Puppy Training for Healthier, Smarter Dogs
Ignoring the necessity of puppy training could lead to a whole bunch of problems in the future. For one thing, housebreaking needs to be done as soon as possible, for your household's hygiene - and your dog's as well. Also, training your puppy more basic things like not going out into the street in busy traffic, or keeping away from poisonous creatures like rattlesnakes, could well save your puppy's life!
If you want your puppy to grow up to be strong and smart, let puppy training begin at an early age. One of the first things you should remember is that "positive reinforcement" - also known as "reward training" - is considered more effective on dogs than the old-fashioned physical punishment techniques. So keep a bag of treats handy, for giving to your pup when he accomplishes important tasks. You also need to have the right equipment and supplies handy, like crates, collars, and toys for your pet to get accustomed to.
Obedience should be the first thing to teach your puppies; agility or speed training could come at the same time, or even later. It's important that your young pets know who's the boss, and have absolute faith in you. Using treats and frequent praise as rewards for jobs well done is a great way to build up your pet's trust in you. Like other animals, even human beings, dogs become fonder of their companions if their companions make them feel good about themselves. It's important to express to your puppy what you feel after he performs his actions, so he quickly learns which things please or displease you.
One of the most important lessons to teach your puppy is housebreaking. Some pet owners use crates for this task. Crates can be bought in pet stores, at different sizes, so you can upgrade the size of your crate as your puppy grows - the important thing is that you use a crate that's only big enough for your puppy to stand up and turn around in. Different pet owners have different ideas about how to use a crate for housebreaking, but there's only one advisable way: when you see signs that your puppy is about to urinate or defecate inside the house, keep your puppy in his crate for a moment. Then release him and immediately open the door so he could go out to do his "thing."
Remember that as a rule, dogs don't dirty up the places where they like to eat or sleep. So your puppy is sure not to dirty up his crate, especially if he thinks of it as a sort of play area. Don't let your puppy think of the crate as a cage! Keep a toy in the crate or lure your puppy in with treats, to encourage this point of view.
New dog owners may be daunted by the task, but puppy training is not as hard as you think. Look up training tips on the web, or ask your vet for advice. It's sure to make the process of growing up with your puppy worthwhile!
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