Getting a new puppy is an exciting time for a household. The whole family can spend time going through a long list of dog breeds, determining which dog would have the right temperament and energy levels to match their own lifestyle. They can have fun thinking of possible names to call the new member of their family. Picking out pet supplies such as food and water bowls, wireless dog fence, and the kinds of treats and toys to buy can also be an enjoyable experience.
There’s all sorts of good things to look forward to — cuddles in the morning, play time with other dogs, long walks at the park, running at the beach, and the knowledge that every time you come home at the end of the day, there’s a little ball of fur waiting to greet you with a loving nuzzle (or lick, or doggy kiss), helping melt the day’s stress and worries away.
But, first things first. After deciding on the puppy to get, you take him home and discover key points in his behaviour. The first thing he does after exploring the house is relieve himself next to your potted plant. He finds a pair of sneakers by a bedroom door and begins to playfully chew on the shoelaces. He catches a whiff of his dog food as you prepare to fill his bowl and he starts jumping up your legs. And you attempt to spend time with him on your lap as you sit comfortably on the couch, but he prefers to nip and bite your fingers and arms.
Regardless of dog breed, a puppy will always display certain behaviours and qualities that will need to be guided or corrected so that they will not become problematic as they grow older. With patience and consistency on the part of the owners and the help of effective puppy training classes, a puppy can grow up to be a balanced, well-behaved, happy and energetic dog that will be a delightful part of any family.
Here are a few things that pets and their human parents can pick up from attending dog training classes:
- Basic commands to hone obedience (such as sit, down, stand, stay, and leave/drop it. These simplest of commands will go a long way in teaching a puppy to respond to his owner and to maintain harmony every day. By associating these words with the right movements, both puppy and owner will have smoother, more organised and more harmonious interactions.
- Aside from basic dog obedience training, a puppy will also learn to curb certain unfavourable practices such as pulling on a lead during walks, jumping at owners and other people, or excessive play biting (which can become painful for a person). These acts may appear cute in puppies, but when they become frequent practices and remain uncorrected until the puppy grows into adulthood, a dog could end up physically hurting people or destroying possessions.
- Socialisation with other dogs and people. When a puppy grows up with its mother and siblings, it will naturally learn correct behaviour through play and guidance. But if a puppy is separated from its family too early, it may fail to learn these valuable lessons. Being in the company of other dogs and people helps teach a puppy when play is becoming rough, or it can introduce the puppy to humans of different ages and energies.
- Ways to keep a puppy mentally stimulated. Dogs naturally require plenty of exercise and play to help improve their physical health, regulate their energy levels and stimulate their mental capacities. Dog owners can learn the most effective ideas to keep a puppy’s mind occupied and his body healthy.