Positive Dog Training for Your New Puppy
Creative Puppy Training Tips
Puppies are so cute. They have the best puppy breath, sweet eyes, fluffy fur. But, what happens when they hit that time in their lives when you just feel like you are going to lose your mind? You know what I’m talking about, a teenager with fur!
Your puppy will become an adolescent dog around the time his canine teeth start to come in, and this developmental stage lasts until he is about 18 months of age, depending on the breed. During this time, your puppy’s immature brain is changing and developing, and it can be a difficult and challenging period in both your puppy’s life and yours. The best comparison between a puppy adolescent is a human teenager, and needless to say, this can be one of the toughest times in your relationship.
An adolescent dog is more often than not rowdier, mouthier, jumpier, and generally more obnoxious than at any other time in his life. They tend to have short fuses, test you, and downright ignore you when given the opportunity. Our shelters consist of a lot of adolescent dogs; dog parents just feel like they don’t know what to do, and can’t control their behavior. I use “parent” lightly because a good parent would not give up. So why even bother? Because it is a temporary time in their lives, and they are so worth the effort.
What you can do: Have patience. Have a little more patience. Continue with all your puppy training lessons, play exercises, and prevention life lessons. Focus on all the positive aspects your puppy has already learned and keep up his progress. Have fun when interacting with your puppy. Keep in mind the best way to keep your puppy engaged with you is to be fun and enjoyable, especially during this time. If you have been putting in the work, adolescence will not be as troublesome. If during your puppy’s first 18 months of life, you continue to play a very proactive role in his development and learning, you will be able to have an enjoyable “rest of his life,” for hopefully 10+ years.
Your puppy’s future depends solely on you. When you decided to bring home your new puppy, you took on the great responsibility for his livelihood and his future. Your puppy is a bright being, full of life, who is counting on you to train him and help him develop into a great family dog. You are responsible for his life and well-being. If you choose to work with him only half-heartedly and do not teach him the life skills he needs to live in your human world, he is more likely to become one of the 4 million pets surrendered to animal shelters each year.
So keep working with your puppy on a daily basis. If you are practicing the exercises in Proactive Puppy Care daily, you are on your way to a well behaved and valued family member. Keep taking your puppy on regular, preferably daily puppy socialization adventures. Get the help of a positive and experienced dog training coach and enroll in group puppy training or private dog training classes. As they say, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”
And last, but certainly not least, enjoy your puppy and have fun!
What do you enjoy most about your new puppy? Tell me in the comments.