January is National Train your Dog Month!
Training your new dog can be a big task. From potty training to “sit & stay,” there are many things your dog must learn when they first move into your home. When first introducing your dog to new rules, remember that patience is key! Here are some training tips to help ease the process.
1- Decide on the house rules before your pup comes home.
Be sure to discuss with everyone in your household what the puppy will be allowed and not allowed to do, so that you are all on the same page. Will they be allowed on the couch? Will they be allowed near the table when you are eating? Are certain rooms off limits? If you establish these rules from the get-go they are more likely to catch on and understand them quicker. (1)
2- Train with Gourmet Treats.
You’d be surprised how much harder dogs will work when they know a quality treat is involved. Try using a tiny piece of chicken breast, cheese, or liver, compared to even premium store-bought treats. When the training gets difficult, these types of treats are more likely to help get the job done.(1)
3- Reward Good Behavior.
Rewarding your dog when they do something good out of the blue helps them realize that they did something good, and enforces them to do it more often. Let them know when they’re getting it right. On the flip-side, never reward bad behavior or it will condition them to continue. (2)
4- Manage the Jump.
Most dogs get over excited when they meet someone new and begin to jump all over them. The best way to discourage this behavior isn’t to scold them but rather to ignore them altogether. When they jump on you, turn around and pay no attention to them. Never encourage the behavior by petting them and acknowledging them when they jump. (2)
5- Encourage your dog to come to you.
Teaching them to come is one of the most important commands to be mastered. Always be happy when they come to you, whether you called them or not, show them lots of affection. (1) “Get on his level and tell him to come using his name. When he does, make a big deal using positive reinforcement.” (2) Use a playful tone and reward them with treats when possible.
If you’re bringing a new puppy into the family, you’ll want to make sure they are getting the proper nutrients they need to grow big and strong while learning new tricks! Our Littles Multi-Vitamin and Dog Multi-Vitamin formulas help picky eaters, puppies, and older adults receive a balance diet and meet their nutritional needs.