Excitable, brave, and friendly… it’s hard not to love a Dalmatian. Especially when they are pups! Training them can take a little time if you are new to the breed and some of the common traits of the breed. In this article we are going to discuss Dalmatian puppies. We’ll talk about how to train your Dalmatian puppy, behaviors to watch for, and more. If you are ready, let’s discuss training a Dalmatian puppy!
How to raise a Dalmatian puppy
If this is your first experience with a Dalmatian then you are certainly in for a treat! The first thing that we would like to point out for you is this: Your Dalmatian is going to be constantly watching to see how you react to various behaviors. Dalmatians are especially affirmation-minded and so the way that you react when your Dalmatian does something is going to be very important. If you laugh when your pup chews your roommate’s shoe, for instance, then you’ve just told them that ‘chewing shoes is alright!’. You are going to want to be very aware of what you might be unintentionally communicating because your Dalmatian is going to notice EVERYTHING.
Is a 12 week old Dalmatian puppy too young to train?
Absolutely not. A 12 week old Dalmatian is quite ready and willing to learn and 10 – 12 weeks is a great time for weaning a Dalmatian from it’s mother. This grants them enough time to learn socialization with their brothers, sisters, and mother, so that they know how hard is okay to bite, how to play with other dogs, and how to get along in general with other dogs and with people. This is why you want to wait a while to wean a pup. A Dalmatian puppy that is just over a month old still needs time to learn these valuable skills and if weaned too early can be at risk for developing biting behavior or becoming codependent on you.
Training a 3 month old Dalmatian puppy
Now that we have discussed socialization a bit and the importance of weaning at the right age, let’s discuss training. So, how does one train a Dalmatian? The first thing that you will want to get in the habit of is encouraging good behavior and discouraging bad behavior. By encouraging good behavior we don’t just mean giving them a treat when they do something right (although you should do this early on, you can always wean them off the treats later when they learn how to behave). Encouraging good behavior also means correcting them as needed. If you catch your dog chewing on something that you don’t want them to chew on, you should gently but firmly tell them ‘no” and follow this up by giving them one of their toys which it is acceptable to chew. If your dog is pulling at the leash and trying to get to other dogs, instead of simply pulling them back and ending up in a doggie ‘tug of war’, you should teach them something else that they can do, such as sitting.
Teaching your Dalmatian to Sit
‘Sit’ is one of the easiest commands to teach. Simply wait until you catch your Dalmatian in a sitting position, say ‘Sit!’ and give them a treat. Do this a few times and then when they are standing, show them the treat and say ‘sit!’ and do not give it to them until they sit. Be sure to offer praise to go along with that treat and very soon they will associate the command with sitting down.
Teaching your Dalmatian to come to their name
This is another very basic and easy thing for them to learn. Simply hold up a treat and call your Dalmatian’s name. When they come to you, give them the treat. Try to stick to just using their name at first so that it sticks properly. For instance, don’t say ‘Come here, Charles!’ and ‘Get over here, Charles’. Mixing up other words is a no-no for now, just focus on getting your dog to come to their name and they will learn what they need.
Teaching your Dalmatian to find a toy
A fun game that you can play with your Dalmatian is ‘find the toy’. It starts off simply. Get a Kong toy (which is a rubber dog toy with an empty cavity that you can stuff treats into for distraction or motivation), and while the dog is watching you, put it behind something in the backyard which is not very far away. Tell your pup to ‘find it!’ and they will run to the toy and start happily chewing it and eating the treat inside. After this,
” Tell your pup to ‘find it!’ and they will run to the toy”
start going back further in the yard (or in a park, if you like) and repeating the process. When your dog gets good at finding the treat at a further distance then you can try the same game, but this time with hiding the toy in advance. After doing this, take your dog into the yard, and simply say ‘Find it!’. Your dog should now start looking for the item on their own. If your dog doesn’t know what to do after a few times of reciting the command then feel free to walk to the hiding place, show them the toy, and try a few more rehearsal runs. Eventually your pup will find the item on their own!
Today we have discussed Dalmatian puppies, when to wean them, some things to watch for, and how to teach them a few basic tricks. You will want to be very patient with your new best friend during this process. Dalmatians have a lot of energy and all of it is going to be focused on you, so you are going to need to exercise your patience quite a lot to get them in the mood for proper training. Limit your training sessions to 3 to 5 minutes to keep their interest and they’ll be performing tricks like a pro in no time!