Your Complete Guide On How To Train Puppies


Like all animals, puppies learn from their mothers. But it is up to you to be the leader when you bring your puppy home and teach him what he needs to know in order for him to grow into an adult dog! We are here to help you with that step as we give you a comprehensive guide on how to train small dogs.

List of what we will learn about how to train small dogs:

1.    How to train 8-10 week old puppies

2.    How to train puppies at 10-12 weeks old

3.    How to train 3-4 month old puppies

4.    How to train 4-6 month old puppies

5.    How to train small dogs from 6 months to 1 year old

The complete guide on how to train

small dogs

First let's learn some simple basics about dog training in general.

1. Use Reward-Based Training!

Use reward-based training that uses high-value rewards such as foods and toys to encourage correct behavior from your puppy! This pose will help build trust between you and the puppy, trust you as a leader, motivate your puppy to work and learn, and instill a lasting positive experience for your puppy.

2. Be patient and persistent!

It's easy to get frustrated with the puppy training process. Puppies are young and still exploring the world, so they make mistakes. Communication with your puppy takes time, so don't expect him to learn on the first try!

3. Practice, practice, practice!

The saying “practice makes you perfect” is absolutely true when it comes to puppy training! You will need to schedule a few short training sessions each day to teach and practice their commands. With younger puppies, you may only be able to hold their attention for 5-10 minutes at a time, and about 10-15 minutes with older puppies.

How to train 8-10 week old puppies

During this stage of a puppy's life, he should learn the basics like his name, good manners in the house, giving some commands, and some early socialization.

1. Toilet training the puppy

Puppy potty training should start as soon as the puppy gets home! The best way to start potty training your puppy is to include a schedule teaching your puppy where to go in the right place!

If you're trying to figure out a potty training schedule as a general guideline, take your puppy's age in months and halve it to determine how long he can spend between breaks. For more information on potty training your puppy, visit our guide on potty training !

2. Basic Obedience Commands

Make basic obedience commands Sit and come at this point. These two will be some of the most useful commands in your arsenal that you will likely use every day for the rest of your puppy's life.

We recommend that you serve these commands while eating. Start with some of your puppy's food in your hand, let him sniff it, and start taking steps back away from him while you say "come" with your hand outstretched to pull him toward you. When he comes to you, treat him with "Good!" And the food!

Then, you can teach him how to sit by arching your hand with his food in it, over his nose and past the top of his head while you say "sit," and when his bottom touches the ground, again say "Good!" Give him food again!

Say "come" when the puppy is following you for food and bowls of water. Ask him to sit and even guide him to a sitting position and say the word “sit” before giving him food.

3. Socialization

Start socializing with your family and close friends first. Throughout his life, a puppy will encounter new people, so getting him used to them early on will help him associate these interactions in a positive way.

4. Teach the puppy his name

Name recognition is very important and will be the one thing you will definitely use for the rest of your puppy's life! When interacting with your puppy, say his name throughout the day and draw his attention to you as he says his name.

We love using food with this! Every time they look at you or come up to you, treat them with excitement and food! To help encourage eye contact, bring a piece of their food to your eyes, and reward them when they look at you!!

How to train puppies at 10-12 weeks old

At this point, you will begin to expand on puppy commands, socialization, and impulse control.

 1. Basic Obedience Commands

Offer more basic obedience commands such as leave and down. For these orders, you may want to take advantage of a high-value bonus to help teach them. For high-energy dogs, you can also start teaching them fetch and drop during play sessions! Check out our guide to basic obedience commands

2. Leash walking training

Insert your puppy's leash and harness if you haven't already at 8-10 weeks of age. These will be the two tools most used in your puppy's life when he's out and about with you. Let your puppy get used to his harnesses by allowing him to wear them around the house while he is being supervised. To help get your puppy to love his leash, visit our guide to leash training !

3. Socialization

Continue the socialization by introducing new people and allowing your puppy to meet quiet dogs after vaccination . In addition, start getting them used to common noises that they will hear in everyday situations like construction, traffic, garbage trucks, etc. by playing the recordings that you can find in the videos.

4. Impulse control

Practice impulse control by making your puppy wait for its food and bowl. Ask him to sit down before placing his bowls. Put his bowls down once he calms down and release him from sitting with a word like “Go” or “Okay!”

How to train 3-4 month old puppies

The puppy is growing rapidly and you can start working on more complex training routines using the commands they have learned!

Try to make the duration of the puppy's exercise work by holding their commands for a longer time, for example, sitting and staying for a long time, and also try to link some of the commands together! Here's a fun combination to try: Sit > Down > Stay > Come > Place. You can work on different combinations to keep the pup busy!

Start introducing your puppy to other new puppies after your puppy has received all his vaccinations !

How to train 4-6 month old puppies

At this point, the puppy should start working on his commands outside the home and in public, as well as continue to socialize!

Serve their orders by practicing them outside your home in your front or back yard. Bring your puppy to a new place, like a park, and train him with his commands and some command combinations.

Begin weaning your puppy off food treats at this point during his training by asking several commands first before offering a food reward, or by using praise or affection when they respond with the right behavior instead!

How to train small dogs from 6  months to 1 year old

Your puppy should have known all of his basic commands and had a solid foundation of toilet training and socialization. From now on, you will continue to work with your puppy to reinforce what he already knows!

 Keep reinforcing all the commands your puppy has learned and include what we call 3D training: distance, duration, and distractions for them! Provide more distance between you and the puppy during training, and have him keep commands for longer periods of time.

Maintain the structure at home! Your puppy is in his teens and can act out if left to his own devices. It is not uncommon for puppies to start chewing, gnawing, or other behaviors if their training and structure begins in the comfort of the home!

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