Initial Puppy Training

5 rules for training your puppy

  • Train your puppy from the very first day it arrives at your house!
  • Never ever shout at your puppy as they can hear SO much better than humans – your voice will seem as thunder for your little pup.
  • Do no let your puppy do things that you would not want your adult dog to get away with.
  • Teach your kids and your friend’s kids that puppy is a live creature; it needs rest and can be hurt just as you. Tell them that puppies have sharp teeth and claws and those can hurt when playing.
  • Never leave your dog or puppy alone with a child because even the nicest dog is only an animal!

Your puppy- step by step!


459798_330531367003858_100001409932796_973337_2054295061_oWhen you bring your puppy home it is a bit like a blank canvas. Puppy is ready to learn everything, but step by step. Often people try to teach as many commands as possible in a short time.

I would suggest to go ahead slowly but surely. In one year we have 52 weeks and one week is usually enough to teach any one command to the dog. That means after a year your dog could know 52 commands if you want it. Quite impressive, isn’t it?!

Firstly- make sure that your pup knows its name. You will be surprised how many 6-7 months old puppies don’t know it. They just follow the voice of their owners. Call your puppy several times a day and when you do that don’t use an extra words-only its name. Each time your pup comes or even looks at you tell him that he/she is a very good boy/girl. You can also use treats but don’t overfeed them. Puppies have quite small stomachs and if you will feed treats to them all day they won’t be interested in normal food.

Dogs love to hear our voices and very often it’s the best reward. Don’t repeat puppy’s name (and also any other commands) several times in succession because it will become an “empty” sound.

Dog’s hearing is very good and your pup will probably hear you first time around, puppy just needs to learn what this word means.

A dogs name itself isn’t a command it’s only a word which is used to get dogs attention so don’t use a name as a recall command.

Recall is one of the most important commands in a dog’s world because in some cases it can save dog’s life, so make sure your puppy learns it very well. Recall is the main issue for a lot of dog owners and usually it is based on not knowing dog psychology and using the wrong methods for teaching recall.

When to let your puppy off-lead…

Owners are often confused as to when they can start letting their puppy off the lead. I would advise to do it from the very first day when you are in a park, forest or anywhere else where your puppy is safe from busy roads. In wildlife no one keeps youngsters on a lead to get them to follow their pack. They just know to be safe they must follow their pack and you are your dog’s pack.

Being a dog owner for more than 20 years and a professional dog trainer for more than 10 I truly believe that if we want to build strong relationship with our four legged friends we have to learn not only the newest training methods but also learn from the wild animal world.

Your young puppy will naturally follow you everywhere but when it gets older it will try to make a bigger distance between you and then very often ignore recall. And at this stage a lot of owners are making their biggest mistake – they follow their pup and try to catch it instead of walking away from them. Let’s face it, a dog moves much faster than human and we don’t have any chance to catch it, even if it is approaching a very busy road. By following the puppy we encourage it to moving away from us. The puppy sees the pack is following it so everything must be fine and the puppy feels safe enough to do what it intends to.

If your puppy seems to have forgotten it’s name and has decided to go in a different direction calm your nerves and walk or run in the opposite direction. Call your puppy once to get its attention and let it know that you have different plans for walking. Younger puppy will follow you very quickly but a dog who is accustomed to their owner always following him may ignore you for a while but finally even this dog will learn to look after you.

Play “Hide and Seek”

One of the best games for the dogs is “hide and seek”, especially if the dog is inclined to go far away from you. Hide from your dog when it’s gone from your sight and when it finally comes back let him panic for a bit – “Where is my mummy/daddy?!”

In quite a short time your dog will learn to keep an eye on you, even when it is enjoying play with other dogs.