When puppy training your new little buddy, there are many objectives to his training that you’ll want to accomplish. “Sit”, “stay”, “leave it”, and “crate” are some of the most basic commands that you will drill time and again until they’re second nature to your puppy. But a puppy’s attention span is fairly short, so be careful not to stress him with lengthy training sessions. Puppies need lots of play time and exercise, but some old-fashioned puppy games have developed a bad reputation: specifically squeaky toys, tug of war, and fetch. Let’s set the record straight and clear their good names.
Squeaky toys are designed to appeal to a dog’s prey drive, and some dogs and puppies have innately stronger prey drives than others. A puppy with a low prey drive will be indifferent to the squeaky toy. Conversely, a puppy with a high prey drive will want to kill the squeaky toy dead at all costs. Puppies with a hearty prey drive are actually highly motivated to learn, so they make great candidates for training. However, exercise caution when leaving a puppy or adult dog with a high prey drive alone with the family cat. In fact, having a high prey drive dog in the same proximity as your cat will likely not end well at all.
Tug of war is a great mental and physical exercise for puppies and an excellent opportunity for puppy training. Though tug of war could get out of control if your puppy tries to assert himself in order to win, your constant assertion as pack leader will teach him to focus on you above and beyond anything else. Tug of war can build a great deal of discipline in a puppy if he is being taught to focus on your direction. Exercise your authority as pack leader and teach your puppy proper boundaries in the process.
Fetch is as timeless as baseball and apple pie. And it’s not only fun, but useful while puppy training. A rousing game of fetch can satisfy a puppy’s prey drive while you set clear boundaries and behavioral expectations.
While your puppy is in training, playing with squeaky toys, tug of war, even fetch will appeal to his prey drive, to whatever degree that he has one. If it turns out that your puppy has a high prey drive, he will likely excel in agility training and other forms of advanced training. The common thread throughout constructive puppy training and puppy play is that you are consistently teaching the puppy that you are his pack leader, and from that structure comes the puppy’s ability to please you and willingly follow your direction.
Bark Busters trainers, who have trained more than 500,000 dogs worldwide, are renowned authorities in puppy training with all-natural, dog-friendly methods. Bark Busters training is the only service of its kind that offers guaranteed lifetime support. With hundreds of offices in 40 states and 10 countries, Bark Busters is continuing its mission to enhance the human-canine relationship and reduce the possibility of maltreatment and abandonment. Bark Busters dog behavioral training services are known as the “Best of the Best” in their category. No other training company or dog trainer has received such a distinction. For more details, call 1-877-500-BARKor visit www.BarkBusters.com.
Are Squeaky Toys and Tug of War Really Bad?