Puppy training can be a challenging endeavor to undertake, as slight lapses in judgment can cause a whole new adult dog to surface. As most dog training professionals say: “bad dogs do not exist, only bad owners.” Since dogs mirror most of their behaviors from the signals we give them, learning how to train a dog means ensuring that you take the right steps when they are young.
Some people have small dogs or puppies that are adorable, but you might notice that they dislike being held or getting picked up. They might exhibit behaviors like squirming, kicking, biting at the fingers, or even growling when lifted off the floor. There are many reasons you’ll need to carry a dog, and most of these occur during the puppy training stages. Whether it’s to keep them safe, relieve them from hot surfaces, or help them get over obstacles, dogs might need some assistance.
However, you can’t exactly carry a dog if they snarl at you, so here are ways to teach your small dog to appreciate being picked up:
Limit the Times You Pick Your Dog Up
As much as possible, it is advised to let puppies walk and to pick them up only when needed. It might feel nice to carry a puppy because of how tiny they are, but doing this is only suitable for some instances where they really need help. Additionally, avoid picking the dog up when it’s engaging in an exciting activity. They might develop negative connotations about being picked up, leading them to develop a bad temperament. If they are doing something against the training handbook, like chewing furniture or destroying items, don’t forcefully pick them up. Instead, it might help redirect their attention to something else like a toy or something meant for dogs, which will help keep all four of their feet on the ground.
Give Them an Indicator
If you want your dog to allow themselves to be picked up, it helps to address this issue by adding a cue word that makes them know it’s time to be carried. Some people use the word “up” or tap on a piece of furniture, making the dog ready for a pick-up. Dogs will appreciate this verbal or visual cue to avoid them being surprised by a sudden jolt in force.
Develop Their Reward System
You want your puppy training system to develop a positive image in their minds when getting carried occurs. By toying with their reward system by giving them a cue, picking them up, supplying a treat, then releasing them back to the floor can help develop their reward system. The more you do this, the more likely they will accept being picked up, provided that you don’t rough them up while they are in your arms. Ensure that when carrying your dog, they feel secure and calm. Otherwise, they may develop destructive behaviors.
Release Them When They Are Calm
Calmness should always be rewarded. If your dog is relaxed and calm, this is the best time to release them because any anxious behaviors will reinforce their belief that acting out will help them break free. Ensure that they are relaxed before you let them down, which means that you shouldn’t be messing around with them while they’re in your arms. Remember that overexerting effort on your dog will lead to them biting you or retaliating in some way, so be sure to avoid forcing anything that makes your puppy feel uncomfortable.
Dogs are simple creatures that develop complicated issues because of their owners. Many of the problems adult canines have are preventable through working on them during the puppy training stages to ensure destructive behaviors are addressed. Don’t force your dog into uncomfortable situations, and be sure to reward positive and calm actions.
Dog Obedience Training is a premium dog training blog that can offer owners valuable advice on training a dog. Puppy training and solving issues with temperament in older dogs are doable with discipline on the human part. Read our blog to find out more about teaching dogs in a better way.