I have my puppy classes already figured out, though that took a long time to find a class that was positive reinforcement only... most trainers in my city seem to think alpha rolling a puppy is the only way to go.
They have their "puppy kindergarten" class starting at the end of October, and I should (if all goes well!) have the puppy by the beginning or middle of the month, so I'll be right on course to start!
We don't have any training "clubs" really, but I may just have been unable to find it/find anyone who knows about it. I'm hoping I can ask the instructor for assistance, assuming there is a club in the city. I'm a bit shy though, so I'm not sure if I'll want to jump into that right away. I have no interest in agility or any dog sports so I guess I still have to figure out what premise I'd be asking about the club for... I know the trainer running the puppy kindergarten class has different classes, but they're mostly for sports, aside from the puppy class and basic obedience classes.
I do know I won't be using the dog parks in the area, though. There's one down my street they closed down because too many dog fights were occurring between owners, and the other one is too far from where I live. I was thinking about maybe trying to set up puppy playdates, though, with people from the class. Is that a good idea? Maybe do like group walks together or something?
I'm still a bit fuzzy on one bit of training, though. Most of the books I've read - unless I missed something - focus on the treatment of separation anxiety, but not the prevention. How exactly do you set a puppy up for success there? Do you practice leaving them in their crate for blocks of time and just give lots of praise/rewards? I have university classes and I'm really nervous the puppy will develop anxiety or something.
The breeders both assured me that my schedule will be fine for raising a puppy (the longest I'm away from home is two hours each week, so in between classes I can do potty breaks/playtime) but I'm still really nervous about it and not sure how to go about "proofing".