If you’re a new puppy owner, you’re probably excited and anxious to start training your pup.
But where do you start? There are so many things to teach a new puppy, it can be tough to know where to begin.
From housebreaking to obedience commands, these tips will help get your pup on the right track.
The first things that a puppy needs to learn are some basic manners such as his name, house training and how to behave appropriately. A puppy needs to develop social skills and will need to meet people, other animals and visit different places.
When should puppy training start?
Your puppy’s training needs to start as soon as he comes home.
This does not mean teaching him to sit and stay but instead helping him to become familiar with the ways of the household and how to behave.
Puppies are clever and learn quickly so it’s important to introduce some basic manners into your puppy’s life from an early age.
Things that you’ll want to consider are:
Not jumping onto the furniture
Not nipping hands
Not barking for attention
The first puppy training steps
Here are several steps to help to get you started on the right track.
Introduce the new puppy to his/her surroundings
It’s important to remember that your puppy has been taken from his familiar surroundings and moved into a new, strange place that has different sounds, sights and smells.
Your puppy will be nervous and maybe a little overwhelmed so you’ll need to take things slowly and allow him to settle into his new home.
Create an area where he will be safe, where he can eat, play and sleep.
Take him outside when you need him to go to the toilet which will be when he wakes up, after meals and at regular times during the day.
Create a routine for your puppy
Puppies are a lot of work, but they can also be a lot of fun. A big part of making sure your puppy grows up to be a happy and healthy dog is creating a routine for them.
This routine should include regular meal times, plenty of opportunities for exercise, and regular toilet breaks.
It’s important to be consistent with the routine, so that your puppy knows what to expect and can start to learn basic obedience commands.
With a little patience and effort, you’ll have your furry friend well-trained in no time.
Teach your puppy his name
Teaching your new puppy his name is one of the first and most important things you can do.
Not only will it help you to bond with your pup, but it will also make training him much easier in the future.
Here are a few simple tips to help you get started.
First, choose a short and easy-to-remember name. Next, begin by saying your pup’s name often throughout the day, especially when you are giving him attention or treats.
Another way to help your puppy learn his name is to use it in positive situations, such as during playtime or when he is being fed.
This will help him to associate his name with good things and make it more likely that he will respond when you call him.
It is also a good idea to use your puppy’s name when giving commands, as this will help him to understand that you are talking to him specifically.
For example, you might say his name before asking him to sit or come to you.
Finally, be consistent in using his name, and don’t be afraid to praise him enthusiastically when he responds correctly.
Socialize the pup with other people and animals
Socialisation is the process of getting your puppy used to being around people and other animals.
It’s important to start socialising your puppy early, as it can help to prevent behavioural problems from developing later on.
There are a number of ways to socialise your pup.
One is to take them for regular walks in different environments, such as the park, the beach, or even just around the block.
This will help them to get used to different sounds and smells, and they’ll also have the opportunity to meet new people and other dogs.
Another great way to socialise your pup is to attend puppy training classes.
These classes provide a controlled environment where pups can learn basic obedience commands and socialise with other pups their own age.
Biting and chewing
Puppies explore and learn about the world around them in a number of ways, one of which is via their mouths.
A puppy’s teeth are very sharp and can easily cause injury to hands and arms of people if they are allowed to mouth humans and, in some cases, this can continue to adulthood.
Clearly it’s not desirable for a dog to mouth people and, as a puppy, this needs to be discouraged so that it doesn’t become a problem later in life.
The best way to deal with this is to make your puppy know that mouthing and nipping isn’t nice.
You can do this by making a loud noise when your puppy mouths such as ‘Ouch’ or similar.
Be consistent and your pet will soon get the idea and grow out of the habit.
Spend time with your puppy
It’s vital that you spend time with your puppy.
Time spent playing, relaxing and enjoying things such as walks, will all pay off in the long run.
Your puppy needs to develop a relationship with you and needs to trust you.
Be consistent with training and your other expectations. If you are not consistent with your puppy then he’ll be confused and won’t know what is expected of him.
Be fair. There’s no room or need to punish a dog and if you are physically abusive then your dog will never trust you.
Protect your dog and never take him into a dangerous situation. Be aware of him when introducing him to new situations or people and always try to see things from his perspective. Always keep him safe.
One of the most important things for puppies to learn is that they need to go outside to relieve themselves.
This may seem like a difficult task at first, but it is actually quite easy to housetrain a puppy if you are consistent and have patience.
The first step is to take your puppy outside frequently, preferably after every meal or nap. This will help him to learn that this is the place where he should go to the bathroom.
When you are outside with your puppy, be sure to give him plenty of time to do his business. If he doesn’t go within a few minutes, simply bring him back inside and try again later.
It is important to praise your puppy when he does go to the bathroom outside. This will help him to understand that he is doing the right thing.
You can give him a treat, pet him, or simply say “good boy!” in a happy voice.
If your puppy has an accident inside the house, it is important not to punish him. This will only make him afraid of you and more likely to have accidents in the future.
Simply clean up the mess and try to take him outside more frequently.
My article on housetraining will help you with this.
Your puppy needs to come when called
One of the most important commands for a puppy to learn is “come.” This will help you to keep him safe and under control when he is outside.
The best way to teach your puppy this command is with positive reinforcement.
The best way, that I have learned over the years, is to use an edible reward to give to the puppy when he comes to you.
Call him by name and, if you need to get his attention by crouching down and making those puppy type noises that so many people make.
Your pup will probably come bounding up to you ( unless he is preoccupied with something super interesting – such as raiding the bin for example).
As soon as he gets to you, give him his treat and make a massive fuss of him, telling him that he is a good dog etc etc.
Try this in different places in the house, garden and, eventually when out for a walk.
With some time and consistency your pup will come back everytime and you’ll be able to progress to whistling him back.
If you want to get your dog to come back to the whistle then take a look at this article that I’ve written that tells you how to do this.
This is another key command for a puppy to learn.
The best and most successful way of teaching this to a puppy is at mealtimes.
This is really easy to do and I’ve written a great article here that takes you through the process.
These are just a few of the things that you can teach your puppy.
With time, patience, and consistency, you will be able to teach him anything that you want.
Soon he will be a well-trained dog that is a joy to be around.
The best way to house train a puppy