Your training program should start as early as possible, while your puppy has a natural capacity for learning. It’s important for your puppy’s safety to learn a few basic commands – such as sit, stay, and down. From the very beginning, a puppy should be patiently taught to obey your commands. Always use the same words for the same commands and start off with very short, three to five-minute training sessions.
Teaching your puppy “down”
- Once you have taught your puppy to sit, you can start teaching the “down” command.
- With a treat in your right hand, give your puppy the “sit” command. Once he’s sitting, lower the treat toward the ground slowly enough for him to follow its path. The moment he has his hindquarters and elbows on the ground, reward him with the treat.
- Once your puppy understands the motion he is to perform, pair the word “down” with his action, and then praise and reward him each time he does it.
Teaching your puppy to “sit"
- Holding the treat slightly in front of your puppy’s nose, slowly raise it in an upward arc to lure your puppy into the sit position.
- The moment your puppy sits, reward him with the treat.
- Once he understands the motion he is to perform, pair the word “sit” with his action. Then praise and reward him immediately each time he does it.
- Many repetitions will be necessary for your puppy to learn to associate the word “sit” with the sit action, so be patient.
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