When you bring a new dog into your home, you need more than food, toys, and a place for your dog to sleep. You need to be prepared to train your new pet in the right way.
Dogs need a strong pack leader in order to thrive. If you start training right away, your pet will feel safe and comfortable in your home.
Of course, this doesn’t mean that your dog needs to be performing tricks within weeks of entering your home. It just means that you need to teach your dog the basics.
Once your pet has the essentials down, both of your lives will be much easier.
The Basic Commands
There are four commands your dog needs to be able to follow without fail. They are: Sit, Down, Stay, and Come. All of these will help ensure good behavior, and will also help to keep your dog safe.
In addition to mastering these commands, your dog needs to be able to behave while walking on a leash. With a little bit of extra training, your dog should be perfectly behaved when you take it out for walks.
How to Get Started
A lot of people assume dog training is complex and challenging, but that isn’t actually the case. In fact, training is more likely to be effective if you keep it simple. Start off giving your dog easy commands in a place that’s free of distractions. Keep training sessions short, and always end them on a high note.
While you don’t need to be an expert in order to train your dog, you do need to be consistent. Make sure you use the same command every time. If you mix things up by saying “come here” instead of “come,” your pet is likely to wind up confused.
Use Rewards Wisely
While it’s highly recommended to use both food treats and praise when training a dog, it’s important to make sure they’re used appropriately. Dogs won’t be able to form a connection unless the treats and praise come immediately after the successful completion of a task.
In addition, treats should eventually be phased out. Start off giving your dog a treat every time they successfully complete a task, but be more discerning once your dog has the trick down.
Only give out treats when your dog responds especially quickly or does a particularly good job.
Most dogs respond very well to food treats, but if your pet doesn’t, you’ll need to find some other form of reward. Some dogs like physical rewards, like a tummy rub, and some dogs like getting the chance to play with a favorite toy.
Make sure your dog is getting something they’re excited about.
If you focus on dog training basics, you’ll be able to make a lot of progress in a short amount of time. Once your dog has these commands down, teaching them new commands will be a breeze.
A well-trained dog is a happy dog.