We discussed socialization and how puppies have a short window were it is critical to socialize them to new things so they don't become afraid of them as adults. We will focus A LOT on environmental socialization and preventing fears throughout class. Often times people get hung up on making sure their puppy is well-socialized with other dogs and up overdoing this socialization and end up neglecting environmental socialization. We actaully see far more problems arise with puppies that have been over-socialized with other dogs.
Your goal is to expose them to new things, at a distance where your puppy can still focus on you when requested. Your puppy should have a neutral or positive experience with the stimulus. Click the photo below to view and print your Puppy Socialization Chart. Please also be sure to read the article, Socialization Beyond the Dog Park.
Freak on a Leash
We learned the dangers and fallout from allowing leash greetings. As a general rule to prevent leash reactivity and other issues, teach your puppy that leashes mean it's time to pay attention to you, not time to scout other dogs to play with. Click the photo to read more about Freak on a Leash.
We also watched a video about Barrier Reactivity and learned how fences, leashes, and even windows are barriers which can evoke barrier reactivity. Click the fence fighting photo to re-watch that video.
Loose Leash Walking
We discussed multiple ways to positively teach our dogs to walk on a loose leash, including humane tools such as the head collar. We also watched a heeling video.
Specifically, we talked about how there are three ways to train our dogs to heel.
- We can punish them when they get out of heel position
- Dogs will continue to "test" the boundaries all their lives, so punishment will need to continue in some capacity their whole lives.
- We can use positive training (use a lot of luring and click/reward on walks)
- Dogs will need life-long maintenance because the smells on the ground will always be more rewarding than heeling
- We can use a tool like a headcollar
- After tools are initially trained, they are the easiest to maintain
You can begin working on the "Introduction to the Nose Loop" section as shown in the video this week. Click HERE to view and print the full Headcollar Training Plan.
We talked about the required supplies for class, what we will use them for, and where to find them. Click the photo to see your Required Puppy Supply List.
As a reminder, we require a specific harness for this class, NO EXCEPTIONS (see required supply list for details). Additionally, we do NOT allow harnesses that clip over the shoulders used on the property (due to safety), including PugLife and step in harness, to give a couple examples. Click for details & photos.
We talked about punishment. PLEASE talk to me before introducing an aversive to your puppy. I want to have a conversation with you about it - JUDGEMENT FREE - so that we can discuss the potential fallout and how to minimize it.
We covered house training and management practices to teach our puppies where to go potty and what is acceptable to chew on. Click the photo to read the article on Housetraining.
We discussed littermate syndrome and the importance of training our puppies away from any dog housemates they may have. Click the photo to read more about Littermate Syndrome.
Treat Holding & Effective Luring
Practice holding a treat as shown in this video and luring your dog.
When you hold the treat as shown in the video, you have TONS of control over your dog's head and it will be FAR easier to get them into the positions you'd like them to be in and to get them to do what you'd like them to do.
Plus, cookie fingers HURT! Getting a puppy tooth in the side of your finger nail is awful! Using the method show in the video will help greatly in that respect.
Kongs are great tools for lots of things! They can be used as a fun way to feed your dog, they can be used as a tool when crate-training, and they can be used as a tool when you just need 5 minutes of peace - we've all been there! Click the photo to see TONS of different recipes to try!
Looking for a way to keep your puppy entertained and busy? Puzzle feeders are a great option! They exercise your puppy's brain which will exhaust them much quicker than physical exercise. Linked below are a few of my favorite puzzle feeders!