Early Dog Training - Getting Started
The earlier you start training your dog the better the
training will go. The old adage that "you can't teach an old
dog new tricks" is not really 100% true, but it is much
easier to teach a young dog than an older one.
So if you have a puppy, early dog training is going to give
you lots of long term benefits to your life with your pup.
Most dogs can start to be trained at as young as eight weeks
of age, at least with simple training like coming to its
name, house breaking and
Dogs act primarily on instinct; however you can shape that
instinctive behavior with a good solid training program. A
young dog is less set in its ways and this makes channeling
and focusing its instincts much easier.
Early dog training should focus on three things: relevance,
shaping, and immersion.
Relevance means that you are working on the most basic
training that relates to your dog's everyday life, such as
trusting you, taking its response cues from your responses,
coming when it is called, and the like. Save the fancy
obedience training until your pup is at least several months
old and until it knows the basics of being a good companion
Shaping means that you are actually shaping the way your
puppy thinks about things, which helps it to learn to react
to its environment in the ways you desire for it to react.
Socialization fits into shaping. A puppy needs to be gently
and safely socialized, i.e. exposed to a wide variety of
stimuli, including other animals, other dogs, and strange
humans, so that it learns to feel safe in new situations and
is less likely to show fear or aggression as an adult dog.
Immersion means that you are being consistent and continuing
his training day after day. Make training an inbuilt part of
your dog's day, finding opportunities to teach it to come
when called during playtime, for example.
If you follow these tips you will find that over a series of
months you can easily get through all sorts of training with
your puppy. This training will have a lasting effect that
your dog will remember and call from for years to come.
The best trained dogs were usually trained as puppies and
have a lifetime of good habits because of it. If your dog is
young, early dog training works and you will easily find
success and mold your pup into a great friend and pet.
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