The question always arises regarding at what age a puppy should be trained. The answer is immediately!
For your puppy to grow into a healthy, balanced dog, you must demonstrate leadership from day one!
In most cases, the new puppy owner will concentrate on finding the right accessories for the dog. They certainly need food, collar, leash and a safe and comfortable place to live but an important biological necessity is the need for a strong pack leader. Puppies are naturally hard-wired to follow a pack leader.
A pack leader is strong, stable, and consistent. These are traits many new puppy owners forget. Many dog owners are strong leaders in their jobs, but when they come home, they turn to mush with their dogs.
Puppies sense our confidence levels and will take control if they perceive us as weak. When this happens, bad behaviors, such as leash-pulling, excessive barking or anxiety, will develop.
The most important thing you can do is become your puppy’s pack leader. This role doesn't begin when your dog is six months old or when he’s bad. Return to Top
Becoming Your Puppy's Pack Leader
When people get puppies they need to establish themselves as the new pack leader. Pack leaders are self confident, aloof,calm and fair in how he lives with pack members. The pack leader is a fair dictator who enforces a well defined set of rules that members know, understand and are expected to live by.
A pack leader is not dictator who loses his temper, bullies pack members into compliance, and does not act in a fair manner in regard to the lives of pack members.
The pack leader always eats first. Lower ranking members don’t get the choice food. But when the leader is finished and he turns the food over to other pack members, he does not come back and drive them away from the food.
You want your pack members to trust you and feel relaxed and comfortable in your presence. The only way this can happen is if they know the rules and anticipate our expectations. When that happens they know they will be treated fairly. They also know that if they ignore the rules they will suffer the consequences.
This leadership relationship is a learned. It can be learned two different ways. It’s learned through the day to day experiences of living with an owner who establishes and enforces rules and also learned through formal obedience training. Return to Top
Obedience classes for puppies and dogs
Hundreds of thousands of dogs go through obedience classes in this country every year. The vast majority of dominant dogs come out of these classes just as dominant as when they went in. That’s because the owners were not trained in pack structure. The key to obedience training is patience, consistency, and a strong leadership role. Obedience training for dogs can be a fun activity when done properly.
Puppies who grew up and became dominant and aggressive dogs were always raised by people who did not establish the correct family pack structure.
Once you bring your dog home, always use a dog crate. The goal is to reduce the possibility of house training mistakes and to teach the puppy that being wild in the house is not accepted.
The beginning of interaction with a new puppy is done outside. Use a flat collar with a snap and a 20 foot cotton line. When the puppy runs around, let it drag the line.
Once the puppy is in the house, never allow it to run around. Always have a line on it. This will establish your leadership. Those who allow puppies to run around unteathered are only asking for the problems that will eventually come up. These pups are going to get into things, they are going to pee on the floor, or they are going to jump up and play bite.
When we are tired of dealing with the pup it goes into its crate. You can leave a radio or TV on to keep the puppy company.
As time passes and the pup calms down and learns manners in the house. If it doesn't calm down it stays in the crate. Return to Top
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