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Training a Well-Behaved Puppy

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Puppies can bring so much joy to your life. (I mean, have you seen the internet?) But, adopting a puppy from a shelter or training your new fur-baby isn't always easy.

Consistent training is key, and making a plan of action helps. We'll help you with two of the biggest habits to break: biting and jumping.

BITING

It's not fun when your puppy starts to discover his teeth - they're sharp and troublesome! There will most likely be times in a dog's adult life when he has the inclination to bite as well - from fear or his tail getting stepped on. Knowing this, it's important to teach your puppy not to bite down hard.

Here are three helpful steps from Animal Wellness magazine:

  1. Your pup is biting on your hand but it doesn't hurt. This is fine. He is learning how to have a soft mouth. However, the second that bite turns "hard," you are called to action.
  2. Loudly say the word "yikes" and remove your hand. That word is great as it is easy to remember, easy to say, and usually stops the puppy.
  3. Immediately put the flat of your palm directly in front of his muzzle; you should find that he'll lick it. At that time, you can use the word "gentle." Usually a dog will lick your palm as soon as it is presented to him, after the "yikes."
  4. If he continues to bite at your hands, tether him on a small house leash away from you for a timeout. This gives him a moment apart to cool down.

**It is very important that your puppy gets enough sleep. Most pups who are riled up and nipping will do much better after a nap. Young pups need to be given a nap just like human babies, so it is up to you.

JUMPING

The best way to train a puppy not to jump is to teach an alternative behavior. Instead of telling him "no" when he jumps, teach him what you would prefer he do and reward him.

When your pup jumps up, take a step back from him. Then, ask him to sit. Hopefully he has already learned this word and will follow suit (otherwise teach it separately).

Keeping things positive, patient, and consistent is the best approach! Let us know if you need any more tips and we will do our best to help you.