For most puppies (and adult dogs too), food can be a powerful motivator. That’s why we like to encourage the use of treats in the training process. Dogs of all ages are quick learners, and when training is done right, they can quickly learn to associate a desired behavior with their favorite yummy treat.
The concept is simple, but it takes time and practice to perfect the techniques. Basically, you want to say the command (“Sit” for example) and show the hand signal, and if the puppy’s behind touches the ground, he gets a treat. Don’t force his bottom down, but be patient. Eventually, he’ll sit, and when he does, give him a treat, pour on the praise, and show him the love. He’ll soon understand that “Sit” means he should sit, and when he does, he gets a reward.
A helpful tip is to be sure he’s hungry before the training session begins. He’ll be far more focused and more delighted by the treats if he didn’t just eat breakfast. So if you’re planning to have a training session, withhold food for a few hours at least so he’s hungry and focused on the job at hand.
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