Pit Bull puppies need the same training and socialization as any puppy. There are some additional steps you can add to your training schedule for these energetic powerful dogs. This is a guide about training a Pit Bull puppy.
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Concerning the training of "pit bulls" and other stubborn/aggressive breeds: If you've rescued a pit bull (or any terrier breed), it's very important to recognize this dynamic animal's character. They were genetically designed to be robust, strong, and ruthless in the execution of their intended duties. From the Jack-Russel and the American Staff (pit bull) to the seemingly "cute" long and short terrier breeds, you have a natural born killer on your hands.
When training these dogs, it is paramount that you remain absolutely ruthless in your own right! They need to know who's the boss from the get-go. However difficult, it is necessary to be very stern with your cute little puppy. A loud "NO!", combined with a decisive but gentle pat on the rear end, goes a long way in establishing your dominance.
Don't even think about being violent with your new friend because first, it's cruel, and secondly it will create behavior issues down the road. And heck, this is your little buddy we're talking about here! The key is to establish yourself as the alpha male/female at a very early stage of your pet's development. I know it's hard, but it's imperative for the sake of the pet's mental health as well as your own. In saying that, it's equally important to offer love in ridiculous quantities the rest of the time (very easy).
By jhorn from Vancouver, B.C.
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Here are questions related to Training a Pit Bull Puppy.
I have a female Pit. I want to know how old she should be before I start training in the basics? Also I was at the park and a male Pit came to visit us. He was 12 weeks old, mine is 10 weeks, but she laid him out flat. I want to know what I should do about this behavior?
By Frugal Sunnie10/22/2012
She sounds very territorial, very. You should be looking at websites and library books for help training her to hold back on that-there are several good books available now regarding training the (American) Staffordshire Bull Terrier (the official breed name of the pit bull), look here for some information on the breed:
Look here for some recommendations on training clubs:
I Googled using the search term 'training a pit bull to be a good neighbour' and am pasting in the search results, there are a lot of excellent resources there for self-help:
http://www.google.co.uk/#hl=en& ... cl=35466521&biw=1024&bih=654
One of the resources is an online forum geared towards owners who are working towards training their Staffies to be good neighbours who are welcome in their communities, you may want to look into that:)
My cousin raised ASBTs for over 40 years (recently retired, he and his wife now have just one at home) and always started his puppies training from DayOne. The main thing was to always stay calm yet firm, and let the pup know he was in the Boss, not the pup. He would gently but firmly take the aggressive pup to it's crate, for example, should the puppy growl or nip, speaking calmly and firmly 'No Rover, not good!'. He never called any dog 'bad', btw, always said 'Not good!' in a firm voice.
My cousin used gentle methods like longer walks wearing a Halti style muzzle and harness, more crate time for the pup, and was always very careful to restrict and supervise any interaction with other dogs of any breed, size, or condition.
You can find out about the Halti here:
Be sure to Google and search info regarding laws about your dog in your state and county. There are several locales both in the US and across Europe (I live in the UK where Staffies and other similar breeds are highly regulated) to be sure that you are in compliance. This can include purchasing insurance for owners of dangerous breed dogs, strict control via use of leash/harness/muzzle, and registration with local authorities. My cousin had to register all his dogs with the local police after the laws changed in his county (mid-late nineties); he lived in LA County.
I have a 9 week year old pit bull that I have many questions about. He keeps niping everything, me, my furniture, everything! When he licks my face he sometimes nips. What should I do?
Also i have an adult Sheperd that seems to get along with him but they play fight, should I let this continue.
And the potty training, he's not like any of the dogs I've had, I am having a lot of the problems, he dosent get the point that he shouldnt do that!
Please help me with answearing these questions. Thanks,
Mike from North Carolina
By Matt M (Guest Post)11/07/2008
I know it sounds harsh but I give my pup a tiny flick under the chin when she nips just enough so her teeth slap shut and firmly say "no bite". I have had alot of dogs around me my whole life my mom was a foster for the local spca plus we owned many. This is my second pitbull since I've lived away from home and the first one is a little over a year and perfectly behaved. The flick technique if you can bring yourself to do it is the trick for sure.
For house training if the dog pees on the floor put its nose close, not directly in the pee and give it a smack on the butt (love tap) and immediately take it outside and don't let it in until it poops pees or outside. When it wakes up! Take it out, when you wake up, take it out, before you go to sleep take it out, after it eats about 15 minutes later take it out. Puppies sleep a lot when it sleeps too long and you maybe wanna try to get some sleep, wake it up and take it out! Talk nicely and give it a treat when it does good! Some people don't agree with the flick under the chin but they really don't even know where it comes from. They just know it happened after biting. It takes literally no time to teach them things that way.
I am going to get a very young pit bull pup because the mother won't care for it. It's maybe a couple of hours old.
Cesar from Arizona
By Kim Churchman04/06/2008
Try goat milk - in the health food store if there are no goat keepers around you. Try the ADGA website, the American Dairy Goat Association, adga.com and they have listings of goatbreeders in all states. Arizona has plenty. Good luck! Take your puppy everywhere but make sure she can sleep with peace of mind! While she's sleeping is when she fights disease and grows.
What do I need to know in raising a Pit Bull?
By cocoa from Augusta, GA
Make sure you spay/neuter, and socialize socialize socialize and train train train! A dog reflects its owner. Show people that pit bulls can be great dogs!
My daughter was given a 4 week old Pit Bull puppy. Will he learn from her what to do and not do? I have heard puppies learn a lot from their mothers and siblings. I don't want him to be mean and aggressive.
I think the puppy is too young for sure! He will need to be around other dogs, and puppies, so he will learn how to interact with dogs! Also I recommend watching the "Dog Whisperer" TV program, it is extremely informative, and there is a website too. Good Luck!
I have a 8 week old Pit. Is it OK to put him on his back and hold his mouth till he becomes submissive? Or is it OK to put him on his back and continue staring at him till he looks away? Should I not try these at all?
By Ella from Seattle, WA
What you are doing is abusive. You need to go to pets mart and get training there. It is free. You are teaching you baby to be aggressive....would you like someone to hold you down like that?...I always treat my dogs as my own babies.
I have a 9 week old male Pit Bull and he's very hyper. He bites everything, me, my clothes, furniture, everything and when he bites it hurts! When he does this I tap him on his butt and tell him "no", but this is not working. I also tried holding his mouth shut and telling him "no" but all he does is growl and bark at me. He's been getting way too aggressive and I don't know what to do. Can you please help?
By Lisa Marie E.12/11/2013
it is very simple and when I say this you may think oh that is mean but no it is not, get some newspaper and roll it up putting tape on one end to hold it in place, any time your puppy tries to bite you say no VERY firmly and tap him on the nose with the newspaper only hard enough for it to make a loud noise. Do this every time he does something you do not want him to do, if you let him get away with it even once then you have just destroyed all the training you have already done.
The newspaper does not hurt (trust me I have been hit with rolled up newspaper) it just creates a sound that the puppy will learn to associate with bad behaviors. Just always remember that no matter the breed of dog you are training it is always the same, you have to show them that you are the dominate one. Dogs have a pack mentality so they will see one person or animal as the highest authority, you just have to make sure that you are the one that they know to listen to above all else.