Surviving the teenage phase
Thanks to weeks of hard work and training, you are now well on your way to having a house-trained puppy! So, why is your puppy suddenly treating your furniture as an assault course or chewing your favourite shoes?
Uh-oh, you have a puppy teenager on your hands …
You’ll notice behavioural changes such as pushing boundaries and testing your patience. When you give your puppy a simple instruction like ‘sit’ do they sometimes look at you as if you’re speaking a different language?
One of the reasons puppies can be so naughty at the beginning is down to their short attention spans. When that happens, revisit the cues and training you used whilst training your pup at the beginning (don’t worry, it’s only temporary!).
Use positive praise and treats to remind them of their training but don’t forget to play with them and make it fun! Remember, they are just beginning to navigate this exciting world and every day brings new and exciting things to see, hear, paw and smell that are just too good to resist.
They’re still in the ‘teenage’ phase, so it’s normal if they’re still pushing boundaries with their mischievous behaviour. As annoying as it can be sometimes, keep reinforcing positive training and show patience during this period as your puppy is naturally testing your limits.
On the other paw, you might notice your puppy growing shyer and losing confidence as you introduce them to new environments such as traffic, strangers and new places.
If you spot this behaviour, keep them well-exercised, enriched and encouraged during all behaviours – never forget to reward them when they’ve been good.
Your puppy has come a long way since the newborn phase. There are lots of changes going on as they grow in height and weight into a fully-grown pooch.
Pups grow very quickly during this phase and you may notice changes every day. Cherish this precious time as they won’t be a puppy forever.