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   Established 1960


Class Policies & Procedures

Registration & Payment

Students must register on-line via the Current Classes page of the website. For instructions, visit the How to Register page. No walk-ins or verbal reservations. Payment may be made either with a credit card via the website or by check/money order sent U.S. mail.  For students paying by check: If registering for more than one class, write separate checks. Make checks payable to SOTC, Inc.

There is a $20 bank fee for returned checks or credit-card chargebacks.

All students registering for a class must agree to the Club's Liability Release.

For the duration of the COVID-19 pandemic,  students must abide by all posted safety precautions.

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Cancellations & Refunds

You may cancel your registration up until the first day of class for a full refund or credit (refunds will be made by check).  Requests for refunds after the first class meeting will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

We reserve the right to cancel a class that does not generate enough interest and will issue a full refund or credit for that class upon its cancellation.

Classes are not held after 7pm on the Club's monthly General Membership meeting nights. Meetings are usually held on the 2nd Monday of odd-numbered months (January, March, etc.) and the 2nd Tuesday of even-numbered months (February, April, etc.) The schedule is posted on the Meetings page. If your class ends before 7pm on a meeting night, it will likely be held. Students are welcome to attend meetings.

Individual classes may be canceled/postponed in the event of bad weather or other unforeseen circumstances. Class cancellation/postponement policies will be provided at Orientation or your first class.

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Priority Registration & General Registration

SOTC members receive priority for admission to classes, with priority registration opening several days before general registration. Registrations received after the priority period are treated on a first-come/first-served basis, regardless of member/non-member status.

Registration remains open until classes fill or start.

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As part of the registration process, all students must attest that their dogs have received age-appropriate vaccinations (either initial puppy vaccines or adult boosters). 

  • To enroll in Puppy classes, puppies on initial vaccination schedules must have received at least the second DAP (distemper, adenovirus, parvo) shot by the start of class. This shot is normally given around 12 weeks of age.
  • Dogs enrolled in other classes should have been vaccinated in accord with the guidelines outlined on the American Animal Hospital Association website. New York State law requires that dogs over 4 months of age be vaccinated for rabies.   

In addition, students enrolled in Puppy, Pre-Basic or Basic must show proof of the dog's age-appropriate vaccination at the first class meeting.  Acceptable forms of proof :

  • A veterinarian's certificate or invoice that includes the date of vaccination and duration of the vaccine (1 year, 3 years), or the date(s) on which re-vaccination is due.
  • For puppies whose initial vaccines were administered by the breeder, a photocopy of the vaccine vial or the breeder-supplied puppy health card.
  • For adult dogs with a known history of initial vaccination,  titers (quantitative antibody testing reports) may substitute for proof of boosters.
  • For dogs with a medically necessary exemption from certain vaccines, provide a letter from your veterinarian.

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Eligibility Run-Throughs

The following students must attend a run-through (with their dog) to determine eligibility:

  • Students new to our classes registering for anything above the level of Basic (run-throughs are not required for Puppy, Pre-Basic, or Basic)
  • Children under the age of 18 registering for any class for the first time as the primary trainer of the dog
  • Students who do not meet the prerequisite listed for a class

If you need a run-through, please contact the Registrar to schedule it.

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In-person Orientation meetings have been suspended for the duration of the pandemic.

Students new to SOTC must attend Orientation. Orientation is held only once per session (usually on the Wednesday preceding the start of classes). This is an informational program designed for owners only. Do not bring your dog to Orientation.

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Special Situations

Junior Handlers (under age 18)

  • Children attending classes with their families must be at least 4 years of age.
  • Children registering for any class as the primary trainer of the dog must be at least 10 years of age (and must attend a run-through the first time he or she registers).

Dogs with Multiple Owners

  • For Puppy classes, the entire family is welcome (and encouraged!) to attend and participate in the training.
  • For classes other than Puppy, we ask that just ONE person handle the dog in class, and that the same person handle the dog from week to week. Other family members may watch from outside the ring.

Owners with Multiple Dogs

  • For entry-level obedience classes (Puppy, Pre-Basic, Basic), students with multiple dogs must enroll them in separate classes.
  • For other obedience classes, a student may enroll two dogs in the same class only by permission, and only if another person is available to handle the second dog.
  • For agility classes, a student may run two dogs in one class only if the class has not filled by the end of the priority registration period.

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Copyright 2021

The Syracuse Obedience Training Club, Inc. 

PO Box 3457, Syracuse NY 13220-3457

A New York State-registered 501(c)3 educational corporation (organized not-for-profit)

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