The Top 5 Things Your Puppy Wishes You Wouldn’t Do

There are a few things that pretty much everyone does, but your puppy kind of wishes that you wouldn’t.

The truth is, these things that you do make it more difficult for him to learn and grow up to be a good canine citizen.

Here Are the Top 5 Things Your Puppy Wishes You Wouldn’t Do:

#1.  Expect Him to Grow Up Overnight

I just got done answering an email from a client who was complaining that her 8-week old puppy was still having accidents in front of her.

Ironically, she then threatened to just leave the puppy in a crate.

I wonder how long it took her to get potty training down when she was a child?

It is like we completely forget being young.

Or, we think that puppies spring from the womb being in control of their bladders.

Puppies have to learn to control their bladders, too.

Some puppies have very few accidents; others will have more.

Sometimes the only difference is which puppy gains control of his bladder first.

99% of puppies are going to have accidents.

Simply clean them up well and try to get that puppy outside.

But don’t expect your 8-week old puppy to grow up overnight.

#2.  Panic When He Goes Potty

Interestingly, this can go both ways.

On the one hand, you get the person who loses control when the puppy has an accident in the house with yelling.

puppy training, puppy potty training, crate training, leash trainingHeaven forbid, there are still the “rub his nose in it” people out there while potty training their puppy.

And then there are the gleeful squealers when the puppy goes potty outside.

All of this is just overwhelming nonsense to the puppy.

Going potty is a natural thing; if you get worked up every time he goes, he wants to avoid going potty in front of you (which is not at all what you want)!

After all, he HAS to go potty, and he should be comfortable going in front of you.

And, when he goes potty outside, just calmly praise him.

#3.  Carry Him Everywhere

This is especially for those of you with little dogs!

Your dog needs to learn to be a DOG!

Set him down and let him walk.

You need to help him foster some independence.

If he were your child, you would want him to grow up and be independent. Carrying your child everywhere and never letting him sleep alone would be bad for both of you.

It is bad for you, and your dog too.

Let him walk, take breaks from one another, and foster a healthy relationship.

#4.  Avoid Crate Training

Crate training also helps to foster independence.

puppy training, puppy potty training, crate training, leash trainingCrating can also save his life.

Puppies don’t know that you can’t chew on electrical wires.

And, the old story about dogs being den animals…that is TRUE!

Sure, he probably won’t like it at first, but all the best things in life take a little effort. And one day, he will love his crate, and you’ll be able to take him anywhere!

#5.  Let Him Pull on His Leash

Don’t let him get stuck in this habit!

I don’t want him pulling back or forward.

I don’t want him pulling at all.

Leash manners must be taught right away!

And, he doesn’t want you to let him pull, either.

It can damage his trachea, and I am pretty sure it doesn’t feel great in any way.

It also isn’t great for you!

So get on it, work on training your puppy, and make sure you have the happiest puppy on the block!

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  1. Diane says:

    My dog came to me when he was about a year old. He hadn’t been trained for any thing but potting out doors. He is very nervous, barks at many sounds. He pulls on his leash when I attempt to take him for walks. He even barks at other family members when they come home or if they come to my bedroom door. He is now going on two. Will your training help us? I would like him to come with me some times but he becomes agitated when out in public places.


  2. Kerstin Kopp says:

    I got my dog Hennessy at 5 weeks old a rescue …
    She is now 9 months old she is terrified of everything u name it . She is 85lbs now. She pulls so hard she rips muscles in back n shoulders sometimes I go running with her then fall . It’s really bad in the day time . Sometimes in evening’s. I also have a 2yr old rescue that I also got at 5 weeks old . He barks like crazy when sees other dogs , can’t go to dog parks cause he attacks other dogs . He barks like crazy at window if he hears or sees something.


  3. Julie Gunn says:

    That’s really sad to know. Getting a puppy as young as 5 weeks is way to early for them to leave mum and siblings. Mum teaches them so much in their first few weeks of like. I wouldn’t consider taking a pup home before 8 weeks of age. I hope you can get help for them and yourself.


  4. Robyn says:

    I must be the luckiest person in the world. My dog was 18 months old when I adopted him. I’ve never had a dog before and he had some bad habits. Fortunately I found him easy to train and now he is near perfect. He would be absolutely perfect if my husband could control his bad habit of feeding him scraps at the table.


  5. Pat says:

    I have a now 9 mon. Lab rescue from Harvey – got her at 8 weeks, easy to train but she has a very annoying habit of jumping and mouthing my arm when I’m distracted talking to someone. Almost as if she’s jealous. I have a training collar and am trying to use it when this behavior is happening but my timing with the button is hard to be consistent. Any tips for discouraging this behavior would be helpful. I don’t want to over use the shock collar.


    Minette Reply:

    why not teach her an alternate behavior over shocking? We wouldn’t treat our children this way. I have many free articles that can be found here on jumping and mouthing


  6. Cynthia says:

    We have a boxer(male) since 8 was. We’re trying to get him trained as a service dog, k9 training. Where do we go and how much does it cost? Our son has Autism so he needs this dog for protection and help him as a ESA. He is already certified for that. We need him to be calmer and more obedience in his behavior.


    Minette Reply:

    service dogs are never for protection. Read this


  7. Julie Kinser says:

    I have a friend with a fairly small breed dog that has such anxiety that she urinates in her kennel. As a result she allows the dog to roam the house for hours while at work. The dog gets into trash and reliefs herself in the house.
    Please give me some pointers I can pass on to her.


  8. Louisa Marx says:

    I have always wanted a big dog and my family got me a Bernese Mountain Dog about a year and a half ago. He is awesome! and I love him very much but he has a couple of weird habits that I have no idea how to train him out of. He uses his huge, heavy and painful foot to get my attention, often. If I am sitting down, he paws at me and whatever I’m sitting on. I’ve tried moving but I’m not consistant enough. Also, he still mouths (just like a baby) our hands and nibbles, I call it flea bitting because he nibbles with his front, smaller teeth. Any suggestions would be much appreciated.
    Thank you!


  9. Ruth says:

    Can a dog be trained to stop running out at cars. My dog is 28 months old.


    Minette Reply:

    a dog can be trained to do almost anything if you are willing to devote the time and training.


  10. Melanie says:

    I have an almost 5 month old, 40 lb female German Shepherd. She is crate trained and she does not potty in the house. We had her in puppy classes for 5 weeks and she did well and still does. The biggest problems we encounter is she continues to jump on everyone and she wants to chew and bite at us. We were told that when she jumps up, to take our knee and gently push her back and say OFF. We do that, it does not help. We were told when she bites us or chews that we should hold her mouth closed for a few seconds and say NO BITE! It doesn’t help at all. Will this program help us with this? She goes back into the basic dog training June 21 but these issues need to be corrected now. Thank you


  11. Barbara Slowey says:

    My dog wants to jump on our house guests and lick their feet, help.

    Also she likes to dig. I have tried putting a piece of poop in the hole, it hasn’t worked.


    Minette Reply:

    use the search bar at the top of the page to look for more free articles.


  12. Margaret Jones says:

    My puppy is a rescue since she was 6 weeks old. She is now a year old. We have a older dog also . the issue is she will not eat her food in her dish . The digs have metal dishes , routine feeding, same food. She has to eat from his dish. I have tried feeding separately but still refuses her own dish


    Minette Reply:

    if she skips a few meals and you don’t give in, she will learn to eat from her dish. This is a dominant behavior.


  13. Joan Garrison says:

    Use a halti lead. It’s a miracle worker for lead pulling.


  14. Hi my dog Mercy is going to 3 yrs old. I DONT KNOW WHAT OR HOW TO KEEP.


    Minette Reply:

    look into our fear program. email customer service at


  15. Craig Mecum says:

    For walking a dog who pulls real bad get an EZ Walk harness. Trained my two beagles to practically walk completely by my side. They are Beagles and you know how bad they can be.
    My beagles love their crates. It’s where nap time is and sleep time.


  16. Nancy C Reed says:

    I was gifted a beautiful Std. Poodle at age 7—never leash trained, so pulls a lot. BUT I just moved into a retirement facility, and he must be on leash at all times. Thank goodness this breed learns fast. He loves to go for walks,and I must constantly remind him to be ‘easy’ (not pull) and carry tiny treats — he is learning fast and me to. I took him for a 1 hour training session on leash walking and –IT’s WORKING


  17. Minette says:

    dogs sleep in dens,not out in the conditions and rain. It is ridiculous to think that means all day every day but it is where they are comfortable. You may look up research about wolves and wild dogs


  18. Kathy says:

    I have a lab retriever mix who barks at everything we have recently moved down to Florida. He barks at people other animals bicycle. What can I do to get him trained to stop this


  19. caroline says:

    First dog that im home all day with after retiring , never had a terrier before (Mini Schnauzer ) hes so jealous and protective of me that he wont allow friends in the house without “attacking ” if people stop in the street he rears up at them , he lets certain people in but then if say they jump up suddenly go to another room he goes nuts but other times hes so sweet and loving i dont want to have to muzzle him all the time or separate him


    Minette Reply:

    Find a veterinary behaviorist this is very dangerous and just one bite could mean he would have to be euthanized. Muzzles are better than euthanasia


  20. Terry Skrapits says:

    If your puppy likes to run off leash in a safe environment and he doesn’t come when you call him, do not scold or tell him he is bad when you finally retrieve him. He will think you are angry because he came back to you and develop confusion at what he should do and lose trust in you as his master. Always praise him and he’ll feel happy to return when you call him.


  21. Cherie Labarbera says:

    I’m interested in the answer for the dog pulling on the leash . We had trained him pretty well in the leash , but we had to leave him for 3 months , that was 6 months ago . He’s now about 1 and a half years old now so he was just a little over a year. He still sits on command and will stay a short time but then gets up . He won’t heal any more at all and pulls on the leash. He’s a BIG shepherd and I’m
    Small ( and old ) and having a hard time managing him. He ALso jumps on me. How can I re train him ? He’s a wonderful dog otherwise.


  22. Jen says:

    When your dog is jumping on you, she is most likely seeking attention and interaction from you. PUshing her with your hands, saying “off” (she has no idea what it means) and using a knee (besides being unnecessary and potentially painful), all serve to reinforce her with the attention she was seeking by talking, looking and touching her. You want to teach her to offer an alternate, preferably incompatible behavior, such as sit. I like to tell people that when we focus on telling our dogs what we dont like without providing information on what we’d like to see them do, its like geting into cab and telling the driver all the places we don’t want to go and never telling them our preferred destination; they are left guessing, getting it wrong over and over and incredibly frustrating for everyone! Until she is strong in sitting for attention, she may continue to sometimes jump for attention since she has developed the habit with a strong history of reinforcement. If she does jump, don’t say anything but calmly disengage from her; don’t say anything or look at her, and walk away. You want her to see jumping makes you leave, and sitting gets her what she wants, YOUR ATTENTION. Focus on teaching your dog what you want from her, instead of waiting for her to make the mistake of jumping where you would react to her bad behavior. I always say, be proactive in your dogs behavior, not reactive! You may experience what is called an extinction burst when you stop reacting to your dog for jumping (rewarding with attention), which is when your dog my try a bit harder with the old behavior trying to figure out why it’s not working anymore. Whenever you teach your dog an alternate behavior, its important the new preferred behavior still functions in the same way for your dog to gain access to what was rewarding the old nuiscance behevaior. Otherwise your dog is just being distracted away and isn’t learning a polite and appropriate way to gain access to everything they find fun and rewarding, whatever that may be. I suggest you look into finding a training program that is rewards based and force free, using science based methods, whether it this one here or an actual classroom environment. There are plenty out there!


  23. L Wadden says:

    Louisa I recently rescued a 2 yr old Pitt and he was constantly pawing me and often ended up scratching me. I was told to turn away from him (ignore) until he stopped pawing. When he stops pawing then give him some positive attention. I have to saw it’s been working! Just be cautious that he’s not pawing because he needs to go potty. Hope this helps you!


  24. This is exactly my problem with my 9 month old dog. She is learning clicker training but refuses to quit jumping up and biting me, particularly when she is wanting immediate attention. She has knocked me down in backyard, knocking me out and I had to pull her by her collar to where I could get up. I’m on permanent crutches. Just a puppy so I couldn’t “punish”. Using OFF and DOWN doesn’t work. Had used a collar given with PerfectDog program and it was choking her. I quit it and reported it to that program. Still had pay full fee despite what I reported. I feel I’ve been burnt. How to change my “abused dog” to take a calming lease so I can walk her. She lunges and has pulled my arm injuring the shoulder. She won’t accept any new collar in my effort to find one that will help us both. Breaks my heart but she’s for life!


    Minette Reply:

    GEt a gentle leader


  25. I tried to put the Gentle Leader on Bridget, my dog. She’s fighting it by squirming and attempts to get it off. Will NOT have it! I got the neck pretty firm but when I tried to put the leader over her snout, it was too loose. I wore out trying to adjust it to fit her. I KNOW that if I could get it on her and we took our first walk, she would love the walk SO much it would be easier to exercise her and she wouldn’t be jumping on me, scratching and biting. I am a wounded dog owner. She licks the wounds but it doesn’t stop her. Yet, she learns other commands and my neighbor put her into a “stay” while he picked up my long ladder. She stayed PUT! So proud of her! Gives me hope.


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