House-breaking a Pup

House-breaking a pup is very important especially when living in flats/apartments has become very common. Unless a pup is four months old, it is not easy to rush downstairs every 2-3 hours interval. In this case, he has to be paper-trained before he is successfully trained outdoors. Paper-training can start immediately after you bring your pet home. Several layers of news-paper is spread on the entire area where he is to be confined upon bringing home. We have already discussed this area previously. As the days progress, you will find that he identifies an area as his toilet. Then, carefully remove the top portion of the paper.

Do not give your pet access to other rooms until he consistently locate his toilet and eliminate. In case you have changed his room of confinement, watch him carefully and note whether he is squatting in the wrong place, which he invariably will do. 'Snatch' him immediately and show him the correct place. If you happen to be late in snatching him, scold him immediately and show him the correct place. If you are too late to detect the mistake he committed earlier, better not to scold since he will not be able to connect the mistake he committed and the punishment. Also, never rub his nose on his faeces.

Always keep the pup near his paper immediately after feeding or a session of play. Praise him liberally when he does the right thing and scold him firmly when he does not. Stick to the programme mentioned above till he learns it. At time, you are likely to feel disgusted. When he is four months old, take him outside in the same way as we have done for the paper-training. If you take him outside your house, take to the same place always. This will help him to smell its previous elimination and defecate. If you are likely to miss the place, keep a piece of paper and a small stone on top of it - to keep the paper in place.

To avoid accidents during night, take him before your bedtime and when taken out, keep him confined to a small area by using a leash of one metre length. Leash or chain may be tied to any object convenient to tether. Another point to be trained is to prevent the dog playing roughly. This is to be taught at puppy-stage itself. Hence, do not engage with him for any play like tugs of war or violent chasing. Never allow or permit your dog to 'mouth' your hand. Also, do not box with him, dangle a finger over him teasing him to snap at it or poke your hand at him. These types of games will encourage him to use his teeth. It may be noted that mouthing leads to nibbling, then to nipping and finally to end with biting. When you handle your pup, if by any chance, it mouths your hand or finger, pull out and bring it at the back of the head and pat him. If it nips your heels while running, say NO and rap his nose lightly.

Teaching the pup to indentify its name:

Before naming your pup, decide to select one name which is short and crisp- that will not confuse with any other word. Never select a human name. This is to avoid ill feeling with people who are having the same name. There are any number of names that can be selected with ease. Once the name is selected, make use of it at every time when you address him. You may use his name when you call him for food, while grooming and when you praise him.

Making him to respond when his name is called:

The command - ‘come’ is easily learned by the pup since it is readily rewarded by food, treats or by praise. Do not punish him if he fails to respond to its name. Also, do not call his name when you are going to punish him. If the calling of its name and punishment is repeated, he may associate the name with punishment and may run away or avoid you when called his name.

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