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Error-Free Puppy Raising™ Tips

by Rolan Tripp, DVM and Susan Tripp, MS

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Getting Started Week 34 - Hands Off!

The best training methods are "hands off."  In other words, use your brain not your brawn to teach your puppy. By showing your puppy with a food lure what positions you are teaching, your puppy must figure it out. Using a food lure with clear, consistent hand movements speed up your pup's learning process.

Think of teaching your puppy how to move into different positions on cue as a game or puzzle. Your puppy must learn what you want. Help your pup be successful. Be an excited, patient coach and teacher. Keep learning fun. 

Remember this rule of thumb:  To increase ANY wanted behaviors, make it worth your pup's while.

If you push your puppy into a position, your puppy learns that you will push him or her into position. Who is really doing the work?  Instead, if your puppy is learning how to earn a treat, your puppy is doing the work, and more likely to remember how to get that treat next time. 

Your puppy needs this mental exercise as much as you need a well-behaved canine in your human home.

If you want an attention-seeking behavior to disappear, ignore it completely. Do not even look at your pup. Turn your back and walk away. If the behavior does not gain a wanted consequence, it will not continue over time. But, if a behavior gets inconsistent attention - it will endure forever!!  Intermittent rewards are what create human gambling habits.  If you don't want a certain behavior - like begging, barking, scratching at the door - make sure you don't respond to it.  Wait for quiet calm behavior, and then give your puppy what he or she wants.

Parenting Tips™ for your puppy 

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