You dreamed of bringing home Lassie, but you may have a dog that acts more like Cujo! Don’t worry, with proper techniques even the worst dog can learn to be well behaved.

The walk can be very hard to master, but with the right practice and patience, your dog will be walking right by your side in no time. Firstly, do not allow them to leave the door first. When you put his leash on, make him sit first or give you his paw. In short, some sort of obedience to get him in the spirit. Then, when you are actually outside, if he begins to walk in front of you, give the leash a quick tug to assert yourself as the one in charge.

Start potty training your new puppy immediately. Take the puppy to the designated toilet area in your garden as soon as he wakes up in the morning, after eating, after a nap, and before bedtime. Choose a certain command that indicates he needs to relieve himself. When he does, don’t forget to praise him highly, and offer a treat as a reward.

Puppies tend to nip as a way of communicating, and this should be curbed. It is normally a signal that they want to play. If you observe a puppy with his litter mates, this is the way that they interact with each other. When your puppy nips you, say ‘no’ firmly, and immediately give him a toy to play with.

While training your dog, observe his body language and general behavior closely. Look for signs of enthusiasm. Is his tail wagging? Does he follow you around? This shows he’s ready to learn. If you see your dog is scared, bored or nervous, stop what you are doing and reevaluate.

Watch your demeanor when you are training your dog. You need to remain calm, but assertive at all times. Do not show anger or raise your voice. If you do this, your dog will require you to shout commands in order to follow them, if this is how he is trained.

When training your dog, be sure to enforce every command you give. This helps your dog understand that they must listen to you when you give a command. If your dog learns to think that he can can ignore you when you give a command, it can be very difficult to correct this.

Refrain from using higher end training gadgets, such as shock collar devices. These devices are expensive and do not always work as well as you would expect them to. Plus, using devices like shock collars can stifle your dog and discourage even good behavior. This technique can yield negative results.

Some training techniques advise that you give your dog a treat as a reward for good performance. This is a great method, but be sure you’re not giving your dog a treat every time they perform the task. If you do, they come to expect the treat each time and when you stop with the treats, the obedience stops as well. Instead give the dog a treat randomly so that they don’t begin to expect when they get a treat.

Most owners are amazed at how easy it is to incorporate basic dog training into their life and how quickly they start to notice results. So if your dogs relationship with you seems strained, try using these tips.