Dog training timeline for puppy

How early should you start puppy training virginia beach? Basically, you can start training your pup as early as eight weeks old. You can start at two months and then continue to train your pup introducing more complex tricks and commands as you go. Don’t worry if your pup hasn’t mastered enough based on its age. This is not a strict timeline. This will only serve as a guide so you’ll have an idea of what commands are expected of them to learn based on their age.

If there are some missing areas, go ahead and go back until your pup masters them. Don’t move forward unless you’ve covered the basics. Besides, this isn’t a competition. The point of training is to make your life easier and to help strengthen the bond you have with your pet. If your pup is a fast learner, luck you but if it’s a slow learner, please extend your patience a bit more. Over time, your pup will learn it.

Eight to Ten Weeks Old – by eight to ten weeks introduce your pup to basic commands. Teach your pup its name and how to practice good manners. You can also slowly incorporate socialization at this time.

Create a schedule and let your pup get used to it. Part of the schedule includes water time, feeding time, training time, nap time, and potty breaks. This will give your pup a routine to follow.

Potty training is one of the first things you need to teach your pup. Otherwise, your entire house is going to smell like pee and poop. Start by showing your pup the acceptable spot where it can pee and poop and then set a schedule when these times are.

You may also start introducing basic obedience commands such as sit and come. These two are by far the most useful commands that you can use on your dog every day. You can also start socializing your pup by introducing it to new faces. We recommend you start with family members and some of your friends.

Ten to Twelve Weeks Old – by the time your pup reaches ten to twelve weeks, it’s expected that it has already mastered some of the commands taught for the past two months. Now, it’s time for more complex commands. After sit and come, you can add commands like down, heel, and place. When you teach these commands, better prepare treats to help your dog remember what the command was about. Treats are given when your pup obeys the command. Give it immediately so that your dog will be able to associate the reward with the action.

This is also a good time to introduce your pup to a leash and a harness. These two items are necessary if you are going to take your pup out in a public place. Let your pup wear these accessories while it’s in the house so it will slowly get used to them. Socialization should not be stopped. Introduce more people to your pup.

Three to Four Months Old – Wow! How time flies! Your pup is all grown! Now it’s time for more complex tricks and routines. You can add the stay and leave-it commands by this time. You can also use command combinations. Don’t worry, your pup will be able to pick up the pace since it has already mastered previous basic commands.

You should also practice heel while outdoors to keep them from external distractions. You may also socialize your pup to other pups as long as your pup and the other dogs have complete immunizations.


Puppy training is fun because it comes in stages. You’re not expected to cram all these lessons in just one day. Take one day at a time or one week at a time. Trust us, with the right technique, your pup will master these commands.

Published by Nick White

Nick White is the owner of Off Leash K9 Training. He has over 80 dog training franchise locations throughout the United States. He currently hosts the A&E show, America's Top Dog.