Training a Puppy: A Whole Family Affair | Pupford
August 10th, 2023
Filed under Training
There’s nothing more exciting than adding a new member to your family -- especially one with paws, a tail, and a little wet nose.
Getting a new puppy is exciting for the whole family. But, it also takes time and dedication to train your new puppy -- and that responsibility should be shared by the whole family.
Making puppy training a family affair will pay off in the long run, and today we’re going to talk about why.
Some frequently asked questions we’re going to cover today about family dog training are:
Why does my dog only listen to one person in the family?
How can my dog and my family be on the same page?
How can I ensure my whole family lives happily with my new pup?
The key to answering all these questions is making sure your family acts together as a unit when it comes to your new puppy. Otherwise, you could end up in this common situation…
WHY DOES MY DOG ONLY LISTEN TO ONE PERSON IN THE FAMILY?
We’ve spoken to a lot of families as they adjust to life with their new puppy, and a lot of them say the same thing: my dog isn’t listening to everyone in the house. Maybe you’re the one who gets your pup to sit while he jumps on everyone else, or maybe you’re the one who can’t get through to your dog while your spouse does.
The reason behind this is actually pretty simple. No, it’s not that your dog doesn’t love you! It’s more likely that , or had their behaviors enforced by you. Think about it in human terms -- if one parent is more strict and reinforces behaviors while the other lets things slide, who is a child going to listen to better?
So if one family member takes point on training your puppy, but the others don’t follow suit, that one person is probably going to be the only one to get behavior responses.
HOW CAN MY DOG AND MY FAMILY BE ON THE SAME PAGE?
Now that we’ve gotten to the bottom of the issue, we can focus on fixing it or preventing it altogether.
The key to getting your dog and your family all on the same page is to engage and train your dog as a family. Yes, even the kids. Especially the kids.
Consistency is key in dog training, and that can be a challenge when there are children in the house. But puppy training with kids is important in making sure one family member doesn’t end up accidentally sabotaging training efforts.
It might seem like an odd concept to “train” your kids on how to train your dog, but it can be an enjoyable way for your kids to bond with the puppy and lay a foundation for a good relationship in the future.
- Involve them every step of the way. Guiding your children through the training process can be a lot of fun for them, while also letting your dog know that they should listen to all members of the household. Since your kids will be with you during the training session, you can guide them so they remain consistent.
- Set expectations for behaviors. As sweet as it is to see your kids excited about their new puppy, it’s important to teach them when to get serious. For example, if your puppy is jumping on people when they come in, teach your children to discourage that behavior by turning their backs and not reciprocate the excitement.
- Stay consistent with cues. Try to get the whole household to use the same words, tones, and gestures when training, so your dog better responds to everyone.
- Teach your kids how to reward. It’s important that your kids save rewards like treats and praise for the right moments. Otherwise, your puppy will learn that they get a treat every time they’re around the kids, so they will have no incentive to perform the behavior.
Involving your kids in a smart way is the key to making puppy training a family affair.
HOW CAN I ENSURE MY WHOLE FAMILY LIVES HAPPILY WITH MY NEW PUP?
We all want our new puppies to fit seamlessly into our lives and bond with our whole family. Forming a solid relationship through training is the way to start!
But taking the time and effort to train your new puppy can be a challenge. Our goal is to give you the best tools and resources to make that transition smoother and more beneficial in the long-run. Here are some of our top tips:
- To train your dog properly, you need the right tools! A or will give you the essentials you need to get started.
- High quality training treats and chews will be your best friend in rewarding and engaging your dog in a healthy way. A will have everything you need for training, playtime, and occupying your dog during time in their crate.
- There’s a reason why “I get by with a little help from my friends” is such a relatable song lyric. Sometimes, we all just need a little help. The Pupford Academy exists to do just that -- help pup parents raise well-behaved dogs at every stage of the journey. There are courses for potty training, leash walking, impulse control, barking, separation anxiety, and more! Get an inside look at Pupford Academy .
Your new puppy is going to become an important part of your family-- but that can’t happen without help from the other members. Remember, training a puppy is a family activity and will result in a strong bond between human and puppy members!