Training your new puppy


I use odoban to cover up accidents inside the house. Odoban can be purchased at Home Depot or Amazon.

Please don't give your trust away to the new puppy, make the puppy earn your trust. Expect the new puppy to have an accident or two & chew on things he/she shouldn't, spend as much time as possible with your puppy learning their behavior & letting them know what is acceptable & what is not. If you can't supervise the new puppy, please put the puppy in the crate until you can be with him/her.

Please don't allow your new puppy to jump up on you, this puppy will grow into a dog that will think it is ok to jump up on you. This may be fun with a puppy, but won't be fun with an 60-90 lb dog. I can not say this enough, puppies love to jump up for your attention, I do not allow them to jump on me so don't allow them to jump on you or children. Negative or good, attention is attention to the new puppy, so it is best to establish some rules right away. Your puppy is ready to learn now and will soak everything up like a sponge, some common things that are easy to teach are place sit, down, roll over, stay & walking on a leash. Treats can be used, but please keep them to a minimum as the puppy will easily get accustomed to treats and may prefer that to their food.

Consistency is key when potty training your new puppy.  Get some small treats. It's fun to reward our dogs with big treats, but for this exercise we are using small, semi-soft treats that you can break in half. Take a couple of treats and break them in half, let your dog see & smell them. Ask your dog, wanna go outside, then once you are outside say "POTTY POTTY POTTY" over & over (they need to learn the action that goes with the word, potty). Use your leash for this training exercise, and lead your dog into a small part of the yard that you want him/her to use every single time. If the puppy goes potty, WHILE the puppy is going, tell him/her how awesome he or she is doing! "GOOD DOG GO POTTY!" Then give him/her the treats RIGHT AWAY, praise the puppy and play for a few minutes.

If the puppy doesn't go potty, take the puppy back in and try again in 10-15 minutes. Keep trying until he/she goes, and when he/she does, act like it's the best thing in the entire world. Let your dog know he or she is doing something right.

Every time your dog goes potty outside, give a treat. As the puppy gets used to going, continue praising but decrease the amount of treats you're giving. Some dogs will do well without the treats, others will need at least one treat for a while - and lots of praise!

A puppy at this age, plays hard and sleeps hard, so it is best to try to tire the puppy out before you put them in the crate. I would carry the puppy to the crate, saying night night, place the puppy in the crate, close the door and give a tiny piece of a treat. I would recommend putting a radio or a fan next to the crate to help drown out the everyday noises in your home. This works and they are already used to music playing 24/7. Remember your puppy wants to be with you more than anything, and if the puppy can hear you moving around, then he/she is more likely to cry. At some point when your puppy gets too large to carry, then lure the puppy to the crate with a treat, let the puppy go into the crate, then give the treat, after you do this a couple times, then have the puppy turn around & face you for the treat, and ultimately you will want the dog to turn around face you & then sit for the treat.

The first few nights I recommend you place the crate beside your bed so that the puppy can hear & smell you. I would use a towel inside the crate (after your puppy shows that it is not going to shred it's bedding, then you can place a more comfy bed inside the crate). A chew toy is usually the best thing to place inside the crate. Normally the puppy will not soil the sleeping area, they will see the crate as their den (safe haven) & will enjoy their crate. I recommend purchasing the larger crate & using the divider, just giving the puppy room enough to stand, sit, turn around & lay down. If the crate area is too big, they will divide the crate with one side being their potty spot & one side the sleeping area. YOU DO NOT WANT THIS. If your puppy is going potty in their crate then you need to take the puppy out more often & adjust their eating and drinking schedule.

Click here to see the crate I recommend ~ Cost on $69.99

I use a towel or blanket that is your puppy's possession, do not allow the puppy to play with this towel or blanket, it is the work space. Place the blanket down, and training takes place on the blanket, whether it be sit, stay, down or retriever training. I teach this because there will be times that your dog is wet, if the dog knows this command, then you can lay the towel or blanket down & the dog will automatically lay on it. As your dog gets older, the dog will lay on anything you put down, I find this command works great on the boat or by the pool.

Kneel or sit next to the puppy, I have the puppy on my left side, place downward pressure on the puppy's back end & place your hand on the puppy's chest and say sit. Once your puppy does good with this, then stop putting your hand on the chest and gently pull the front legs down while still applying pressure to the back end with your arm, saying down and once the puppy is doing what you want ALWAYS release the pressure. If your puppy fights you, just start over and try again at another time or when the puppy is tired. Remember every time your puppy takes a big nap it is a brand new day, all is forgotten and you can start fresh.

Once your puppy is comfortable sitting by your side & laying down, then you can gently start to roll your dog over saying over. It is alot of fun, and this one is very exciting to them, so they may do it and then jump up and run around in excitement. :)

In my opinion is the hardest one to teach, but can be the most rewarding for you. Start with small distances, they have to know sit for this one. As your dog stays & doesn't break you can continue to back away saying stay. I have also used an ottoman or couch, by placing the puppy up higher it is more intimidating & they are more likely to stay. This takes a while to teach so have patience & be consistent. I have found the best way to teach this command is during mealtime, so have the puppy sit while you pour the food in his bowl, then I tap on the bowl to signal it's time for him/her to come. And say "good boy/girl".

Needs to be started right away, if your puppy is struggling with this then you can have the puppy follow a treat as you hold it in front of them, so have the puppy on your left with your left hand and the treat in front with your right hand. I do not like the retractable leashes because it teaches the dog to go ahead of you & gives too much freedom. (I do use the retractable leash on a dog that is already leash trained and we are in a place where the dog needs room for potty breaks or in a playful situation such as a park where you are wanting the let the dog play but can't because it has to be on a leash) BUT for training & everyday dog walks, I have a 6 ft leash & I have a 2 ft leash for taking the dog into stores. I am having great success with using a harness during leash training.

Lay the blanket/towel down, kneel or sit with the puppy on your left side, have the puppy to sit, show the puppy the toy, letting the puppy smell the toy saying Mark, then toss the toy just in front of the puppy, (you are holding the puppy with your left hand by the collar or your arm wrapped around the puppy) once you toss the toy, release the puppy by calling it's name, your puppy will likely take off, grab the toy & run back to you. Once the puppy grabs the toy, smile real big & say HERE, HERE, HERE, in your most excited voice, when the puppy brings the toy back to you, take the toy as quickly as possible and NEVER, I repeat NEVER let the puppy play with the chosen toy. This is a SPECIAL "working toy" and must not be played with. Put the toy up and make the puppy want it. The puppy will fall in love with this toy & will want it so bad, use this to your advantage, it will teach the puppy if it brings it back to you, it will get to retrieve it again. I use a toy with a string on the end so the puppy will have the toy & you can grab the string saying Give. Start with short distances & keep increasing distance as the puppy gets older. If your puppy doesn't bring it back to you, don't chase the puppy, I find ignoring the puppy works better because they will miss all the attention you give when he/she brings it back. So as soon as you can get the toy, put it away again. If you continue to have a problem, there is a 30 ft leash you can use and you can pull the dog back to you. You always want the dog to come back to you so make it a big deal when the dog does!! You can also use a hallway in your home where the puppy has no choice but to bring it back. This is very rewarding for you & your puppy/dog. Our first lab, Meg we had to buy a tennis racket so we could hit the ball further. Now they have the chuckit launcher that will give alot of distance.

Remember your puppy wants to please you so if you have a bad training experience, don't show anger, just stop & start over later. No puppies/dogs are ever trained in a day, it takes constant correction & the puppy/dog must recognize you as the pack leader for any of these commands to work.

Touching feet and toenails
Handling ears/checking inside of them
Touching and squeezing nose (gently)
Checking eyes/touching eyelids
Checking and feeling around mouth and gums
GENTLY rolling puppy over onto their back and rubbing their belly.
Baths, and water in general, and drying off with a towel
Wearing a cone (If you have access to one, it’s good to get them used to this early on in case it’s needed when they’re older)
Wrapping a paw or leg with an ace bandage
Being held in your lap
Being around a variety of “types” of people (i.e. tall men, deep voices, high pitched voices, beards)
Being around babies and children (ALWAYS supervised)
Being around variously dressed people (i.e. sunglasses, boots, hoods, etc.)
Being around other dogs, and differing breeds, small and large (again, ALWAYS supervised, and we should specify… around dogs YOU know. Be cautious of dog parks and strange dogs. There are health and safety concerns.)
Being around other kinds of animals (cats, rabbits, birds, etc.)
Walking on different floor surfaces (carpets, tiles, wood, etc.)
Standing on a scale (like in the vet’s office)
Hearing alarms and sirens, doorbells, fireworks, the vacuum cleaner, and other loud noises
Being around washing machines and dryers
Taking walks near parks, moving cars, and other distracting and busy atmospheres
Riding in the car
Visiting as many different dog friendly places (banks drive thru, parks, shopping centers, etc.)