April 1, 2022
By Jason Dommeyer
Nobody likes to be considered a jerk, but when it comes to a well-behaved dog, sometimes you have to accept the fact that nice guys finish last.
If it was as easy to simply train each dog through treats, everyone would do it, and there would be no dog trainers around. However, I can tell you from 20 years of experience, every dog, regardless of breed, requires some sort of discipline. This being said, I recommend some corrections early in the puppy process.
Now that does not mean to get your puppy home and start disciplining with a leash and choke chain right away. In fact, my theory is, let a puppy, be a puppy. What it does mean is establish some ground rules right away. Begin by making your young pup wear a collar right away. Most pups don't like them, but with time will slowly get used to it. This will enable you to put some sort of a leash or check cord on at an early age, which will enable you to start with some light leash corrections.
When the puppy gets used to your home environment, quickly begin to eliminate behaviors that may seem alright now, but as the pup grows, will turn into an unwanted behavior. Choose certain behaviors that you will not desire in the future, and set the tone right away. Let's discuss two of the more common unwanted behaviors: barking and jumping up.
Barking is something that nobody likes and it sounds so cute when they are young puppies. Keep in mind that this cute noise that a young pup makes quickly turns into that annoying bark that everyone hates.
The key to avoiding this habit is to address this early behavior with discipline. Respond to these early noises with something the pup does not like. A spray bottle with cold water is a great starting point. The key is consistency with this action to be effective.