The Importance of Consistency

Puppies are cute and adorable, let’s face it who doesn’t love puppies! But raising a well behaved puppy is a lot of hard work, and as you have a short period of time before your cute puppy becomes an unruly teenager, you need to lay down the ground rules fast.

Make it easy on yourself as well as your puppy, and don’t allow any behavior from your puppy that you won’t allow once he has grown into an adult dog. Decide what the household rules are going to be, and be consistent and persistent.  It takes much longer for your pup to learn the rules then you would think,  and even though you will need to repeat your self over and over again, make sure you redirect your pup when he is doing something wrong, and always let him know when he is doing something right.

It is going to be much easier to follow through with your puppy training if you have a plan. Decide what is acceptable behavior and what isn’t, and then follow through. If he is chewing on a shoe, get it from him and encourage him to chew or play with his own toy. When he changes his focus and starts playing/chewing on an appropriate toy make sure you let him know that he is doing the right thing by praising him, petting him or even giving him a treat. If you redirect him to the correct chew toy but don’t acknowledge it in some way, it will take way longer for him to know what you want/expect from him. So make it clear when he is doing something right.  Every time he makes the right  choice-tell him. Every time he makes a wrong choice- redirect and then praise him.

It is really easy to get frustrated and give up on the redirection and reward, but if you stick with your plan you will start seeing the benefit of you consistency and persistence. And remember, if your pup is being especially trying, give yourself and your pup a break and let him unwind in his crate. Puppies need a lot of sleep and just like human babies they can get over stimulated, so when your pup is getting  really worked up give him some down time by calmly putting him in his crate. It is very important that he is put in his crate as an opportunity for some quiet time, and not as a punishment for misbehavior.

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