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How To Train a 2-Month Old Puppy (Best Tips)

March 4, 2021

Having a puppy sure is nice, isn’t it?

All the unconditional love, excitement, energy….

But good things often take work, and this is one of those cases.

In this article we’ll be talking about how to train your new 2 month old puppy to be a happy, well behaved dog that will thrive and be a pure enjoyment to you and your family.

Why You Must Train Your Puppy As Early As Possible 

Two months is around the age that most puppies are adopted. They need at least this much time with their mothers and littermates to learn proper social behavior. 

Therefore, around two months is about the time that you’ll likely take over training your puppy. Puppies are adorable at this age, and they’re wide open to learning. You can have a lot of fun training your two-month-old puppy.

Puppy Fear Period

Puppies go through two fear periods, the first from around 8 – 10 weeks. That means that you’ll be getting your new puppy just as they are entering their first fear period. 

During this time, puppies will be more apprehensive about new things. You will need to give your puppy confidence that you have their best interests in mind and won’t let any harm befall them. It is important that your puppy not have negative experiences during this time. 

Sometimes puppies will form lifelong conclusions based on negative experiences that they have when they are going through a fear period. Throughout the training, but especially at this critical stage, it is essential that you use gentle and positive training techniques. Never use harsh training tactics or do anything that could hurt your puppy’s trust in you. 

how to train a 2 month old puppy
2-month-old puppy

Start Consistent Training Immediately

It is essential to train your puppy from the moment you bring them home. It is much more difficult to undo things that you didn’t want your puppy to learn than it is to guide them correctly in the first place. Make sure that everyone in your family agrees to the house rules for the puppy. Ideally, this conversation will have taken place before the puppy ever comes home.

Even small deviations, like one person feeding the puppy under the table, can result in long-term behavioral patterns, which may be undesirable for the rest of the family. Make sure that your entire family understands how important it is to stick to the rules and what the rules are. 

It might not be a bad idea to hang a copy of the puppy rules somewhere that everyone in the family can see it clearly to remember. Sometimes training the humans in the family is more challenging than training the puppy. 

What To Train a 2 Month Old Puppy First?

There is no single first thing that you should train your puppy. All training should be integrated and varied to keep things interesting. Your puppy will be learning their name and to come when called at the same time as they are mastering first commands like sit. 

At the same time, your puppy will be grasping the finer details of potty training. It should come as no surprise that your puppy is exhausted at the end of the day when you consider just how much they learn every day. 

How to Teach a Puppy its Name

One of the first things that you’ll want to teach your puppy is how to understand their name. You want your puppy to come when they are called, even when there are lots of distractions. Begin building a strong positive connection for your puppy to its name from the beginning. Here are some steps for how. 

  1. Choose a name. The best names for dogs are usually two syllables, easy to say, and distinguishable from any other names in the household or often said words, especially commands. For instance, if you use the word “No” to correct, you don’t want your dog to be named “Joe” because they may think you are correcting them when you say the name. 
  2. Associate the name with good things. Say your dog’s name and give them a treat. Keep doing this randomly throughout the day, until your dog looks at you expectantly whenever you say their name.
  3. Teach that saying the name means to come. Begin saying your dog’s name from a distance so they’ll have to come for their treat. Increase the distance until you are calling your puppy from all over the house and yard. 
  4. Increase distractions. Call your puppy when there are distractions such that they may not want to come at first. Keep the distractions minimal enough that you puppy will come, but strong enough to make them hesitate. 
  5. Keep increasing distractions. Keep building the number of distractions to teach your puppy to come to you despite distractions.

How to Teach Your Dog to Give You Their Paw

Teach your dog to recognize your command word and gesture

Dogs cannot learn to talk, but they can learn to recognize and act on individual words, even phrases.

Always use the same word for the same action. They will associate your command with your gesture and they will then do their part.

Always use the same hand, because sometimes using one hand and sometimes the other, will only confuse your dog and you will not get the results you expect.

The command word you choose doesn’t matter, just remember to be consistent.

  1. Use the word you chose and tell your dog to sit
  2. At the same time, take their paw.
  3. Use a pleasant tone of voice.
  4. When you have the paw, give your dog the treat.

The first time puppies may not understand your intent, but they always end up doing it.

Never exhaust your dog. It has to be fun for both of you.

You may also try this:

Let you dog first smell the treat.

Put your hand with the treat close to the dog’s nose.

Your puppy will try to open your hand with its paw.

Open your hand and let your dog enjoy the reward.

After a few times. they’ll understand and learn the trick.

Don’t forget to show that you are satisfied with his/her behaviour.

A nice trick is to try to teach your dog to use the other paw when you use another word or phrase, that simple training improvement will amaze your friends & family.

How To Teach Your Puppy Not To Jump On People

People often feel bothered or even scared when dogs jump on them. And, indeed, it can be dangerous in some situations.

The good news is that this behavior can be corrected, and the sooner you teach your dog not to jump on people, the better.

Why do puppies jump? The reason is simple.

They do it because they want attention. They want you to like them.

So, the obvious thing to do is to teach them, that there is a better way to be noticed: to be in a sitting position.

How do we teach them? As always, simply prevent unwanted behavior and encourage acceptable behavior.

To stop jumping, practice the simple “sit” command in different situations.

  1. Have your puppy sit for everything he likes, like getting food, fetching a ball or toy, or before opening a door, etc.
  2. He will soon associate sitting with good things in his life and also as a way to communicate with you.
  3. He will learn that is better to sit than to.

Keep in mind: don’t ever reward jumping, except when that is exactly what he should do.

If you try to catch or hug him when he jumps, then he will get the wrong message and he will think you liked the jump.

Instead, when your puppy jumps, step forward and say “Off!” in a friendly but firm voice.

Use “Off” in this situation, because “Down” is normally used when instructing the dog to lie down.

Alternatively, turn away from him and go in the opposite direction when he still jumps or intends to do it.

As usual, remember to praise him when he is sitting down instead of jumping.

He needs a reward from you.

Give him a treat and praise him, when he puts his four paws on the floor.

Now tell him again to “sit” and offer praise and a treat as a reward for good behavior.

And of course, if your puppy doesn’t get it yet, ignore him and repeat the exercise, perhaps several times.

Ultimately he will understand that jumping is not the right thing to do to get attention, and you can then reward him.

If you have some friends who love dogs or have their own puppies, then you may ask them to take part in the training.

They will know that training takes time, but they will love to help you and your puppy.

And last but not least

When your friends come over

Remember to keep him on a leash until the situation calms down, and you can then let him get acquainted with your visitors.

Be assured, he will learn to stop jumping on your friends and be just cute and adorable.

Training Self-Control

You can have fun teaching your puppy all kinds of tricks, but one lesson that should run throughout your training is self-control. Two-month-old puppies have very little self-control. They must develop it through deliberate training. 

Asking your dog to sit and stay is a great way to build self-control. Playing games that make your puppy wait for a reward is another good technique for self-control development. 

You want your dog to have the control to not jump on people, grab food, and do other undesirable behaviors regardless of size, but self-control training may be especially important for large-breed dogs. 

Can a 2-Month-Old Puppy be Potty Trained?

One of the most common questions we get is “Can I potty train a puppy at 2 months old”?

The answer is YES!

Potty training is one of the most important aspects of training your puppy. Elimination accidents are frustrating and destructive. No matter how well your dog behaves otherwise, you’ll have a hard time not being irritated if your dog persistently has potty accidents. 

Potty training can begin as soon as you bring your puppy home. Some dogs are easier to potty train at two months than others. Larger breed dogs may have larger bladders at this age, and therefore be able to hold their urine better than small breed dogs at the same age. 

Some breeds are easier to potty train than others. Italian Greyhounds are notorious for being extremely difficult to potty train, while Shiba Inus are said to nearly housetrain themselves. Each individual is different. 

Can you potty train a 2 month old puppy
2-month-old puppy

The Fastest Way to House Train Your Puppy:

If you want to housetrain your puppy as quickly and effectively as possible, be ready to put some time in. Effective potty training requires constant vigilance. Every mistake sets back your goals and means that it will take longer to train your dog. Sometimes the fastest way to train your puppy is to make compromises to make training easier for your dog. 

Set Aside Some Time

You probably won’t be able to take off of work for the entire time that you are potty training your puppy. Still, this is a time that you should try to devote to your puppy as much as possible. Don’t plan any trips, since going somewhere or staying with a sitter can disrupt training. Try to limit the number of engagements that will distract you from potty training. Constant vigilance is needed for potty training, especially at the beginning. 

How to Correct Your Puppy

Correction should not be harsh. A simple, “nuh uh” while you remove your dog and put them outside to eliminate is sufficient. When your dog finishes eliminating outside, praise them. 

Your puppy will start to get the idea that going potty outside is a good thing pretty quickly. However, it may take them longer to realize that they have to control the impulse to eliminate whenever they are inside. It is important to correct your dog every time they have an accident so that they don’t mistakenly believe that it is ok sometimes and not others. 

Supervise or Crate

Your puppy should either be under your supervision or in their crate. Otherwise, they may have a mistake without you noticing in time. Correcting your puppy for having an accident won’t do any good unless it is immediate. Therefore, your puppy needs to be supervised every time that they are out of the crate. Here are a few techniques. 

  • Baby gate or pen. Putting up a gate or small pen to keep your puppy in an enclosed area makes it easier for you to keep an eye on them and keeps them from wandering off to eliminate. Being kept in a small space with you may also keep your puppy from wanting to go in that area. Many dogs have instincts about eliminating very near to their people and sleeping area. 
  • Tethering. If you need to move around the house but also want to keep an eye on your puppy, tethering is a great solution. Reward your dog for going along with you wherever you go. You’ll be able to tell when your puppy wants to eliminate because they will try to move away from you to do it most of the time. If your puppy does start to eliminate inappropriately, you’ll be sure to notice quickly. 

Frequent Trips Outdoors

Most puppies can’t hold it for long, so get used to frequent trips outdoors, especially at the beginning. You will probably also need to take your puppy outside in the middle of the night until they are old enough to hold it all night. 

The more frequently you take your puppy out, the better their chances of only eliminating when they should. Frequent, regular trips out also help to teach your puppy that there is an outing coming, which makes them more willing to try to hold it until the next outing. 

Stick to a Schedule

Your puppy will nearly always need to go potty about the same time after they’ve eaten. If you’re using food-distributing toys or chew toys that take longer to eat, the schedule may be skewed a bit, but you’ll still be able to calculate an average time from finishing the toy or chew until having to go. 

Keeping your puppy on a schedule helps you to predict when they need to go so that you always offer them an opportunity to go out when they need it. Good scheduling can also make it less likely that your puppy will keep needing to go out in the middle of the night. 

Paper Training

For some people and puppies, paper training is a better alternative to crate training or potty training. In general, paper training isn’t the fastest method. It takes dogs a fairly long time to understand that they should go to a specific place. Once they understand that they should go on paper, dogs sometimes have a hard time understanding the transition to outdoors potty training. 

If you can’t be home for longer periods, paper training is a better option for you, even though it may be more time-consuming. Paper training is also a good option if you are planning on litter box training. Here are the principles of paper training:

  • Put paper over the surface of a pen or room and remove the soiled paper
  • Slowly reduce the amount of the floor that is covered with paper, one piece of paper a day
  • Add more paper again if your dog has an accident
  • Once you’re down to one spot of paper and your puppy has the bladder control to hold it longer, switch to training your puppy to go outside. 

When to Compromise on House Training

Some dogs are much more difficult to housetrain than others. Some dogs may have medical conditions or just tiny bladders, which makes it harder for them to hold it. If you’re having a very difficult time potty training your Italian Greyhound or other small dogs, you may decide that it is best to compromise with your dog. 

Using a litter box allows your dog to relieve themselves whenever they want to, without making a mess of your house. Many owners even find it more convenient to clean up a littler box than take their little dog out as frequently as they need to go. 

If potty-training isn’t going well for you, litter-box training may be the best solution for you and your pup. 

See more: How to train a service dog article.

Have Fun Training Your Puppy

Training your two-month-old puppy should be a blast. Puppies are so small and adorable at this age. They’re eager to soak up new information and learn from you. 

Training can be monotonous and boring, and it can be frustrating when it doesn’t go as planned. Putting in the time for your puppy now will result in a great companion down the road. 

Your Next Step…

We have no doubt that if you take this guide and run with it…

Your new puppy will be on the right path to proper training.

But would you like to take this further?

To train your new puppy as quickly as possible….

And impress your friends and family with how well behaved your new family member is?

If that’s something you’d like to do, we highly recommend Brain Training for Dogs.

Brain Training For Dogs by Adrienne Farricelli

In this program, dog training expert Adrienne Farricelli shows you how to quickly become a dog training expert.

Read our full review of Adrienne’s dog training program here.