Top 5 Mistakes That People Make When Training Their Puppy

Below you find 5 of the most common mistakes that people tend to make when they first start training their puppy. You should aim to avoid these at all costs and make every effort possible to invest the proper amount of time and effort into training your puppy so that you don’t have to worry about continually correcting them when they are fully grown.

1.Using scare and intimidation tactics

A lot of people believe training dogs effectively has to involve physical correction and intimidation. However, this is simply not the case and you’ve got to be careful how hard you treat your puppy, exactly as you would be when raising a child. If your dog is continually scared of you and being walloped, they are more likely to react aggressively towards you or others as they grow up. It is a proven fact that fear is unbeneficial to learning and dogs just will just not be able to understand when they are doing something wrong, as humans can do.

You must be patient with your puppy and firmly correct them whenever they are doing something that you don’t want them to do without hurting or scaring them. It’s easy to get caught up and angry and involve physical correction but this is quite simply wrong. Your puppy will learn what to do if you keep calm and have the right level energy, whilst rewarding them when they do what you want.

2. Encourage the wrong behaviour

puppy-and-boySo many people get caught up in providing their puppy with everything it needs, as well as all it desires whenever IT wants that they don’t realise they are pandering to the puppy and that it has learnt how to get what it wants, when it wants it. For instance, barking at 6am every morning because that is when you have always fed it. This means you can’t lie in at any point or let someone else look after your puppy because they probably won’t pander to its routine and this will distress the dog.

If you give in when they are hassling you for something, they learn to do it again and again and again and this encourages other negative behaviours, such as jumping up at you when they want a walk, continually nudging you when they want to be petted and so on. If you do what they want, you are rewarding them so how are they to know what they are doing is wrong.

3. Confusing your puppy

One of the best ways to train a puppy is to use the click method. However, to use this method effectively, you have got to keep good timing. This means that if you are training your puppy to sit for example, you must only click and give them a treat when they have actually sat down. If you were to click as they were sitting or just before, how are they to understand what it is exactly you are rewarding them for?

Practice your click method without your puppy around to ensure that your timing is good and only then start training your puppy with it. Clicking at the right points will ensure that your puppy soon learns what it is you are after and you’ll find that their learning accelerates, they start enjoying their training and you can get rid of the food treats you’ve been using alongside the clicker and start to use the clicker by itself. You’ll learn to love your clicker nearly as much as your pooper scooper!

4. Discrepancies in your training style

Once you’ve installed elements of training, you have got to make sure that you continue to reward or correct their behaviour each time they do something you want or don’t want them to do. Your dog will not be able to make sense of how you can want them to run around and be excited at one point (when you arrive home and want them to give you tons of attention) and then another time want them to sit in their bed calmly and quietly (when you have guests and don’t want your dog jumping all over them).

Be consistent and try to understand how difficult it is for your puppy to recognise the difference between situations that often are exactly the same to them but not to you. Inconsistency will only go towards ruining all the good training you have installed in your puppy.

5. Not putting enough time into the training

As the old adage goes, practice makes perfect and this is exactly the same when you are trying to train a puppy. So many people give up so quickly because, to be honest, it is hardwork, however, once you have put in the time and effort, it will all be worth it. Try taking your puppy to obedience classes or attend them on your own if you are embarrassed about your puppy’s current lack of obedience and learn the vital techniques that will help you out on your own.

Repetition is key here and be assured that if you keep at it, are consistent, patient and put aside training time every day, your puppy will soon be an absolute joy. Training a puppy is not easy and does take a lot of effort, so if you’re not prepared to put in this time and effort, perhaps you’re not ready for a puppy!