Top 10 Things to Teach Your Dog

Brown Lab Chewing on a Stick

From day one, your dog is constantly learning and experiencing new things.

Some of these things your dog has learned are good and others, not so good.

As a dog parent it is important to help your dog differentiate what is appropriate and inappropriate behavior as a member of the family.

Don’t let man’s best friend become an enemy with bad behavior, learn the top 10 things to teach your dog.

1. No Biting

A puppy that bites will grow up to be a biting dog and biting dogs do not live long in this day in age. It only takes one small nip on the hand and you could be handing your dog over to the court.

On day one, teach your dog that biting is not acceptable behavior.

Discontinue the activity you are doing with your pup as soon as you feel those teeth. Draw away from your dog immediately and ignore him for five seconds.

After the five seconds have passed, resume the activity calmly and continue the process until your pooch gets the picture.

Puppy Biting Ear of Other Larger Dog

2. Housetraining

Teaching your dog when and where to relieve himself is a training tool every dog must learn.

Try confining the pup overnight in a crate, taking him outside to relieve himself and then to a slightly larger confinement area during the day.

Try trigger words like “go” or “do your business” and reward your dog when he does go.

Over time the area in which he is allowed to roam can become greater and his final reward for becoming a complete master of his bodily functions is free range of the house.

Dog outside Being House Trained

3. To Chew or Not to Chew

It is in a dog’s nature to chew and he should not be completely discouraged from doing so.

Not only is chewing a good way to save your dog from boredom, but it can also aid dental health and alleviate stress.

Provide a variety of dog friendly chew toys in your home and work with your dog to understand what is his to chew.

Black Puppy Biting a Small Stick with Purple Background

4. Socializing

Dogs that are not properly socialized often become aggressive or fearful in situations they are not familiar with.

Socialize your dog by going to the park to allow him to see other dogs, animals and people.

Invite friends and family over to the home often to allow your dog to get to know people who are ok to be in the house.

Two Black Dogs Socializing

5. Veterinarian & Groomer Behavior

Teach your dog how to behave at the veterinarian’s office or at the groomers by playing pretend.

Set your dog up on an elevated surface and begins petting him, massaging his ears, his feet and looking into his mouth.

If he has not bitten you or tried to jump off, reward him and tell him “good.”

Practice this little routine several times a week and make your next visit to the dog professionals run a lot smoother.

6. Separation Anxiety Prevention

Dogs build strong bonds between themselves and their owners, so much sometimes that they can develop anxiety when their owners leave.

Prevent separation anxiety by leaving your dog for different periods of time.

Give your pooch a fun chew toy to play with and meet him with a joyful greeting upon arrival. Of course, this training technique works best if started at an early age.

7. Wearing a Harness or Collar

Getting your puppy or dog used to wearing a collar is not always as easy as it looks. You may go through a couple dozen, chewed up collars before your pooch gets accustom to wearing one.

Try lightweight collars and placing the collar loosely on your dog.

8. Leash Training

Training your dog to walk on a leash without pulling or jerking you every step of the way takes practice.

There are a variety of training techniques used to get your dog to walk appropriately on a leash, but it all comes down to reward and consistency.

Rewarding him for not chasing that bird on the street or discouraging him from walking ahead of you should all be done on every walk.

Burmese Mountain Dog Puppy on Blue Leash Sunny Day

9. The Meaning of “Yes” and “No”

To teach your dog the meaning of “yes” and “no” means you want him to continue, or discontinue what he is doing.

Catch him in the act of doing something you want him to continue doing like coming to you by repeatedly saying “yes.”

If your dog is doing something you want him to discontinue doing, like digging up the yard, repeatedly say “no.”

You may have to tell him to stop what he is doing using a stern tone in your voice and even a foot stop to make the message clear. 

10. Learning His Name

A dog must learn his name to identify when he should look to you and when he is needed.

Choosing a name with no more than two syllables is easiest for dogs to understand, such as Fido.

Teach your pooch his name by repeating his name until he looks, clapping your hands when you say his name and rewarding him with treats when he identifies it.

White Puppy on a Leash

Training your dog is so important to start from day one. Don’t wait, practice these top 10 things to teach your dog and start training your dog today!

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