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Puppy Training Advice

It’s never too early to begin training and socialising your puppy.
Puppies develop rapidly compared to humans and they are capable of taking in information about their world when they are only 3 weeks old.

  • By the time they are ready to go to a new home at 6-8 weeks of age,
    they should already be familiar with people and other animals.
  • As soon as they are settled, training and further socialisation can begin.
    The earlier it starts, the easier it is, so don’t delay.
  • By the time they are 6 months old, they are equivalent in age to
    a 12 year old human – they grow up fast, you haven’t got much time.

Dogs are not born with a manual of how to behave in human society.
They need to be educated and this is much easier to do when the puppy is still very young.
Teach them how to behave in the same why as a child is taught.
Encourage and reward good behaviour and prevent your puppy from doing things that you do not want him to do (e.g. if he jumps up to greet visitors, use a lead to prevent him, and ask them to praise and reward him as soon as, and only when, all 4 feet are on the ground).

Punishment frightens puppies and they cannot learn easily when they are scared.
The systems in their brain designed to keep them safe become activated and inhibit learning. Punishment makes puppies afraid or wary of humans and they are more likely to be aggressive to adults and children as they get older. Humans usually punish when angry or frustrated. If you feel you want to punish, walk away, take a moment to calm down and think through ways you can get your puppy to do what you want by using kind methods instead (ask your tutor for ideas).

Take them to lots of places, let them meet lots of adults, children & other animals, and encourage them to hear, see and smell lots of different things.
As long as you take care not to overwhelm them or let them get scared, the more they see and do while young, the more positively they will view new experiences. If a dog views life positively and with less apprehension, it is less likely to bite and more likely to be friendly. Since it is essential in our society that dogs do not bite or frighten people, socialisation is one of the most important parts of raising a puppy.

Puppies who have all their needs fulfilled are happier, better behaved & nicer to live with. Exercise is important. Puppies cannot walk too far while their bones are still soft and growing, but they can have regular energetic play sessions to use up excess energy.
It is important to balance activity with enough time for rest and sleep (young puppies need to have time out sessions, especially if you have a family of young children).
Make sure they have the right type of food, plenty of water, enough exercise and games with toys, enough time to rest, lots of trips to the garden to go to the toilet, lots of praise and social contact, and all should be well.

You have taken on the role of pack leader, parent and guardian, so it is your job to lead decisively, prevent accidents, encourage and reward good behaviour and protect your puppy from bad experiences. Don’t let him down!

Reward-based training is the best way to teach puppies
how to behave and to respond to commands.

Never use harsh methods or unkind devices such as check chains.

Training using rewards is fun, easy, and it works.

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