Have you recently added a puppy to your household? Congratulations on your new addition! Puppies are a lot of work, but they’re also loads of fun. One of the most important aspects of raising a well-mannered and well-adjusted puppy is proper training. The question is, how do you make your puppy’s training stick? There’s no sense in training your puppy when they’re young only for your hard work to go to waste.
Use these simple tips to make your puppy’s training last a lifetime:
Keep it up.
The first and most obvious way to make your puppy’s training stick is to keep it up over the course of their puppyhood. You can’t expect to train your puppy for a week and then have them be set for life. If your puppy isn’t reminded of their commands and put through their paces, they’ll forget it! Of course, you’ll want to keep up with commands and training as your puppy enters adulthood, too. It’s simply the best way to make sure you have a well-trained dog on your hands throughout life.
Be consistent with your language, hand signals, tone, etc. as you work on training your puppy. If you’re not, he or she will get confused. You can’t tell your puppy to “sit down” one day and then command him to “sit” the next. Make sure all members of the family agree on the exact phrasing and tone of your puppy’s commands. This consistency is key to making little Fido’s training stick!
Use positive reinforcement.
Dogs tend to respond much better to positive reinforcement than negative reinforcement. Praising your pup for a good deed is a more powerful and effective training method than reprimanding them for a bad one. That’s not to say you can never tell your dog “no.” You should, and it’s a key part of training. But reinforcing good behavior with treats and praise tends to have a more lasting effect than punishment or verbal reprimands.
Hire a professional.
You don’t have to tackle the journey of your puppy’s training alone if you don’t want to. Professional dog trainers and animal behaviorists specialize in this sort of thing, and they can make your life much easier. Ask your vet about training options near you, and do some research online to find a training program that suits your needs.
Call your vet for more insight into puppy training.