The Labrador puppy is one of the most amazing pets you can get. Labradors are really adorable, especially with their fluffy looks. They’re also friendly little dogs who love to get your attention.
Even as pups, Labs are already even-tempered, and it’s one of the best things about them. But are Labrador puppies easy to train as well?
Are Labrador Puppies Easy to Train?
Training a pup is an essential part of their growing-up stage. It’s also the responsibility of a good dog parent. Teaching your puppy different things can help them become a better member of the family. Additionally, it can help your puppy avoid any unruly behavior when they grow up.
But how hard is it to train a Labrador pup?
Labrador Retriever’s Intelligence
Knowing how hard it is to train a dog can depend on their intelligence. The smarter the dog, the easier they learn. But it’s not really a walk in the park. While they absorb what you teach quickly, smart dogs also tend to lose focus more.
That means a boring training is not applicable to them. They need something that will also sharpen their minds and keep them entertained.
Labrador retrievers are highly intelligent. You can start with basic commands and soon teach them something more complex. But does that mean they easily lose focus too?
Some pups will. They’re still exploring the world, so anything can make them lose their focus. Think of a more creative way of teaching them and keep sessions shorter.
Yet, these dogs are also eager to please. Use this to your advantage.
So, how do you use their eager-to-please attitudes? Use positive reinforcement.
Reward your dog every time they do something right. Give them their favorite treat, a good belly rub, their favorite toy, and praises. For example, reward them with a treat when they sit as soon as you say the word.
Most importantly, never punish your dog. If they started running away to investigate a flower, don’t pull them. Or don’t slap them if they jump instead of sitting.
Negative actions will only make them more disobedient and even aggressive. You’re only training them that aggression is the only reaction applicable. If you do have to be a little firm, use your tone to assume the Alpha role.
Be the Alpha
Pups have to know that you’re the alpha, that you’re the boss in the house. You should be the one giving the orders and being followed. This works well for any breed, even the stubborn dogs.
But being the alpha doesn’t mean you have to be harsh. You only need to be firm and consistent with your training. Never fall for their adorable puppy faces or else they’ll only get what they want.
That can be hard, especially when you see how cute Lab pups are. But fight the urge to pet them even when they are doing something wrong.
How Old Can You Start Training Your Pup?
Pups learn quicker than adult dogs. Plus, it’s always better to start early so they can get more familiar with their tasks.
You can begin training your pup at around seven weeks to four months. Start with potty training and basic commands. It’s also best to begin their socialization at a younger age.
Potty training is one of the first things you should do. Housebreaking your dog will avoid any untoward incidents inside your home. You can keep your home clean for them and for your own family.
There are two most common and effective potty training methods. The first is putting them in a crate. Another is bringing them outside at least every two hours.
The crate training is effective because dogs love a clean space as much as you do. Once they see the crate as their space, they’ll alert you if they need a break. Then, you can let them out and let them do their business.
Getting them used to a routine also works as dogs thrive in repetition. They’ll learn that the potty room is outdoors and never indoors.
For the first few weeks, there will still be accidents. Be patient and know that your dog is still learning. Anxiety may also cause these untoward incidents and that’s normal too.
Basic commands are important. Start with “Sit,” “Stay,” and “No.” Obedience training can be hard, especially for new dog parents. But you need patience and lots of treats to get by. You’ll also need to turn your alpha mode on.
This is essential because you’ll use these signal words for more training. It also cuts down their naughty behavior.
Labs are already friendly dogs. But it’s still best to give them time to socialize with other dogs. It’s also best to bring in some new faces as well. This is to avoid any aggression towards strangers.
Are Labrador puppies easy to train to be more social? Yes, they are, thanks to their natural friendliness. But always monitor every training session and bring them to a dog park regularly.