Puppy Care – Basics

A new puppy can be a source of joy for its entire lifetime. Here are a few quick tips to ensure your dog grows up well-behaved.

Make sure to socialize your pup early! Enroll him in a puppy socialization class, host a puppy party, bring him to puppy daycare, visit other neighborhood dogs… the earlier it is, the easier it is! When introducing your pet to new people or dogs, make sure you act relaxed and friendly. Pets do read us!

When done correctly, toilet training should only take a few weeks. This should consist of positive reinforcement. One proven method that works with most puppies is crate training, as dogs instinctually like cozy spaces. Ask us for information about the right size and type of crate and instructions on this easy technique

Your pup should learn right away that you are the controller all of the “good” resources—praise, treats, walks, toys, massages—and that he must do something “good” in order to get these things. Before giving your dog anything good, always ask him to do something first. You’ll see results soon!

Never hit or punish a puppy. You should be a source of positive reinforcement, not punishment. The pup will soon learn that it’s in his best interest to do things right, not wrong. This goes for everything. For example, to “come” should always mean praise and perhaps treats. Never call your dog to “come” and then do something he perceives as negative, such as a bath or a scolding.

Exercise your pet mentally and physically daily.

Remember that what you teach your pet now is how he will act later as a full-grown dog. If you don’t want him on the furniture, do not let him on the furniture now (no matter how cute!). If you don’t want hard bites later, don’t allow biting now. Provide constant supervision until all of the house rules are learned.

Enroll in the Animal Behavior Network at animalbehavior.net which sends out daily emails for the first two weeks of the pup’s life and weekly emails from then on. These emails are filled with info regarding what to do to ensure a satisfying and well-behaved pet.