Monday, October 3, 2016

How to Train a Puppy Using Obedience Steps

Puppies are cute, rambunctious characters and it's easy to allow these fuzzy bundles of joy to get away with murder because they're so adorable. No matter how young and small the puppy, teaching it manners and basic obedience is critical to its development into a well-adjusted, well-behaved member of your family. There are steps you can take to teach your puppy basic obedience commands.



    Choose a choke chain appropriate to the size of your puppy. Choke collars come in varying chain strengths based on the length of the chain. The chain should fit around the dog's neck with at least six extra inches of chain. Puppy chains should be the lightest weight that is needed to control the puppy. Despite the name, you should never choke a dog with a choke collar. The noise of the chain and the ability to lightly tighten it are what provide the corrections necessary for training.


    Buy a six-foot leather leash. Leather leads are standard for dog training and provide a soft but sturdy tether to control your puppy.


    Place the choke collar over the dog's head. Loop the chain through one of the circles at the end. When you hold the chain in front of the dog's head, the extra length should be to the left and the collar will form a "P" as it slips over the dog's head.


    Attach the leash to the choke collar.


    Teach the dog to sit. Place the dog at your left side and give the command "Sit" while applying a sharp but quickly released snap to the choke collar with the lead. Don't choke the dog, just snap the chain; the noise is what gets the dog's attention. At the same time you are giving the command, gently push the puppy's rear end down into a sit. Reward the puppy with a treat when it sits. Don't be overly excited in delivering praise, as this will encourage the pup to stand or jump up. Continue the process in daily 20-minute training sessions until the puppy understands and will sit on command.


    Put the dog in a sit. Slowly move from the side of your dog, holding the leash in one hand with your free arm stretched out with your hand raised in a halt signal. Give the command "Stay." If the dog comes to you, quickly turn it around and put it back in a sit. Only move a very short distance in front of the dog at first and reward it when it doesn't move from its sit position. Gradually move farther away as the dog learns to stay in position on command at any distance.


    Tell your dog to "Come." Once the dog will sit and stay, place it in a sit stay. Lower your halt hand and sweep it toward your chest while giving the command "Come." This signal will release the dog from its stay and coax it to come to you. Don't be overly excited when the dog comes, quietly praise it while placing it immediately in a sit at your left side. "Come" is the easiest command for dogs to learn, as most will readily release from stay to come to their owner.


    Command your dog to lie down. Down is sometimes difficult to teach a dog, as it's a position where the dog will feel dominated. But after already training the puppy to sit, stay and come, the process should be easier. Snap the choke collar downward toward the ground while giving the command "Down." Gently push the dog's shoulders down while giving the command. Reward and praise it when it lies down. Promptly give the "Stay" command once the dog is down to get it to hold the position.

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