Consistency the key to training a puppy

The euphoria that overrides all practical senses when interacting with a puppy can easily be attributed to the laws of attraction. The encounter with a young pup yields enraptured moments of joy, innocence and mindless bliss as you bend down to pick up the little ball of fluff. Cuddling the puppy up close to your face, the smell emitted from its small body completely overwhelms your olfactory receptors. The tiny whimpers and grunts lavished in wet kisses absolutely engulf your whole being. 

Never mind thoughts of practicality relevant to caring for this small creature; it is just so incredibly cute. The strong desire to take the youngster home tugs at your heart. As your new little friend chews on your shoelace, visions of life with a dog cloud your mind. It is hard to imagine any scenario where this adorable young puppy would not be a loving asset to your life.

Generally, at this point, reality begins to tug at your conscience. Food and bowls will be a definite requirement, but aside from that, what else could you possibly need? Maybe some toys and treats, a collar and leash. You have already rationalized how the dog will develop into your lifestyle as you watch the pup explore the contents of your bag.

On the drive to the house, you briefly glance down as you gently pet the tiny being curled up in your lap. Once inside, you position the pup on the floor as you turn to lay your belongings down on the table. Within that brief moment, you turn back to see the dog squatting in an unusual stance. Having just relieved itself on your living room floor, you realize that particular aspect of rearing a young animal had suddenly vanished while you were spooning over the puppy. Remembering young animals learning house rules at your mother’s house, you rub the little pup’s nose in the puddle, and tell them, “No, No!” The puppy looks at you with sad eyes wondering why you yelled, which in turn, makes you feel guilty.

Training a young dog is one of the greatest challenges new pet owners must endure. It can be a trying and exhaustive process, often resulting in “No, no, bad dog!” out of sheer frustration. However, diligent observation of the dog’s reactions to its new surroundings can help expedite the process. It is going to take a few days, maybe even weeks. Hopefully, in your deliberations regarding pet parenthood, you took into consideration the amount of time these cute and cuddly creatures require.

They are young but for a very short time. Everything they learn in the first few months of their lives will impact their personalities. A foundation of negative influence at a young age is a contributing factor to many behavioral traits they will exhibit as an adult. Utilizing methods dependent upon positive, encouraging reinforcement of good behaviors eventually eliminates the unpleasant activities they must learn to overcome. 

Consistency is the integral component for success in training your puppy. The fundamentals taught to a young dog provide the building blocks for a lifetime of companionship. Taking time to teach appropriate protocol early in a young dog’s life will result in expedited training processes as the pup grows into adulthood. In addition, positive, encouraging response to good behavior creates a pleasant experience that often supersedes negative actions.

Unlike complicated human emotions, dogs perceive life through happy experiences and genuinely strive to exist in a pleasing manner with their two-legged companion. Through patient guidance and teachings, your responsibility to that adorable puppy is to provide an environment where the youngster can grow and learn good behavior. The challenges you both must overcome as you learn to coexist with each other will ultimately create one of the deepest bonds you will ever experience.

Charlé Thibodeau has been a passionate pet caregiver for more than 30 years. If you have a pets question you would like Thibodeau to answer in her column, email .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).


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