HOW TO TRAIN YOUR BEAGLE
Dog training is an essential stage in the life of any dog and its owner. And, nice though they may be, Beagles do need solid training to compensate for their elusive and stubborn side. Nonetheless, this dog breed is very intelligent and will have no trouble learning new things.
What Age Should I Start Training My Beagle?
The answer is simple: as soon as you welcome your new puppy home! You can start training your Beagle as early as 2 months old. It’s important to lay the ground rules and set boundaries early on so that your Beagle knows their place within the family. Although Beagles are not normally dominant in nature, they need to understand that you are the leader of the pack. Your Beagle is most likely to learn during the first few months of its life, so take the opportunity to set up a solid training plan, based on a positive approach.
Be sure to ban anything from the start that you wouldn't want your dog doing once they grow up. It’s easier to grant permission later than to withdraw permission granted too early. However, you're in luck! Beagles are relatively easy to train. The Beagle’s temperament is gentle, sociable, affectionate, and kind, but it can also be stubborn and difficult to handle if you don’t fully understand how. Before you begin training your dog, make sure you understand the basics of dog training.
Beagle Training Tips
Dog training requires certain prior knowledge and a solid base. Keep in mind that you should never use violence with your dog, neither verbal nor physical. And this is true for all dog breeds. Training your Beagle should be based on reward, not punishment. Reinforce good behaviour with cuddles, or playtime. You can also take advantage of your Beagle’s greedy nature and bribe them with treats, just be careful not to over-do it to avoid any risk of obesity. Treats should be used as a last resort! Nevertheless, all dogs respond much better to this kind of approach than to coercive training. Poor dog training could make your Beagle aggressive and difficult to handle.
Always follow these three main principles when it comes to dog training: patience, coherence, and consistency!
Patience: This is all the more important for this stubborn dog breed. The Beagle is not always willing to do as it’s told. So repeat things over and over, and learn to accept it when a training session is cut short. Teach your Beagle one command at a time, repeat until they've fully grasped it, then move on to the next one. Obedience requires patience.
Coherence: Keep your commands short and easy to remember, and stick to them along the way. Each action or request must correspond to a specific word, which is easy for your dog to understand. Set limits and make it clear to your puppy that you are in charge.
Consistency: The only thing that will bring concrete results is repetition over time. Your Beagle cannot be expected to understand everything immediately, no matter how smart they may be. Set aside fifteen minutes a day for training sessions and repeat each lesson as many times as necessary until your four-legged friend understands what you want.
Finally, training is easier with a puppy, but that doesn't mean that it’s impossible to train an adult dog. On the contrary, Beagles can learn at any age. You just need to take into account your dog's past. They may have gone through trauma, for example, in which case you will need to exercise caution and great patience in helping them to unlearn bad habits. If in doubt, you can always hire a professional dog trainer to help.
Which Basic Commands Should I Teach My Beagle?
It's important to teach your dog a few basic commands as early as possible to guarantee their safety.
Come: This command helps you keep your dog safe under any circumstance. It allows you to call them back to you whenever you see that they’re in danger. And this is especially important for the stubborn Beagle, who has a tendency to run off. To teach your Beagle to come to you, start in an enclosed, secure area. If need be, ask a family member or friend to help you. Take turns calling your dog and congratulating them profusely when they come towards you.
Drop it: Your dog must know how to let go of something they’re holding in their mouth when you ask them to. This will prevent your Beagle from swallowing anything and everything, especially bits of extra food they’ve stolen and want to eat. This is a very greedy dog breed, prone to obesity. And, although the Beagle’s small size is less impressive than a large dog, it will still hurt if they bite you. As such, they need to know how to drop something quickly.
Stop: Thanks to this command, you can tell your dog to stop what they’re doing or ask them to wait for you, for example. It will take a bit of work on your end, as Beagles are not always willing to listen. Most hunting dogs have a strong character. This command should not be interpreted as a punishment by your dog. You need to keep a positive approach and also reward your pooch for stopping whatever they were doing.
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