Bringing home a new furry best friend? Getting started on their training early can help save you from headaches and can help make them a calm and obedient pup! Here are some popular training methods that you should consider for your dog.
This is known as the most positive (hah) and successful dog training methods. It teaches your pup that good is good, and doesn't focus on the bad things they do. In this method, you teach your pup a trick or task, and if they do it, you reward them. Usually this reward comes in the form of a treat or toy. The key here is that there is no punishment of any form.
Clicker training is popular amongst cat owners and dog owners, as it's a versatile form of training that helps many animals learn new tasks. With clicker training, you make use of a physical tool, called a "clicker" that makes a sharp sound. In order for this method to work, you must teach your pup that this sound means "reward." In the beginning, you simply must teach your pup that they will get a reward when they hear the click. Then, you can start associating commands with the click, and your dog will start thinking of these commands in a positive way!
This method is great if your pup learns best by observation. Of course, it's not clear if your puppy will learn this way until you try! It relies on there being a "model" of the behavior, like another dog sitting or even a human sitting down when saying the command "sit." This works for some pups because it helps them connect the dogs by seeing the command acting out. This works best with repetition and consistency.
Methods to Avoid
On the other hand, there are a few methods you should avoid when training your pup. While some folks use electronic training, this can be a harsh and startling punishment for pups. While it doesn't actually hurt them, it does invoke shock and fear, which can lead to your pup feeling frightened. The same thing can be said for physical negative reinforcement as well as verbal negative reinforcement. If your pup associates an act with fear, then they might fear you, which you certainly don't want!