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Training is an important part of a dog’s development and strengthens the bond between dogs and owners. Pooches Paradise offers obedience, agility and vocational dog training programs to build communication and responsiveness, plus give owners more control over their dog’s behavior.

Mary Sellaro

Mary Sellaro
Director of Training

Mary Sellaro joined Pooches Paradise as the director of training in 2012. A former dog daycare owner, she has been training dogs since 1990. Mary teaches obedience training in group and private lessons, from puppy level to advanced, and helps pet owners train dogs with behavior and aggression issues.

Mary is a certified American Kennel Club Canine Good Citizen evaluator and has been the temperament test evaluator for the Children’s Mercy Hospital Pet Pal Program and Pets for Life, Inc. She also developed and implements the Kansas City Retired Greyhounds as Pets (KCREGAP) training program to rehabilitate former racing dogs in preparation for adoption.

Mary is a recurring guest and canine behavioral consultant on Talk Radio 710 KCMO and Hot Talk 1510 KCTE. She is a regular contributor to MetroPet Magazine and a published author on canine behavior and training in numerous pet-related publications.

We Now Offer Virtual Training

We would have been lost without Mary Sellaro’s expertise and her team at Pooches’ Paradise. I was immediately impressed with Mary’s skills and talent, and of course, Bean just loved her! Mary and her team provide us with the expertise and support that has helped strengthen our relationship with Bean through every development stage, and they identify and curtail behavioral issues quickly. If my dog could talk, she’d ask me to take her to school every day!


I can’t say this enough: Pooches Paradise is hands down the best experience we’ve had. From the convenient location and evening schedule, to the reasonable pricing, knowledgeable and professional staff. With a ton of help and support during – and outside of – class, Mary Sellaro and her team helped us meet our goals as a successful therapy team!


The training classes are exceptional, enjoyable and effective. We enjoy working with Mary, Jess and Sammi so much that we have taken at least 3 classes and plan on more! I wouldn’t go anywhere else!


Pooches Paradise offers 6-week classes for obedience, agility and vocational training. View the Calendar for a current list of training classes and prices. If you do not see a class date scheduled, please let us know you are interested and often we can form a class from your inquiry. See class descriptions below.

Private Lessons

Private Lessons – In Home or In Resort

Private Lessons are a great option for busy clients, dogs with specific behavior problems, owners with a particular goal in mind, dogs not suitable for classes, or aggressive/fearful dogs. Our trainer will meet with the client at a mutually agreed location for one-hour increments.

**Private training packages available please see Virtual Training Page**

Pricing: $110 per hourly session

Pooches University

Pooches University

The Pooches University program can compliment the 4-week training courses and supports busy owners who want assistance in training their pooch. Dogs are dropped off at daycare on Training Class days for socialization and training. Our trainer works with the dog during the day, and the owner joins their pooch for class in the evening.

Prerequisite: Temperament Test
Pricing: $55/session, plus the cost of daycare

Stay and Study

The Stay and Study program is specifically tailored to each guest based on client goals and trainer recommendations. The program includes daily training sessions, a daily report card, and two in-resort private lessons to educate the owner on how to maintain and effectively handle their pup at home.

Pricing: $55, plus the cost of boarding. Minimum investment is $200 in training.

Group Training Classes

Manners 101

This beginner class is ideal for rescue and shelter dogs, or for owners who want to communicate better with their pooch. Dogs will learn exercises such as come, controlled walking, sit, stay, wait, leave-it, down, and focused attention.

Prerequisite: None
Age: Minimum 5 months
Duration: 6 weeks

Manners 202

Take Manners 101 training to the next level by adding distractions and distance to your pooch’s basic skills.

Prerequisite: Manners 101 or comparable class
Age: Minimum 8 months
Duration: 6 weeks

Manners 303

Offered in the spring and fall, this public manners class is focused on helping you control your pup’s behavior while out in public.

Prerequisite: Manners 101, Manners 202 or comparable class. Requires instructor approval.
Age: Minimum 6 months
Duration: 6 weeks

Canine Good Citizen Prep

Do you want your pooch to earn the American Kennel Club’s Canine Good Citizen certification (CGC) or learn manners for appropriate greetings and socialization around distraction?

Prerequisite: Manners 101 or comparable class.
Age: Minimum 6 months
Duration: 6 weeks

AKC S.T.A.R. Puppy Class

The AKC S.T.A.R. Puppy is an exciting new program designed to get dog owners and their puppies off to a good start. The AKC S.T.A.R. Puppy Program is an incentive program for loving dog owners who have taken the time to take their puppies through a basic training class.

All puppies will be evaluated for the S.T.A.R. Puppy Test on the last night of the class.

This 6 week class will cover sit, down, leash walking, come, leave it and drop it. We will also discuss play biting, chewing, housebreaking, jumping up and other puppy behaviors.

Prerequisite: None
Age: 10 weeks – 20 weeks
Duration: 6 weeks

Almost Mannerly

The next step after puppy class or for dogs who are new to our training program working towards Manners 202.

Prerequisite: Puppy Class
Age: Minimum 6 months
Duration: 5 weeks
Pricing: $225

Specialty Classes

Agility 101

This fun, safe, non-competitive class will provide your dog the ability to learn four agility obstacles. You dog will experience the A-Frame, Pause Table, Weave Poles, and Tunnel. You and your pup will build confidence through work and develop better communication and understanding of each other.

Prerequisite: Manners 101 or equivalent
Age: Minimum 1 year
Duration: 6 weeks

Rally 101

This course is an introduction to AKC Rally sport. It is a fun way to practice obedience exercises which will challenge your pooch, plus develop communication and teamwork. It is a natural progression after obtaining the Canine Good Citizen certification.

Prerequisite: Manners 101 or comparable class
Age: Minimum 6 months
Duration: 6 weeks

Visiting Paws

For those interested in putting your dog’s talent towards therapy work, this course will prepare the handler and dog for volunteering with organization such as Reading Education Assistance Program (R.E.A.D.) or Pet’s for Life. Pooches Paradise will provide information on volunteer opportunities and testing.

Prerequisite: Manners 101 or comparable class with prior instructor approval.
Age: Minimum 18 months and in the handler’s home a minimum of 6 months.
Duration: 6 weeks

Training Guide

Still not sure which class is right for you and your pooch?

Read Which class is right for my dog? a helpful guide on frequent behavior scenarios.