June 23, 2015 In Puppy Training
The Perfect Puppy
The perfect puppy comes from understanding; Knowing how they work and how they learn and how they see their surroundings.
It’s important to understand that our domestic dogs as puppies are unlike any animal as they are not born with the ability to walk. Their survival does not depend on this unique survival ability anymore.
However, they have got the ability to crawl forwards and backwards using its available sense’s.
An experiment conducted by John Paul Scott and John L. Fuller documented in their book ‘Genetics and the social behaviour of the dog‘ was to take a week old puppy and place it a short distance from its bed.
The pup sat there for a short time after which it started to crawl around putting its head from side to side; it was trying to feel its way back.
If it felt nothing and heard nothing it would head in the wrong direction.
However at the age of three weeks when taken away from its bed, it was able to navigate its way back to its bed, this was done by sight and sound.
Their social behaviour starts to develop around the time they can walk, they start to play with their siblings’ mouthing and biting each other. This type of play teaches them to bite inhibition.
Dogs are 90% energy and body language and 10% sound. They understand more when the pup shows it’s not happy as opposed to a verbal dislike of the particular activity.
Now it is between eight to ten weeks they are ready to join you and your family. This can be a somewhat daunting experience for them and us.
Looking at it from the puppies point of view they have had the comfort of their littermates and mother and now they are out on their own.
They do however learn very quickly by using their senses, processing all new smells, sounds and sights.
They learn to interact with you as their humans as you teach them to accept you as their new family.
They learn to meet other dogs through your guidance, allowing socialisation to become easy and stress-free.
But we must understand when two dogs meet for the first time they pose a problem to each other.
Two puppies sleeping
This is a natural, instinctive response for them if one starts the play using a universal canine language they can only guess other dogs will follow suit and understand the intent to play.
Which is why puppy socialisation type classes are so important a week to week they will try different solutions to this problem until they solve it.
They learn to interact and it becomes a very enjoyable experience for them.
This type of interaction is essential to their learning as they grow.
There are two ways that a dog views us: one being its owner and the other the teacher.
As the dog’s owner, they learn that we are the ones that feed them, shelter them and fuss them.
We as the teacher we lead and guide them. They may give the correct response to our request through reward.
Training is a human activity, but it is essential our dogs learn to sit, stay, come and leave on our command.
Without this, the young adult dog may not understand what the human views as right or wrong behaviour.
We need to continue to teach and reinforce this good behaviour throughout its life, but the first two years are the most important.
The family dog learns its behaviour good or bad throughout its life.
Some behaviour comes naturally (instinctive). Some is of a reaction to how other animals and humans behave towards it (social). And some has to be taught by the human (learnt).
Dog’s will always learn new things but it is up to the Family unit to ensure that it is good.