From your puppy?s point of view, you are the alpha dog. It?s up to you to keep your new puppy safe and protected, and to help him establish boundaries. Here are some puppy training tips you can use to teach your puppy everything he needs to know to start the journey of becoming your very best friend.
Your puppy is eager to please you, but he can?t always tell right from wrong. He can?t read your mind. A puppy?s world can get very confusing, and it is up to you to provide immediate positive reinforcement for good behavior and absolutely no reward for bad behavior.
Dogs need to experience the consequences of their behavior immediately. They will work hard to get what they want and to avoid what they don?t want. But they need to understand the consequences between behavior and result. If you give your puppy a treat fifteen minutes after he followed your ?sit? order, he will be happy, but he will have no idea why he?s getting a treat. There is no connection between the ?sit? and the biscuit, and it will have no bearing on future behavior. Immediacy and timing are crucial.
The same is true for withholding rewards. If your puppy behaves badly, you should hold the treat so that the puppy can see it, but do not give it to him. If you don?t give him a treat fifteen minutes later, it is much too late to serve as negative reinforcement. Remain consistent in your own behavior, and your puppy will quickly learn cause and effect.
Keep in mind that no reward is not the same as punishment. No reward means withholding something your puppy wants. Getting punished confuses him. He understands that you are upset, but he?s not clear why. Your puppy is unable to reason. But if you withhold a treat, the cause and effect of behavior becomes clearer.
Establish routines with your puppy, such as regular feeding times, walk and play times, and bathroom breaks. Stick with your routines and this will help speed up the process. Be consistent since inconsistencies will only confuse your puppy and prolong the training process.
If you don’t want your puppy to jump on people when they come through the front door, you need to reinforce that expectation every time. Allowing the pup to jump all over your sister but not your neighbor will cause confusion. Use the “sit,” “stay,” or “heel” command to get your puppy’s attention and do it every time.