Puppies during Covid
During the first weeks of puppy life, it is essential that your puppy is exposed to as many new situations as possible. It is important so they become a well balanced adult dog and “settle into their paws”. Certain training must be learnt at adoption and early puppyhood to ensure that they will also practice this training and learnt behaviour when they’re big and strong in adulthood. These include walking on a leash, toileting appropriately, travelling well, settling and basic training.
During confinement, when access to the outside world is restricted, it is more necessary than ever to be imaginative and patient in training to ensure quality learning. Using an ADAPTIL® Junior Collar can comfort your puppy throughout this challenging time and will help make their training easier and quicker!
Our advice for successful learning… even during confinement:
RESPECT PUPPIES SLEEP NEEDS
First of all, know that your puppy will spend most of their time sleeping (between 3 pm and 8 pm per day) in their sleeping area. Their rest and space must be respected. Try to not disturb your pup when they’re relaxing or sleeping and give them their space.
TOYS TO KEEP YOUR PUPPY BUSY
During play sessions, offer your puppy small toys adapted for their age. Your pup can chew them to help soothe their growing sore teeth. Also small toys are great to throw to them and get them to retrieve. Consider using this fun playful time to train: wait, release, fetch, come back and drop. Fora good fetch and come back to you, ensure whenever your pup brings their toy back to you, do not hesitate to provide lots of praise (even a tug of war or play together as a reward)!
SHORT BUT ESSENTIAL OUTINGS
The outings with your puppy should be short but frequent enough (after meals, upon waking, before bedtime), with different family members, to allow him to do his business outside. Praise him if he eliminates outside or in the right place.In case of small indoor accidents (which are inevitable!), do not get angry or scold them. Clean the soiled area thoroughly and increase time outside or consider the use of puppy educational mats. Every time your pup is outside and toilets, praise this heavily with high pitched excited praise and rewards. The ideal place to put the training mat is near the door to the garden or in a quiet place, away from their sleeping area and always in the same place and replace it after each use. As the days pass, your puppy will get into the habit of toileting there and you can gradually move the mat closer to outside or the desired place.
WALKING ON A LEAD IN THE HOUSE OR GARDEN
If you have a garden, you can exercise your puppy on a lead outside. If this is not the case, then wearing the collar and lead can also be practiced indoors. The goal is to get your puppy used to walking calmly by your side with a loose lead. This also helps your pup get less excited by the lead as it won’t always mean a walk outside. Take advantage of this moment to reward your pup for looking at you voluntarily and teach your pup how to “sit” with rewards. Keep learning sessions short but repeat them throughout the day. Be patient and carry out daily for consistency.
FAMILIARISE YOUR PUPPY WITH EVERYDAY NOISES
Confined inside means it is not as easy to expose your puppy to a variety of day to day noises. At first, you can get them used to domestic sounds: vacuum cleaner, hair dryer, washing machine,
television, etc. For exterior noise (traffic, alarms, fireworks, etc.), you can open the windows or use recorded sounds. There are pre-recorded sounds specially made for training puppies by playing the noises when your pup is relaxed and rewarding them for remaining relaxed ensures a positive association is built up. Only start when your puppy is calm but not asleep and begin at a very quiet volume and only increase the volume gradually. Repetition is key, so train daily.
GET YOUR PUPPY USED TO THE CAR
Even though you are unable to travel, if it is safe to do so, you are still able to get your puppy used to the car. To start, ask your puppy to walk around the car with the engine off. Let them sniff the car and reward them if they stay calm. Next, get them used to the car and the car boot with the help of a toy or a treat. If your puppy reacts calmly, reward them and then next time go to the next step and start the engine. Your puppy will be getting used to the noise and ready to make their first trip calmly and happily when the situation allows. Remember: take your time, being patient, consistent and calm alongside the positive reward-based training is essential to successfully educate your puppy!
THE “ESSENTIALS” FOR A SUCCESSFUL EDUCATION:
✔ ADAPTIL® Junior Collar
✔ Bed and blankets
✔ Time outside
✔ Collar and lead
✔ Age-appropriate puppy toys
✔ Yummy age-appropriate treats