Puppies are absolutely adorable, to the point where it’s easy to forget about the responsibilities that come along with owning one. Puppies are anything but easy. They require a lot of time, training, and attention, and when it comes to training, the earlier you start the better. Not saying you need to turn your scruffy little guy into a show dog, but there are a few basic commands your dog should know so he’s equipped to be the best dog he can be.
There are plenty of effective DIY puppy training tips out there so don’t give up on your disgruntled pup just yet! Start simple, be consistent, and before you know it you’ll be able to take your newly-polished pup just about anywhere!
1. Getting your dog to sit.
Believe it or not, getting your dog to sit is a HUGE milestone in terms of dog training, so don’t get discouraged if it takes you a while to master it. The moment your dog obeys the command “sit” something magical has happened. Your dog will have learned impulse control. Now the question is: how do you get your dog to listen to you in the first place?
First, hold a treat up to your dog’s nose so he can sniff it for a moment and then hold it above his head. The dog will most likely try to go for the treat by first sitting, then jumping up. But here’s where your training comes into play. When the puppy sits but before he has a chance to jump, award him with the treat.
After doing this a few times, give the “sit” command while holding up the treat. Your dog should get the hang of associating the command with the action after a while, especially with the help of a tasty treat. Be patient and keep trying!
2. Getting your dog to stop pulling while on walks.
Dogs love being outside, and anyone who has seen one off a leash in the outdoors can tell. However, it’s important for a dog to learn who is in control and how to walk when on leashed walks so they won’t get carried away with themselves and end up getting hurt or causing an accident. Once you and your furry friend have mastered the art of a leashed walk you’ll be able to take them anywhere.
When your dog gets excited and starts to pull stop walking and pull back tightly on the leash. Command him to sit. When your dog sits, reward his behavior with praise or a treat before continuing on your walk. Repeat as needed. Dogs are very responsive to positive reinforcement, so it’s important to reward them when they are doing something right. If you are consistent with your training you and your dog should be able to get the hang of taking a walk without you being pulled along the whole time.
3. How to properly reprimand your dog.
This subject can be a little trickier because you don’t want to damage your dog’s trust in you. The key to effective reprimanding is that the action has to happen immediately after the bad behavior, or the dog won’t make the connection between the two. Do not ever strike your dog to the point of injury, in almost all cases a light smack on the snout should suffice. Good instructional reprimands consist of firm, loud voice commands using commands like “Sit!”, “Quiet!”, “Leave it!”, and “Outside!”.
Even if your pet has the cutest little pair of eyes, or they want to do anything but what you say, stay strong and stick to your training. Consistency is key when it comes to training an animal, with a bit of hard work and a lot of dedication, we promise you’ll see results.