Clyde the Puppy

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The newest member of the Burke’s Backyard team is Clyde, the crossbred terrier who will be a mate for Maurie. At only 8 weeks old, Clyde is possibly one of the smartest little dogs Don has ever met. Even though he has only lived at Don’s place for 3 days, Clyde has already learned some basic puppy skills.

Don’s puppy training tips

  • Hold a small piece of food just above the puppy’s nose and give the command ‘SIT’. As the puppy’s head comes up to take the treat his bottom will go down into the sit position. Praise him and give him the treat. Repeat several times with the same hand signal above the dog’s nose. Don’t always give a food reward, but always praise.
  • Train using positive reinforcement (rewards) rather than punishment. The reward doesn’t always have to be food. It can be a game with a ball, a toy, a walk or a cuddle.
  • Never use the dog’s name as a rebuke. If he’s been naughty just scream out ‘NO’ very loudly. 
  • Puppies are easily house trained. First, decide where you want your puppy to go to the toilet. Take him to that spot without fail every time he wakes up from a sleep, after every meal and whenever you see him walking round in circles and sniffing the ground. When the puppy goes to the toilet in the right spot, praise him. If there is an accident yell ‘NO’ and rush him out to the toilet area. Don’t smack the puppy or rub its nose in the mess.
  • Avoid greeting the puppy profusely when you return home – it can lead to problems later, such as separation anxiety. You should initiate all contact with the puppy. When it bounds over to you ignore it for a few seconds. Wait until it walks away, then call it back and give it a pat. This technique gives you good control over the dog at all times.