Your new family member is finally home—how exciting! Though you may love the little quirks of owning a new puppy, it’s vital to nip any bad behavior in the bud right away. Training needs to start immediately, and we’ve got the information you need to get started. Below, we’ve listed some simple, yet vital, tips for training your new puppy—check them out!
Decide on House Rules
Before your pup even comes home, decide on what exactly he is and is not allowed do. Figure out whether he’s allowed on the furniture or if one part of the house is off-limits. Settle on these guidelines early to avoid confusion for both you and the dog.
Set Up a Private Area
Just as you like to go and relax in your bedroom, your dog will like having a room of his own. From the moment your dog gets home, make sure he knows that he has his very own private space. For example, crate training is difficult to start out with, so give him something comfortable at first, such as a Pop N’ Go Playpen. This will get your dog used to going inside, and it provides many other benefits as well. The more you give your pet a comfortable place to go, the less they’ll intrude on your comforting places.
First Command: Come!
Before you get into any of the fun commands like “paw” or “roll over,” you need to focus on the most important command—“come.” When you get your pup to come to you, your alpha status will be reinforced, and he’ll be more inclined to listen to you for other commands. Start by getting on your pup’s level: use his name, and then say “come.” When he obeys, use tons of positive reinforcement. Once he improves, try commanding when he’s busy.
Reward Good Behavior
It’s simple: reward your pup’s good behavior with positive reinforcement. Say things such as “good boy” and “excellent job,” and use treats, toys, pats, and lots of praise. This will let your dog know he’s doing well. In that same realm, make sure you never reward bad behavior, as that will just confuse him.
Discourage Biting, Nipping, and Jumping
As previously stated, never reward bad behavior, and discourage all moments of biting, nipping, and jumping. Dogs love to jump in greeting, but make sure to never pat or praise your dog when he’s in a jumping position. You should also ignore biting behavior. One good way to get him to stop nipping is by pretending you’re in great pain. He’ll be so surprised that he’ll likely stop right away.
Keep Training Short
With all those tips in mind, make sure to keep training sessions short. Dogs have short attention spans, so if you go for longer than five minutes, they’re sure to lose their focus. End each session on a positive note, and stop after five minutes. You can train multiple times in a day; just keep it short and sweet—they’ll catch on in no time!