Understanding Puppies & Training Essentials

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The most important course of all! What is the right thing to do after we get a puppy? What are the developmental stages of growth that correlate to behavior change? How to teach a puppy to be confident and build a desirable behavior repertoire?


What is the exciting, info and action pack about this course?

You learn about the different growth stages that the puppy goes through, the neonatal period (0-2 weeks), born blind and deaf. Then the transitional period (2-3weeks), where their eyes and ears open. The first teeth emerge and then begin to explore their surroundings. And by 3 – 12 weeks which is the Socialisation period. The puppy starts interacting with littermates. They learn bite inhibition during the interaction. It is an important time for their development; they learn many social skills from their littermates that will help them deal with humans and other dogs later in life.


If they are removed from their litter during this time. They may have trouble later on. Moving on to the Crucial socialization stage, the Juvenile period (3 months to sexual maturity). The ease of learning starts to decline at about 16weeks. This is when they start teething, gums will hurt and they chew more. On top of it, socialization should continue because one of the difficult stages that most dog owners face is the adolescent period teenager (sexual maturity 6-9 months to social maturity 2-3years). And in that timeline is also when the female puppy gets their first heat and the male puppy might start lifting their leg to urine mark. Now, they are bigger and stronger. Permanent adult teeth appear.


If a puppy did not get enough socialization, you might start noticing problem behaviors. By 2-3years of age, your puppy is an adult. A small breed of dogs matures faster than large breeds. Somewhere between that age, we may see play behavior decreases. Your puppy will be considered as senior when she reaches 7+ years. Small breeds live longer and become senior at a later age (10-12years). Their activity level also decreases as they age.


What a big info-dumping! However, the above relates to behavior (good or not so good) and how to prepare for it to prevent undesirable behavior from arising.



Let’s slow it down…


The objectives of Understanding Puppies and Training Essentials are:

  • To educate owners about normal canine behavior, development, and communication.
  • To help owners set realistic expectations and understand their puppy better.
  • Understanding a well-conducted puppy socialization class is one of the most important things for your puppy’s behavior development.
  • Understanding the critical socialization window (3-16weeks) is the most influential learning period of a dog’s life. It forms the foundation for all future learning.
  • To understand that a bad experience or a lack of experience/ exposure to novel stimuli during the critical socialization window (3-16weeks) of your puppy’s life can lead to problem behavior including fear, anxiety, and aggression.
  • How to prevent common behavior problems including inter-dog aggression, fear, separation anxiety and attachment disorder, house soiling and inappropriate elimination, hyperexcitability, destructive and unruly behavior, as well as resource guarding and so forth.


More to come…

  • The setup for success; the resting area, playpen, and toilet.
  • The appropriate type of toys to help with teething and enrichment.
  • The appropriate accessories, flat collar, harnesses, and leashes.
  • The feeding ritual to build desirable behavior repertoire
  • The essential behaviors to teach.
  • Not forgetting the fun tricks.

Other Resources

1. If you are thinking of getting a puppy, please check out this wonderful guide before you get a puppy. Click here!


2. Before you get your puppy – Dr. Ian Dunbar. Click here!

3. Puppy Socialization Position Statement (PDF) – American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior (AVSAB). Click here!




When you go to work, the pooches go to school. School4Dogs is a fun packed program combined with the Socialisation Program.

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Adolescent Dogs

This course provides owners with the knowledge of how behavior works and the practical skills to teach, maintain and change behavior.

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