Why Obedience Training For French Bulldog Puppies?
Training is a Two-way Process
We all know the reason why people bring a French Bulldog puppy into their lives and homes… They bring us a huge amount of enjoyment, entertainment and of course companionship. However, many (first time) owners may think that puppies are too young for any serious training; and that it may be better to start when they are slightly older. This is usually the first mistake new owners make and why we say that Training must be a Two-way process.
We all want our dogs to fit in their new family and society in general, but sometimes we expect them to just know how we want them to behave. In effect, we are expecting them to know what ‘normal’ is! We can solve this problem by understanding more about how our Frenchies think. We should remind ourselves that for the most part Frenchies are keen to please, so if they are not doing what you are asking, then it may be because you are not being clear about what you want them to do. Make sure that you are using rewards, commands and body language in a way that your puppy understands.
When to Start Training
Whether you have just brought home a new puppy or a rescue dog, training should begin straight away. Remember, your dog can pick up bad habits if allowed to get away with certain behaviors when settling in. For example, you allow your puppy to sleep in your room for the first few nights because he is crying. However, later he may object to sleeping in his bed in the lounge room and howls all night! You should decide on the ground rules before your dog arrives and stick to them.
So the message here is: As part of training your new Frenchie, you should also be teaching yourself how to interact with him to get the best results from that training and ultimately forge a strong relationship.
What you Need to Know
When we first bring our beautiful new French Bulldog into our home most of us know that we are making a long term commitment that requires us to invest years of taking on responsibility. Your new Frenchie will need to be nurtured with good nutrition and hydration, attention to health care and regular exercise, shelter and somewhere comfortable to sleep. Providing these basics will set your puppy up for the first steps in dog obedience training basics.
All dogs see their new families as their new “Pack”. They quickly understand who the leader(s) are their instinct is to please their pack. However, they will need to understand what the boundaries of acceptable behavior are both in and outside of your home. A well-behaved dog makes for a happy household. For obedience training to be effective, your communication with your puppy needs to be very clear, so that they know what you expect from them across a full range of situations.
Training time should not be all hard work. It can also be a rewarding for both of you. Having a regular, focused time for obedience training with your new puppy is a great way to strengthen your special bond early. We believe that consistent, positive reinforcement or reward based training is by far the most effective way to teach puppies right from wrong when it comes to acceptable behavior. If you are prepared to put the effort in to training your French Bulldog puppy early in your relationship, then you will reap the benefits of a wonderful and happy bond for years to come.
Types of Training
Setting the scene: For the most part you will need a bit of patience and a willing puppy. French Bulldogs as a breed are typically keen to get involved in fun learning activities. Choose a quiet room to limit any distractions to enable you and your dog to concentrate. Also, ensure you have suitable training aids or equipment at hand. Eg: treats, clicker, harness, lead etc.
Reward based training:
Schedule short but focused, regular training sessions of no more than 5 minutes at a time (for puppies), and around 20 minutes in total each day. You can train your dog to perform any task provided you use clear concise commands combined with a suitable reward. The trick is to be firm without being threatening. The last thing you want is your puppy to fear you. A ‘Reward’ for the correct outcome does not always involve a food treat. It can also be kind words in an encouraging tone; a walk, a play, a favorite toy or even a tummy rub. Any positive outcome in recognition of acceptable behavior can be the reward.
This is another form of reward based obedience training which is often combined along with treats. A clicker is simply a small handheld object that makes a short, sharp ‘click’. You use it to confirm with your dog that he or she has just done exactly the right thing, and that a treat is coming their way. Using a clicker in addition to your voice means that your puppy receives a consistent positive reinforcement to all the ‘correct’ actions they perform during training. Once your Frenchie is performing a certain task reliably, you can start to ask him to do this in a ‘real’ situation. With time and patience, you can train a young dog to perform almost any task with clear, concise commands and a suitable reward.
Some of the more important lessons for them to learn at this early stage are:
House-training – learning that there is a set place for him or her to relieve themselves
Socialization – with other dogs and people
- Sit, stay, down – particularly when crossing roads
- Walking to heel
- Retrieving objects
Other lessons that are just for fun are:
- Giving paw to handshake
- Catching a ball or treat
Some Final Training Tips
If your young dog has already developed some problem behaviors and you are finding it difficult to correct the problem, then it may be very helpful to join a training class for guidance and support. Alternatively, if you are looking for a comprehensive dog training solution, make sure you consult a professional. For example, your local vet, a good quality dog kennel, or a puppy training school should be able to help.
We hope you have enjoyed ready these puppy training basics. Don’t forget to share these tips with all your family so you can all share in the wonderful experience of training your puppy.
Related article: 5 Step Basic Obedience Training For French Bulldog Puppies
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