What age should I start training my puppy?

Your puppy is learning 24/7 whether good or bad.  Your training should start the second you pick your puppy up from the breeder.  This course will tell you just how to do that.  What to do when you get home, and what items you should work on first.  In fact I recommend you looking through the course prior to picking up your puppy so that you will be prepared what to do from the start.

How long will it take to see results from the training?

Every puppy is unique, and so are you.  It will be an adjustment for you and for them.  The biggest item that I concentrate on is the relationship between you and the puppy.  Without that nothing else matters.  If that is strong and built on love and trust, they learn so fast!  Puppies are a sponge up until 16 weeks of ageingbut you can typically start seeing improvements in behavior within a few weeks of consistent training.

What training methods do you use in the course?

Our course emphasizes positive reinforcement techniques, using rewards like treats and praise to encourage desired behaviors. I focus on capturing behaviors not luring for them.  This makes the puppy work for you and not the food.

My puppy keeps biting. How can I stop this behavior?

Biting is normal puppy behavior, but it’s important to teach them bite inhibition. Goldens and labs are very mouthy puppies.  An easy trick to do is just have a stuffed toy, when they go to bite, the toy goes in their mouth.  You are redirecting their attention to the toy.  We do several excercises the first week to get the puppies used to our hands coming towards them.

How do I potty train my puppy?

Consistency is key to potty training. Take your puppy outside frequently, especially after eating or sleeping, and praise them when they go in the designated area. By giving to much freedom to early on will sabotage your efforts.  We have a full section on potty training in our course.

What if my puppy doesn’t listen to the cues?

Then there are to many distractions, or your reward is not strong enough.  I will often give the puppies a taste of what they are working for, and I know that it must be totally distraction free.  Even if the puppy knows what you are asking the environment can make it so they do not comply at all and it gets very frustration.  Set your puppy up for success from the start.

Can older dogs benefit from this training course?

While the course is designed for puppies, many of the principles can be applied to older dogs as well. It’s never too late to start training! It will take longer, and you must truly have the midset to totally start over.  That often is hard as your habits are formed.  If you are changing your environment, saying moving to somewhere new, you would have an advantage.  If you are getting a rescue or shelter dog, you also can use this.  You would just skip some of the early temperament exercises that the dog may be to big for.

How do I socialize my puppy with other dogs?

In our socialization section we go over this.  You must not introduce your puppy to random dogs if they do not have their shots yet.  They can easily catch something even though the other dog is not showing any symptoms.  I

My puppy is scared of loud noises. What should I do?

You need to determine if your puppy is truly scared of the noise or just startled.  Using sound cd’s or anyway you can recreate the sound is great.  This course has 15 built in common day sounds to help you desensitize your puppy by gradually exposing them to  at a low volume and rewarding calm behavior.

Can I train my puppy without using treats?

This is something I do not recommend.  Why do you not want to reward your puppy for doing well?  I hear because I don’t want to always have to give them a treat.  Why?  Are they not you companion, your friend, your partner in crime, don’t you give gifts to your closest companions.  I will never understand this comment from people.  What I recommend is actually taking a portion of their kibble (if that is what you are feeding) and use that for the rewards.  This way you are forced to reward them as it is their daily allowance of food.  For example let us say your puppy gets 2 cups a day of kibble.  You would feed him 1/3 cup 3 times a day and then you have a whole other cup for rewards.  This forces you to look for the good in your puppy as that is their daily allotment and you must give it to them.  If they are working on a very hard task, then a higher value treat will be necessary.

How do I prevent separation anxiety in my puppy?

Gradually acclimate your puppy to being alone by leaving them alone for short periods and gradually increasing the duration. Provide plenty of toys and mental stimulation to keep them occupied. This is hard in todays everyone works from home society, as our puppies get used to us being there.  Also Goldens and Labs are such social animals that they get very attached right away.  Knowing this ahead of time, you must have it in your mind to work on from the day you bring them home.

Should I crate train my puppy?

Crate training can be a useful tool for housebreaking and providing a safe space for your puppy. However, it’s essential to use the crate properly and never use it as punishment. Crate training matters for a couple reasons.  If you plan on grooming your pet, they may be left in a crate while waiting their turn.  Also if they have to go to the vet and stay over, or for a surgery the vet will more than likely keep them in the crate.  I feel it is better for you to teach them to somewhat tolerate the crate at home, instead of them getting stressed out at a vet or groomer.

My puppy keeps jumping on people. How do I stop this behavior?

Puppies will jump no matter what.  Even if you work on the items in our course which teaches you how to combat the jumping…they are still going to try.  Jumping is something that only will be learned through repetition and association.  When guests come over, you mus handle the situation and show them how to act.  Practice, patience, and consistency are the key to teaching the no jumping.

How much exercise does my puppy need?

Puppies have lots of energy and need regular exercise to stay healthy and happy. I find that puppies get more tired from mental work than physical.  Game puzzles, socialization outings, and working on training tires them very quickly.  In fact the process of sleeping after working a new learning cue, helps them retain more.  The walks are more important for your relationship than tiring them out.  I personally find walks do the opposite.  Think about it…they are on heightened alert with all the smells and distractions, then you want to go put them to bed?  You have just amped them up.  Physical excercise should start with a mental excercise (such as a puzzle) then a short walk, then working on a few cues.

Should I enroll my puppy in obedience classes in addition to this course?

In my opinion NO!  First of all if you follow this course, your puppy will be far beyond what any class would teach.  If you are thinking for socialization, I say NO again.  You are putting your puppy in an uncontrolled environment.  You have no control of what other types of dogs or puppies will show up, how your puppy will relate, and you leave it to open for disaster.  What better place to train your puppy but in your own home where you can control all the variables.  Obedience classes can be a great complement to online training, providing opportunities for socialization and practicing skills in a group setting. However, our course is designed to provide comprehensive training that you can do at home.

How do I maintain my puppy’s training as they grow older?

Consistency is key to maintaining your puppy’s training. Continue practicing cues regularly and reinforce good behavior with praise and rewards. Regular training sessions can help prevent regression and keep your puppy’s skills sharp. Always be talking to your puppy.  The training is based upon “I do this, you do that” the way a puppy learns.  Being instructional will make all the difference.  Remember your puppy will not know how to act unless you teach them!