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Training

Sadly MANY people take dogs to shelters between these puppies are between the age of 6 months to 1 year. People think puppies are 'adorable' when they are small. Then when the dog is no longer a baby and the big puppy is too rowdy or going through their chewing stage, the adopter returns the dog to the shelter. Educate your puppy and avoid this scenario - you will determine whether your puppy becomes a well-behaved, well-tempered dog. Your role as educator begins the moment you bring your puppy home - houstraining, walking on a leash, "table manners,"and following simple commands are not genetically programmed skills.

Housetraining

Housetraining your puppy is a vital part of your puppy's education. Housetraining requires some patience, skill, and as always, love on your part. Given the right combination of these, your puppy should be making fewer puddles on your favorite oriental rug and more in the great outdoors. Remember that once trained, you are responsible for disposing of your puppy's waste while on a walk or in the park. For more information on housetraining, see the ASPCA guide.

Play

Puppies have a lot of energy and you should encourage them to release that energy constructively. Play time is also an excellent opportunity to train your puppy. You should not play 'rough' with puppies because they will continue to play rough when they become an adult. Supervise children playing with the puppy. Often, children will play rough with the puppy, thus teaching the puppy that aggression is an acceptable form of play.

Dogs generally need safe chew toys - do not give them household objects, like old shoes, because they teach the puppy that socks and shoes are chew toys and she will not be able to distinguish between non-chewable shoes and chewable ones. Also, these items may contain toxins that if ingested in high enough levels can harm the puppy.