A cockapoo is a cross between a poodle and a cocker spaniel, and she typically has characteristics of both breeds. Training methods vary, but the most effective approaches rely on her exceptional intelligence, her energy, and her strong desire to please you to get the best results.
Put a collar on your dog, and attach a leash to it. Let her wear it in your home and have her spend some time dragging it around behind her to get her used to the feeling of being on a leash.
Socialize your cockapoo puppy from the start. All puppies benefit from exposure to the world around them, learning not to fear new experiences. Enroll her in a puppy socialization class to get exposure to other people and puppies. These are often sponsored by pet shops or city recreation departments.
Train your cockapoo in basic obedience. Many puppy classes include both socialization and obedience components. Your cockapoo puppy needs to know how to respond to basic commands such as sit, stay, lie down, come and heel. This gives you better control over your dog, stimulates her desire to learn and promotes bonding.
Put your cockapoo puppy in a crate when you can’t watch her, and let her out frequently during the day and night to relieve herself and for play and attention. Always let her out soon after eating and take her to the place you have designated as her toilet. It can take several weeks, but cockapoos are quick learners.
Apply positive reinforcement techniques when working with your cockapoo puppy, especially when teaching obedience commands. According to the Cockapoo Club of Great Britain, this breed is very sensitive as well as highly intelligent, and if you use harsh training methods or rough corrections, you may end up making your dog afraid of you.
Use bits of hot dogs, cooked liver or chunks of chicken to reward your puppy as soon as she does what you tell her to do. Such high-value treats will inspire her to excel and help her to learn to respond to you quickly and without question. Use lots of praise as well.
Combine the use of a clicker with treats to help your cockapoo learn quickly. Begin by giving her a command. When she does it, immediately click and simultaneously reward her. Your pet will rapidly learn to make an association between what you said, what she did, the click and the treat, and will begin to repeat the behavior reliably in a short time. Clicker training makes training your cockapoo puppy a pleasant experience for both you and your pup.
- Despite the fact that some prominent trainers use forceful approaches, choke chains and dominance over their pets, these methods are increasingly under question, and your cockapoo is more likely to be frightened than helped by such actions. While you should be the unquestioned leader in your home, you can get there with gentle, positive training methods that won’t make your dog cower or go belly-up when you speak to her.