See some of our frequently asked questions below
1. Choose your ‘toilet’ spot in the garden
2. Take pup out to the spot every hour where possible as well as the following times:
· After eating/drinking
· After play
· When excited
· Immediately on waking
3. Monitor your pup – look for the signs that they need to wee.
4. Don’t react if accidents occur in the house, simply remove pup, clean it up and
deodorise the spot.
5. When in the act of urinating or defecating, use a word that you would like to become
the command for this act.
6. When pup has finished, praise and reward immediately. You need to be on the spot.
It is no good waiting indoors and rewarding pup when he gets back in.
7. If pup doesn’t go, after a short while, when you take him out bring him back in, but
don’t allow him to have free run of the house. Confine him, in a crate if you are using
one and try again 5 or 10 minutes later.
Puppy needs to learn that outside is where it should happen so try not to allow any
accidents in the house by following the above. Don’t expect pup to understand he should go
to toilet outside even if the door is open.
Not all dogs will learn at the same speed so be patient but if you follow the guidelines above
pup should be starting to get the idea within a few days.
Keep up the training at this time. Don’t think the job is done. Your pup needs support with
this for some time to come and it will be a while before he learns to ‘ask’ to go out.
Ask if you would like a toilet training diary
sheet to help with this
There are all sorts of foods on the market. Ever y one you speak to will have a different view. Raw feeding is high on the list but not everyone can accommodate this. Dried kibbles are plentiful, but which one should you choose? Some people choose to cook for their dog, balancing their diet themselves. Not something I could do. You do need to be sure to give your dog all the nutritional elements in the correct quantities.
You also need to be sure not to under feed or over feed your dog. Kibble feeds give you a guide on the packaging but this is just a guide remember. You can buy raw food ready packaged for the daily requirement of your dog.
Some brands of kibble are better than others. Some brands even use human grade food in the manufacturing process. If you have a kibble that has lots of colour in it, chances are it has lots of rubbish in it.
Going in the garden - As long as your garden is safe and enclosed with solid fences and is not used by other dogs, then your puppy can go out in the garden straight away, it will help to build their confidence get them used to their new home and you can start their toilet training.
Taking your puppy for the first walk is a huge milestone, but you’ll need to wait until they are fully covered by their vaccinations to be safe. This is usually a few weeks after their second jab in their primary vaccination course, but this does vary from vaccine to vaccine. It’s best to ask your vet when you take them in for their jabs as they’ll be able to give you exact timings.
We use positive reinforcement training (reward-based methods). This means, in a nutshell, when a dog does a behaviour we want, we reward him! It’s much like us going to work – our salary is our reward, and if we didn’t get that reward, we would not be as likely to go into the office each day. It is the same with dogs. We need to tell the dog when he has done something we like, in order to reinforce the behaviour. Behaviours that are reinforced and more likely to occur again. We do not use aversive or punitive methods or equipment.
Clicker training is one of the most modern, effective and enjoyable methods available. Based on sound scientific principles, the clicker enables you to communicate with your dog and train him or her to do practically anything you choose. Clicker training is simpler and quicker than more traditional training methods. It also builds your dog’s confidence as they learn that something that they do by their own choice can earn a click, and then a reward.
We would never force anyone to do something they do not want to do, and if you truly do not want to use the clicker we would suggest you use a ‘marker word’ such as “yes” which is not commonly used in everyday conversation, which can be used instead of the clicker. This is not as accurate as the clicker, and we do find that despite some people being unsure of the clicker to begin with, once they have got the hang of it and how it works they don’t look back!
No, not at all. The clicker is mainly used to introduce a new behaviour or exercise, but once the dog understands the behaviour and is performing it consistently the clicker can be phased out. We do recommend that you still use the clicker and rewards at least intermittently, however, so the dog doesn’t forget and continues to be keen to learn.
No absolutely not. We use food in our hands initially to make it easier for the dog to understand what we are asking of them. We very soon encourage you to remove the food lure and reward from a treat in a treat bag or pocket, and then show you when the right time is to introduce a verbal cue. Once your dog knows the verbal cue, there is no need to treat them every single time, although it is still important to reward them every so often.
In a class setting or when you are outside training, it is best to use high value treats such as cheese, chicken, liver cake or hot dog sausages, depending on your dog’s tastes. Whereas your dog may work for dry kibble when training at home, when you factor in more distractions (new people, dogs, smells etc) you will probably find the dry treats do not catch your dog’s attention because they are more aroused. Training treats should be small in size – about the size of your small finger nail. As a rule – use higher value treats for more ‘difficult’ training exercises. So for example, save your highest value treats for recall and loose lead walking training!
First thing in the morning when the dog is hungry, you will find he/she is more responsive