Sunday, August 16, 2009

Tips on training your furry friend

Training Your Furry Companion

How to train a puppy is one of the most common questions raised by new dog owners. You have just brought this new creature into your lives and before too long you realize that unless you do something about it, your carefree companion ways are going to turn into a real headache (lol) when he is five times his current size and weight.
With that in mind, the following are what I consider the ten most important principles to take into account when training a puppy.

9 complete Principles of Dog Training

Starting the Process of Training
1. Utilize the first two months of the dogs life to shape the dogs behavior. This time should be spent teaching the dog where it can and can't go in your house, getting the puppy into a routine so that it knows its boundaries and potty training the puppy.
2. Don't start formal obedience training with your puppy until it has reached at least 2-3 months of age. Your puppy goes through drastic change during his first 2-3 months where the central nervous system is developing. A puppy will not be able to understand or cope with formal obedience training before then.
3. When you do start formal obedience sessions at 2-3 months of age do not make the sessions any longer than five minutes long. Break the sessions up so that your puppy never becomes bored and ensure that you make the sessions happy so that your puppy is left wanting more. This is crucial.

The most important commands
4. At 3 months of age concentrate on the three most important commands, 'down', 'stay' and the command that you should consider to be the most important-'come'. (The come command is crucial, it can save your dog’s life). The way to introduce these commands is as follows: "Whenever your dog sits or goes into the down position on its own free will, simply state the command 'sit' or 'down' to coincide with the action". Also, whenever you walk away from your furry companion and want the puppy to remain where it is, simply state the command 'stay'.
Sometimes you can even do this as early as 2 months old because you are not putting any pressure on the puppy but usually when the puppy is 3 months old it will then be ready to associate the command with the action in formal obedience sessions.
Praising and Rewarding the Puppy
5. Most owner make the mistake and yell, hit, punish or scold their puppy during obedience sessions, this will only hinder your puppy's learning by having a negative effect on his confidence. As a pet owner try and focus on positive reinforcement. Such as giving the puppy a treat even verbal praise as well.
6. Try using food rewards 100% of the time, when you start formal obedience sessions with your puppy. However, slowly take them away because you want your puppy to be motivated to do a command without always receiving a treat. This is somewhat like raising children.


7. Whenever your puppy brings an item such as a stick to you, don’t immediately reach for the item. Instead pat the puppy on part of his body except his head and ignore the item at first. If you immediately reach for items that your puppy brings to you, he will always feel threatened whenever he has an item in his mouth. This will hinder progress with retrieve exercises and even with games such as retrieve with a ball or stick.

The Collar and Lead
8. During the first couple of months familiarize your puppy with the lead and collar. Do this by introducing the collar first. Show the puppy the collar and let him smell and investigate it before you place it on him. Do this in a positive environment, for instance when you are outside playing with the puppy. After he has investigated it, simply place the collar on the puppy with minimal fuss, give a food reward so that the puppy has a positive association with the collar and continue playing with the puppy as if nothing has happened. If the puppy becomes distracted and starts pawing at the collar etc. distract the puppy with a toy or food item to take his mind off the collar. Very soon, your puppy will have forgotten that the collar is there. After 1or 2 days of wearing the collar, introduce the lead. Again, do this under positive circumstances. Allow the puppy to investigate it and then clip it onto the collar then give a food reward. Allow the puppy to run around an area where he cannot get tangled, with the lead dragging behind him on the ground for around five to ten minutes. Extend this to around thirty minutes over the following week and then start picking up the lead for short periods while slowly walking around with the puppy following you.
Enjoy your Puppy
9. Lastly remember to enjoy your puppy. Make training for companion as stress free as possible. Accept that when you are training a puppy that things will go wrong and when they do move on with minimal fuss. Training is your responsibility as a dog owner. It is well worth the time and effort because the result is a companion that is always under your control and a pleasure to be around.
Final Thought- I hope this blog has been helpful for you and that it has taken the fear out of training your furry companion. For the latest dog product, you should feel free to visit href="">