Most hunts offer a non-regular class called a Puppy Learning Experience (PLE) or a Novice Learning Experience (NLE) as part of the practice day before the official trial begins. The goals of the PLE/NLE are to provide mentoring to new handlers on how to work with their dogs on the field (how to get the dogs into cover, how to recognize when the dogs are scenting, etc.) and to provide guided experience for the dog. The PLE/NLE is highly recommended for all new handlers.

(Note that puppies under 6 months can be out on the field during the practice day but cannot be entered in the trial.)