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How Do You Train A Golden Retriever Puppy

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Getting A Golden Retriever

How To Potty Train Your Golden Retriever Puppy (5 Easy Steps)

Do plenty of research before you get a Golden Retriever. Make sure you have the knowledge and dedication to give to these sweet natured dogs to keep them happy and the time and space to exercise them. While they make great family pets, make sure you are absolutely ready to take on the commitment of getting a dog first.

Training Your Golden Retriever Puppy

Heres puppy training in a nutshell:

Golden retriever puppies want to please you, and they want to have fun, so they respond best to positive reinforcement training and learning games.

When teaching any new behavior, you want to start with baby steps and have them be successful at each step.

Of course, theres a lot more to it than that, and well get into it, but first, if youre here because you just brought your puppy home and theyre a lot more difficult to manage than you expected, dont worry, thats totally normal.

Its a good thing golden retriever puppies are so cute because theyre quite a handful!

But just because your puppy is difficult now doesnt mean that theyll be difficult forever.

Before you know it, theyll be a well-behaved adult and youll miss their naughty puppy days when they were small and fluffy.

Now, many people dont put a lot of work into training their puppies when theyre young, but instead, hope that their dog just ends up being a good dog.

Thats a big gamble because even though golden retrievers are great dogs, they were bred to be working dogs retrieving birds in the field.

If theyre not being mentally stimulated and given a job or a purpose, a lot of problems can occur, such as jumping up on people, tearing up the house, etc.

But all that being said, if you have a golden retriever, youre in for the ride of a lifetime.

Theyre so sweet and loving and you will have a blast watching your puppy learn and grow into a well-behaved adult dog.

Raising A Golden Retriever Puppy Finding A Vet

Most of us have our puppies vaccinated. Vaccines are not completely without risk, but the risk of serious disease for unvaccinated puppies is usually considered by experts to be much greater.

Most puppy parents want to know which shots their puppies need, when their puppies can go outside safely, a few want to know what happens if they decide not to vaccinate their puppies.

Youll find information on all those topics in the articles below:

Youll also find lots more information in our puppy health and care pages.

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Where To Get Help And Advice

Puppies are great fun, but they can also be hard work. At times youll benefit greatly from the support of other new puppy parents.

We used to be able to help new puppy parents by answering questions in the comments on this website. But there are now so many that we needed a better way.

Do check out our support forum. Youre welcome to simply browse and read the answers to other peoples questions. Or you can join in and ask your own.

Its free and wed love to see you there!

How Do I Train My Golden Retriever

Golden Retriever puppy for sale near Lancaster ...

Here are the necessary steps on how to train your golden retriever to go potty outdoors or in a designated spot.

Decide where and when your puppy needs to go. Its essential to establish a consistent routine to help your puppy learn. Set an alarm to take your puppy out or to its spot. Offer praise and treats each time your puppy is successful. If you catch your puppy going to the bathroom in the wrong place, gently command no and move your puppy to the right place. When your puppy finishes in the right place, offer treats and praise. Never withhold water to help train your puppy. This is unhealthy and dangerous. Stay consistent and be realistic about your puppys training. Your puppy will need time to get things right. Stick with the positives so your puppy doesnt associate bad things with going to the bathroom. If you only punish your puppy, it may hide to go to the bathroom to avoid the punishment.

Read Also: How To Potty Train A Golden Retriever

Always Use Positive Reinforcement

As a rule of thumb, with Golden Retrievers, you should always use a positive reward system.

Goldens are not an alpha-breed that needs a firm hand to keep them in place, nor are they a pack dog that naturally seeks out a leader. Instead, theyre a loving and sensitive canine prone to respond poorly to scolding.

Theyre smart enough to understand the point, so always reward them for their good behavior, rather than scolding them for their bad.

Research the best positive reward systems used for Golden Retrievers, know that they involve lots of treats, praise, toys, and playtime.

Always remember this breed is extremely docile. Its not a chore for them to learn, and if you make it fun for them youll have their attention for longer periods of time.

Begin The Training Process As Soon As Possible

It’s never too early to start training your puppy. In fact, the earlier you begin, the easier it will be to develop good habits. Most dog owners bring their pups home at around six to eight weeks of age.

While you may be tempted to let your dog have a few days of worry-free living when you first bring them home, it’s not a good idea.

Your puppy may start to develop bad habits straight off the bat. If you don’t address these issues, your dog will see that there are no repercussions to their actions. Start building that trust as soon as possible. Golden Retrievers are very intelligent creatures, so they’ll have no problem picking up training techniques at only a few months old.

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Introduce Your Puppy To The Crate

The name of the game with crate training your golden retriever puppy is baby steps.

Heres what you dont want to do: immediately throw your puppy in the crate and let them cry it out.

If youve already done that, youll be fighting an uphill battle, but by following the steps in this section and the next, its a battle that you can definitely win.

Its best if they can learn that the crate is awesome and safe before they spend time in it, especially time alone.

So how do you do that?

First, they need to decide to go into the crate themselves.

You can do that by putting a favorite toy in the crate, or scattering food in there.

Expect them to walk in and right back out the first time.

If theyve eaten all the food in there, or brought the toy back, eventually put more toys, or more treats in there.

You want to make it so that they know fun things are in the crate.

Now that theyve been introduced to the crate, the next step is to get them to love it.

When To Begin Training

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Training begins before you even bring your new puppy home. Some breeders start training pups before they find a family. Often this training includes things like mild crate training, mild potty training, and corrective behaviors. Of course, not all breeders do this. Not only that, but many people do not find their goldens via breeders, but rather shelters or rescues.

Regardless, its important to note that dogs should not be separated from their mothers or littermates before the ages of 7-8 weeks old. Studies have found this to be damaging to puppys psyche and emotional well-being, which can lead to behavioral issues down the road. Therefore, you can expect to begin training as soon as you pick up your 8-week-old golden retriever!

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Why You Should Crate Train Your Golden Retriever

Honestly, crate training can be very hard, so its important to know why youre doing it in the first place.

Here are a few of the benefits of crate training:

  • It accelerates potty training
  • It keeps your house safe from them chewing things they shouldnt be chewing, like your shoes or furniture
  • It keeps them safe from swallowing things they shouldnt swallow, like socks, which can get lodged in their stomachs or throats, or poisonous things like grapes or chocolate
  • If they ever need to spend the night at an animal hospital, they will be placed in a crate, so its best if theyre used to it already
  • The safest way for them to travel is in a crate

Some people think putting them in a crate is cruel, but in addition to all of the benefits above, dogs are naturally denning animals so theyll usually learn to love their crates.

When Should You Start Training Your Golden Retriever Puppy

Puppies are surprisingly smart and you can start training them as soon as you bring them home.

In fact, its encouraged to start training them as soon as you bring them home.

For one, it will help build communication and a bond between you two.

It will also help build their confidence as theyre challenged and they overcome those challenges.

Plus, its great to start training them before bad habits start.

If your puppy learns that jumping up on people gets him pets and attention, its going to be very hard to train her not to do it.

And if your puppy learns that crying in the crate gets them out of it, its going to be very hard to teach him not to do that.

So now that you know puppies are easy to train, and you know you need to start training them asap, how do you actually train them?

Lets get into the training strategies now.

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Choosing A Healthy Golden Retriever Puppy

Once youve found a reputable breeder and chosen what gender of puppy youd like, you need to choose the healthiest puppy possible.

Here are some signs of a healthy Golden Retriever puppy.

  • Clear, bright eyes no red marks, dirt, or signs of infection
  • Clean ears no wax, crustiness
  • No obvious issues with sight or hearing follows your hands, turns to your hand if you click next to his head
  • Healthy wet nose no mucus or crustiness
  • Clean mouth pink gums, white teeth, no bleeding
  • Healthy skin no sores, redness, scabbing, or obvious injuries
  • Healthy fur glossy, clean, no fleas or ticks
  • Clean dry bottom
  • Steady on its feet, no limping or trouble using certain limbs
  • Healthy weight no visible ribs
  • Ideal temperament interested in things around, friendly, bright, interacting well with other puppies and things around

If a puppy seems overly scared or has any obvious health issues, it may be best to choose a different dog.

What To Avoid When Training Your Dog Not To Jump

Hytop Goldies, golden retriever puppy
  • Do not shout or get angry. Shouting will only confuse your dog, and depending on their personality, they will either become afraid, or even more excited. Either way, it doesnt promote a respectful relationship and can be very counter-productive.
  • Do not knee your dog in the chest. Many books and web articles suggest you raise your knee to block your dog when they jump. This can work, but we cannot condone this method. On one leg its easier for you to fall and get hurt, and you could also potentially hurt your dog. Please use the force free, positive methods above, not violence!
  • Do not push your dog off you. Pushing will quickly become a game to your dog and wont teach them anything. Its a form of interaction, and interaction is rewarding. To you, youre telling them off, to them they got a reward. And rewarded behaviors increase. So, no pushing!
  • Do not punish your dog after they have jumped up. Your dog will not understand punishment after the fact. They may think youre punishing them for saying hello in the only way they know how, which might lead to your dog running away from you in fear instead of greeting you happily. Instead, ignore unwanted behavior and pile in with rewards for the behaviors you do want to see.

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Golden Retriever Puppy Waking At Night

Another problem that a lot of new puppy owners experience is night time waking.

There are a number of reasons puppies wake at night. They may be scared, in pain, or hungry.

Puppies may also wake at night because they are lonely and want attention, or because they need the toilet.

For the first few nights after you bring them home, keep your Goldens crate by your bed. This will reduce the risk of them waking out of fear and loneliness because they will see you and know they arent alone.

Puppies will need the toilet through the night when they first come home. So, if you arent using puppy pads, youll need to take them outside throughout the night to pee.

Try not to make nighttime trips out to the toilet too exciting. Otherwise, your puppy may start waking up and crying for your attention.

Top Tips For Choosing A Healthy Golden Retriever Puppy:

Meet the parents Check for obvious health issues, like skin problems or fleas
Make sure the parents have all their health checks Make sure theyre a health weight no ribs showing!
Ask the breeder lots of questions and expect to be asked questions! Look at the environment the puppies are kept in
Interact with the puppy are they friendly and bright? Check theyve had their first set of vaccinations

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Get Them To Love The Crate

This step is the fun step.

To get your puppy to love the crate, theyll need to associate it with things like food, games, and toys.

Here are some tips:

  • Feed meals in the crate
  • Play games with and in the crate
  • Give them toys in the crate

As youre getting your puppy to go in and out of the crate, make sure to give them a consistent cue like, crate that lets them know to go in there.

Check out the video below for a fun crate training game to help your puppy learn to love their crate.

Ask Friends To Help With Dedicated Training Sessions

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Rope in some friends to help with training thats what friends are for!

A ten-minute session every now and then is all thats required and your friends will benefit from your dogs new found manners just as much as you will.

Prep them beforehand so theyre prepared to implement the four methods outlined above. If you are practicing sit for greeting, keep your dog on a long leash and be sure your friend backs away if your dog breaks the sit. You want to avoid any occurrence of your dog successfully jumping up. A long line enables you to do this.

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Make It A Lifetime Commitment

Even when your dog has very good manners and is a treasured member of the family, there are always new things to learn. Dog training provides excellent brain stimulation, which helps use your Goldens high energy level. It also strengthens the human-animal bond, which enriches the entire household. Explore new sports and activities, like nosework, agility, rally and therapy visits.

Whether you begin with an 8-week-old puppy, an adolescent rescue or a senior dog, these tips can help your new Golden Retriever understand what to do in his new home. It also enables you to help him burn energy, provide stimulation and build a strong bond between you and your dog.

Take Them To The Same Spot

Dogs like to go potty where they smell other pee and poop.

You can use this to your advantage by taking them to the same spot every time.

However, this works to your disadvantage if you dont clean up accidents correctly.

Dogs have much better noses than us and even if we cant smell pee in the carpet, they can, and theyll repeatedly go in the same area.

To stop this, you need to clean up accidents with an enzymatic cleaner, not regular soap and water.

This type of cleaner breaks down and actually removes the smell so that its not there anymore.

To clean up Olivers accidents, we used this .

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Implement Training Techniques In New Locations

It’s not uncommon for dogs to completely forget their training once they leave the confines of home. Unfamiliar environments are exciting to a young pup.

If you have only ever performed training techniques at your house, they may not realize that those commands apply to everywhere they go.

To ensure that you don’t have to deal with a misbehaving puppy when you take your dog out for an adventure, try to implement techniques in new locations.

Take them to the local dog park or try a few techniques when you’re out for a walk. They’ll learn how to cut through the distractions and listen.

Stop Bad Behavior Early On

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When you first start the training process, your precious puppy doesn’t have a good understanding of what they shouldn’t be doing. They’re going to do some stuff that you don’t like.

For example, they may start to chew on your furniture, climb on your bed, or even bite you. It’s important that you put a stop to this behavior as soon as possible.

They don’t know any better, so you have to show them.

Something as simple as saying “No!” is enough to show them that the behavior is not acceptable. You can also show them a good alternative. For example, if your dog chews on your favorite pair of shoes, take them away and put a toy in their mouth.

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