Between the soft kisses, puppy breath, new toys, bedding, bowls, and more, you might not think of training as an important part of bringing home a new puppy. However, puppy school is a great way to begin your lives together. Training encourages bonding and helps put good behavior in place. And enrolling in puppy school when your pup is in the informative first months of life is key!
Bond With Your Puppy The bond between you and your puppy is an important and unique one. Your puppy depends upon YOU to teach him what you expect from him. And working together in a structured puppy class helps build trust and confidence as your pup learns about the world. You will also learn you how to effectively communicate with your pup and how to address common training and behavioral issues.
Teach Socialization Skills Classroom training is more than just obedience training – it provides important socialization skills in a controlled environment. The best time to start puppy school is when your pup is between 10 and 16 weeks of age. This is a critical time in your puppy’s life, when social learning is optimal and fears are minimal. Through structured off-leash playtime, pups learn how to interact and communicate with age-appropriate playmates of various sizes and play styles. As a result, he will learn essential bite inhibition (controlling mouth pressure). He will also meet friendly strangers with different physical attributes and mannerisms. And watching pups play is fun! You will learn how to read canine body language and assess appropriate play styles.
Get Expert Advice Does your puppy have an odd quirk you’re not sure how to handle? Or perhaps you’re frustrated by your pup’s frequent housebreaking mistakes? Internet research is overwhelming and the advice of well-meaning friends often falls short. Don’t run the risk of using antiquated and inappropriate training techniques on your puppy. Enroll in a puppy school class taught by a certified, such as a CPDT-KA, for access to expert advice and coaching. And be sure that the trainer you select uses only reward-based training techniques.
Exercise Mind and Body Exercise isn’t just physical, it’s also mental. And puppies need both! Structured puppy school is a great way to burn excess energy and reduce boredom-related behaviors such as destructive chewing. You’ll also learn how to keep your pup constructively occupied when he’s home alone.
Teach Your Puppy Manners Household manners and preventive training are an investment in your pup’s future. Life skills such as taking treats gently, relinquishing stolen objects, polite greetings and focus are a part of many puppy school programs. Teaching your puppy what’s expected of him early in life can prevent the development of bad habits. And yes, you CAN teach an old dog new tricks, it’s just more difficult once undesirable behaviors are in place.
In the past several decades, early puppy school has become more widely accepted among trainers, veterinarians and pet owners. And science has proven that early puppy socialization and training reduces the likelihood of behavioral issues later in life. So if you haven’t already done so, consider enrolling your new best friend in puppy school as soon as possible. You’ll be glad you did!
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