Tips For Training a Chihuahua
Tips For Training a Chihuahua, Chihuahuas are fun-loving, intelligent and affectionate animals, but they can also be aggressive if not trained properly. Many owners feel that, because of its size, the Chihuahua is all sweetness. However, spoiling a dog of any size can cause behavioral problems and a snappy Chihuahua can be just as difficult to manage as an aggressive Doberman. So, to ensure that your little bundle of joy is happy and a pleasure to be around, here are some training tips.
1. Start Young
A Chihuahua can live until the ripe old age of 18, but the first few months are the most important in terms of training. Obviously, as with any animal, or child for that matter, dogs are most receptive to learning when they are young, this is also the best time to assert your dominance over your pet. In order to have a happy dog, it needs to know that you are the boss. If your dog does not perceive you to be the leader of the pack, he, or she, can become very stressed. Therefore, training your puppy to recognize you as the alpha member of the family should be the first step in your dog’s training.
2. Be Prepared to Dedicate the Time to Teaching Your Puppy
In the first few months of your puppy’s life with you, it is crucial that you can afford the time to housetrain and obedience train him, or her. No dog will learn how to behave correctly on its own. Therefore, a little time and patience is needed on your part. As mentioned above, the Chihuahua is a very intelligent breed, so, training should not be an arduous task and it is a wonderful opportunity for you and your dog to forge a bond that will last a lifetime.
3. Praise Good Behavior, but Don’t Spoil Your Chihuahua
Obviously, when a dog obeys a command, it is important to offer lots of praise for the positive behavior. However, some owners can find themselves spoiling a Chihuahua. In part, this may be because the Chihuahua is the plaything of a certain type of celebrity, leading to a range of products designed to pamper your pooch. Of course, it is perfectly natural to want to spoil your dog, but it is important that this does not overshadow the dog’s perception of its place in the hierarchy. Therefore, treats and rewards should only be given when your dog has done something to earn them.
4. Socialize Your Chihuahua While he/she is Still Young
Smaller dogs are known for a propensity towards aggression with other people and animals. Therefore, it is important to ensure that your dog is socialized with people of all ages and other animals from an early age. If you are having trouble with a dog that is aggressive towards visitors, it is a good idea to address this quickly. The best way to resolve the problem is to have visitors bring a treat for your dog. However, your Chihuahua should only receive the treat if he, or she, has obeyed your commands to sit and stay. Soon, you should be able to phase out the treats, because you don’t want your dog to become overweight.
They key to a happy well-behaved dog is consistency in its training. In other words, if you do not want your dog to climb on your couch, from the very beginning do not allow him, or her, to do so. Many owners see a new puppy as a novelty and will allow behavior that they later find unacceptable. This will only confuse your Chihuahua. So, make sure that you establish house rules and stick to them.
Chihuahuas are very popular pets and can make wonderful companions. Despite their small size, they have a very large character. To ensure that your dog is as happy and healthy as possible, good training is imperative. If you have a Chihuahua with behavioral problems, you may wish to seek advice from your local veterinarian or obedience school.