How to Train a Lab Puppy?

Pet Training

petvblog

February 26, 2023
how-to-train-a-lab-puppy

There is no denying that puppies are adorable. Just as babies are adorable, there is nothing like bringing home a puppy, watching it play, and just generally looking as cute as possible. But puppies are also untrained, and that can lead to serious frustrations.

How you train your puppy also depends on the breed. You need to learn how to train a lab puppy, for instance, because labs have different requirements for training than other breeds. The key is to remain positive and to keep calm throughout the process.

How to Train a Lab Puppy?

The good news is that learning how to train a lab puppy isn’t the most complicated endeavor. Sure, lab puppies have a lot of energy and might want to chew on you from time to time. That is when the training can come in handy.

With a few basic techniques, you can have all the tools you need to instill obedience training in your lab. Here are a few tips for getting the puppy to listen regularly when you give it a command.

Reward Good Behavior

Without a doubt, the most important part of how to train a lab puppy is positive reinforcement. Dogs do not understand negative responses aside from becoming fearful or anxious. Never, ever hit your dog as it will not understand physical correction. Dogs understand that you are trying to hit them and nothing more.

To create a good listener, you need to use positive reinforcement. When the puppy does something right, let it know. Tell the puppy it is being good, give it a pat or scratch, and (most importantly) make sure that you have plenty of treats handy.

Puppies especially will not recognize punishment. So instead of focusing on the negative, use positive reinforcement instead. You will notice that training is a lot smoother when your dog is looking to please you and not fearful of what you might do.

Don’t Play Rough

Playing with your lab puppy is a crucial thing. It might seem simple—play with the puppy a lot since it is young and has a ton of energy—but there is more to it than that. Tug-of-war is fine to play, but understand that your puppy will equate roughness with playing. It could also lead to the puppy developing a nasty habit of biting, particularly on your fingers.

Never, ever use your hands as toys. Remember, part of the training is instilling in the puppy that biting is not okay. If you use your hands in rough play, then you are basically teaching the pup that it is okay to bite your hands.

Avoid roughhousing until the dog gets a better understanding that it isn’t to bite you. Using different toys in place of your hands can be effective, too. The minute you realize the puppy is going to bite you, replace your hand with a toy.

The puppy will begin to associate the act with the knowledge that it should bite its toys instead. It takes time and there will likely be a few nips here and there, but you should have no problem getting the puppy to realize that biting is not okay.

Let Them Know Biting Isn’t Okay

One of the most important aspects of training your lab puppy is showing it that biting is not okay. Sure, they might be cute, but puppies definitely have teeth that can hurt. Maybe they have made a habit of chewing on your fingers or even your favorite pair of shoes.

Nipping that problem in the bud sooner rather than later is essential. When they bite you, yelp or cry out. Pretend that you are hurt so that they understand that they have hurt you. When they are puppies, their brothers and sisters will yelp when bitten, telling them to stop.

If you act as though your puppy has hurt you, it should help instill the message that it shouldn’t bite. A stern “no!” can also help, but a good yelp can go a long way.

Be Consistent

Without a doubt, one of the biggest mistakes dog owners make when training is being inconsistent. For instance, if you want your dog to stay on the floor and not jump into bed, you can’t bring them into the bed on a whim. You need to remain consistent.

Dogs do well with training when the message is consistent. When there is wavering or they are allowed to get away with things from time to time, it gives them the idea that they can get away with that thing more often. Nip that in the bud by being consistent in your training methods, and it shouldn’t be long before they fall in line.

Conclusion

It isn’t exactly new science to train a puppy. It takes a lot of time, patience, and a cache of treats to get the results you have been looking for. Before long, the puppy will be following your commands with regularity, earning the praise it has been seeking.

There is always the option of using a professional trainer. That said, anyone can do the training themselves as long as they are confident and patient. It isn’t reinventing the wheel, though it can feel that way at times.

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