Check the Learning Center calendar for the next Life Skills class date.
    The cost is $50 for 4 classes plus an orientation.
    Life Skills orientation begins at 9:30am--please come without your dog. Life Skills class with dogs begins at 10:00am and lasts one hour.

  • Junior Puppy Kindergarten

    For puppies 2 to 4 months old at the starting date of class. Junior Puppy Kindergarten gives young puppies and their owners a head start on their new life together. This class introduces the basic skills of paying attention, the sit, down, stay and come commands, and walking on a leash. It also covers the importance of proper management of mouthing, housetraining and socialization. Class includes some supervised off-leash puppy playtime to help develop critical social skills AND burn off extra puppy energy! Learn more about puppy socialization here.

    6 week class/$100

  • Senior Puppy Kindergarten

    For puppies 4 to 6 months old at the starting date of class. Senior Puppy Kindergarten is an introductory class on positive training and behavior management for older puppies. This class introduces the basic skills of paying attention, the sit, down, stay and come commands, and walking on a leash. Emphasis is placed on proper management of problem behaviors such as mouthing, housetraining and socialization. Class includes some supervised off-leash puppy playtime to help develop critical social skills AND burn off extra puppy energy! Learn more about puppy socialization here.

    6 week class/$100

  • Family Dog 1

    For dogs 7 months old or older with no previous formal training. This is an introductory class on positive training and behavior management for any dog. Handlers will learn the basics of effective communication and proper use of training techniques. Skills covered in Family Dog 1 include attention, name responsiveness, the sit, down, stay and come commands, and the beginnings of loose-leash walking.

    6 week class/$100

  • Family Dog 2

    For graduates of Junior or Senior Puppy Kindergarten or Family Dog 1. Family Dog 2 expands on the skills learned in previous classes and introduces new elements such as wait, leave it, go to place, recalls and loose-leash walking with distractions.

    6 week class/$100

  • Canine Good Citizen/Therapy Dog

    For dogs 1 year and older. Dogs and owners need a good working knowledge of basic obedience commands such as: Sit, Down, Stay, Come and Leave It. We will bring these commands to the next level where the dogs become more confident and learn to obey and hold these commands with all types of real life distractions going on around them. Handlers will learn how to best handle their dogs in difficult and distracting environments by simulating many different types of distractions that a dog may possibly encounter in a facility. Class is 7 weeks to include a night for CGC testing.

    PREREQUISITES: Family Dog 1 or 2

  • Really Reliable Recall

    This class is designed for owners who want their dog to come when called, EVERY TIME! Come to this class to teach your dog this life-saving skill and have a lot of fun besides!

    PREREQUISITES: Family Dog 1 or Puppy Classes

    4 week class/$80

  • All-Star Tricks

    One of the best ways to strengthen the bond between owner and dog is continuing to train new behaviors. Our All-Star Tricks class will focus on understanding positive training techniques like shaping, targeting and capturing. Learning tricks teaches your dog body control and keeps their mind actively engaged. It goes beyond the basics like “roll over” with unique tricks that will keep you and your dog totally entertained.


    6 week class/$100

  • Loose Leash Walking

    This is a single-subject class focused on improving your dog's behavior while walking on leash. Leash manners are a struggle for many dogs and handlers. Six weeks of coaching and practice will help make walking your dog a more pleasant experience instead of a stressful tug-of-war.

    PREREQUISITES: Junior or Senior Puppy of Family Dog 1

  • Clicks for Tricks

    This class is geared towards dogs and handlers who have mastered the basics and want to advance their training and learning skills. We specifically focus on using techniques like capturing and shaping to teach a variety of interesting and fun tricks. All teams should be familiar with clicker training and ready to take their skills to the next level. Handlers will learn to improve their timing, rate of reinforcement, and observation skills while the dogs learn to problem solve. The first night of class is Orientation for just people, no dogs.

    PREREQUISITES: Two group training classes and desire to move outside your comfort zone

  • Breed Handling with Dale McElrath

    A drop-in class appropriate for dogs with show ring aspirations. Our instructor, Dale McElrath, has more than 20 years of experience exhibiting dogs in AKC and UKC conformation with great success. Learn how to present your dog to his or her best advantage in the show ring. Teach your dog to bait, stack and gait properly and also accept examinations by a judge.

    $10 per class

  • Scent Detection

    Ever wonder what your dog's nose knows? Learn to read what he or she is saying in a fun class geared toward dogs who would benefit from intense mental stimulation. Main concepts covered will include imprinting on odor, recognizing natural alert behavior, and adding a trained indication. Specific legal odors will be the handler's choice, such as morel mushrooms, personal items, antler sheds, or essential oils.

    PREREQUISITES: No prerequisites are required, but dogs should feel comfortable crating between turns.

  • Canine Fitness

    Learn the basics of canine fitness and help your dog enjoy their workout! In this class we will focus on safe and fun exercises and tricks that help improve body awareness, core strength, balance and flexibility. We will also introduce some FitPaws equipment to add instability to your dog's workout.

    PRE-REQUISITES: Foundation Agility or instructor approval

  • Foundation Agility

    For dogs who have completed at least one group training class. This class emphasizes all component skills needed in agility: self-control, motivation, balance/coordination and handling. Dogs and handlers will learn a foundation of safety and skills that will enable them to continue to more advanced agility training if they wish. This class is geared toward dogs who have no prior experience with agility training.

  • Obstacle Skills

    For dogs who have completed Foundation Agility or a comparable class. Introduce your dog to the agility obstacles in a positive, safe manner. Your dog will learn to tunnel, jump, table, tire and contact obstacles with confidence and speed.

  • Contacts & Weaves 1 & 2

    Contact obstacles (A-frame, dog walk and see-saw) and weave poles comprise some of the most challenging skills in the sport. This class will focus on teaching and maintaining solid performances of contacts and weaves. We teach 2on-2off contacts, running contacts and 2x2 weaves. C&W Level 1 is for teams with little to no experience with contacts & weaves. Level 2 is for more advanced teams who need to practice or improve speed and accuracy on contacts & weaves.

  • Handling Skills

    This class teaches handlers and dogs the finer points of handling. Skills covered include lead-outs, pushes and pulls, and front and rear crosses. Courses will be composed of jumps and tunnels, so dogs need only be proficient at those obstacles.

  • Sequencing Skills

    Dogs in this class must be able to perform all obstacles at full height and perform sequences up to five obstacles long. This class focuses on running increasingly longer sequences while maintaining correct performance criteria. Dogs will also learn the strategies of walking the course and planning a good path for both handler and dog.

  • Competition I

    This class is geared toward teams who are competing in AKC Open or above. Courses will contain all the obstacles (6–12 weave poles) and will feature challenges appropriate to the skill level of dog and handler. We will run standard courses and a variety of game-based training exercises.

  • Competition II

    For dogs and handlers already competing in AKC Excellent or USDAA Masters. We will work on a new, challenging course each week, focusing on more difficult skills and other obstacles, like 12 weave polls.

  • Agility Run-Throughs

    This class is a drop-in class held most Saturday Mornings. We set up a challenging numbered course for students to practice their skills. No instruction is offered, just time in the ring to practice. The cost is $5 per dog for unlimited runs. Dogs must be proficient at all obstacles and able to perform them safely.

  • Advanced Sequencing

    This class offers masters-level challenges to our most advanced agility students. All equipment is used and we work on skills such as 270s, threadles, back-side approaches and other master challenge elements.

Private Lessons

$50 per hour
$30 per half hour

Dog Park and Nature Trail

General Information

Dog Park
The Paws4ever Dog Park is a fenced three-acre off-leash socialization and play area for your dog. The park is located on the grounds of the Felicite Latane Animal Sanctuary and is open 365 days a year from 8 a.m. until dusk. Dog Park memberships are available for an annual fee of $50 for one dog and $20 for each additional dog.

For those interested in Dog Park membership, we strongly recommend attending at least one obedience class before joining the park. All dog owners must participate in a Dog Park orientation, which includes a video on Dog Park etiquette. Each dog must be at least four months old and is also interviewed for basic social conduct.

Remember it is your responsibility to control your dog off-leash. Having your dog spayed or neutered is strongly recommended and no female dogs in heat are permitted in the dog park. Documentation of DHLPP vaccinations, rabies and Bordetella must be provided upon application for membership

Nature Trail
The Paws4ever Nature Trail is now open! The 2 mile primitive trail is a beautiful route through the woods and includes access and views of Toms Creek. Nature Trail memberships are available for an annual fee of $20 for one dog and $5 for each additional dog. Dog Park members may add access to the Nature Trail for an additional $5 per year.

All dogs must be on leash while on the Nature Trail.

Join Today
To schedule an orientation and interview for you and your dog please contact the Paws4ever dog training manager, Julie Jenkins at (919) 241-8438 ext. 102 or

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