The day you adopt a new puppy to add to your family is filled with joy, snuggles, and maybe an occasional accident in your home. A puppy needs love and training to be a well-mannered and healthy adult dog. Just because your pup is young, it doesn’t mean it is too soon to start training. Several essential behaviors and tricks, taught early, can help keep your puppy safe and healthy for the remainder of its life. Below, let’s look at some essential behaviors to start teaching your pup from day one.
Although it may sound simple enough, teaching your dog the “watch” command can be a lifesaver. This command is easy to learn and even easier to teach. But, the trick intends to get your dog to focus their attention on you. If your dog focuses on a dangerous endeavor, a simple “watch” from its owner can redirect that attention. Many dogs can learn “watch” in just a few short repetitions but retain the behavior for their lives.
Luckily, the “sit” command is a standard, and most dog owners will begin teaching this behavior from early on. At our Perrysburg dog training classes, we like our new pup owners to be comfortable with the “sit” command so they can learn the basics about dog training. Sitting on command can help you calm an excited dog or teach your dog good manners when meeting other people or dogs. Plus, “sit” is the perfect way to lead into a “sit-stay” command, which helps center your dog and keep it calm when your attention directs you elsewhere. Many advanced tricks and behaviors will start with a simple “sit.”
Any curious puppy will rush to investigate fallen food or movement from a new animal friend. But what happens when the food is dangerous, or when the new friend isn’t so friendly? Teaching your dog the “leave it” command is the perfect way to tell your dog to stop what it is doing and pause for further instruction. The “leave it” command is stern and forceful, but it can sometimes make the difference between life and death for your pup. The command is simple to teach and easy for even young puppies to learn.
In theory, the “come” command sounds like it should be relatively simple, but in practice, come can be challenging for your new puppy to learn. While usually, your pup is happy to come bounding into your arms, telling your dog to come when it is playing with friends can be difficult. Start training this command early in your puppy to have plenty of time to learn there is an excellent reward for coming to their owner. Teaching your dog “come” can help keep a good-mannered dog or even help save your pup from running out into traffic. Simple but effective, the “come” command should be a staple for any new pet parent.