New Puppy Advice, (c) 2012-2018 Frania Shelley-Grielen all rights reserved
Having a new puppy in your life includes all that sweet, warm, funny puppy-hood and all the
steps in teaching your little one how to navigate the human world with you. A new puppy
client asked me to help. My follow-up advice will benefit all new puppies and owners too:
It was wonderful meeting such a sweet, little puppy and seeing how invested you are in
her welfare. Thank you again for allowing me to work with you both. Your puppy and
your relationship with her will benefit from clear and consistent communication:
- Regular walks with your puppy will help socialize her to the big outside world,
offer her opportunities to explore it and sniff, aid in house training and teach her
to walk on leash. Avoid choke, prong or head halters which are painful, inhibit
learning due to stress and can damage puppy's anatomy. Select harnesses instead
that attach in the front. Make sure your leash is 4-6 feet long, no extending
leashes so puppy can learn to walk with you and no chain link which can be tough
on human hands. Vary your walks to offer new environments.
- Your puppy is a baby and does not come to you housebroken. She is still growing
and cannot fully control her bodily functions; she needs frequent (hourly) walks
to eliminate and to learn where you would like her to do her eliminating. We often
ask so much more of this canine species than our human babies in this regard-who
get to wear diapers for years and then still require extensive potty training! (More
on housebreaking tips.)
- Your puppy has learned that biting is a game with her humans and with teething
coming on (generally between 4-7 months) if not effectively addressed this is a
game no one will win. Frequent and regular puppy play groups will develop much
needed puppy socialization skills and help to develop bite inhibition with
conspecifics (other puppies). For her human interaction in this regard,
redirecting your puppy with a loud noise, offering a toy to bite or chase when she
is about to bite or is biting will help if done consistently and repeatedly.
- Your puppy needs a large variety of toys to bite and play with at all times. Pay
attention to the type of toy she favors and offer puzzle toys, balls to chase (thrown
by you) and chew toys. Your puppy will also begin teething so keep thinking chew
toys to add to her toy chest and to help ease the pain of new teeth.
- Jumping is a natural behavior to garner attention. Stand up if seated when you
see her getting ready to do this or turn away if standing. The instant all feet are
on the floor turn and praise her. This must be repeated over and over. She can not
unlearn a behavior on one trial, especially one which she took so long to learn.
- Offer praise constantly for all the good, quiet behavior and "put it on command:"
tell her "Good Quiet" or "Good Girl" for being just that, "Good Sit" when she is
sitting, etc. Your puppy's gentle nature will be impacted seriously by aversive
corrections. Avoid fear and displacement behaviors by focusing always and only
on positive training methods.
- Puppy kindergarten or puppy training classes are key for puppy's socialization
around other dogs and people. Learning in a group setting affords social learning,
observational learning and utilizes the model rival method for humans and non
- Keep crating to a maximum of an hour. You can try draping the crate with a
sheet to cut down on visual stimulation, be careful with this, makes sure there is
adequate airflow-if it seems to exacerbate a negative reaction -stop immediately!
- Puppy-proof her long term confinement area (your office area) and add classical
music to soothe her. A classical music radio station also offers soothing human
voices to the mix.
The right approach in a group training class will make all the difference in your puppy.
Positive methods are the only way to go. Please ask me if you would like a referral. We
also offer individual training packages.
"Offer praise constantly for all the
good, quiet behavior and "put it on
command:" tell her "Good Quiet" or
"Good Girl" for being just that, "Good
Sit" when she is sitting, etc. Your
puppy's gentle nature will be
impacted seriously by aversive
corrections. Avoid fear and
displacement behaviors by focusing
always and only on positive training
copyright Frania Shelley-Grielen
copyright Frania Shelley-Grielen
Ask me about puppy training
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