Many aspiring pet owners prefer dogs as their pet of choice. And who can blame them? Dogs are the most loving and loyal pets that anyone can befriend. Teaching your puppy good manners can be very rewarding. Sometimes new puppy owners can be a bit overwhelmed in the beginning. However, with a little guidance, your journey with your new pup will be a positive experience for both of you!
You’ll need to have a lot of patience and understanding during the training process. As well, you will want to reinforce your puppy frequently. Reinforcements can be anything that is enjoyable to your puppy. This could include treats, belly rubs and verbal praise. So, when your puppy does something that you like, give him a reward. This way, the good behavior you are training is more likely to occur again.
Puppies can be trained as early as eight or nine weeks of age. Remember, they are like little sponges; they are learning all the time. You want to make sure that they are learning the behaviors that you prefer them to learn!
Teach Your Puppy Some Basic Commands and Tricks
Of course, dogs of all ages can learn. However, it is best to teach your puppy as soon as you get him home. Puppies learn more commands and tricks when they are taught as early as possible. These tricks do not have to be as complex as jumping through a hoop or fetching the newspaper. Here are some basic commands and tricks that will be beneficial to teach your puppy.
You’ll want your puppy to sit with his rear on the floor and wait patiently. To do this, you’ll need to kneel or stand in front of your puppy while holding a treat. Place the treat close to your pup’s nose and move it gently over his head As your puppy place his rear on the floor, say the command of “SIT”. Give your puppy the treat for his accomplishment and praise! Soon, your puppy will place his rear on the floor when you say the verbal command of “SIT”. Through repetition, in a few weeks your puppy will sit without getting the treat.
Once your puppy learns how to sit, you can build on teaching him to “STAY”. Staying requires a longer time for the puppy to stay in place. To train this, first command your puppy to sit. While he is in the sit, place your hand as a stop sign in front of his body. (The stop sign helps him to understand that you do not want him to move.) Tell him to “STAY”. Initially, just have him stay for several seconds. You can release your puppy from the “STAY”. Praise your puppy and give him a treat! Soon, you will increase the duration that your puppy will sit and stay.
Aside from sitting, teaching your puppy to lay down is good to help him rest and calm down. To train him to lay down, you may need to sit or kneel beside your puppy. First, tell your puppy to sit. While he is sitting, place a treat to the tip of his nose. Slowly move the treat downward to the floor between his paws. Your puppy will follow the treat and place his belly on the ground. Once his belly is on the ground, say the word “DOWN”. Give your puppy the treat and praise him happily. Release him from his position! Eventually, you will build on the “STAY” with the down position.
As a pet owner, you’ll want to teach your puppy to approach and respond to you. This way, you’ll create a long lasting bond with each other. Training your puppy to come to you is one of the most important commands to teach him!
Always start off with your puppy on a twenty foot long leash. This ensures that your puppy will not run off. Initially, allow your puppy to explore a bit of distance from you. Next, while holding the end of the long leash, call your puppy to “COME” enthusiastically. After he comes to you, tell him to sit. At this point, you will reward your dog with three treats (a jackpot). You want to make sure that your puppy understands that wonderful things happen to him when he come to you! Once he is reliable, you will not need to treat him anymore.
Train Your Puppy to Act Appropriately
Given the commands above, it will now be easier for you to teach your puppy how to respond. For example, teaching him to “COME” to you will help him focus on you and respond to you even when distractions are occurring in the environment. Likewise, teaching him to “SIT”” or “STAY” will help teach self control in greeting people and dogs properly.
Keep in mind that your puppy is more than just a pet. He is part of your family. As you patiently teach your puppy, you will see the bond increase between the two of you. Training can always be an enjoyable experience!