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Puppy Training Tips for New Pet Parents

 March 17, 2020

Bringing home a new puppy is an exciting time in the life of a pet parent. The first few days will be full of fun and joy as your new furry friend quickly becomes part of the family. This is also an important time to begin obedience training so your new pet can learn good behavior and form a bond with your family.

What Is Puppy Obedience Training?

Obedience training for puppies teaches your dog the skills she needs to interact with people as well as other dogs. Your puppy will learn behaviors that are healthy and will also learn how to avoid negative behaviors. Examples include learning how to be a good listener, learning simple commands like “sit” and “stay,” learning how to follow directions, and learning how to be patient.

Puppies make great students because they are energetic and truly enjoy learning new skills. And of course, they are very willing to please their new pet parent! So, it’s important to get training started right away before negative behaviors can set in.

Here are a few simple points to remember as you get into training your puppy:

  • Keep it Short
    This will come as no surprise, but puppies are not known for their long attention spans! Stick with short and simple training sessions with your pup. You should work on one skill for about five minutes at a time and then take a break. Separate from a dedicated training session, look for other opportunities to practice during everyday activities with your doggie. Again, keep it short.

  • One at a Time
    As much as we love our dogs, they can really only do one thing at a time so continue work on one skill only, until your puppy has got it figured out.

  • Practice, Practice, Practice
    Consistency and repetition are definitely key to training a new puppy. Practicing of skills must be repeated time and again, which means you may need to stop what you are doing to reinforce a skill. You should do it in a way that is consistent. Don’t change up commands, be sure use the same terms over and over. “Stay” should always be “stay” and “sit” should always be “sit” and should not be used interchangeably for the same skill.

  • Train Everywhere
    Your puppy needs to learn that his new skills are expected everywhere, not just in the family room. Work with your dog on skills when on a walk, playing in the backyard, and in other rooms throughout the house. Don’t forget to enlist your other family members in your training efforts, and of course, be consistent!

  • Rewards
    What doggie doesn’t love a treat? Puppies are very motivated by positive reinforcement, so be sure to reward your pooch with praise or a small treat when she follows commands. After a while you should back off the treats, however, so that your dog learns that good behavior is always expected even without treats.


Need help? Contact a Professional

Even following the tips above, many pet parents find that they still need help training their new puppy. A professional dog trainer has the experience necessary to help your dog learn and internalize these skills. They understand more than just training exercises, a well-qualified trainer will understand breeds and can use that information to develop training that works best with your puppy’s natural ingrained habits.

You might consider partnering with a local kennel near you or obedience school to help move your dog training efforts along. Just remember, you’ll want to select a trainer that values your puppy’s health and happiness as much as you.

About Alden's Kennels

Aldens Kennels is located in McHenry County. We offer a variety of dog training classes on topics ranging from obedience to agility and training for therapy dogs. Visit our Dog Training page to learn more.