Puppies are the best, but they can be a lot of work to take care of. They can wreak havoc in your house if they are not properly trained. Luckily, you found the perfect place to learn the basics of how to train your new pup. It may not be easy at first, but with a little patience and a lot of treats you’ll have a well-trained dog in no time. Welcome to Puppy Training 101!
Positive Reinforcement Training
Before we get into the nitty gritty of training, positive reinforcement is important for when they perform a trick correctly. Humans like to hear ‘good job’ when they do something right and so do dogs. Along with treats, a click from a clicker is a great way to give them positive reinforcement. The click is an easy way to give dogs an indicator of good behavior. Angry Orange has a Dog Training Set with a clicker and training pouch to make it easier for you to give your puppy positive reinforcement while training.
When to Start Your Training Sessions
Puppy training sessions should be short and fun. Puppies at 8 weeks old are able to learn the basics, but they have short attention spans. So, conduct your lessons when they are well-rested, but not too excited to affect their focus.
When starting training, your lessons should take place in a familiar, distraction-free environment. This will allow for your pup to feel safe during sessions. Once they get the handle of basic commands, your puppy will transition to working outside, in new spaces to improve their focus.
The Puppy Basics
Sit and lay down commands are great and all, but you need to start with getting them used to their new environment. This will get them more comfortable and make it easier for you to teach them other tricks. Here are some basic training techniques to help with your new puppy.
Dog crates help dogs to connect with their canine denning instincts. When picking the size of your crate, it needs to be big enough for your puppy to stand up, turn around, and lay down comfortably. Dogs rarely have accidents where they sleep, but make sure that the crate isn’t too big where they can poop in one corner and sleep in the other.
To get your dog used to the crate, make sure that it is located in a common room in your house. This will help them to feel like they are not being banished when you put them in their crate. To start crate training, begin by introducing your dog to the crate. Leave the door open and place some treats inside for them to discover. Keep the door open and give them a few treats for staying inside. Continue with short sessions until they go into the crate without hesitating.
After this introductory phase, you can tie a sturdy rope to the crate or give them treat-stuffed toys so they know that good stuff happens in the crate. Over time, while they’re with the toy, shut the door for 10 minutes. Stay close to the crate for the first time. As your puppy gets used to it, work up to leaving them alone while they’re crated for longer periods of time. This goes on until they’re happy in the crate without you around.
When potty training a puppy, it is important to establish a daily routine. This schedule includes meals and play sessions, so your puppy can anticipate the day ahead. For potty training, you should be taking your puppy out about 15 minutes after meals, play sessions, and before and after crating.
The key for successful potty training is supervision. Accidents most likely happen when your puppy is wandering around the house unattended. When you can’t be with them make sure that you crate your puppy or block them off with gates. You can slowly expand their access to the house as they get better at communicating when they need to go out.
When potty training, it is important to be patient and never punish your puppy for having an accident. To prevent accidents, you need to understand your dog’s body language when they are about to go to the bathroom. To boost communication, you can use potty training bells, like the ones from the Angry Orange’s Dog Training Set. Before you take your puppy out to go to the bathroom, ring the bell to show this means going outside. Continue to repeat this process, and as your pup gets housetrained they will be able to ring the bell to show they need to go out.
Your puppy knowing their name makes them a permanent part of the family, but it’s for safety when you need to call them away from danger. Start by saying their name and when they look up at you give them positive reinforcement with a treat and a click.
To get them to come to you when you call their name you need to have a recall word after their name, like “come” or “here” to understand what command they are doing. Have you and another person stand on different sides of the room and take turns going back and forth calling your puppy’s name to get them to come. Make sure to give them positive reinforcement with a treat and a pet. As your dog gets better at it, go into separate rooms and call them back and forth with more distance.
Training your pup is going to be a lot of work. During this time, it might be tiresome, but try to enjoy it. As your puppy gets better at their tricks, remember to reward them. Treats are great, but it’s fun for them to get new toys, like Angry Orange Puppy Toy Set. It comes with ten toys that you can sporadically surprise them with as they are doing a good job and help reduce anxiety for them in a new home. Before you know it, you’re going to have a well-trained pup in no time!
Contributing Writer: Madeline Collins