Raising a puppy can be demanding, depending on any number of factors including breed, temperament, and the level of training or other environmental factors that may have had an impact on your puppy before he came home with you. It can be difficult to manage regular obedience training along with regulating feeding schedules, bathroom breaks, and walks with that seemingly unlimited puppy energy that comes along with it. It doesn’t have to be so difficult, provided you know the appropriate tips and tricks to make it just a little more manageable.
Teaching your puppy to ask for permission for things like food, toys, walks, or going outside can give them a great foundation to later obedience commands, as well as increase the bond between you and the level of focus he offers when you want to ask something of him. This practice relies on the notion that “nothing in life is free”, and that earning these things is important, even if it’s with a simple obedience command as payment.
Asking for permission can consist of several different things. Some people choose to teach their puppy to ring a bell when nature calls, or to bark at the door if going for a walk is in the cards. But an easier method to utilize is simply using the basic obedience commands that your puppy will hopefully use and remember through puppyhood and well into adulthood. Asking for something as simple as a ‘sit’ or a ‘down’ before your puppy can get what he wants will help to teach him that he does not get things simply because he wants them. You are the provider of these good things and being able to show you that he is obedient and ready to receive what he wants with polite manners can mean the difference between a dog that steals food or bolts out the door as soon as it opens and a dog who is patient and waits for your say-so. Your puppy should begin this training as soon as possible and should pick up on the practice in no more than two to three weeks.
There are a few things that may motivate your puppy, though usually the reward should be what the puppy is asking for, such as his meal, going outside, or a toy. However, you may choose to use other helper items before weaning off of them.
Items that you can use include:
You may choose to mix these things or not use them at all, depending on the level of training your puppy is already at.