Welcome to the wonderful (and sometimes crazy) world of owning a new puppy. There’s nothing more exciting than adding a new member into the pack but it certainly doesn’t come without a hefty dose of responsibility. A puppy is like having a toddler; they need to be watched every second they’re not in a secured location, such as their crate, and when they’re super quiet, they’re doing something they shouldn’t be doing. The moment you turn your head even if it’s just for a second, their paws (and little teeth) are exploring. There’s no denying that your pooch’s puppy habits are incredibly cute but they won’t be so cute later on when your house is destroyed and you have an unruly companion claiming alpha dog status throughout your home. So, we’ve put together this list of the top essential tricks, or rather, lessons every puppy needs to learn at an early age.
Your new puppy’s name is super important and the first step to training him or her to be the furry companion you’ve always dreamed of. Their name is the one word you will use to instantly get their attention for the rest of their life, so you want to make sure your dog can recognize their name as soon as possible. The good news is that, chances are, you’ll be repeating your dog’s name regularly as soon as he or she arrives home, so this is often taught with no extra effort.
However, if your puppy is a little aloof and distracted by all the awesome scents and sights around them, you’ll have to sit down and teach them their name. Fortunately, it’s really easy. When you have your dog’s attention, say their name and give them a treat. Keep doing this and eventually, you’ll be able to say their name when they aren’t looking and still get their attention. Give them a treat.
And voila! The dog knows his or her name and it’s time to gift them with a personalised dog tag! Yes, it’s a must.
Teaching your puppy how to sit is one of the most basic dog tricks and a great place to start your obedience training. When your dog knows how to sit on command, almost all incidents, behaviours, and potential dangerous risks can be avoided, whether it’s jumping on guests, running after a rabbit in the backyard or worse, across the yard, and going crazy at dinner time begging an whining for a bite. If your dog can sit on command, you’re one step ahead of the game.
Start with a treat in your hand and your puppy’s attention. Make sure they know you have something tasty for them – dogs are exceptionally smart and will do pretty much anything for a piece of food. To begin the training, slowly move the treat from your dog’s nose and upwards and slightly past their head causing him or her to look up and lower their butt. As soon as their fluffy tail sits on the ground say the command, “sit” and give them a treat.
Do this repeatedly until your dog has mastered the trick and then move on to asking them to sit and reward them with affection or their favourite toy instead of a treat.
If your dog likes to be rebellious, use a rope dog lead and stand on end of it to prevent your dog from running away.
Just when you think your dog knows how to go to the bathroom outside, they use your entire house as their personal restroom. While it’s easy to assume a puppy will know where to go to the bathroom, they don’t. You have to teach them.
Eventually, you will learn how to spot your dog’s pre-bathroom behavior and rush them outside when they need to go. Circling and waddling around like it’s 5 o’clock is usually a pretty clear indicator that they need to go, but until then, you’ll need to take your puppy outside frequently. Every time they go pee, use a command word as they’re doing it and reward them. Use a different command word when they’re having a bowel movement, and reward with a treat. If you have a large backyard and your puppy likes to go off and wander, make sure to keep them on a dog leash when they go outside so you can train them properly.
Every puppy has to be trained to walk on a leash. This is an easy task when they’re still young as they go more than a couple of feet away from your feet when they’re still a wee little pup. So, grab your dog collar and rope dog lead and let the training begin.
This task can be as simple as having your dog on a rope dog lead and rewarding them as they walk calming beside you. However, if they’re struggling with this task, start by facing your dog and backing away from them as you say “come” and your puppy will excitingly bounce and rush over to you. Gradually make the process more difficult by taking a couple steps further.
If your pooch likes to do the opposite of what you want, keep them on their dog leash and run backward with them. This forces them to run towards you. The key is to avoid running or walking away from your dog with your back facing them, as it teaches them to chase. You must face them so they learn to come to you.
Similar to all of the other commands, teaching your puppy how to stay is imperative for their own safety.
Start by asking your dog to sit. Once they’ve done so, with a flat hand, hold it up in front of their nose and say, “Stay”; take a couple of steps backward. If they were able to stay until you released them from the sit command, give them a reward. As your pooch improves at this task, make it a bit more challenging by moving further and further away, and eventually out of sight.
And if your dog is a runner, make sure to keep a rope dog lead on them at all times while practicing this obedience trick.
Start your puppy’s life off right by teaching them these essential life skills. Otherwise, their bad yet incredibly adorable habits won’t be so cute when they’re full-grown and dominating the household with alpha dog behaviour. Browse the Barker and Bone collection of premium dog accessories today.
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