Puppy Training 101: A Guide for New Dog Owners

White Pomeranian puppy laying on wooden floor

Welcoming a new puppy into your home can be an exciting experience, but it also comes with great responsibility. Just like a human baby, your new furry friend needs to be taught how to behave properly. Proper training helps your dog to behave well and be healthy and happy, and early puppy training lays the foundation for a well-behaved and obedient dog. In this article, we will provide you with a guide on how you can train your new pup effectively.

Start Early

While it’s never too late to train a dog, starting early puts you in a much better position to achieve success with your pup. Training can begin when your puppy is between 8-12 weeks old. During this period, puppies are most receptive to learning new things, such as responding to their name and potty training. It is also easier to correct undesirable behavior at this age.

brown and white puppy in wire crate with blue towelConsistency Is Key

Consistent training is crucial during puppyhood. Establish routines such as regular feeding times, potty breaks, and playtime. Routines make it easier for your pup to understand what is expected of them. Use the same tone of voice and hand gestures for every cue. Your pup will learn faster if they can anticipate what you’re going to say and do.

Giving your puppy too much space too early is the mistake most new puppy parents make, especially during house training. Learn about how to set up a long-term confinement area for your new family member here.

Positive Reinforcement

Dogs are social creatures, and they crave interaction with their owners. Use positive reinforcement to motivate your pup during training. Give your puppy plenty of praise, treats, and cuddles when they respond correctly to a cue! This encourages good behavior, and your pup will learn more effectively when they feel loved and secure. Interested in learning how to best use rewards as training tools? We can show you through group puppy classes or private training sessions fun and effective ways of teaching your new companion.


Socialization is the process of introducing your puppy to people, other animals, and new environments. Well-socialized dogs are calm, well-behaved, and happy. Socializing teaches your pup how to handle novel situations without getting anxious or fearful. An important component of socialization is learning to read your puppy’s body language and not moving past their comfort level. Properly socialized dogs are less likely to develop behavioral problems in the future. Group puppy classes such as our Great Start Puppy or Pups Around Town classes are a fantastic tool to socialize your pup under the eye of a great trainer.

Seek Professional Help

In some cases, training your pup on your own may not work, especially if your dog has developed undesirable behavior. You might need to seek professional help. The best dog trainers are experienced in dealing with dog behavior problems, and a professional trainer can give guidance on how to manage and train your puppy effectively.

Imagine having a well-behaved dog that listens to you without yelling or punishment. We believe that training should be easy, fun, and rewarding for both you and your dog. Positive reinforcement techniques are gentle and effective, and proper training helps you communicate effectively with your pup, promoting obedience and good behavior. With positive reinforcement training, we can help your dog learn the behaviors you want them to exhibit in a way that is fun and rewarding for both of you!

Training your new pup is a huge responsibility, but it’s also a great opportunity to bond with your furry companion. By following a consistent routine, being patient, and implementing positive reinforcement, you can successfully train your new puppy. Remember that dogs are also social creatures that need opportunities to explore the world around them, and don’t hesitate to seek professional guidance if needed. With patience, persistence, and love, your pup will grow into a well-behaved and happy dog.

Freak On A Leash employs some of the best dog trainers in the Hampton Roads area. Through our rewards-based puppy classes or private in-home training, we can set your puppy up for success. Read more about our puppy training here or contact us today for a free phone consultation. We can help make life easier with your dog!

We can help bring out the best in your dog!

Freak On A Leash dog trainers are experts in using positive reinforcement techniques. Let us help bring calm into your chaos.