Puppy Training – Commands

Teaching your puppy new commands is fun but can also sometimes be frustrating for both of you. Your puppy will be keen to please you and therefore  annoyed if she can’t understand what you want her to do.

Puppies that are food motivated are easier to train.  Pip, our eating machine, will do anything for a tasty treat so we have no problem in that department.

Don’t believe what you read on the internet when someone says a particular command is ‘easy’ or ‘hard’ to teach.  This will depend on you and the puppy and to some extent the luck of her spontaneously displaying the behaviour you want or quickly understanding in the training session.

We found short training sessions of 5 minutes or so worked well.  If it got frustrating this was usually down to human error and Pip was more exasperated than us. In this case we returned to practice commands she was good at to end the session on a positive note.

All of the training is based on rewarding the puppy for the correct behaviour based on the book The Perfect Puppy. We taught Pip to respond to a clicker and target to aid some of the training but only used these from time to time.

This is a list of commands with approximate age Pip started learning and the age she could do them reasonably reliably. We are very grateful that training was started by our breeder before she came home.  Links are included where we have a post about how we did!

Command Training Started Puppy Competent
Sit Breeder 7 weeks
Sit (to be picked up) Breeder In progress (human failure)
Whistle Feeding Breeder 7 weeks
Down 7 weeks 8 weeks
Go Wee 7 weeks In progress
Go Poo 7 weeks In progress
Five (give me five) 7 weeks 8 weeks
Ten (give me ten) 7 weeks 8 weeks
Go Home (Into crate) 7 weeks 9 weeks
Stand 8 weeks In progress (human failure)
Jump (Over a small hurdle) 8 weeks 8 weeks
Roll (over) 8 weeks In progress
Tall (stand on back legs) 8 weeks 8 weeks
Tunnel(run through one) 9 weeks 9 weeks
Spin 9 weeks In progress
No (Don’t do that) 10 weeks In progress

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