It's a "pattern". So says Jodi Jarvis Therrian this week. A puppy for Christmas is a pattern according to Jodi and it's "ok" as long as a few things have happened in advance of that puppy coming home to a family. The first key thing to remember is that a puppy is really no different than an infant, and while the joy of the moment on Christmas Morning may be the lasting memory, it's also the starting line to a lifetime commitment and devotion to the care of that animal.
So, where do you begin? If you think about the comparison of puppy to infant, it's a pretty good start. Baby steps. At first, chances are that you're going to find some messes around the house and some wet spots in the carpet. Hey, you didn't know how to use the bathroom when you began either. You'll also find an over abundance of curiosity and eagerness. Let's not forget teething and chewing on things.....we may have to think about some excitement issues and more as the puppy grows.
Being pro active along the way is the first step. Using an encouraging system of teaching is so much more beneficial than negativity and some of the other essentials like the importance of socialization of your puppy not only with other people, but other animals too is easiest handled early on. You begin building the personality of your pet from day one, and imagine the scenario should you come home to the excitement of all that is a Christmas morning, and then....you find yourself getting swatted with a newspaper or stuck in a crate all day. Jodi can help assure that setting the dog's demeanor from the start leads to the best experience possible for you and your pet.
Jodi mentions that she's got a GREAT tool for you to use in the training of a new puppy. It's the Dog Blessed Interactive Journal and Workbook. You can pick up a copy on Amazon.com by CLICKING HERE. This workbook was developed to help you and your companion understand each other better. As certified professional dog trainers, we have found that the key to training is consistency and rehearsal of the behavior you desire in a clear manner. Helping your dog to understand you takes time. They are not born knowing English. They communicate using their body. We suggest you learn to communicate in their language while you teach them yours. It is a process of patience, consistency, and dedication. Enjoy the journey. Laugh at yourself. Have fun and stay positive. The rewards are a lifetime of unconditional love and gratitude that are priceless.