It can be hard to know where to begin when trying to train a new puppy. Jeff Allen, Head Instructor and CEO of Dog School, gives these top tips for training your newest family member, all of which are used in our puppy classes based in Croydon and Surrey.
Make sure your puppy pays attention to you
You can’t teach a puppy any commands if he does not give you his full attention. The easiest way to get a puppies attention is by calling his name, however the puppy must be able to recognise his name for this to be effective. Take a few minutes several times a day to reinforce the puppy for responding to his name. By calling the puppy and holding a treat up by your face, you are encouraging him to look at your face when you he hears his name and if you then give him this treat he will begin to always look at your face when you call him.
Teach your puppy to sit
When a puppy responds to a command to sit down it is not just a useful party trick to show off to your friends. A puppy that is sat down is much more relaxed and attentive, meaning that it will be easier to give him cues as to how to respond next and to put a collar or a lead on him. Hold a treat above your head and draw your puppy’s attention to it. This will make him look up and will naturally cause him to sit. Give him the treat at the exact moment he assumes the sit position and repeat until he associates sitting with food. Once this has happened start to say “Sit” as soon as your puppy assumes this position.
Teach your puppy to come when he’s called
It is important that your puppy knows to come back to you when he is called. This will mean that both you and your puppy will be more relaxed and he will be much freer to explore and have fun. It will also give you peace of mind to know that if your puppy is ever heading towards a danger you can call him back to you. Young puppies often keep coming back to their owners for reassurance so use this to your advantage by calling his name and saying “Come” every time you see him coming back to you and give him plenty of praise and a reward every time. Your puppy will come to you if you are the most exciting thing around. Remember that your puppy’s focus is low so get down to his level and draw his attention to you by banging on the floor, shaking a toy or clapping your hands. Once you have got his attention call his name and say “Come”.
At Dog School we understand that although getting a puppy is fun and exciting it can also be a challenge. That is why we’re here to help with our puppy classes. Puppy classes in Croydon and Surrey help your puppy learn the basic skills that will help you and your family have a long and enjoyable relationship with him.