Is dog obedience school training right for you and your pup?
Definitely! The best time to get started is when your puppy is 4 months old. They are developmentally ready to concentrate at this age. However, if you got your puppy at 8 weeks like I did, you don’t want to waste any time. I actually started with the come command using a treat each time. It took her maybe a week for her to learn that. Does she always come now? No, because she is just now 4 months old. The wheels have been set in motion though.
Other commands you can work on are:
- Lay down
Housebreaking the New Puppy
Housebreaking the new puppy will be one of your first things to do as this is the most important tasks for both of you to accomplish. You can check out my Potty Training for Puppy page here. I have all of the steps for you to work on. Setting a schedule is always number 1!
Teach Puppy to Stop Biting
The next thing you will want to work on, is to teach puppy to stop biting. At first you think it is cute. I know because I was there, but you will need to nip it in the bud pretty fast. Mouthing or biting is when your puppy or dog is chewing or nipping on your hands, shoes, or clothes. It is not playing, even though that is what most of us think. This is your puppies way of seeing what they can get away with. Can they dominate you? If you are allowing them to do this, then yes, they can. You will need to make your puppy stop biting or mouthing you fast.
What works for me to stop puppy behavioral biting?
Here is a no, no for my Lily, pictured on the left. We actually had a hard time getting a picture because she now knows better. When she bites I gently say “no,” and move her away or unhook her mouth from my clothes. Another way I use when any puppy is biting my hand or fingers is to press down on their mouth while saying “no.” This makes it uncomfortable for them to bite or mouth me. It usually only takes a few times of doing this for it to work. Be persistent though. If you let it slide once, you are back to square one.
Her is a little story. Last year my neighbors got a new dog. They have no clue on training, first dog ever. So it has not been trained and is over a year old now. This year it still comes to my house and jumps on me. It is a male Husky and it is huge! He also likes to bite. Because of this, we don’t want their dog near us and we love dogs! It is sad when you don’t get a puppy for the right reasons. You always have to be responsible for your dog. Training needs to be done and it needs to be done early.
Training Puppy to Walk on a Leash
The next thing is training puppy to walk on a leash. After your puppy gets used to being in its new home, I would introduce the leash to them. As I state in my puppy starter kit page, I like a puppy body harness. That way, I don’t have to worry about the puppy choking when first introducing the leash. I actually got a puppy harness leash set for my little Lily. It’s pink of course!
All you have to do is get your puppy comfortable walking on a leash, don’t worry about puppy training leash walking just yet. You only want your puppy to get the feel of wearing the collar or harness and being on a leash. They need to feel comfortable with these one before you start training specifics.
Handling your Puppy
If you have ever been to a kennel or animal shelter, you have seen signs about the puppy dog not doing well with anyone while eating. Others are put to sleep if they can’t handle being around people in general. To help your puppy, you will want to make sure to handle your puppy a lot. When Lily is eating, I will stick my hand in her food dish to make her get used to it. This helps her not be obsessive with her food. When I give her treats, I will hold her treat in my hand just a little longer when she is biting down so she learns to take her food gently. I have done this with all three of my dogs. If you have kids, you will want to do this with your puppy. It’s a game changer!
To handle your puppy, pick it up often and just handle them in different ways so they get used to it. I pick up Lily and touch her ears, around her mouth, on her feet. I have also already introduced nail clipping to her. The sooner you handle your puppy the better their behavior will be.
Lily also gets a bath about every third or fourth day and we even use the hair dryer on her. She is now used to all of this. That is what you want, a puppy dog who can handle just about anything without getting upset and doing something to protect themselves, like taking a bite out of someone or something!