Puppy Training Tips: Part 3
Here are some more puppy training tips coming at you by reader request. These are all tips that have to do with 2 dog households
***Again before we get into it, I want to state that I in no way am a professional dog trainer. The following steps and approaches I am going to be writing about are ways that have worked for me. I do not claim that they are the best or right way, just that they worked for me. So I want to pass along the information I have learned so that it can hopefully benefit someone else.***
Also remember patience is crucial. Your puppy will mess up, DO NOT GET MAD AT THEM, use the commands to help them learn.
Also remember the 3 rules to take into every training session:
1. Exercise The Puppy Before Any Training Begins
The puppy is less likely to listen to you if they are full of piss and vinegar and just ready to tear sh*t up. So burn off that initial crazy to bring them down to a more normal state of mind. I would exercise Thor and storm with no particular set of training attempts in mind, i.e. They would follow me everywhere I went in the house so I would walk up and down a few times or toss the ball down the hallway so they could chase it (if they didn’t bring it back that’s ok because I didn’t say a command I just threw the ball for the purpose of them to run after it). It doesn’t have to be intense, just a few minutes and then they were good to go.
2. Have A Separate Leash ONLY For Training
I bought a 15 foot leash and every time the dogs would have this leash attached to their collar they knew it was time to train. While that leash is on, there is no ‘play time’ only training time. Then once training time is done the leash comes off right away.
3. Finish On A High Note
EVERY SINGLE training session needs to end on a high note. No matter how bad a particular training session might be going, give the puppy a command they will get every time and when they succeed at it, give them lots of praise and end there. Don’t finish with you being angry or frustrated so they up on that emotion and have future sessions not go as good.
Tip # 7 - Get 2 From Same Litter or Wait A Year To Get The Second One
Before we got Thor we knew we were definitely going to have 2 dogs but didn't know what route was better to go? Should we get 1 dog and then wait for another one to become available or get 2 dogs right away?
Thor became available really quick so we pounced on the opportunity and got him. At his first vet appointment I asked the vet if there was a better route to go and he had some advice from his years of experience that was: Either get 2 dogs from the same litter right away or get 1 dog, wait a year or two and get another later on. He said this way there won't be any bad battles for dominance. If they are part of the same litter there will be a natural dominance being that they are siblings. So because we already had Thor we decided to wait a year and then get Storm.
Tip #8 - Set Up The Hierarchy and Always Stick To It
To prevent aggression or battling for dominance, once you set up the dog hierarchy you should always stick to it no matter what the situation is. Thor was first and older so he was first in line and then Storm came second. So it didn't make matter if it was feeding, getting treats, snacks, getting new bones, toys, or getting let outside, Thor always went first and Storm went second. They both knew the order and they have never once fought over food or who should get it first. Maybe it was just by chance or maybe it is just the way that they are but it has seemed to work.
Tip #9 - Waiting A Year To Get The Second Puppy Made It So Easy To Train The Second Puppy
By the time Storm came around Thor already had a great grip on the rules of the house and how to be a good dog. Now to get him to that point took a lot of time and effort. When we got Storm I was anticipating more of that same time and effort to get Storm up to speed but that was not the case. Because Thor already knew what to do, Storm immediately followed his lead, it was awesome. Less time doing the tedious repeating of training, she just did what her older brother did and in probably a third of the time already picked up the rules to follow. So if you are planning on having two dogs and are worried about the stress of training both of them at the same time, you could always give it some time and let the older dog help train the younger one.
These are just some of the tips that worked for me but let me know what you think down in the comments below. Have a great day!
- Papa Bird