Getting a new puppy makes for a fun and interesting time. You probably went to a breeder or a pet store or maybe just saw an ad on the Internet or the in newspaper for puppies and decided to just check it out. Before you knew it, those little eyes and fluffy puppy fur had your heart melting and you were headed home with him or her in your arms. If you are like most new pet owners, you have had visions of playing fetch with your dog, of watching him frolic at the lake and of cuddling up on cold nights.
However, you probably failed to realize that the behaviours you dream of in a dog do not come naturally. In fact, the more natural behaviours for most puppies include lovely little things like chewing up your favourite shoes, barking every second of the day, and peeing wherever they are when the mood strikes them. These behaviours might seem cute at first or even manageable but if left unchecked they can lead to a very bad adult dog.
The problem with puppies that are not trained is that they grow into untrained dogs. An untrained dog can be a nuisance. All of that cute little yipping can quickly become loud barking that keeps you and your neighbours up for nights on end.
The little teeth marks in your shoes can turn into destroyed furniture and a destroyed home before you know it.
Untrained dogs can also be very dangerous. All dogs can bite. It is in their nature to defend with everything they have, including their teeth. You have to teach your dog not to use their teeth so that no one winds up hurt, at least not when they are playing with them. While we all expect our dog to protect us in a worst-case scenario situation, you should train your dog to be non-confrontational. Dogs that pose a danger to the community are at risk of being put down.
In addition dogs that are problematic for any of the reasons listed above often wind up homeless. People grow tired of dogs that never grow up, and then they take those dogs to the pound. We all know how sad life can be for a pound dog and the end that many of those dogs meet. If you really love your new puppy and intent to have a long and happy life with it, train her. By training your dog you teach her how to live in your world and increase the likelihood that your life together will be long and happy for both of you.
Dogs have been domesticated around the world for more than 15,000 years. Because of this long term human companionship, the puppy that you adopt today needs you. Dogs are not truly able to live by themselves in the wild. They are not adapted to living outside and foraging for food. Indeed the dog you adopt today needs you and yearns to please you. That desire to please their master is the reason that dogs are so easily trainable.
The dogs that we have as pets have what is called social intelligence. This enables them to read your visual and verbal cues and adapt their behaviour to it. While each dog will train at a different pace and through different ways, nearly all domestic dogs are trainable.
Just like humans, dogs go through a series of cognitive development. Puppies, like babies, learn to interact with the world around them at around eight weeks of age. They will also mimic behaviours early in life, so if you have one well behaved dog your puppy can learn from it.
Whilst its not our preference to work with puppies under 6 months of age we highly recommend you conduct your research and find the best Puppy school and a qualified trainer that understands the needs of a young puppy and the developmental stages.