Dog training is completely unnatural for humans – everything you are supposed to do is exactly the opposite of what you instinctively want to do.
And so, dog training can be difficult – for both the owner and pet – but ultimately it’s a rewarding experience for the persistent ones. We’ve put together some common do’s and dont’s of puppy training.
- Do be consistent – Always use the same words and tone of voice for the desired behaviour.
- Do teach your pup one command at a time. Don’t confuse and overwhelm your pup by teaching too many things at one. Once the pup has learned one command effectively, it should then be trained the next thing.
- Do reward your pup immediately – set the command with the reward in sight, but only give the reward once your pup has completed the task you’ve set.
- Do be patient - allow your pup to take some time to understand the command you’ve given. A lack of an immediate reaction is not always a sign of disobedience. Be patient and kind at all times.
- Do enjoy yourself! – play with your pup before and after each session and it’ll associate you with companionship. You’re in it together for the long haul – there’s always got to be some fun involved.
- Don’t chase your pup when they run away: Lead the way if you want your pup to follow – body motion is huge in dog training.
- Don’t lose your temper while training: Dog training requires a lot of patience and positive reinforcement. Never yell at or hit your pup – remember, you want to inspire loyalty, not fear.
- Don’t forget to reward for good behaviour: It is important to reinforce continuous good behaviour by rewarding your pup appropriately.
- Don’t harp on the negatives: remember your dog is a dog. Although pups can be frustrating at times, being too harsh on them can undermine their confidence majorly.
- Don’t rush the training: dogs, like most humans, take time to learn new things. It's important to give them time to learn a new command.
This list is obviously not meant to be exhaustive, but to provide you with some guidelines in pointing you in the right direction when training your pup. Remember that your dog is a dog and not a human. Step into their paws to see the world, and this will help you communicate more efficiently with your pup. Don’t be afraid to seek the help of a professional dog trainer.