18 Apr

Tips to raising a happy, well-adjusted puppy

1.  Set Boundaries with Crate Training

Puppies are full of energy and spunk and often new puppy owners feel it’s beneficial to allow puppies to have a lot of free time to run around and have fun. While this isn’t harmful it’s important to set boundaries early and limit freedom. Setting boundaries and limiting loads of free time early helps your puppy be set up for success. Crate training your puppy properly is the best way to set boundaries and is quite useful for many reasons.

2.  Start Training ASAP

When a new puppy comes home, everything they do is cute, right? Jumping when happy and to greet – aww. Little puppy barks – aww. However, often people think puppy behaviors will just go away with age. This is not true! If you don’t start training early and begin rewarding behaviors you want, once puppyhood is over these behaviors will now become annoying, at best. By starting training ASAP it will be less stressful for the puppy and everyone else

3. Socialize the Proper Way

One of the top puppy tips puppy owners receive is how they must socialize their puppy from day one in order to prevent their puppy from becoming aggressive or shy or fearful. This is true to an extent, but the mistake many puppy owners [unintentionally] make is that they put their puppy into situations where the puppy may be learning negative associations,
not positive ones. For example: If you have a shy dog don’t take him to a crowded park to socialize. If you have a puppy that is nervous of loud sounds don’t expose her to loud sounds in hopes she’ll get used to it. These types of negative experiences will create many problems down the road.

4. Set Proper Expectations

Many puppy owners become frustrated easily, which is totally understandable. However, it’s important to keep expectations realistic and in alignment with puppy development and in accordance to how puppies learn and grow. Puppies chew, steal and have potty accidents. It’s up to you to train them, or prevent them, from being able to practice these behaviors. Proper chew toys, crate training and obedience training will help all of these things, and set everyone up for success!

5. Keep your Cool

Puppies can make one lose their mind quickly. They are energetic, nipping, chewing, pooping machines! Keeping your cool, remaining calm and gentling putting puppy in his crate when you cannot supervise or need a mental break will set you and your puppy up for success from the get-go. Your puppy will learn faster, have better listening skills, and succeed faster when you exhibit calm behaviors and utilize positive reinforcement appropriately.

A certified trainer will help you learn all the ways to do all these things properly. Hire a professional for optimal results with your new puppy!

Contact Cathy Daugaard, Certified Professional Dog Trainer with Family Dog Training