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Train your puppy in just 10 minutes a day

With hundreds of online courses from top experts to 24/7 online trainer support, we're here to support your puppy training journey every step of the way. 

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Strelka LTD, trading as Fluffy, Firm Reference No. 986188, is an appointed representative of Innovative Risk Labs Ltd, which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority, Firm Reference No. 609155.

How do dogs learn?

Understanding how dogs learn is a cornerstone of effective puppy training. Grasping these principles can help you guide your puppy through their learning journey, ensuring they grow into well-behaved and happy adult dogs.

  • Observation and Mimicry: Puppies learn a great deal through observation. They often mimic behaviors of other dogs and their human family members, which is a natural part of their learning process.

  • Positive Reinforcement: This method is integral in dog training. Rewarding puppies with treats, praise, or play for desired behaviors encourages them to repeat these actions.

  • Consistency and Repetition: Regular and consistent training sessions are vital. Puppies thrive on routine and repeated practice helps solidify their learning.

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What are the stages of 
puppy’s growth?

1

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2

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3

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Neonatal Period (0-2 weeks)

Characteristics: Puppies are born blind, deaf, and toothless. They rely entirely on their mother for warmth and nourishment.


Developmental Focus: This period is primarily about physical growth. Puppies spend most of their time sleeping and feeding.

Transitional Period (2-4 weeks)

Characteristics: Puppies begin to open their eyes and ears. They start to stand, walk, and wag their tails.


Developmental Focus: Sensory development is key during this stage. Puppies become more aware of their surroundings and start to interact with littermates.

Socialization Period (4-12 weeks)

Characteristics: This is a critical period for social development. Puppies become more playful and curious.


Developmental Focus: Exposure to various people, animals, sounds, and environments is vital. Positive experiences during this stage are crucial for preventing fear and aggression in the future.

Juvenile Period (3-6 months)

Characteristics: Physical growth continues rapidly. Puppies begin teething and may become more energetic and independent.


Developmental Focus: Continued socialization and more structured training are important. Basic obedience and house training should be reinforced.

5

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Adolescence (6-18 months)

Characteristics: Puppies reach sexual maturity. Behavioral changes may occur, influenced by hormonal changes.


Developmental Focus: Continuing training and socialization are crucial. Consistency in rules and expectations helps manage potential behavioral issues.

Adulthood (18 months onwards)

Characteristics: Dogs are considered adults. Their growth rate slows down, and they typically display a more mature behavior pattern.


Developmental Focus: Adult dogs can continue to learn and be trained, although they may require more time to pick up new skills compared to their younger selves.

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Train your puppy with Fluffy

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Onlne courses

Access a selection of more than 100 training courses led by professionals, offered for free.

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Personalised growth plans

Receive a tailored development schedule for your dog, designed on a weekly basis by top global specialists.

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24/7 pet trainer

Our team of expert trainers and behaviorists are available at all times to provide advice and assistance.

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First things to do before the training begins

1. Establish a
Routine

Create a daily routine for your puppy. This includes regular times for meals, walks, playtime, and potty breaks. A consistent schedule helps your puppy feel secure and learn faster.

2. Puppy-Proof Your Home

Ensure your home is safe for a curious puppy. Remove or secure anything that could be harmful, like toxic plants, loose wires, or small objects they could swallow.

3. Build Trust and Bonding

Spend time with your puppy playing, cuddling, and just being together. This strengthens your bond and helps your puppy feel secure with you.

4. Socialization

Safely introduce your puppy to different people, animals, sounds, and environments. Positive experiences during this critical socialization window can prevent fear and aggression later in life.

What are the puppy training techniques?

1. Positive Reinforcement

Principle: Rewards good behavior with treats, praise, or play. This encourages the puppy to repeat the behavior.


Application: Use it to teach basic commands like sit, stay, come, and during house training.

2. Clicker
Trainin
g

Principle: Uses a clicker to mark the exact moment a puppy performs a desired behavior, followed by a reward.


Application: Helpful for shaping new behaviors and refining existing ones.

3. Crate
Training

Principle: Uses a crate to create a safe, personal space for the puppy, aiding in house training and preventing destructive behavior when unsupervised.


Application: Introduce the crate gradually and ensure it's always associated with positive experiences.

4. Leash Training

Principle: Teaches a puppy to walk on a leash without pulling.


Application: Start with short sessions using a harness and leash, rewarding calm behavior and gradually increasing the duration and distractions.

5. Socialization

Principle: Exposes the puppy to various people, animals, environments, and experiences to promote well-adjusted behavior.


Application: Organize controlled socialization sessions and gradually introduce new experiences.

6. Potty Training

Principle: Establishes a routine and specific area for the puppy to eliminate.


Application: Take the puppy to the designated potty area regularly, especially after meals, playtime, and waking up.

Dos and don'ts of puppy training

Dos

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Do Use Positive Reinforcement: Always use treats, praise, and play to reward good behavior. Positive reinforcement is the most effective and humane training method.

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Do Be Consistent: Use the same commands and rules consistently. Consistency helps your puppy understand and learn faster.

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Do Start Early: Begin training as soon as you bring your puppy home. Early training sets the foundation for good behavior.

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Do Keep Training Sessions Short and Fun: Puppies have short attention spans. Keep training sessions brief (5-10 minutes) and enjoyable.

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Do Socialize Your Puppy: Expose your puppy to different people, animals, and environments to develop a well-adjusted and confident dog.

Don'ts

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Don't Use Physical Punishment: Physical punishment can lead to fear, anxiety, and aggression. It's ineffective and can damage your relationship with your puppy.

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Don't Yell or Use Intimidation: This can scare your puppy and hinder their learning and trust in you.

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Don't Be Inconsistent: Sending mixed signals can confuse your puppy and slow down the learning process.

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Don't Rush Training: Trying to teach too much too quickly can overwhelm your puppy. Go at a pace that suits them.

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Don't Use Too Many Treats: While treats are a great training tool, relying on them too much can lead to obesity. Use them sparingly.

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How much is puppy training?

The cost of dog training can vary widely depending on several factors, including the type of training, the trainer's experience and location, and the specific needs of your dog. Here's a general overview of what you might expect:

  1. Group Classes: Typically, these can cost from £40 to £150 for a series of weekly classes over 4-8 weeks. Ideal for basic obedience and socialization.

  2. Private Sessions: For one-on-one training, the cost can vary from £25 to £80 per hour, depending on the trainer's experience and the specific training needs.

  3. Board and Train Programs: These intensive programs, where your dog stays with the trainer, can range from £400 to £2,000 or more, depending on the length and nature of the program.

  4. Online Training Courses: Online courses can be a more budget-friendly option, with prices ranging from free for basic guidance to around £80 for comprehensive programs.

  5. Puppy Training Classes: Focused on puppies, these classes usually fall in the same price range as general group classes.

With Fluffy pet insurance, you get dog training for free!

What is the first thing you should train your puppy?

1. House Training

4. Heel

7. Bite Inhibition

10. Leave It

2. Sit

5. Down

8. Crate Training

11. Noise Desensitisation

3. Leash walking

6. Socialisation

9. Name Recognition

12. Impulse Control

How to prevent unwanted behaviours in puppies?

Preventing unwanted behaviors in puppies involves a combination of proactive training, consistent reinforcement of desired behaviors, and understanding the needs and signals of your dog. Here's how you can address and prevent common unwanted behaviors:

1. Early Socialization

  • Importance: Expose your puppy to different people, animals, and environments early on. Proper socialization can prevent fears and aggressive behavior later in life.

  • Approach: Introduce new experiences gradually and positively, ensuring your puppy feels safe.

2. Consistent Training

  • Consistency: Use the same commands and rules consistently. Inconsistent commands or rules can confuse your puppy and reinforce unwanted behaviors.

  • Routine: Establish a routine for feeding, walks, playtime, and toilet breaks. A structured routine helps prevent anxiety and destructive behavior.

3. Positive Reinforcement

  • Reward Good Behavior: Reinforce good behavior with treats, praise, or playtime. This encourages your puppy to repeat these behaviors.

  • Ignore Unwanted Behavior: Avoid giving attention (even negative attention) to behaviors like excessive barking or jumping. Instead, reward the puppy when they stop the unwanted behavior.

4. Redirecting Behavior

  • Substitution: Redirect unwanted behaviors like chewing or biting by offering an appropriate alternative, such as chew toys.

  • Distraction: Distract your puppy from unwanted behaviors (like digging or barking) with a more desirable activity.

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What is basic dog training?

Basic dog training refers to the fundamental training that every dog should receive to ensure they are well-behaved, sociable, and safe. This training typically covers essential commands, socialization, and basic manners. Here's an overview of what basic dog training usually includes:
 

  • Sit: Teaches the dog to sit on command, which is a fundamental behavior for control and calmness.

  • Stay: Instructs the dog to remain in a particular spot until released, important for safety and discipline.

  • Come: Trains the dog to come to you when called, crucial for recall and preventing potentially dangerous situations.

  • Leave It: Tells the dog to ignore or drop whatever they are focused on, which is essential for preventing them from picking up harmful objects or food.

  • Heel: Teaches the dog to walk beside you without pulling on the leash, important for enjoyable and controlled walks.

At what age should you start training a puppy?

It's recommended to start training a puppy as early as possible, typically around 8 weeks of age. At this young age, puppies are highly receptive to learning and can begin absorbing basic commands and good behavior habits.

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  • Is pet insurance worth it?
    Pet insurance is a valuable safety net, covering unexpected medical expenses. It provides peace of mind, ensuring your pet gets necessary care. It's especially beneficial for pets prone to health issues or accidents.
  • What is the cost of pet insurance?
    The cost depends on factors like your pet's age, breed, and coverage level. Basic plans are more budget-friendly but offer limited coverage. Premium plans cost more but provide comprehensive protection.
  • What pet insurance do vets recommend?
    Vets typically recommend comprehensive policies covering accidents, illnesses, and routine care. They suggest looking for plans with good coverage for chronic conditions. It's also advised to check for policies with minimal exclusions.
  • What does pet insurance cover?
    Accidents: Injuries and emergency treatments. Illnesses: From minor sickness to chronic diseases. Routine Care: Some policies include wellness visits and vaccinations.
  • Pros and cons of pet insurance
    Pros: Financial safety net for unexpected costs. Access to necessary treatments. Peace of mind for pet owners. Cons: Monthly premiums can add up. Exclusions like pre-existing conditions. Potential deductibles and co-pays.
  • Who has the best pet insurance?
    The best pet insurance varies based on individual needs. It's recommended to compare policies for coverage, exclusions, and customer reviews. Look for a balance of cost, coverage, and customer service reputation.
  • Which pet insurance that covers everything?
    No pet insurance covers 'everything,' but comprehensive plans come closest. They typically cover accidents, illnesses, and some wellness procedures. Always check for exclusions like pre-existing conditions and routine care limits.
  • How much is a vet visit for a dog without insurance?
    Costs can range widely, from basic consultation fees to hundreds for complex treatments. Emergency visits or surgeries without insurance can be particularly costly. Prices vary based on the procedure and location of the clinic.
  • What is a good annual limit for pet insurance UK?
    A good annual limit depends on your pet's potential health needs. In the UK, limits typically range from £1,000 to over £15,000. Higher limits offer more coverage but come with higher premiums.
  • Do vets charge more if you have insurance?
    Vets generally charge the same rates regardless of insurance status. Insurance helps owners afford more comprehensive care. It's more about coverage than cost differential at the vet.
  • What’s third party liability pet insurance?
    This covers costs if your pet causes injury to a person or damage to property. It's particularly important for dog owners. This insurance is a safeguard against legal liabilities.
  • How do vaccinations affect pet insurance?
    Keeping vaccinations up to date can lower pet insurance premiums. It reflects responsible pet ownership and preventive health care. Some insurers require up-to-date vaccinations for coverage.
  • What’s co-insurance or co-payment?
    Co-insurance is the percentage of a claim you pay after the excess is deducted. It's a way to share the cost of care between the insurer and the pet owner. Higher co-insurance can mean lower premiums.
  • Why are pedigree animals more expensive to insure?
    Pedigree pets often have a higher risk of inherited health conditions. They may also have higher value, increasing insurance costs. Insurers consider these factors when determining premiums.
  • Does my address matter for my pet insurance price?
    Yes, your location can affect insurance costs. Areas with higher vet fees typically have higher premiums. The risk of theft or straying can also vary by location.
  • Will property be covered if my pet damages it?
    Pet insurance usually doesn't cover damage to your own property. Third-party liability can cover damage your pet causes to others' property. Check your policy for specific exclusions.
  • Does pet insurance cover ‘cherry eye’ in dogs?
    Many insurers cover ‘cherry eye’ treatment if it's not pre-existing. Coverage depends on the specific policy and insurer. Always check for breed-specific condition exclusions.
  • Does pet insurance cover BOAS surgery?
    Coverage for BOAS (Brachycephalic Obstructive Airway Syndrome) surgery varies. Some insurers cover it if it’s not a pre-existing condition. It's important to check your policy's specifics.
  • How does my pet’s age affect pet insurance?
    Older pets often have higher insurance premiums. They are more likely to develop health issues. Age can also affect the availability of certain coverages.
  • Do I need to pay an excess for pet insurance?
    Most pet insurance policies require paying an excess. The excess is the amount paid out-of-pocket before insurance covers the rest. Choosing a higher excess can lower premiums.
  • Does pet insurance include kennel or cattery fees?
    Some policies cover kennel or cattery fees if the owner is hospitalised. This coverage is typically part of a more comprehensive plan. Always check the policy details for such benefits.
  • Can I get cover that starts immediately?
    Some insurers offer immediate cover for accidents. Illness coverage often has a waiting period. Check with your insurer for specific start times of coverage.
  • Is it better to pay for insurance annually or monthly?
    Paying annually can sometimes offer a discount. Monthly payments provide easier budgeting. Compare options to see which suits your financial situation best.
  • What should I do if my pet goes missing?
    Notify your insurer as many provide assistance for lost pets. Check if your policy includes advertising or reward costs. Also, inform local vets and animal shelters.
  • Will pet insurance cover life-threatening injuries or illness?
    Most pet insurance policies cover life-threatening conditions. This includes emergency surgeries and critical care. Check your policy for any limitations or exclusions.
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