Puppy Training for Billy, the Fox Red Labrador
Posted March 5th, 2014, under Blog
Puppy Training 101
Please allow me to introduce to you Billy, the Red Fox Labrador Retriever puppy. I will be tracking Billy’s puppy training for the next four weeks. Billy is 9 weeks old and just about the cutest little guy I have ever worked with. I hope these posts will provide you with some insight into the world of puppy training, how much fun it can be, but also how much work it can be. My goal is to educate dog owners in all things canine so that we can eliminate dogs being owner – surrendered to the local shelters.
I have had Billy for 9 days now. To begin his puppy training we are currently working on his crate training, learning to potty outdoors promptly, and to sleep through the night. Billy is a little bit younger than I like to remove a dog from the mother however certain circumstances presented that we needed to do this. In a normal situation I recommend that you allow your puppy to stay with the mother until they are as close to 12 weeks as you can. If you are in a rescue situation where the mother is not present you should follow the same steps that I am doing with Billy. A dog’s prime social development is taught by the mother or other older pack members between the ages of 8 and 12 weeks. If your puppy must be separated from it’s mother prior to 12 weeks it is ideal to schedule some socialization play dates with older dogs that are fully vaccinated and well-socialized. This will aid in your puppy learning to speak dog body language. We can teach many things in puppy training but unfortunately we cannot teach Fido how to hold his ears to say he heard something. The first two days that Billy was with me his socialization was limited to our family and a dedicated space in our yard. I do this to limit the stress of the changing environment as well as ensuring that he is healthy before introducing other dogs. On day 3 Billy was introduced to Blackjack, my 1 1/2 year old Giant Schnauzer. They have already become fast friends and look forward to their play dates each day.
Day by Day – The life of a puppy in training
Day 1-3 Puppy Training: On these days I concentrated on introducing Billy to crate training and learning to hear and respond to the Go Potty command. Additionally he was introduced to all of the members of our family as well as to our Giant Schnauzer Blackjack. I began working on developing a good feeding and watering schedule which will aid in getting Billy housetrained.
Day 4-6 Puppy Training: I began expanding Billy’s freedom in these days. He began responding better to the “Go Potty” command and seems to be emptying his bladder when he is outside with me. During this early phase of potty training it is very important to go outside with your puppy after he has food or water to ensure that he eliminates whatever he took in.
Day 7-9 Puppy Training: Billy has begun meeting some of the other dogs that I am working with. It is important to socialize your puppy with fully vaccinated older dogs between the ages of 8-12 weeks. This is the prime social development age for dogs which means they are learning all of their body language that we, as humans, cannot teach. Billy has been playing with Blackjack, my Giant Schnauzer, Clyde, a four year old Bassett Hound, and Lola and Oops, 3 month old Goldendoodle puppies. Billy is learning quite a bit about canine body language and how to interact with other dogs.
As I progress with Billy’s training we will be working on introducing the Basic Commands (sit, down, stay, come, and heel) as well as correcting his house manners. I will be training Billy for the next four weeks. I hope you enjoy watching his progress and seeing how much more fun your puppy can be if you prepare him for a lifetime of love, obedience, and good manners.