Puppy Training 101: Essential Cues Every Puppy Should Know
Bringing a new puppy into your home is an exciting adventure filled with joy and some challenges. One of the first and most important tasks in this journey is training. Training your puppy not only aids in their development, but also strengthens your bond and ensures a harmonious coexistence. In this blog post, we’ll explore essential training cues that every puppy should learn, setting the foundation for a well-mannered and happy canine companion.
A Foundation Behavior.
‘Sit’ is usually the first thing taught. by new puppy guardians. It’s a fundamental skill that most puppies do naturally, so it is fairly easy to teach. It can help in various situations, such as greeting people calmly or waiting patiently for food. My word of warning though is, do not over use it. We tend to ask our dogs to sit for absolutely everything, and I’m not sure that is fair to our dogs. After all, they aren’t robots.
Use a treat to guide your puppy into a sitting position, then pop that treat into their mouth as soon as they sit. Consistency and positive reinforcement are key.
Cultivating Patience and Self-Control:
‘Stay’ is crucial for your puppy’s safety, especially in potentially dangerous situations like crossing a street.
Start by asking your puppy to stay for a second or two before releasing them with a release cue like “okay” or “free”. Gradually increase the duration. You will then need to work on distance and distractions. Do not try to work on everything at once.
3. Come aka Recall
Ensuring Safety and Responsiveness:
The ‘come’ cue is vital for preventing and managing potentially risky situations. It’s also essential for off-leash walking and play.If you do not teach your puppy anything else, please ensure their recall is solid.
Practice this cue in an environment free of distractions, rewarding your puppy every time they come to you. Never use this cue in anger or call your puppy to you when you are going to do something they don’t like, such as giving them a bath or bringing them inside when they are having fun outside.
4. Leave It
Preventing Unwanted Behavior:
‘Leave it’ teaches your puppy to ignore things you don’t want them to have, like inappropriate food items or unknown objects on walks.
Teach this by offering a less desirable item and saying “leave it.” When your puppy ignores the item, reward them with a high value treat. Be careful how you say ‘leave it’. We are communicating with our puppies, not barking orders.
Teaching your puppy to lie down on cue is beneficial for calming hyperactivity and for situations where you need them to settle.
Lure your puppy into a lying position with a treat, and give the reward once they’re fully down. Another great way to teach this behavior is to capture it. Your puppy is going to lie down at some point, probably a lot too.
6. Loose Leash Walking
Enjoyable Walks for Both:
Training your puppy to walk without pulling on the leash makes walks enjoyable and makes walks safer for both of you.
Use treats to encourage your puppy to stay close. If they start to pull, stop walking until the leash is loose again.
Training your puppy is a rewarding process that builds a strong foundation for a lifetime of companionship. Start with these basic cues, always using positive reinforcement methods. Remember, patience and consistency are vital – your puppy is learning and growing each day. If you find yourself needing more help, consider enrolling in our Power Puppy online course or hiring a professional trainer. Contact us for more information about our puppy training packages. Happy Training!