Just like making a new friend, being a new pup owner means that you need time to foster a communicative relationship. Dog training is a great way for your dog to do so! Here are some tips to help you build the solid foundation of your furever bond:
Make training a pawsitive experience
Just like humans, dogs get bored and dog training can be a source of mental and physical stimulation that keeps them happy. You can invest in a qualified trainer who uses positive teaching methods to make your puppy’s training as fun and engaging as possible!
Your dog will learn essential skills such as potty training, obeying simple commands and interacting with various people in a conducive and encouraging environment. Remember to reward your dog after it has completed the training well so that it will remember to be on its best behaviour always!
Be patient with commands
Remember, your dog wishes only to please you, but successful training requires patience on your part as well. For example, dogs don’t have an inkling of what the word ‘sit’ means until their owners assign a meaning to it, so don’t be surprised if Buster doesn’t immediately know what you expect of him!
Dogs in training take time to learn and process new cues, and chances of compliance increase if you wait 3-4 seconds after you issue a command, instead of repeating it over and over which may end up being confusing. If your dog fails to follow a cue, withhold its reward and start over again.
Don’t train through punishment
Punishing your pup during training is not advisable. Because rewards and punishments work on the same time principles, punishing a dog after it fails to follow a command might create a negative association with the command itself, which means your dog might put more distance you and him the next time you ask Rover to come.
Be conscious of time
In general, training sessions should not last longer than 15 minutes because dogs usually have short attention spans and are easily distracted. This applies especially to younger dogs and puppies. This may result in the creation of more negative associations between your dog and commands! Keep sessions focused and brief – to yield better outcomes!
Teach your dog to be social
Just like us humans, socialising is essential for your pooch’s mental and emotional development. Acquaint your pet with other pets and people during its first few months of training – and get these people to reward your dog with dog treats each time they meet it!
To teach your dog to control the pressure of its bite (bite inhibition) so that it can socialise better, you can also train your pup by saying “Ouch!” and removing your attention from it for 4-5 seconds every time it bites you hard.
Eventually, it will learn that hard biting is associated with the loss of attention and playtime, and it will be less inclined to bite! Otherwise, you can consider enlisting the help of an experienced dog trainer as well if you’re not confident about training your pup yourself.
Puppy/dog training is essential if your dog is to be well-behaved and sociable. While the aforementioned tips are not exhaustive, they are key to ensuring that you and your dog develop a healthy play-based companionship!