Basic commands such as; sit, drop, stay and come are all commands your puppy should know.
You should begin training your puppy as soon as you bring him home. Contrary to popular belief, 8 or 10 weeks of age is the perfect time to start the training process! At this age puppies are ready and willing to please you, and to play!
The biggest hurdle will be the incredibly short attention span and the insatiable drive to play! Playing with your puppy is good but, he also needs to learn when and how to behave. This is where you decide what is acceptable and what isn’t.
As you begin training, keep in mind that puppies were not born speaking our language, we need to show them what the command is, and then name the action after the puppy has done it.
The ‘come’ command is the first a puppy typically learns after coming home. Even though you may not realize it, you teach this command every time you call the puppy to you.
Use this opportunity to make returning to you a solid command, one that has a reward at the end. Your choice of reward is unlimited; a treat, toy or a fresh new game to play! Never scold your puppy for returning to you, if you call your puppy, he comes to you and you punish him; he will think you are punishing him for returning to you.
You can incorporate the ‘sit’ command into the ‘come’ command by gently pushing your puppy’s backside to the floor after he comes; reward him while telling him ‘good sit’. Repeat this every time he comes to you and in a short amount of time he will learn to sit immediately after you call him. Introduce the ‘stay’ command by slowly increasing the time you expect him to sit. As his attention span lengthens, increase the time he remains sitting accordingly.
Using a treat, coax the puppy into a dropped position. If he raises backside off the floor, gently push his backside down. This is tough for a puppy to learn and will take patience and practice! Be consistent with all your commands from start to finish!
As you are training at home, research local dog obedience clubs to find a puppy class to attend. Search online for dog obedience training south central Florida for a list of clubs to visit and possibly join. Joining a dog obedience club has its’ own set of rewards, from competitions to new friends and most importantly, a chance to socialize your puppy.