Say YES More Than NO and Say It Often chapter

You'll need to exercise a lot of self-control when your puppy is active, defiant, or testing you. If you get angry, you may accidentally encourage mischief, as your puppy will do anything to get your attention, regardless of whether it's negative or positive.

Your goal is to highlight the times your puppy is doing the right things and cooperating rather than wait to interfere when he's naughty. Simple logic tells you that he'll repeat the behaviors you reward because they satisfy his need for attention and his craving to fulfill his needs.

If you're sharing your puppy with family and friends, it's important that they follow the same logic. One happy solution is to select one word—for example, YES or GOOD—to highlight all the moments your puppy is cooperating. One strong happy bark-sounding word is actually better than a string of "good puppy, good puppy, good puppy," which may by mistake end on a bad behavior.

Use your encouragement word for everything your puppy is doing right, which is to say everything he is not doing wrong! When you focus on good behavior, from licking, to chewing on a bone, to interacting calmly with the kids, you'll be surprised by what your puppy comes up with! Pair this word with an upbeat hand signal, and your puppy will not only be listening to you he'll be looking for your direction as well!

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