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Shag Bark Pet Retreat
  • “Thanks to Brian for helping teach an old dog new tricks”

    – Katie Leep (Maxine — Dog)
  • “We continue to be very impressed with all services”

    – Ann Barta (Stanely — Dog)
  • “We Loved coming here for training. Very relaxed atmosphere and felt very comfortable. Brian has a good sense of humor!”

    – Tom and Victoria Coberly (Stella — Dog)
  • “We’ve been coming here for boarding and grooming since Brian took over, and my sheltie LOVES it! She wags her way in the door, greets everyone, and has a fabulous time and looks gorgeous!”

    – Cheryl Silva ( Katy — Dog)
  • “We've been bringing our dogs here for over 20 years. Love this place.”

    – Katie Maki (Mickey — Dog)
  • “Grooming can be stressful for our old dog Tara. She had a great time and looked wonderful!”

    – Sarah Koth (Tara — Dog)
  • “My dog Riggs loves to come here, it's his second home. I know when I drop him off he's always well taken care of and loved.”

    – Karen Barrett (Riggs — Dog)
  • “We have peace of mind bringing Mac here, knowing he is well cared for and has fun. He knows when we turn onto Grass Lake Rd. where we are heading and can't wait to get there. Amazing!”

    – Nancy Miller (Mac — Dog)
  • “So Friendly and accommodating! Refer everyone I know to come here. You're the best! ”

    – Debbie Hart (Molly — Dog)
  • “The staff really love the dogs and seem to know them all personally, my dog loves it here.”

    – Raymond Springer (Jak — Dog)
  • “Zoe loves her friends at Shag Bark. All we need to do is mention “Shag Bark’ or your “Favorite place’ and she is at the garage door ready to go. We can't even talk about Shag Bark unless she is going right then!”

    – Suzie Teal (Zoey — Dog)
  • “Shelby Loves coming here! Thanks for treating her so wonderfully. I'm so thankful for doggie daycare, to let out Shelb's extra energy and let her play with all her friends!”

    – Debbie Prather (Shelby — Dog)
  • “I love that we found a place that treats our baby Madori like the princess she is. Cat's can have a rough adjustment period when you change their routine, but Madori LOVED the vacation. It makes going away so much easier when I know she is getting as spoiled as she would at home, Thanks guys!”

    – Kathleen Burman (Madori — Cat)
  • “I think Rocky likes it here more than home. He never wants to leave. I know he is in good hands at Shag Bark”

    – Joan Richardson (Rocky — Cat)
  • “Awesome Place! You take great care of our Daisy!”

    – Ronald Ludwig (Daisy — Dog)
  • “Very nice staff. I feel that Fritzy is being well taken care of. Thank you!”

    – Heike Bates (Fritzy — Dog)
  • “Brian is the dog whisper he is so great with the dogs!”

    – Sandy Mosak (Max — Dog)
  • “I hadn't been able to break through with any training with Dudley until this class. He wouldn't sit, come, stay, down or heel. Now he does thank you. You have been most helpful.”

    – Carol Malick (Dudley — Dog)
  • “Brian is fantastic with Mia, she has learned so much in the past year from him.”

    – Laura Goecke (Mia — Dog)

Dog Training:  Group Classes

Do you want a dog who listens when you tell him to sit?  Do you want a dog who doesn't pull on leash?  Do you want a dog who comes when called?

Maybe your dog has the basics down, but you want to strengthen your bond and provide your dog with additional mental and physical enrichment.

Whether you are looking for a socialization class for your puppy, a canine manners class for your adult dog, or want to provide your dog with a new challenge, we have a variety of classes to fit every canine's needs.  Group classes are a great way to start or continue training in a fun and safe environment with professional guidance.  Our class sizes are small with a maximum of six dog/handler teams in most classes.  This allows us to give you plenty of individual attention as well as the benefit of training with the distractions of the other teams.

All of our classes fall into one of these three categories, each with a different emphasis:

  • Good Dogs:  Classes focus on creating family dogs with great manners, training your dogs to succeed wherever you take them, and solving problem behaviors.
  • Animal Athletes:  Classes are for dogs that have basic training and would like to stay both physically and mentally fit with dog sports such as Scent Work, Rally, and Agility
  • Specialty Classes:  These provide emphasis on specific interests and include workshops and seminars on a variety of topics.

Sign up for one of our classes today to unleash all the potential your dog has to be an awesome family member!

Group Class Offerings:

Good Dogs

Puppy Preschool

Puppy Good Neighbor

Canine Manners

Canine Good Neighbor

Canine Better Neighbor (f/k/a Focused)

Calm & Controlled

Ready


Animal Athletes

Intro to Scent Work

Beginning Scent Work/Intro to Odor

Continuing Odor

Beginning Rally

Intermediate/Advanced Rally

Intro to Agility

Beginning Agility

Specialty Classes

Leadership Workshop

Feisty

Hounds Around the Holidays

Dog's Got Talent

Sampler Class

Note:  For class dates, days, and times, please visit our Class Schedule.

Please review our Cancellation Policy.

Good Dogs

Puppy Preschool

Puppy Preschool is for puppies ages 9 to 16 weeks.  This is the most important class you will ever attend!  Puppies are like little sponges that soak up new experiences and it is critical to use this time to socialize them to people, experiences, and other puppies in a safe environment.  Puppy Preschool provides lots of off-leash play time, socialization with other puppies and humans as well as an introduction to basic behaviors such as sit, down, and come.  The Instructor will cover topics like socialization and healthy play, house training, crate training, chewing, puppy biting, fear issues, puppy management, and proper handling.  General information is also provided on feeding, health, grooming, and the stages of puppy development.  Registration fee for this four week class is $79.00.  Minimum:  3; Maximum:  6 - 9

Puppy Good Neighbor

Puppy Good Neighbor focuses on building foundation for your puppy and includes specific behaviors such as sit, down, stay, and come as well as walking on leash.  The course also includes the framework for responsible dog ownership.  We will be following all the testing guidelines for the American Kennel Club's® S.T.A.R. Puppy® program.  During the final class, those who meet all the criteria will be given test paperwork to send to the AKC along with a small fee.  The AKC® will then provide a beautiful, frameable certificate citing the puppy's accomplishment.  Owners will also receive a medal, a booklet, and more.  Read about the program in this brochure. Registration fee for this eight week class is $179.00 and includes the testing fee.  Minimum:  3; Maximum:  6

Canine Manners

Canine Manners is for dogs six months and older.  the class teaches your dog the manners that will make her a welcomed member of your family.  We work on all the basic behaviors and we give you a solid foundation about the science of training.  We teach you how to prevent problem behaviors.  Remember, it's never too late to get started.  Yes, you CAN teach an old dog all kinds of new tricks!  Our Canine Manners class is designed to help you get started on creating a well-mannered dog that is a joy to be around.  Behaviors taught include sit, down, come, stay, touch, bed, and walking on leash plus an introduction to heeling.  Registration fee for this eight week class is $179.00.  Minimum:  3; Maximum:  6

Prerequisites:  Dogs must be friendly with or tolerant of other dogs while on leash.

Canine Good Neighbor

Canine Good Neighbor focuses on responsible dog ownership and ten specific skills (sit, down, come, stay, sitting politely for petting, reaction to another dog, and more) that every well mannered dog should possess.  During the final class, we conduct the American Kennel Club's® Canine Good Citizen® test.  Those who meet all the criteria will be issued paperwork to send to the AKC® along with a small fee.  The AKC® will then send a beautiful, frameable certificate citing your dog's accomplishment.  Read more about it in this brochure.  This class serves as a building block for therapy work.  Registration fee for this eight week class is $179.00 and includes the testing fee.  Minimum:  3; Maximum:  6

Prerequisites:  Canine Manners OR consent of Instructor.  Dogs must be friendly with or tolerant of other dogs while on leash.


Canine Better Neighbor (f/k/a Focused)

Does your dog know a perfect sit...in the living room?  Does your dog know a perfect recall into the kitchen where his food is waiting?  Is your dog a well behaved citizen at home but forgetful of manners when you go out into the real world?  This class is a great way to continue training all the important behaviors (sit, down, recall, walking on leash/heeling, etc.) with distractions to set your dog up for success in every day life.  We focus on attention exercises and distraction work.  We cover the ten behaviors required for the American Kennel Club's® Community Canine test.  Read more about it on this web pageThe test will be given the final night of class.  A minimum of three classes (including the test) will take place off site (within fifteen miles of Shag Bark) Registration fee for this eight week class is $189.00 and includes the testing fee.  Minimum:  3; Maximum:  6

Prerequisites:  Canine Good Citizen® designation/title OR consent of Instructor. 

NOTE:  Community Canine® is a title issued by the American Kennel Club®.  In order to be eligible, dogs must have a Canine Good Citizen® designation/title on file with the AKC® and must be registered with the AKC®.  All breeds and mixes are eligible. Those interested in the class but not interested in the title may still take the class provided they have met the prerequisites above.

Calm & Controlled

Calm & Controlled is a mini class with emphasis on strengthening skills such as leave it, stay, door manners, greeting manners, and go to bed.  Registration fee for this four week class is $95.00.  Minimum:  3; Maximum:  6

Prerequisites:  Canine Manners OR consent of Instructor.  Dogs must be friendly with or tolerant of other dogs while on leash.

Ready

Ready is a mini class with emphasis on strengthening skills such as loose leash walking, heeling, and recalls.  Registration fee for this four week class is $95.00.  Minimum:  3; Maximum:  6

Prerequisites:  Canine Manners OR consent of Instructor.  Dogs must be friendly with or tolerant of other dogs while on leash.

Animal Athletes

Scent Work

DOES YOUR DOG HAVE A NOSE?  Does your dog lack confidence?  Is your dog uncomfortable around other dogs?  Canine Scent Work is a new dog sport that is sweeping the nation!  You can develop and focus your dog's natural scenting abilities in this stimulating and engaging activity.  ANY DOG CAN DO IT!  This is the perfect sport for building confidence and enhancing your teamwork with your canine partner.  It's great fun for dogs and fascinating for humans!  Have you ever seen a drug or bomb detection dog on TV or in a movie?  Following guidelines set forth by the National Association of Canine Scent Work®, we draw on the fun parts of those same training techniques to give your dog a wonderful experience.  Do you have multiple dogs?  Because each dog works individually, you're able to enroll as many dogs as you'd like in these classes.  Classes are progressive and, depending on enrollment, levels may be combined.

Intro to Scent Work

This class provides an introduction to what Canine Scent Work is all about.  You'll learn a bit about the history of the sport and how it works today.  We'll introduce you to some of the techniques we'll use in class.  Throughout this course, dogs will be searching for food (or their favorite toys).  This will get them into true "hunting" mode.  Your dog will begin searching in the very first class!  The registration fee for this eight week class is $189.00.  Minimum:  3; Maximum:  8

Prerequisites:  Dog must be non-aggressive toward people.

Beginning Scent Work/Intro to Odor

This course builds upon the Intro course.  We continue to have the dogs hunt for food and we begin to incorporate the elements involved in the sport of Canine Scent Work - Containers; Interiors; Exteriors; Vehicles.  We continue to build the dog's intensity for the hunt while honing the handler's ability to read the dog.  Skill building will be included.  We'll also introduce the first odor, Birch.  The registration fee for this eight week course is $189.00.  Minimum:  3; Maximum:  8

Prerequisites:  Intro to Scent Work OR consent of Instructor

Continuing Odor

This course continues to build the dog's skills and additional odors will be introduced once the dog has mastered Birch.  This class readies the dog for Odor Recognition Tests and Pre-Trial Tests required for competition.  Not every handler chooses to compete and that is just fine.  Dogs love this activity and they don't care about titles or ribbons.  They just love spending time with their owners.  The registration fee for this eight week class is $189.00  Minimum:  3; Maximum:  8

Prerequisites:  Beginning Scent Work OR consent of Instructor

Rally

Rally is a team sport based on a positive relationship between dog and handler.  Teams perform a course consisting of ten to twenty five stations.  Each station calls for a specific skill to be performed.  Our classes will incorporate multiple Rally venues:  AKC®, UKC®, WCR®, and C-WAGS®.  Rally does not require the same amount of precision as formal obedience, so it's easier on the dog/handler relationship.

Beginning Rally

In this class stations will include exercises like sit, down, come, various types of turns and pivots, and more.  There will be stations that require the team to serpentine or do figure eights.  There will be a lot of heel work in class, but great precision will not be required.  Registration fee for this eight week class is $189.00.  Minimum:  3; Maximum:  6

Prerequisites:  Canine Manners OR consent of Instructor.  Dogs must be friendly with or tolerant of other dogs while on leash.

Intermediate/Advanced Rally

This class builds upon the Beginner class.  Courses are longer and additional behaviors are expected.  Stations will include more advanced skills such as walking backwards, going over jumps, and even through tunnels.  There will be a lot of heel work and off leash work is incorporated.  Registration fee for this eight week course is $189.00.  Minimum:  3; Maximum:  8

Prerequisites:  Beginning Rally OR consent of Instructor.  Dogs must be friendly with or tolerant of other dogs while on leash.

Agility

Agility is a team sport in which the dog is required to navigate a series of obstacles including jumps, tunnels, teeter totters, weave poles, and more.  Obedience skills are a must for this activity as the dog works off leash and at a distance from the handler.  This sport is great exercise for both dog and handler and is a great confidence builder for dogs.

Intro to Agility

This introductory course focuses on teaching your dog the basics to succeed in this fun dog sport.  In addition to introducing your dog to agility obstacles, we work on building a solid foundation in your dog's body awareness, confidence, impulse control, and focus on you.  Registration fee for this eight week class is $189.00.  Minimum:  4; Maximum:  6

Prerequisites:  Canine Manners plus Intermediate coursework (Canine Good Neighbor; Rally; Calm & Controlled AND Ready) OR consent of Instructor.  Dogs must be friendly with or tolerant of other dogs while on leash.

Beginning Agility

In this class, we introduce additional obstacles and continue to work on basic skills with an emphasis on handling skills and flat work between obstacles.  Registration fee for this eight week course is $189.00.  Minimum:  4; Maximum:  6

Prerequisites:  Intro to Agility OR consent of Instructor.  Dogs must be friendly with or tolerant of other dogs while on leash.

Specialty Classes

Leadership Workshop

The first hour of the workshop focuses on theory.  Our presentation covers canine social structure, communication, and body language.  We teach you how to implement a leadership structure at home.  We talk about ways to incorporate training into your every day life in order to improve your dog's manners and confirm your status as a benevolent leader.  We demonstrate exercises that you can use at home and we provide several handouts so that you have information and instructions to share with your family.  During the second hour, we work on impulse control exercises with dog and handler teams.  These include door manners, recalls, leave it, and more.  Registration fee for this two hour workshop is $60.00.  Minimum:  3; Maximum:  6

Prerequisites:  Dogs must be friendly with or tolerant of other dogs while on leash.

Feisty

This class is specifically designed for dogs who are uncomfortable around other dogs while on leash - those who are fearful or who lunge, growl, and/or bark.  Owners will learn to recognize triggers and read body language.  We'll focus on attention exercises and owners will learn how to change the dog's emotions and behavior around other dogs.  An evaluation and specific equipment will be required.  Evaluation fee is $50.00.  Registration fee for this eight week class is $219.00.  Minimum:  2; Maximum:  4

Hounds Around the Holidays

This class will help to prepare your dog for special challenges during the holidays.  You'll concentrate on skills like door manners, greeting guests, go to bed, leave it, and more.  You'll also learn safety tips for a happier holiday.  Registration fee for this four week class is $89.00.  Minimum:  3 Maximum:  6

Prerequisites:  Puppy Good Neighbor, Canine Manners, OR consent of Instructor.  Dogs must be friendly with or tolerant of other dogs while on leash.

Dog's Got Talent

This class focuses on training fun tricks such as roll over, kiss, blow bubbles, fetch my keys, and many more.  Teaching your dog tricks has a lot of benefits besides the obvious one of making him the star of your dinner parties.  In this class, your dog will learn more than twenty behaviors and you will get a chance to polish your training skills and timing while developing an even closer relationship with your canine companion. Trick training not only strengthens your bond, but it provides great mental stimulation for your dog.  Registration fee for this eight week class is $189.00.  Minimum:  4; Maximum:  6

Prerequisites:  Canine Manners OR consent of Instructor.  Dogs must be friendly with or tolerant of other dogs while on leash.

Sampler Class

If you are overwhelmed by having to choose between so many great classes and are unsure which one you and your pup would enjoy most, than our Sampler Class is the one for you.  Each week will have a different emphasis and give you a taste of a fun activity that you can do with your dog.  We'll cover Scent Work, Rally, Tricks, and Agility.  Registration fee for this four week class is $95.00.  Minimum:  4; Maximum:  6

Prerequisites:  Canine Manners OR consent of Instructor.  Dogs must be friendly with or tolerant of other dogs while on leash.

Cancellation Policy

If minimum enrollment is not met two days prior to the class starting date, the class will be cancelled.  Shag Bark will notify students via e-mail.  Class fees will be credited toward another class or service or refunded in full.  Cancellations due to weather conditions will be posted on our Facebook page and students will be notified via e-mail.  There are NO REFUNDS should a student choose to cancel.

Visit our Class Schedule for class start dates and times or call (847) 395-8476 to speak with an Instructor.

 

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Come experience exceptional pet care

We are conveniently located within 10 miles of the following North Eastern Illinois and South Eastern Wisconsin Cities.

  • Antioch
  • Lake Villa
  • Lindenhurst
  • Round Lake
  • Fox Lake
  • Spring Grove
  • Grayslake
  • Gurnee
  • Mundelein
  • Libertyville
  • Great Lakes
  • Zion
  • Waukegan
  • Bristol
  • Genoa City
  • Kenosha
  • Paddock Lake
  • Pleasant Prairie
  • Salem
  • Trevor
  • Twin Lakes