Puppies are adorable – that’s something no one can deny (unless they are a cat person – then, that’s understandable). However, as cute as they are, they can also be real troublemakers – especially those around three months old, which is why it’s important to start their training around that time. If you don’t, you might find yourself with a six-month puppy that has never had any rules and was living its life like the king or queen of the world.
However, training a puppy is definitely not a piece of cake. We understand that, which is why we created this short list with many useful tips. If you want to know more about the most important ones that can help you with training your furry friend, all you have to do is keep reading.
Without any further ado, let’s just jump right into it.
Tip #1: Choose Wisely the Name
Probably one of the best parts of bringing home a new puppy is choosing its name. There are so many of them that you can easily find one that all your family members will love.
However, did you know that there are some that work better than others when it comes to training? It’s true – short names that end with a strong consonant are your best bet if training your puppy is involved, as they will be able to hear it clearly even when in a loud environment. Examples of such names include ‘Ginger’ or ‘Jack.’
Tip #2: Use a Reward System
As experts from PetPlace notice, “Puppies learn best when they receive exciting rewards for their efforts. Even the youngest and tiniest puppy will be enthusiastic about food treats and will be eager to work with you. Experiment to find your puppy’s favorite reward, whether it’s food, a tossed toy, or a warm word of praise.”
Probably the worst thing you can do when training a puppy is to punish it for making mistakes. This will lower their confidence, and therefore it will be a lot harder for you to teach them any of the commands. If you go to the dog park, you will easily be able to tell which dogs were trained using a reward system, and which ones were being punished for doing something wrong.
What you need to keep in mind is that just like people like different sweets, puppies, and dogs like different treats. It might take a while before you find a treat that will satisfy your furry friend.
Tip #3: Use Commands
When training your pup, you should utilize simple commands, such as ‘sit,’ ‘lay down’ or ‘come,’ as they will be the most useful ones in the future for you as a dog owner. What’s more, you should also teach your puppy how to walk on a leash without tugging.
If you are considering enrolling your four-legged friend into an obedience competition, you will also need to teach it the ‘heel’ command. However, that’s something that can wait for later, when your puppy is a little older.
Keep in mind that the commands don’t have to be only verbal – there are many non-verbal commands that you can teach your dog, which means that even if you are in a loud environment, you will be able to signalize to them what you want them to do, and they will understand it and respond accordingly. So, whenever you are teaching your pup a verbal command, include a corresponding hand gesture. When your dog gets older, you will be able to freely switch between vocal commands, gestures, and dual commands.
Tip #4: Discourage Jumping Right From the Start
It’s no secret that puppies have a lot of energy, which makes them jump around. They also love to show their excitement when they see you after a long time (or what for them is a long time). However, it’s best to train them not to do it when they are still young.
So, whenever your puppy tries to jump on you, don’t reprimand it – instead, turn your back on them, ignore their behavior, and wait until they calm down on their own. They will probably do it quickly, as they will be surprised at your lack of reaction.
The Bottom Line
Training your puppy is important – that’s a fact. However, as necessary as it is, it is also not a piece of cake – quite the opposite actually. Puppies have a lot of energy. They don’t understand what is going on around them or what they are doing wrong, so it might take a while before they learn that. As their owner, you need to be patient and let them understand those things at their own speed.
We hope that our tips were at least a little bit helpful and made the training a little easier for you. Good luck!