Once a puppy is aged between 9 and 12 weeks old, you can start to think about introducing him to formal obedience training in a classroom situation. In order to protect the health of you dog, as well as the others in the class, most places require that all pups have at least 2 vaccinations. A kennel cough vaccination and a negative stool sample usually need to be done before classes begin.
Training your puppy to behave in a way that makes them a perfect house pet should begin the moment you bring them into the home. This does not mean submitting him to intense sessions, but rather short 5-10 minute sessions that can be built upon as he begins to grow and learn.
Puppies start to learn from the moment they are born. The scale of their early world is small, and is often confined to a fairly tiny environment. They learn valuable lessons from their mother, as well as from their littermates. When they are weaned and sent into the big wide world, they will have learned a lot from those early experiences. If the pup was born under the watchful eye of a reputable breeder, there is a better than average chance that a solid foundation will have been set for future learning. This, more than any other, is perhaps the best reason to buy from a breeder with a proven track record.
There are a number of factors to consider with learning:
Socialization – Your pup is going to be introduced to all kinds of new things – people, animals, sounds, situations, etc. – and needs to learn how to properly react to them all.
Innate personality – Every person and animal is born with a specific type of personality.
Environment – The most positive experiences occur in an enriched environment.
In-home training – This is essentially teaching the rules of your home, including where to eat and sleep, which areas of the home are a no go, and a host of others.
Training classes – These are sessions that are help outside of the home in a classroom setting. This helps the puppy learn to be obedient when surrounded with distractions.
Serendipity – The things that the puppy learns on his own in the early stages are crucial.
By reading this article, you are taking the time to learn, but what is your dog up to as you do this? Puppies quickly learn that they can make their own decisions when you are distracted. Not all of those choices will be good ones.
The answer to the question of when to start training is RIGHT NOW!!