In training, not all puppies have the same learning; some learn fast, while others have slow wit. You have to incorporate techniques whenever you are training your pooch for basic commands and good manners. This is to ensure that they will learn these tricks well, and they will remember it every time you signal them to do it.
One such technique is the Puppy time-out that you can use when you are training your pup. It helps in managing your doggy’s inappropriate behavior, especially during training sessions. Examples of behavior that you can stop with time-outs are too much excitement and barking.
What are Puppy Time-outs?
Just like with children, time-outs also work with puppies. It is when you put your mutt to a more confined space compared to where they were before. In this space, they can’t repeat the behavior you were trying to control or prevent.
After calming down and lowering their excitement, they can play with you again. Usually, it is an area isolated from the crowd, but can be easily seen within the room.
Contrary to known belief, time-outs can be applied to all puppies during training. Even if they are already adults, you can use time-outs to stop their inappropriate behaviors. These behaviors may include nipping, biting, loud barking, hyperactivity, and many more. This is an excellent way to prevent these behaviors from being their habits.
Time-outs should not be used as a punishment but should only be used as a time for your puppy to relax and relieve their excitement. Do not use puppy time-outs in case you get mad at them for something that they did.
They will not understand the context that time-out, so avoids doing it. Time-outs are just preventions from hyperactivity and unnecessary accidents that may happen.
How long should Puppy Time-outs last?
Normally, they should only last for a short time, enough to calm down your doggy. About 30 seconds to one minute would be enough for their cooling down period. However, longer time-outs are possible if you gave them something like a treat or a chew toy to distract them. Let them be there for a few minutes if possible risky situations may happen.
Make sure not to abandon them in their time-out area for a long time that they may feel upset and bored. Especially if you don’t have something that can distract or stimulate their brains, eating treats or playing with their chew toy would only last for a few minutes, so make sure that you observe them carefully.
How to Use Puppy Time-outs in Training?
There are two most appropriate situations where you should use puppy-time outs during their training sessions. When you encounter these two situations, make sure to optimize the use of the puppy time-out.
1. Teach them that when their inappropriate behavior starts, the fun stops
One scenario that should remember when to use puppy time-outs is when their undesirable behavior begins.
During training, and your pooch starts nipping at you, leave them alone in a room for a few seconds. After going back into the room, remember to reward them with every achievement that they get during the training.
Rewards like toys treat, or even compliments, would be a huge plus for them. Examples of desirable behavior are playing with their chew toy instead of nipping at you and staying in one spot. Such small things should be rewarded since this type of puppy time-out requires that.
2. Put your pooch in a time-out to stop an unwanted behavior
Once you notice that their unwanted behavior immediately escalates, use your time-outs to stop it. The time-outs were used in a way to prevent your puppy from exhibiting unwanted behavior and any accidents.
During this time-out, give them something as a distraction like a puzzle or a bone stick. This way, their excitement would go down, and they will focus their energy on what’s in front of them. This type of time-outs helps create a healthier habit for your puppy that they can carry as they grow old.
When is Puppy Time-outs effective?
Time-outs need a proper place and situation where you can implement an effective time-out. Not all situations call for a time-out, so here is a list of when you should use a time-out.
Time-outs are useful when:
1. Teaching them not to bite
When they start nipping at you, it is one of the times that you should put them to a time-out. Prevent the increase of their arousal by immediately putting them in their time-out area as soon as nipping starts.
2. Training them to calm down
During their playtime with you, or with other fur friends, sometimes it leads to excessive biting and jumping. Use your time-out to calm them down and keep them busy with a distraction on their time-out area. You can predict how this inappropriate behavior escalates, so observe them properly when training or even playing.
3. Telling them not to jump or bark for attention
Use your time-outs when behavior like jumping or barking for attention starts. It should be addressed immediately to prevent them from doing it by habit. Just walk away from the area or put them away from the area for a few seconds to cool down.
Time-outs are ineffective when:
1. Done as a punishment
Punishing your puppy with a time-out would only be a waste of time. They will not understand the context of staying in a corner just because they made a mistake. What’s best is just to reward them when they show good behavior.
2. Training them to be alone
Anxiety from being alone or being separated is common with doggies, so time-outs should not be used in this instance. Dogs are social animals, so you have to do this gradually if you want them to be independent. You don’t want your puppy to bark the whole time you are not in the house.
3. Potty training
If a bathroom accident happens, do not force them to stay in their time-out area. This does not solve the fact that your pooch forgets their potty area. You can observe their movements and take them out immediately to deal with their bathroom needs.