Sunday, July 26, 2009

The Name Game and Staying Safe

As puppies get ready to go to their new homes it is important to remember that puppy must always be kept in a safe environment. Crates are an excellent way to keep puppies safe while you are unable to watch them. It is kind of like having a toddler in that you must think of things that puppy may get into and protect them. Baby gates are another good solution to keeping young pups safe. Puppy will come to understand that by your keeping him safe he then develops trust in you. Life-long connections with your puppy develop at this stage.

One important aspect of keeping puppy safe is making the connection with their name and learning that when you call them and they come to you wonderful things happen. For those pups that have their real names now we have started imprinting that. At this age puppies are underfoot and want to follow and be with you. We take them individually for walks in the yard and let them get a bit ahead or behind us and call their name and the instant they turn and look at us and start to come toward us we reward them with excited praise and when they get to us they get a tasty treat. It doesn't take long for puppy to learn that his new name is associated with wonderful things (you and a treat). That is why we NEVER call a puppy to us and punish or scold them. We only use positive reinforcement in training puppies. It is so easy to train a solid recall at this age and can save the life of your puppy in the future.

These pups are very comfortable napping in a crate.

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