Introducing a new pet into your home can be exhilarating. In addition to providing endless hours of playtime, the child-like behaviour of the puppy is bound to flood your family with endorphins. But just like toddlers, puppies are learning new behaviours each day. And if you do not mould their demeanour right from the beginning, you could end up with a menace on your hands. Before you know it, you might start contemplating rehoming the puppy because you can no longer deal with their behaviour. Fortunately, you can avoid having to rehome your pup as long as you are proactive about reinforcing good behaviour while the animal is still young. While all pet owners should take their dog for obedience training, here are critical red flags that should prompt you to enrol your dog in puppy school immediately.
Most dogs are vocal creatures. Considering that barking is their leading mode of communication, you can expect your puppy to yip and yap whenever they are trying to get your attention. Nonetheless, this barking can get out of hand and go on for hours on end with seemingly no underlying reason. For instance, if your dog starts barking and zipping about the house without a trigger such as a doorbell or a loud car outside, you should be worried about this becoming a habit. On the other hand, if you have to leave the house and your dog barks the entire time you are away, you should be concerned about this behaviour becoming disruptive to your neighbours. If this sounds familiar, it is best to enrol your animal in puppy school as soon as possible so a dog trainer can get to the bottom of this problem. In some cases, this habit could stem from boredom, and your dog would require more stimulation. Whatever the case, puppy school will teach your animal to control their urge to bark unprovoked and instead learn other ways to communicate with you.
Another red flag of the urgent need to enrol your dog in puppy school is when they begin to exhibit signs of excessive aggression. Admittedly, dogs are naturally possessive creatures, and this can be attributed to their animal instinct. However, your animal should know when to back down, more so when there is no immediate threat being posed to it. If your puppy snarls whenever someone gets close to their food and toys or if they growl when you, the owner, are approached by other people such as family members, you need to seek obedience training so this behaviour can be nipped in the bud. The blunder some pet owners make is thinking this behaviour is cute since their puppy is too small to cause any real harm, yet this will only reinforce this aggression. Consequently, once your dog is older, they are likely to attack strangers, your family members or their owner.
Contact a puppy school near you for more information.