Poodles were originally bred for retrieval, that is, finding and bringing birds or small animals that had been brought down by their owners, without eating or mauling the dead animals or birds. Later on, during the 18th century, the miniature or toy Poodles were bred, raising the Poodle’s popularity, especially in royal circles. Today’s Poodles are often considered to be ‘house dogs’ and make lovable and affectionate house pets. They are extremely intelligent and active. As well, they are hypoallergenic as they do not shed, making them ideal pets for allergy sufferers. That said, poodles can be over-protective and anti-social around strangers, without proper training. Poodle owners sometimes do not find it necessary to go through the process of training a Poodle. However when the canine eventually gets out of hand, it might be a little too late for proper training.
Tips on Poodle training
Here are a few tips on how to train your Poodle that pet owners can follow even on their own:
- Patience and consistency are of the utmost importance when trying to train your poodle.
- Poodle training should be done with firmness but also gentleness as Poodles tend to be stubborn dogs.
- Remove any and all distractions in your training area to ensure that the dog is focused. Distractions may include toys or other dogs or both. Avoid a noisy training area as this will also serve to distract your Poodle.
- Begin with the most basic commands, for example “Come” and “Sit” first before moving on to more difficult ones.
- Make sure your Poodle has mastered a command before moving on to a new one.
- At the same time, make sure to avoid prolonging teaching sessions as boredom will lead to loss of interest, which will hinder progress.
- Give your Poodle lots of praise and a treat when it has mastered a command successfully. On the other hand, if your dog is being slow to master something you are teaching it, vary your technique. Keep it fun and interesting.
- Schedule regular and consistent training sessions. Dogs work best on a routine.
What not to do when training a Poodle
These are some common mistakes that pet owners make during poodle training:
- Teaching too many commands at a time- one by one is the way to go. It is better for your dog to only learn one command in a session or even two sessions, than to learn four commands at a go and remember none of them during the next session.
- Teaching another command before the dog has successfully mastered and practiced the previous one taught.
- Having too many people trying to train your Poodle.
- Not revising commands that the dog has already learnt to help its memory.
Making these mistakes can hinder or stop your Poodle’s training progress. Confusion might set in and the dog might resist any future attempts at training. If it is obvious that you cannot train your dog by yourself, it would be wise to seek professional assistance. There are trainers who have years of experience in training even the most stubborn canine. However, if you have decided to have a go at it yourself, remember that the keys to Poodle training are consistency and patience.