Raising a Pitbull Puppy And Building a Life Long Bond with them is Essential for a Successful Relationship
From the moment you bring your new puppy home the “game” starts. This game is the game of teaching your puppy how to be a responsible, well behaved dog who respects and loves you. Notice respect came first in the sentence above. Why is that?
Out of all the questions and problems I’ve helped people find the answers to, the number one reason they are having problems is they failed to raise their puppy correctly and respect was not built.
5 Absolute Rules for Raising a Happy, Healthy PitBull Puppy
Rule #1: The puppy should never be left unattended in the house or outside. You can’t stop your puppy from chewing on shoes or peeing on the floor if you are not paying attention.
Watching your puppy at all times when they are running around the house allows you to stop the problems before they start.
In other words, if you see your dog getting ready to chew on a shoe, you can tell her No! and offer her an acceptable chew toy. This is how you stop the chewing problem in it’s tracks. If they are never allowed to chew on shoes, they won’t develop the habit.
Rule #2: When outside the puppy is always on a 20-25 foot cotton leash.
Once again, how can you expect your puppy to come to you or pay attention to you if they run off and you have to go chase them down? You can’t.
Having them on a long line at all times when outside gives you control and the ability to “reel” your puppy in if they are doing something they shouldn’t (digging in the garden.)
We are not punishing them for anything, we are limiting their freedom and building leash tolerance for later leash training.
Rule #3: When the puppy can not be supervised it is kenneled.
A wire kennel from the local pet store will suffice in this situation. You can use this kennel to keep your puppy safe when you can not supervise them.
Another use for this is potty training.
Do not leave your puppy in the kennel for more than 3 hours at a time.
Rule #4: YOU and ONLY YOU feed your puppy. This is important.
We are not teaching them to be mean or whatever. We are teaching them that YOU are the provider of all things good and the other people after some time will be allowed to interact with the puppy too.
However, they should not feed, treat, or walk your puppy. That is YOUR job. They should not be able to play with the puppy without you around either.
This goes for the wife, kids, husband, friends etc…
We have to build a bond before we start socializing the puppy.
Rule #5: LOVE THEM.
Pitbull Puppy Basic Training
As puppies, pitbulls have extremely short attention spans. I’ve had people email me and wonder why their 8 week old puppy isn’t sitting well when other dogs run up on them. Well duh! They are 8 weeks old!
For puppies I suggest you start with only two basic things.
1. Their Name. Teaching them their name is a good thing and they should come to or look at you when you say it is the first step.
You do this by sitting really close to your puppy and calling their name. When they look at you, treat and praise them. Repeat this every single day. When your puppy is looking at you take a few steps back and require them to come to you. Then treat and praise.
Note: This is not the recall or coming when called.
What we are teaching the puppy is to pay attention to their name. This will allow you to say their name in the future and when they look then give them the cue you want to give them. Example, Puppy! (puppy looks) Sit!
2. Focus. Every single time your puppy looks at you for some reason you say, “Yes!” and treat them. This is also going to be used later when you start formal obedience training. It’s a lot easier to teach new behaviors when your dog is looking at you and paying attention.
Almost all behavior problems start because owners did not build a healthy bond with their puppy. They cuddle them to much, avoid restrictions, and allow them to run around without supervision. By applying restrictions, watching your puppy at all times, and then showing them love when they have earned it you are building your role as your dogs leader. Your puppy will learn to respect you as their leader and trust you. This will lead to easier training and a well behaved companion you can be proud of.