At an average weight range between 50 – 80 pounds, Golden retrievers will bring a whole lot of love to your family. Although they can be a little hyper, with the proper training, you will have a best friend who is loyal and obedient.
Golden Retriever Training Guide: Housebreaking
The key to housebreaking is establishing a schedule. Take them outside every morning and after they eat and drink when you are home. Then, take them out when you get home after work, preferably at the same time every day. Use positive reinforcement such as affection or treats to show they have done well when they go to the bathroom outside. It’s also a good idea to give some sort of ‘go potty’ command to reinforce the behavior. Then say, ‘good go potty’ when they do their business in the appropriate area.
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If they have an accident in the house, bring them outside immediately so they can learn inside is not acceptable. Also, be sure to clean up the mess right away as dogs will use the bathroom where they can smell it. Recognize signs your pup might need to go, such as pacing, whining, or scratching at the door and let them out to avoid accidents. (2)
Golden Retriever Training Guide: Crating
Crating a puppy helps them feel secure when you aren’t home. It’s not a place for punishment like a human “time out.” When used in this way, the crate becomes a scary place for a dog. It’s also safer for them as it keeps them from the danger of romping unsupervised and chewing on things they shouldn’t. The crate should be large enough for them to stand and turn around, but not large enough to go to the bathroom in one corner and then retreat to the other side to lie down. This defeats the purpose of training. Introduce the crate and leave the door open. Add a comfy blanket or cushion and a toy to make it welcoming.
Once your pup goes into the crate, close the door for a few minutes and then let them out. Slowly increase the time the door is closed so your pup gets accustomed to being there. At night, check on your pup every few hours to make sure they don’t need to use the bathroom. Stop providing water two hours before bedtime to reduce the urge to pee. Never over-crate your dog, as it may be harmful to them and make them depressed. Vary the length of time they are left in the crate, so they don’t expect to be let out after a specific amount of time. (2)
Golden Retriever Training Guide: Obedience
Obedience training should start between the ages of 7 to 8 weeks. The first step to training is naming your chum and teaching them to respond to their name. Repeat their name often and praise them when they respond. Golden retrievers are smart dogs and are eager to please. Affection is an important aspect of training for positive reinforcement. This lets them know you are happy, which encourages the behavior you want to see. Never try to train your pup when they are sleepy. This will just frustrate them and can have a negative effect on progress. Training should take place at home where there are fewer distractions. Be as clear and helpful as possible so your dog understands what is expected of them. Teach them basic commands such as sit, stay, and heel. These basics help teach them good behavior and can be used to keep them calm when socializing. (2)
When training your pup, assert yourself without using shouting or hitting. Using praise instead or negative reinforcement will teach them to obey without being afraid of you. Sticking to this golden retriever training guide will keep your pup happier and encourage proper behavior. Happy training! (2)