“A trained dog is a happy dog”
All puppies have to be taught good manners and self-control. They are eager to learn and will enjoy pleasing you by learning quickly. It can be a most rewarding experience, and it will stand you both in good stead throughout your puppy’s life. It is never too early to start.
Basic training includes:
- responding to its name
- come, stay, lie, sit
- walking on a lead
- greeting friends, children, strangers and indeed other dogs in a polite and non-threatening way
When training, you must start as you mean to go on – don’t keep changing your attitude and methods as this will only confuse your puppy. If you are feeling grumpy, then don’t train on that day as the puppy will pick up on your negative attitude, and you can easily destroy previous good work.
Training should be fun, and puppies will readily respond to a cheerful voice. Be patient and do not rush through the lesson as this will only confuse your puppy. Give it time and give it love.
Keep lessons short and simple, not trying to cram too much into one session. Use treats and toys to help you, and lavishly praise a lesson learned.
Your training will influence your puppy for the rest of your life together, so get it right! You will almost certainly benefit from it.
Puppy Training Tips
- Training should be fun for all parties involved
- It is a great way to exercise their brain and tire them out
- Positive training will build a great relationship between pup and owner
- You should only ever use positive rewards – never punish them
- Never physically move or train them
- Be patient
- Don’t allow them to get bored – keep sessions short
- Ensure they cannot be distracted
Positive reward training works because if you reward your dog with something they want as soon as they have done what you ask, they are far more likely to do it again.
Punishing them will cause them to be scared, and they won’t understand that you’re doing it because they have done something wrong.
Rewards don’t always have to be edible, they just have to be something your puppy enjoys:
- Training treats (edible rewards should be small and easy to chew and swallow quickly)
- Access to their favourite toy
- A belly rub or vocal praise
Some really tasty treats will usually work best – try small pieces of hotdog sausage, chicken, ham or cheese for maximum effect. If these aren’t given at other times, even better as they will definitely see it as a treat. Be aware you’ll have to alter the size of their main meals.
Always combine the reward of the treat with vocal praise too, such as “good boy!”, so they will be able to eventually cut out the edible treats.
Dog Training Classes
There is almost certainly more than one dog training class near you, and it is vitally important that you choose the one in which you feel comfortable.
Ask around – friends, family, your vet, and online for reviews and recommendations through social media.
It is a good idea to start training classes as soon as possible after the vaccination process is finished and your puppy can safely socialise.
Your instructor should give equal attention to all in the class, and give you both lots of encouragement. You may even benefit from 1 on 1 classes if you need to pick up some tips too.
A dog training class should be a happy event to which you and your puppy eagerly look forward to.
If you spend time on basic training this will be rewarded with a happy dog and one which is not a nuisance to others.
All information on this site is given in good faith, but should never be taken as final authoritative advice. In all cases of doubt or query, you are strongly advised to check the position with an expert – and your vet is the person to see first.