Adopting a dog as a companion in your home can be so rewarding and wonderful, but adjusting to your new puppy can also be a source of stress at times. What you do with your dog in the beginning stages of its life will determine how it will behave as an adult. I am sharing what has worked for our family. This is just a guide, I am sure you will adjust things to make them work for your home!

Training Your New Puppy


With puppy training, the more you can redirect instead of discipline, the better. Praise praise praise! Your puppy will learn that good behavior gets rewarded. Get small treats and start with the “sit” command. Say “sit” and gently guide their bum to a sitting position. Give treats and praise, do this over and over for about 10 minutes then give them a break. Working with your puppy in 10-minute sessions a few times a day will do wonders. After “sit” is “stay” or “lay”. We use hand signals for each one.

Bad Behaviors

I do not let puppies bite on my face, hand, clothing, or shoes. If they do this, I pull their lip over their own teeth and gently push their lip into their teeth to make them bite themselves. I say “NO NO” they will yelp and stop. If they do it again, then you also do it again. It has worked very well for my puppies. Remember YOU are in charge and the alpha of your new puppy. 90% love, praise, and affection, 10% punish!!

When your puppy gets older, you can teach them not to bark. Dogs that just can’t help it get to wear a shock collar. There are settings that only vibrate as well. I have tried many bark collars and this is the collar that has always worked the best for us.

I also use a tool called pet correcter, it is a canister that sprays out compressed air. It makes a sound that they hate. When they jump up, bark, or scratch doors, I spray it and say “NO.” They will learn very quickly. Do not overuse the spray or it will lose its effectiveness.

Potty Training

When your puppy has an accident in the house, which they will, if you catch them in the act jump up, tell them “NO NO” and rub their nose in it. I know there is a lot of controversy on this, I have always done it for all of my dogs. I do not want them to go to the bathroom in the house. Immediately put them outside. If you do not catch them in the act it is hard for them to understand why they are being punished. I keep my new puppies outside, kenneled, playing, or laying by me at all times. When they start sniffing around take them out to their spot and say something like “Go potty!” Reward your pup’s successful bathroom trips every time they go with positive reinforcements or treats. When in doubt, keep pee pads in thier kennels and by the doors.

At Wasatch Pup we kennel train all of our dogs. We want them to have a place where we can put them when we are not watching them. A kennel can become a den for your dog, they will love to go in to get away from you too!

Kennel Training

Every puppy will be scared for their first few nights sleeping alone without their siblings. They will likely cry for attention throughout the night. You can turn on a fan right next to the kennel that makes a lot of noise, cover the kennel with a blanket, and go to bed. For the first little bit at night-time, we put the kennel in a room or bathroom where no one can hear the crying. Maybe even downstairs. In the morning we always bring the kennel back upstairs into the living area. Don’t Leave the kennel in a place where they are not with the family during the daytime. They are pack animals and want to be part of your family. Do not let them out of the kennel when/because they are whining, this will encourage unwanted behavior.


To keep your puppy comfortable and make their kennel a space that they will enjoy, you will want to provide them with just enough room to be able to stand up and turn around comfortably. Dogs do not like to potty where they sleep, when they are just learning I will put a towel or cheap dog bed in their kennel as well as a puppy pad they can use if they need to go at night. Once they are potty trained we use a durable, washable, kennel pad full-time.



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