Puppy Training Tips

Training a new puppy is a time-consuming hassle, but it’s definitely worth it. Good dogs aren’t just born, they are taught. Before you get a dog, examine your commitment to its training. Dogs and their humans are generally happier when expectations are clear.

Photo by Josh Hild on Unsplash

Expect Destruction

Just as babies like to put everything in their mouths, puppies also like to chew, and they have much sharper teeth. Whether you buy certified German Shepherd puppies or adopt mixed breeds of unknown origin, puppies are likely to chew up and possibly destroy whatever they can. Puppy proof your house by providing a safe space such as a crate or utility room where your puppy can be a puppy. Provide lots of chew toys for stimulation.

Keep It Simple

Choose a few simple commands to start with such as sit and no. Dogs are not born with a facility to understand human language (like babies are), so they need lots of practice and reinforcement. Choose small, delicious treats (such as cooked chicken) that you can give liberally when your dog is doing what you want. Avoid crunchy biscuits for training because by the time your pup is finished chewing, he will have forgotten why he got the reward in the first place.

Stop Laughing

It’s difficult not to laugh when your dog is being silly, but if you’re in the middle of a lesson, try not to. Bad behavior is often reinforced accidentally by the mannerisms and behavior of the human companions. For example, if you don’t want your dog to sleep on the sofa when you’re at work, don’t put “his” blanket on it. In your mind, you may be keeping the furniture clear of dog hair. In your dog’s brain, you’ve invited him up.

If you don’t have lots of time to train your pooch, consider enrolling in an obedience class. That way you’re both committed to at least that hour of training every week.

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