Thinking of getting a new puppy? Before you even bring your furry friend into your home, educate yourself on training. You’ll find endless information on what to do when training your puppy, it’s just as important to know what NOT to do.
1. Don’t Leave Your Puppy Unattended
While it may feel like a nuisance, it’s worth it to not leave your new puppy unattended during the first few months. If left alone, your dog will likely have accidents or chew up a brand-new pair of shoes or something else valuable. Of course, there are times when you will have to step out or go to work – this would be an ideal time to start crate training or confining your new friend to a puppy-friendly room.
2. Don’t Misuse the Crate
A kennel or crate is supposed to be a safe place for your pet. Make sure to only put him in the kennel during the night, for naps, or when you leave the house. Never put your dog in the kennel for punishment or neglect him in it as it can lead to anger and anxiety issues.
3. Don’t Train Inconsistently
Consistency wins every hurdle, especially when it comes to puppy training. Dogs need simple training instructions and they need to obey your commands – consistency is key. If you don’t put in the effort one day but expect to train the next day, your dog won’t understand what’s going on.
4. Don’t Encourage Playful Biting
Puppies begin exploring with their mouth and teeth. Everyone knows puppies like to chew on everything from shoes to furniture – even fingers. Though your puppy is cute in all the little things he does, it’s never okay to encourage biting.
5. Don’t Try Too Much at Once
Despite needing to repeat different training sections all at once, it’s best to be patient. Wait until your puppy fully comprehends a training section before you move on to the next. It’s easy to assume just because your puppy learned a particular command a few times in a row means he is ready, but it’s best to wait until he is proficient with the specific command. Never rush or your puppy may feel overwhelmed and it could set your training process back. For example, if you are teaching him to sit and have done it a few times in a row, then you automatically go to sit and stay, that is usually too much at once.
6. Don’t Reward Too Soon
If you are telling your dog to do a command and they are doing a good job so far, wait before you reward him. Wait until your dog is completely finished with his command so he knows what you are rewarding him for. When you reward him before he’s finished the command, you’re teaching only half of it.
7. Avoid Negative Emotion
Overdoing it with the emotion can actually lead to a poor response from your puppy. When you train with irritation, anger, or force, you are intimidating your dog and the training sessions can turn more into an inquisition. Train with positive energy and praise. Your energy levels will likely rub off on your puppy, leaving him energetic and more willing to learn.