Puppies need rest. If they don’t get adequate rest, they are less able to focus on training and for sure, less able to retain whatever they’re being taught.
I don’t know how much rest your puppy will need, but if you pay close attention to his/her behavior, you’ll know pretty quickly. Some signs that they are not getting enough rest are: overexcitement, inability to focus, seeming to be stubborn but are just not up for the task because they haven’t gotten enough rest, sniffing out of context, and easily distracted to name a few.
A good routine to follow for puppies in training is stimulation for mind and body in the mornings, training 4-6 times throughout the day for short periods, maybe 5-10 minutes the first month, gradually adding time but not more than 15-20 per session after that initial month. Shorter training sessions help dogs continue to be enthusiastic and ready for more, later. Free choice exercise in the mornings, romps in the yard exploring their new turf, games like fetch and tug-o-war, puzzle games and then rest. Continue this pattern throughout the day and your pup will thrive.
It’s easy to go and go and go with your new pup but it’s actually not good to be stimulated for hours on end without adequate rest. Short training sessions, short exercise sessions and ample free exploration time will help you help your puppy to be eager for whatever’s next and will very likely rest quietly on their own without having to be crated. Remember, I’m not a fan of crate training.
The good news is you can get all your chores and work done while your puppy is resting.
About the author: Jill Breitner, is a professional dog trainer, award winning author, writing articles for Dogster, The Whole Dog Journal, Animal Wellness and her own blog. She is also a dog body language expert, loving and living her life on the west coast of the USA. She is the author of Dog Decoder, a smartphone app about dog body language recommended and used by veterinarians, shelters, trainers, educators and guardians worldwide. It’s available in iTunes and Google play. Jill, is Fear Free Certified and has been teaching gentle handling/basic husbandry skills to clients dogs for 40 years. She helps you to be your pets advocate for a happier and stress free life. She also does online dog training, worldwide. Join Jill on her Dog Decoder Facebook page