If you're like most people around a new dog, you probably think your Labrador puppy is the cutest thing on the planet. You bought them a comfy bed and some lovely toys and you are so excited about your new little friend. But, every time you leave the room or put your puppy into their crate, they start crying and whining. And if you leave your Labrador pup alone for too long, the whole house is suddenly filled with yowling, a high-pitched noise that makes you think your little one is in desperate pain. After a few days of this, you are probably at your wits' end with how to train your Lab puppy to stop whining.
Puppies whine as part of a deep-seated survival instinct. In the wild, a puppy left on their own is in serious danger, so they will whine to bring the adults in the pack back to them. Your new puppy has been whisked away from their safe place to come live with you. For the first few days, a puppy will whine because they don't feel quite safe in their new environment. Keeping your puppy comfortable will cut back on whining in general. After a week or so, if your puppy is still whining, they have probably learned that a good whine fest will get them what they want, be it food, cuddles, or your return to the room. Training your Labrador puppy not to whine is not too difficult if you are consistent and teach them that staying quiet is more likely to get them what they want.
For whining, it is best to use a clicker to mark the behavior you want. You will first need to clicker train your pup by associating the sound of the clicker with a tasty treat. Then, you can use clicking as a way to reinforce the behavior you want which, in this case, is staying quiet. You will also need to choose a reward to use to tell your Labrador puppy they've done a good thing. Puppies are often food-driven, making treats a good option, but your pup may prefer physical affection or a toy instead.