Your puppy is a sponge, ready to absorb every bit of information you throw their way. Here are some tips on what you need to teach your puppy to ensure they grow into respectful, happy dogs.

There are a few fundamental pieces of training that every puppy needs to learn. “Puppies should learn basic manners such as sit, down, stay, come and loose lead walking as well as swap, bed, self-control and independent play,” says Serena Dean, Veterinary Behaviour and Training Manager for Greencross Vets. “Socialisation and communication skills are also developed in the early months of your puppy’s life,” so it’s important to enrol your 8-16 week old puppy into puppy school where they’ll learn these basic cues and how to interact with other puppies.
Enrol your puppy in Petbarn's Puppy School

Enrol your puppy in Petbarn's Puppy School

A puppy’s daily routine

Routines are possibly the most important thing you can instill in your puppy. They are reassuring and train your puppy to fit into your family. While they may seem tedious to us, your puppy needs routines to learn things like what time of day they eat, what time they go to bed, what time they get up and where they go to the bathroom. And yes, reinforcing these routines requires some tough love, so prepare yourself to play bad cop.

Toilet & crate training

While you can’t expect your puppy to have reliable control of their bladder for some time, it’s important to start housebreaking them the instant you bring them home. Again, this is all about developing a routine that suits you and your family, whether that involves puppy training pads, a dog door to the garden, or a crate, housebreaking your puppy takes time and may involve a few accidents!

Basic cues

It’s important to train your puppy to understand certain words. Start with the basics, like “no” – which translates to “naughty” or “stop what you’re doing”, and “good” – which means “good” in both English and dog. You’ll gradually be able to add other words like “come”, “sit” and “stay” with the help of your qualified Puppy School trainer, but it’s best to master the basics before you inundate your pup too much.


Introduce your dog to new people, other dogs and animals, and new places when they are young so they don’t fear these things as they grow older. For example, being comfortable with being handled will ensure you both have an easier time at the vet and the groomers. Overall, a well-socialised dog is more happy and confident so once your puppy has been protected by vaccinations, train your puppy to enjoy life by taking them out to see the world!

Walking on a lead

In order for you to take your dog for walks with minimal hassle, it’s essential that you train your puppy to walk on a lead. This is a skill that you will learn and practice in puppy school as staying on their leash is important for your puppy’s safety.

Love and respect

Remember that your puppy is still young and will make mistakes, but that’s all part of the learning process. As long as you praise and reward them for good behaviour and teach them that they are loved, you will have a great relationship together. “Your puppy is a member of your family and it is important that boundaries are set early on,” says Serena. “It is important that the entire family is on board and everyone is consistent once the boundaries have been decided. Providing your puppy with boundaries early on will ensure your puppy feels safe so they can become a happy, confident member of your family.”

Enrol your puppy in Petbarn's Puppy School

Enrol your puppy in Petbarn's Puppy School