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How to Deal With Puppy Separation Anxiety
Feb 21

Puppy Separation Anxiety

By Training A Puppy | Dog Training

Puppy separation anxiety is a frequent complaint among new puppy owners. If mild, it may make your puppy whine or bark when left alone. Left unresolved, his fear can gradually intensify. A severely anxious puppy is often destructive and disruptively loud.

A few of the behaviours that are commonly linked to separation anxiety are: urination and defecation in places that are inappropriate, excessive barking, destructive behaviour and whining. Even hyperactivity and depression could be indications of separation anxiety in your puppy. Of course, the behaviours could be warning signs of other problems as well.

How to Deal With Puppy Separation Anxiety

What Causes Puppy Separation Anxiety?

The puppy has an instinctive need to be part of a pack. He feels frightened and insecure if there is no alpha, or dominant, leader to the group. Most of the time that he is anxious about being home alone, he is reacting not only to the lack of his pack mates, but actions that he has come to associate with your absence. This is why puppy separation anxiety often seems excessive.

When your puppy is observing you, he comes to realize that there is a normal sequence of events that take place each day. When he sees you going through your daily routine and expresses fear, you may attempt to comfort him, unknowingly giving positive reinforcement to his frightened reaction. In the end, you have a puppy who is consistently anxious when it is time for you to leave.

Reducing Puppy Separation Anxiety

Reducing puppy separation anxiety when it first appears is far easier than ignoring it until it becomes a serious problem. This article discusses a few simple methods to try as soon as you notice this is becoming a problem.

Do Something Different

If your morning schedules is the same from day to day, your puppy will have an easier time connecting your actions with his fear of being alone. Changing your routine makes a huge difference in breaking these connections in his mind. If you notice that one particular step of your preparations is when he begins to behave nervously, alter it somewhat.

Change the time that your alarm rings, get dressed after breakfast if you normally dress immediately upon waking, or pack your lunch before you shower. They may not seem like big changes to you, but to your puppy, they will make a big difference in helping him to feel less anxious.

Never Give Positive Reinforcement

It may seem to you that you are comforting a scared family member, but in your puppy’s mind, you are rewarding him for being scared. As inhumane as it sounds, the most effective way to reduce puppy separation anxiety is to ignore it. The first way to get him to stop being frightened of you leaving is to break any associations between your arrival or leaving with affection.

When you are going to or getting home from work, ignore him for the first or last quarter hour or so. Practice leaving the house and returning without making any fuss over the puppy. This is especially effective when combined with crate training or practicing putting him in a room by himself.

You’re Alpha, Not Mean!

As a responsible puppy owner, it is your job to prevent or address puppy separation anxiety by teaching him to be calm about being alone and secure in his rank in the family. Dealing with his anxiety will help prevent damage to your home, angry neighbors and preserve your pup’s mental and physical heath.

Once you’ve tried these methods, if he is still frightened, you need to take further steps to figure out a solution immediately. Dealing with these symptoms of anxiety in your puppy while they are still minor will help prevent him from having serious habits to break and feeling insecure about his position in the pack.

how to prevent puppy separation anxiety

Handling Puppy Separation Anxiety

A number of ways exist to take care of separation anxiety in a dog; however, your two primary goals are:

  • Ensure that the puppy find enjoyment during the period in which he is alone; well, perhaps “enjoyment” is a bad choice of word in this instance. Probably “tolerate” would be a better choice.
  • Ensure that the puppy is occupied while it is alone at home.

Below are a few tips that can be made use of as a means of eliminating separation anxiety in puppies:

  • Your puppy must be taught to be alone. Begin while the pet is still young. At first, you should start out slowly, short training sessions that are just about 5 to 10 minutes in length are considered to be a good start.
  • It is important to note that there is absolutely no need for emotional, long goodbyes. If you have to go away from the home, just do it. When you leave and come back immediately because the pet is whining or displaying other symptoms of separation anxiety, your puppy will be reassured that all will be fine; however, the puppy will interpret that as you rewarding his tantrums. In fact, what you are doing is promoting puppy separation anxiety.
  • Prior to leaving, tire out your pet by engaging it in a number of tiring activities. There is a big possibility that after you leave, the puppy will fall asleep.

There is tip that is among the easiest to implement when dealing with separation anxiety in your puppy; prior to leaving, turn on a radio. This will possibly not seem like it makes much sense; however, hearing different voices will provide your puppy with reassurance.

Training the Puppy for You to Leave

Some of the training methods to reduce puppy separation anxiety might seem counter intuitive but you must remember it is all about reinforcing good behavior and ignoring or scolding bad behavior. Work with your puppy by pretending to leave.

Start the morning routine where you go for your energy reducing walk. From there, begin getting ready as normal. If the puppy begins to show signs of anxiety, ignore the behavior. Open the door as if you plan on leaving but then close it without going anywhere. Sit down and relax but do not show the puppy any affection if he is exhibiting signs of anxiety.

Keep repeating the “leaving” process until the puppy does not show signs of separation anxiety and then shower the animal with affection. This gives him a sense of the “right” behavior as well as a belief that you will always come back.

Puppy separation anxiety is one of the most frequently occurring problems with puppies and the anxiety can lead to behavior problems, and because dogs are pack animals and very social, being alone causes the animal concern. They do not understand why there is no noise, no people and it feels very unnatural to them. Even having a large home or yard to wander around in may not be enough to eliminate separation anxiety.

why does my puppy scratch
Dec 13

Stop Puppy Scratching

By Training A Puppy | Dog Training

Millions of puppy owners would love to know if there are easy ways to stop puppy scratching. A puppy’s delicate skin is prone to a host of problems ranging from parasites and allergies, as well as boredom or anxiety. Excessive scratching can lead to skin infections and hot spots, so make sure to eliminate scratching before it becomes problematic.

why does my puppy scratch

Why do Puppies Scratch

Unfortunately puppies scratch for many reasons. In order to stop puppy scratching, you need to identify the cause of the problem.

Infections

Puppy skin can have bacterial, viral or fungal infections. These can be recognized by open sores, bare patches of skin and red swelling.

Neurogenic

Excessive licking and chewing can be caused by a lack of exercise, boredom or separation anxiety.

Allergies

Less commonly, scratching can be triggered by allergies to food, flea bites, plants or dust.

Dietary

Malnourishment can lead to dry skin, eczema, dry hair and sores.

Environment

Dry skin and extreme itching can be caused by exposure to too much water or dirt. This can be caused by swimming, digging or too much time outside.

Parasites

While fleas are extremely common, puppies often react to ticks, biting flies, mites and other flying insects. Parasite reactions are generally easy to control with medication.

A Visit to the Vet

If you need to stop puppy scratching, the first step is to visit your vet to make sure that it is not being caused by an infection or something else easily controlled by medication. Your vet will be able to provide you with antibiotics, anti fungal or antihistamines and discuss any necessary dietary changes. He can also assist with medicated baths to kill any parasites.

how to stop puppy from scratching

How to Stop Neurogenic Scratching

Unfortunately, neurogenic scratching is the hardest type to stop. Because your puppy is unable to tell you why he is scratching, you need to observe him carefully. Is he scratching because he is bored. Many puppies find repeated licking to be soothing. Putting foul flavored bitter apple or cayenne pepper on his preferred licking spots may help stop puppy scratching if the habit is not too deeply ingrained.

Your vet can also provide you with a cone shaped collar that will not permit your puppy to reach the itchy spots. Once he is out of the habit of licking, you can gradually wean him off of the cone and sprays.

If after trying all of these, he is still scratching, another trip to the vet is in order. Sometimes the itching can trigger an infection secondary to the initial cause.

In the end, it is your responsibility as a puppy owner to watch your pup’s behavior carefully. With close attention, you should be able to prevent or stop puppy scratching.

how to stop a puppy from barking
Dec 07

Stop Puppy Barking

By Training A Puppy | Dog Training

There is only one breed of puppy, the Basenji, that doesn’t bark and where you won’t need to stop puppy barking. Every other breed, regardless of their individual temperament, will have some urge to bark.

However, as responsible pet owners, it is our job to make sure that our puppies are not a nuisance to people around us. In order to learn how to stop puppy barking , it’s important to understand why they bark.

understand the reasons why puppies bark

What Makes Puppies Bark?

Puppies bark when they’re tired and when they’re full of energy. They bark if they’re happy and they bark if they’re upset.

Most of the barking can be summarized into the following categories:

  • Barking to greet you
  • Barking to request attention
  • Barking to indicate unhappiness or frustration
  • Barking to protect territory
  • Barking to alert you to danger
  • Barking to express pain or sickness

In addition to all of that, you get puppies who just bark compulsively. Barking is so ingrained into your puppy’s nature that to completely stop puppy barking is simply not possible. Puppies will always have the need to bark occasionally, but it is our job to teach them when and where it is acceptable.

how to stop a puppy from barking

How Can You Stop Puppy Barking?

If your puppy is barking, the first step is to figure out why. Once you have determined that barking is unnecessary, you can take steps to control his behavior. What is your puppy barking at? When is he barking and is it usually in response to the same triggers?

If your puppy is trying to protect his territory or afraid, punishing him will often cause an aggressive reaction. While it may stop puppy barking, the underlying problems are still triggering a negative feeling in him without a way to act on it appropriately.

The proper way to stop puppy barking, as always goes back to you making sure that you are a strong alpha, or pack leader. If he understands that you are in charge, then he will feel less of a need to protect the space. Also, reducing his triggers can be as simple as closing your curtains, closing the windows or getting a privacy fence so he doesn’t see strangers near his home.

Stop Anxious Barking

Anxiety often seems to be the cause of excessive barking, but in reality is often the symptom of an underlying problem. Separation anxiety is often caused by well meaning owners who accidentally reward their puppies for barking to express excitement over your presence.

While it seems counter-intuitive to us, the easiest way to break this cycle is to ignore your puppy for the last ten or fifteen minutes before you leave the house and again for the first ten or fifteen minutes after returning home. If you wait until they are calm before paying attention to them, you will be rewarding them for their calm behavior.

Lastly, a very effective method to stop puppy barking is to teach them to bark and to be silent on command. Having cue words for these behaviors permits you to use them when you need to. Your dog still has the ability to bark if there is an intruder, but you have the means to control his behavior if necessary.

If you know how to stop puppy barking, you will be able to enjoy the company of your puppy without worrying about your neighbors complaining about excessive noise.

how to stop your puppy from chewing
Dec 04

Reasons for Puppy Chewing and How to Stop Them

By Training A Puppy | Dog Training

As most of us know, when you introduce a small puppy into your home the first thing he starts to do is run around getting more and more excited, and then he/she will start to chew everything in sight.

The reasons are many. Initially it’s probably to ease the discomfort of teething, but a puppy also plays by biting it’s siblings and at the same time by doing so is gradually establishing itself among the pack. A puppy will also bite because it’s hungry, or out of sheer boredom.

The teething problem will gradually pass, but once you let a puppy get away with biting you or your family, you will have a problem on your hands. If you watch a female dog with her litter she will tolerate so much, and then she nudges the small bundle hard with her nose to let it know it’s gone too far.

Never take on a puppy until it’s about ten weeks old, as it’s during this time with it’s mother and other siblings that it’ll learn that biting too hard is not acceptable. Once it’s taken away and brought to your home you will then be able to continue with the discipline by showing it that biting or chewing will not be tolerated.

how to stop your puppy from chewing

Start Training Your Puppy from Early Age

It’s absolutely essential you start training your puppy from the moment it enters your home. Puppies are adorable, and it’s difficult to be cross with them, but if you want your dog to grow up to be a good companion and a friend to your children, he must learn from an early age that chewing your home is not acceptable. Dogs are pack animals and he must learn that you are the pack leader and he must obey the rules.

A bored puppy will automatically chew everything he can get his paws on. Exercise him every day to make sure he uses up as much of his energy as possible and give him a place of his own within the home where he can have his own chewable things.

If his teeth hurt a puppy will try to ease the pain by chewing. He will also chew things when he’s playing, getting over excited and out of control. If a short “NO” or a gentle nudge doesn’t work, then it’s a good idea to take him away from the object and give him something of his own to chew.

Generally puppy chewing and biting is not normally aggressive behaviour, but it can become so if not controlled at an early stage. Supervision of your puppy is essential, and if he’s left alone then he should be placed in a contained area with plenty of his own toys to keep him occupied.

If you’re leaving your puppy alone make sure he’s got something which has your smell on it and that way he wont feel as though he’s been deserted. Once alone he will automatically turn to chewing out of frustration and boredom and this is perfectly natural behaviour.

All puppies chew, but it’s up to you to take control from the beginning. These are not the only problems you will have with your puppy. Why not check out this great resource we highly recommend that will help your puppy grow up to be a great, worry free pet!

How to Stop a Puppy from Chewing

Your beloved sofa is showing signs of wear and tear, but what really gets at you is the chew marks at the posts and feet caused by no other than your beloved little puppy. You wonder how such a small thing can cause so much damage. Well, fret no more as here’s how to stop a puppy from chewing so that you’ll be able to preserve the sofa in good condition and teach your puppy some discipline.

While chewing is normal behavior among puppies and dogs, when done in the wrong place, it is unacceptable and may even endanger your puppy’s health should it chew on something he cannot digest. It is also a puppy’s way of exploring the surroundings and relieving stress and boredom.

what to do if your puppy chews on everything

Choosing a proper breed plays an important part in how to stop a puppy from chewing, as its breed can help determine its chewing habits. For example, a very energetic puppy may be unable to adapt to a household whose members are too easy-going or too easily annoyed at all the excited barking.

The same goes for a shy, quiet pup who may not adapt easily to a household with active individuals or small children that intimidate such a puppy, causing it to be stressed out. Stress can really aggravate a dog’s chewing activity. It also helps to puppy-proof your home and to remove things that the puppy may be tempted to chew on, such as rug fringes, plants, trash cans and soft paper products like tissue or toilet papers. You can also tape down or cover visible electrical wires.

Also an important thing to remember in how to stop a puppy from chewing is to avoid putting your hands or feet within easy biting or chewing distance. Puppies, especially those that aren’t raised in a pack, have a tendency to nip, thinking this is okay. When this happens, give a firm, loud command for the puppy to stop and then move away. Isolate the puppy for a few seconds or minutes, and then come back with a chew toy it can play with.

This is usually enough to let the puppy know that its biting behavior is unacceptable. Contrary to popular belief, a puppy can have too many chew toys, so make sure that only an acceptable amount is left for him to play with. Otherwise, he can get confused about which toys he can chew on and which ones he can’t.

And if you have wide spaces in your house and will for example be unable to safely supervise your puppy’s playtime, you can put him in a suitably-sized crate or behind a wire puppy gate to prevent him from roaming about on a destructive chewing mission. Make sure though to use this as positive reinforcement and never use the crate as a punishment. Gentleness is an important factor in how to stop a puppy from chewing. Being strict and harsh may not bring the desired results.

As a last resort, if the chewing continues at alarming levels, consult a professional dog trainer to determine how best to solve the problem.

how to stop your puppy from biting
Nov 30

How to Stop a Puppy From Biting

By Training A Puppy | Dog Training

Learning how to prevent or stop your puppy from biting is an essential skill that must be honed by every responsible dog owner. Granted, we have all seen news reports about a member of the public or a family member being mauled by a dog. The duty is on responsible dog owners to prevent or stop biting as part of their puppy training.

Generally, puppies use their mouths to not only explore their environment but to play with other puppies as well. Without their litter mates, puppies are likely to turn to their owners to play. If not discouraged, they will include their bites and nips in their play too. While this biting and nipping may be cute at the start, it will most certainly feel less so once your cute 15-pound puppy has grown into an 80-pound dog.

Training your puppy to stop from biting is therefore something that should be done when your pet is still small. The earlier you commence this process, the easier it will be to break the biting habit before your neighbors and friends become too petrified to visit your house. Below, we take a look at how to stop a puppy from biting in 4 easy ways.

how to stop your puppy from biting

Puppy Bite Inhibition

Puppy bite inhibition is a puppy’s ability to control the intensity of their bite and their ability to control when and when not to bite. Training a puppy not to bite is arguably the most important lesson they will ever learn. The way you train your puppy will determine their entire future and the dog they will become. A dog’s character, temperament, and behavior habits are all formed during puppyhood. For this reason, it is important to start training as early as possible.

Bite inhibition training is a sub category of behavior training. Behavior training is really behavior modification training. It is the process of adjusting a dog’s natural habits to mesh better with our lifestyle and the society in which we live. Dog’s are the most happy when we are happy. This is why you should convey a clear message to them all the time and let them know that biting a person is not acceptable.

Up to 8 weeks of age, puppies are normally still in their litter. During nursing and play-fighting, they are corrected for biting too rough by their mother and siblings. By the time a puppy makes it home, assuming they were properly socialized, they have a pretty good understanding of bite inhibition with other puppies and dogs.

For the most part, they teach themselves bite inhibition with other dogs during puppyhood. However, pet owners need to supplement their development by teaching them proper behavior towards people.

Generally speaking, dogs love to make people happy. They almost never do anything out of malice, so puppy biting is usually a misunderstanding. When a dog does something that ends up hurting, we usually react with a few upset words and an angry tone.

When a puppy is calm, they can interpret tones relatively easy. But if they are biting, they are probably too excited to be able to focus on tones. In this case, the pitch and following actions are the most important parts. When it comes to bite training, you have to react differently than what is natural to you. Instead, you must react the way a dog would if they were bitten.

How to Stop a Puppy from Biting

It’s important for your puppy to learn that, what may seem like him to be playful fun, can actually be a painful experience for humans when his teeth come into contact with skin.

Mouthing is a natural action for a dog. Just as humans use their hands, dogs use their mouths. When we play with a dog, in general we use our hands and the dog responds by using his mouth – puppies are like children and your puppy will not know how hard he can ‘mouth’ you unless you show him – the way you do this is to remember to protest when he is too rough – by saying “Ouch”.

You also need to remember that puppies teethe – just like babies do, and the process of them loosing their baby teeth can be painful and uncomfortable, in the same way that human babies struggle with the growth of teeth, so do puppies and it can affect some dogs more than others. You have to be appreciative of this and therefore attentive to the fact that there will be a temptation/need for the puppy to nibble things – you just need to make sure that he doesn’t nibble people.

Get loud

Puppies love to gently bite when you are petting them or rubbing their belly. However, to let them know that this behavior is inappropriate, one needs to get loud.

As soon as your puppy touches your skin with its teeth, it is advisable to let out a loud yelp or squeal before walking away from it and avoiding eye contact for several seconds. This will undoubtedly startle it whilst also letting it know that it hurt you and that the behavior will not be condoned.

Alternatively, you can use other noise makers such as an empty can filled with rocks which you ought to shake and say a firm ‘No!’ each time your puppy bites. Puppies detest the sound of loud noises, especially when they are unexpected. By using such tactics, you can help your puppy break its biting habit.

how to train a puppy not to bite

Employ toys

Unfortunately, your puppy is unlikely to know that your hands are not the same thing as their favorite toy. This means that they will bite your skin in much the same way that they would their favorite ball or another dog.

Instead, encourage your puppy to chew on its toys. The minute that your pet begins to gnaw on your feet or fingers, replace that body part with one of its teething toys. Also, ensure that there are plenty of toys available for your pup to chew on as it distracts them from other chewable items such as your hands or ankles.

For instance, you could keep a toy in your pocket as you move around the house and immediately your puppy starts nipping at your feet, pull it out and distract him. Do this several times and your puppy will learn to let you move around without biting.

It is useful for the puppy to have a selection of toys to play with, teddies, chews, Kong Toys and other items that you don’t mind being damaged by sharp, needle teeth – old slippers seem to be favourites.

Thumb use

In cases of extreme puppy biting, one may have to resort to physical measures. This, however, does not mean punishing your pet or any physical disciplinary act. Rather, as soon as your pup uses its teeth to touch your hands, yell out a firm ‘No!’ and then proceed to place your thumb under its tongue. Hold this position for several seconds whilst ensuring that you do not press too tightly. Remember, your intention is to prevent him from biting as opposed to harming him.

Bitter deterrents

If other methods are unsuccessful at preventing puppy biting, you could try deterrent sprays which have a bitter taste. These are especially effective if your pet is fond of chewing on things such as furniture.

Begin by applying the deterrent on your hand (gloved or otherwise) during play. As soon as your puppy starts to lick and bite your hand, it will encounter a bitter taste in its mouth which should instill in it that nipping on your hands in the future will not be a pleasant encounter.

Conclusion

Needless to say, there are few things that are as exciting as having a new puppy in your household. While they are a joy to behold, they can also be quite hard to handle, especially when it comes to biting. This natural behavior needs to be reined in before those cute puppy teeth turn into adult teeth which is why the above tips are crucial in your puppy eventually learning that biting is not acceptable behavior.

how to teach your puppy good manners at home
Nov 25

How to Train a Puppy Basic Manners and Obedience

By Training A Puppy | Dog Training

How to Teach Your Puppy Basic Manners

Your puppy’s first manners at home will be dictated by cause and effect. If she does something that gives her pleasure or gets attention from you, then she will be more likely to repeat it. For this reason, you may find that a pup who has nothing given to her to chew on will end up gnawing on the furniture. If you get excited when she jumps during greetings, this will reinforce her behavior.

how to teach your puppy good manners at home

To redirect a jumping puppy, you should encourage everyone in the household to do the following:

– Ignore the puppy when she jumps for attention.

– When she is excited and wishes to greet you, shake a treat cup or throw her favorite toy on the floor. After she gets all of her paws on the floor, then get down on her level.

– Put all of the objects that she wants on her level. Don’t place them on counters and tables. Discourage interest in jumping by interrupting her as soon as you see her looking at places where she is not allowed to go. After you have distracted her, then redirect her to one of her toys.

You may find that you have problems keeping your puppy away from the table at mealtimes. You can deal with this issue by placing her in her bed or crate with a toy and encouraging everyone to ignore her during the meal. Remember to take care of any pressing needs that your puppy may have before you start your meal.

To take care of any chewing problems, buy some items that your puppy would like to chew. Whenever she gets bored or restless, direct her to those items. If you do catch her chewing on something she shouldn’t be, then distract her and redirect her to the permissible items.

Sit, Stand, and Down

There are two different methods for showing your puppy how to sit. You should choose the one that works best for your puppy.

– Go down in front of your puppy. Hold onto a treat as a lure. First, let the puppy sniff the treat. Then, say “sit” as you put the food above her head. Most likely, she will naturally sit down to eat the treat. If she tries to back up instead, then place your other hand on her rump and gently push her into a sitting position. Make sure that you praise her. Give her the treat when she sits. You should give it to her regardless of whether she needed help or not.

– Get down next to your puppy. Put one hand on her chest and the other behind her rear legs. Tell her to sit as you guide her into a sitting pose. As soon as she is sitting, give her the reward.

To teach puppy to lie down, start with her sitting on your left. Kneel down and put your left hand on her shoulders. Place your right hand just behind her front legs. Say “down” while you press gently on her shoulders. At the same time, scoop her legs out until she is lying down. Reward her.

To teach her to stand, first, get your puppy to sit. Hold some food near her nose, say “stand,” and slowly bring your hand forward and slightly down. Encourage her to move forward by patting your leg. When her bottom is off of the floor, lower your hand with the food so that it is level with her chest. Push your hand towards her chest so that her chin drops and her nose is pointing towards the floor. Reward her when she is standing properly.

teach your puppy basic commands

Stay, Come, and Follow

To get your puppy to stay, put her in a sit on your left side. Turn your body to face her. Keep the leash slack. Hold up your hand to her face and say “stay.” Take a step back. Wait a few seconds and go back to where you were. Place one foot on the leash. Say your release word and give a reward.

To teach puppy to come, first, sit in a squat position. Open your arms wide. Tell her to come. If she starts coming to you, give her some praise. If she doesn’t come to you, go slowly to her. Guide her back to the spot where you called her. Give her praise the whole time.

One way to teach her to follow you is to carry treats with you when you are walking. Let her smell the treats and walk away from her. She will most likely start to follow you.

Basic Lure and Reward Training: How to Train a Puppy

There are various methods of training your puppy. One of these methods is lure and reward training. The idea is simple: you simply use a toy or treat to get your puppy to do what you want her to. The lure needs to be something that your dog likes. It also cannot be something that she gets in her normal day-to-day activities.

When you use a lure and reward method, you need to pinpoint the actions or behaviors that you want your puppy to do.

Ideally, the lure should be used only in the early stages of your puppy’s training. When she learns what the expected behavior is, then you should taper off the lure.

The lure should not be taken away suddenly. If you do this, then your puppy is likely to stop doing the desired behavior. Rather it should be tapered off.

Using Food to Reward Your Puppy

There are various pros and cons with respect to using food as a reward for puppy training. One pro is that you are practically guaranteed a positive response when you use a treat that excites your puppy. However, the corresponding con is that your puppy may become dependent on food treats to display positive behavior at all. Another con is that food rewards do not demand any respect on the part of the puppy, and this may deter from the bonding and training process.

how to potty train a puppy
Nov 19

Puppy Potty Training

By Training A Puppy | Dog Training

Potty training a puppy (also known as house training) is training your puppy to use a designated toilet area either in the garden or in the home. This process can begin when the puppy is around 8 weeks old. Depending on where you purchased your puppy from, some puppies are already somewhat housetrained. If your puppy isn’t house trained, you can start encouraging them to use a specific area as soon as you bring them home.

how to potty train a puppy

How Long Does it Take to Potty Train a Puppy?

There is no scientifically proven time frame for potty training a puppy. Successful house training depends on your puppy’s age, their breed and how you approach the training process. To make potty training as fast and efficient as possible, the following factors are essential:

Potty Training Method

There are different approaches to conducting house training. Which one you choose depends on your own personal preferences, but we highly recommend researching all available approaches before deciding which one will suit you and your lifestyle. Essentially, there are two styles of potty training.

Where you live will have an impact on which approach you choose. If you live in an apartment, you could choose either option. If you live in a property with access to a garden, your approach may be slightly different if you ultimately want your puppy to use a designated outdoor area once fully trained.

Pee Pad

Pee pads are generally 30cm x 30cm square pieces of absorbent pads that soak up waste. They usually contain some form of ammonia which your puppy recognizes as a place to eliminate. They are cheap, mostly effective and a great way to introduce your pup to using a specific toilet area.

However, we’ve noticed that puppies occasionally like to chew on them. If left unsupervised, your pup can shred these pads into tiny little pieces that you will find all over!

A disadvantage of using pee pads is that once your pup learns to go in that particular spot, they are likely to always recognize that spot as their toilet area. It’s a good idea to get them to focus on the pad rather than the area. You can do this by having more than one pad available, and rewarding them each time they eliminate on the pad.

Crate Training

Our preferred method to potty train our puppies is using a crate. We’ve experimented with using both pee pads and crates over the years. So far, crate training has been the most efficient way to house train a puppy. Dogs do not like to make a mess of their dens. If you can train them to use the crate as their den, you will very quickly be able to house train them.

When new puppy owners ask us how long it takes to potty train a puppy, we immediately recommend crate training. You can house train your pup in a matter of weeks! Crate training is especially useful if you are not able to be at home with your puppy all day.

Consistency with Potty Training

Your ability to persevere with training is a key component to quickly potty train your puppy. If you follow a consistent routine with specific actions, your puppy will very quickly learn the desired behaviour because they know what happens next.

Once they know what is expected of them, they can remember the next step in the sequence. In this case it means ‘I pee in this area = I get a treat”. Puppies like routine. Especially in those first few months at home! Being consistent means you are able to firmly settle the routine in their minds.

tips for potty training your puppy

When accidents happen

Never use violence to train your puppy. The most successful way to approach training is by using positive reinforcement. When they behave correctly, they are rewarded with a treat. When they do not behave correctly, they do not get a treat. This is a very simple method to leverage your puppies self-interests i.e food. Violence and punishment can instil fear in into your puppy and may slow down the training process.

Positive reinforcement

Make use of incentives, treats and play time to reward your puppy. It is the most effective method to train them. They are positively motivated to get what they want by carrying out the desired actions. Once your puppy knows that they will be rewarded for good behaviour, they will very quickly learn to do what is being asked of them. Respect your puppy’s individual development and ability to learn. This way, you will form a healthy relationship with them that will last a lifetime.

As you can see from these factors, each puppy will be different. How long it takes to potty train a puppy is unique to each dog, but you can speed up the process. Plan, implement and revise the training as they grow. Be gentle with your puppy, and yourself. You are both learning about each other. Make training fun, happy and positive – and your puppy will be settled into their new home in no time at all!

how to train your puppy to lay down on command
Nov 17

Training Your Puppy to Lay Down

By Training A Puppy | Dog Training

Training your puppy to lay down is a great way to teach them how to stay in the position that you have told them. This is also an important part of reinforcing to your puppy that you are the leader of the pack and that they should obey your commands.

how to train your puppy to lay down on commandThere are a few different methods that you can use when teaching the ‘lay down’ command, and you should try them all to see which your dog best responds to.

Many people find that the ‘down’ command is easier to teach once your dog has mastered the ‘sit’ command. So if you haven’t already followed the steps to teach your puppy how to sit, then you should do this before commencing with training your puppy to lay down.

One of the most basic ways to teach your puppy to lay down is to start saying ‘down’ every time you see your puppy is about to lay down of its own accord. This will start the mental association with laying down and the ‘down’ command.

Remember to always use a firm but friendly tone when you are training your puppy. It’s important to show that you are in control, while also not making them feel intimidated. Also, remember to praise your puppy every time they follow a command that you give, they will soon start associating correct behaviors with being praised and will want to please you every time you give a command.

To get into training your puppy to lay down, first give the ‘sit’ command so that you have your dogs attention. Then, firmly say down and pat the floor in front of you. If your dog needs some additional pointers, you can either push gently on their shoulders so that their legs give way, or you can take their two front legs and lay them in the down position.

teach your puppy to lay down

Once your puppy is in the correct position, you need to praise them so they understand what you want them to do.

As an alternative, it is possible to train your puppy to lay down using a leash and collar. Once again, have them sitting with their full attention on you. Give the ‘down’ command and gently pull the leash towards the floor. Another trick that works well in combination with this is to hold a small piece of liver treat near their nose, and move your hand downwards towards the floor.

Your puppy’s nose should follow the strong and tempting smell of this treat until they are in the downward position. Always remember to praise your puppy once they are in the desired position, this is a great way of showing your puppy how you want them to respond to a given command.

Not all puppies will follow this command immediately, so keep training in short, regular bursts so that your puppy regards training as something fun and is focused on what you are trying to achieve.

Remember that persistence and consistency are the two most important points in training your puppy!

how to train your puppy to come on command
Nov 14

How To Train a Puppy To Come

By Training A Puppy | Dog Training

Many people struggle when it comes to training their puppy the ‘come’ command, but yet it’s another very useful part of puppy training that you can use in an infinite number of situations. If you are lucky enough to live in an area that allows your dog to walk freely off leash, or even if you would enjoy taking your puppy to dog parks to socialize, then the come command will be especially useful.

How To Train a Puppy To Come

When you train your dog to come when called, you are building an extra level of trust that will allow your dog to have some additional freedom, while you are safe in the knowledge that they will return to you when called.

The ultimate goal that you are trying to reach when you train your puppy to come when called, is to get to the stage where no matter what else is going on, your puppy will return to you immediately and give you their undivided attention.

How To Train a Puppy To Come at Home

The most frequent obstacle that people face when trying to teach their puppy to come is that they try too hard too soon. In fact, the best way to train a puppy to come command is to start at home when it is relatively quiet and when your puppy is nearby. Tell your puppy to sit, and then take one or two steps back.

When you make the ‘Come’ command, use a light and happy voice, and introduce a gesture such as patting the fronts of your thighs, to show the puppy that you are excited and want them to come to you. When your puppy responds, be sure to praise them for their efforts. Next, you should again tell your puppy to sit, but this time move a little further away. And repeat the process.

how to train your dog to come

Keep following these steps until you are at the other end of your garden and your puppy is still coming to you. If at any stage, they don’t respond, simply move a few steps closer. It may take a few weeks before you can have trained your puppy to come from a distance, but this is okay, just keep having short practice sessions every day.

How To Train a Puppy To Come Anywhere

After you have trained your puppy to come in the safety of your own yard, it’s time to move on to practicing the come command in public. Of course, there will be many more distractions for your puppy here, so it’s advisable to keep them on a leash. If your puppy gets distracted as you practice, simply give the leash a small tug until they come running to you.

One of the most important points of training your puppy to come is to ensure that you never scold your puppy once they have come to you. By doing this, your puppy will associate coming to you with a bad experience, and will stop responding as explained in this article on Petsium.com. If you need to correct bad behavior, always go to your puppy, rather than undo all the hard work you have put into training your puppy to come when called.

how to train your dog to sit on command
Nov 13

Training Your Puppy to Sit

By Training A Puppy | Dog Training

Sit is one of the most important commands that you can teach your puppy, as you can use the command in a multitude of different situations to control your puppy’s behavior. When your puppy learns how to sit, they will be learning how to give you their full attention, which means that you can use it to lead into another command, or simply to ask as a way to distract your dog from danger.

Many dog trainers will tell you that the most important reason for your puppy to learn the sit command is for safety – because if your puppy is about to run across the road, the sit command can avoid potential disaster.

how to train your dog to sit on command

How to Train Puppy to Sit

Luckily, training your puppy to sit is a relatively easy thing to do, because it is already a natural position, the only thing that you really have to teach is the command when to sit.

Unlike cats, dogs are unable to flex their spines which means that when they need to look upwards past a certain point, they need to be sitting to be able to do so. Because of this there are two separate methods that you can use to teach your dog the sit command.

Call you dog to come to you, and make sure that it is standing facing you, so that you can look each other in the eye. When you first start training your puppy to use the sit command, it’s best if you can crouch down so that you can obtain better eye contact. By doing this, you can ensure that you have your puppy’s attention, making the training much easier.

Next, you need to tell your puppy to sit. Still looking them in the eye, firmly say ‘Sit!’ in a strong, controlled voice. At the same time, push gently down on your puppy’s back legs to make them sit. Some dogs are resilient to this method, in which case you can use the alternative.

teach your puppy to sit

Again, using a controlled voice and maintaining eye contact, firmly say ‘Sit!’. This time, have a small piece of food or treat, and hold it just above your puppy’s nose, slowly raising it back and over their head, and they will naturally sit to follow the food.

Remember that each time your puppy follows the command; you need to shower them with praise. Use an excited voice and tell them ‘good dog!’, ‘clever boy!’ and give them pats and hugs. You can opt to use treats as praise, but be sure not to do this every time, as you can risk your dog becoming over weight.

When training your puppy, take only a small timeframe of five or ten minutes, as any longer and your dog will begin to lose interest in training. Shorter, frequent bursts are a far more effective form of training than intensive lengthy sessions.

Continue practicing with this method while gradually reducing the rewards, and your puppy will soon associate ‘Sit!’ with meaning that they need to sit down and pay attention.