Things I’ve Learned While Dog Training

Mika AM
2 min readAug 28, 2021
Photo of a puppy with black fur, laying on a red pillow.
Day 1 and I was crying while taking the picture.

Early in 2021, I got a puppy. I wouldn’t exactly call her a pandemic dog; in my defense, my mother adopted her for me on the grounds that I needed a distraction from my anxiety, as well as the fact that we were grieving a very beloved dog who’d passed of old age four months prior. While we’ve had, and still have, dogs before, this one was the first one we ever trained from scratch.

Here are a few things I’ve learned from training my now 8-month old puppy:

  1. Dogs, especially puppies, are pure instinct
  2. No precaution is too little
  3. Every moment is the perfect moment for training
  4. Their first time doing anything is amazing; they have their own personalities and thus react differently to their first treat, their first bath, their first walk
  5. There’s a thin line between granting them independence and accidentally giving them separation anxiety
  6. They will bite and scratch the hand that feeds them, and you will get used to it
  7. On that note, they’ll suddenly stop biting one day and you have no idea how you got so far
  8. You cannot let your attention waver for a single moment or else they’re gone, chewing on everything you love
  9. Positive reinforcement only goes so far when you’re crying at being woken up at five in the morning for five days in a row
  10. No matter how many times you ask, they will continue to chase that wasp and you don’t know what you’re most scared of: her getting stung or you
  11. Should’ve taught her “drop it” before “sit”
  12. They will know when you’re on your phone and resent you for your lack of attention
  13. The fear that they will pee inside the house doesn’t go away
  14. Like a newborn, you become very aware of the fact that there’s a life form in your care, before getting used to seeing them as pets
  15. I have zero patience and am fearful of the day I have children. Either way, I love her to death now
She’s so grown up and professional now.

Mika is a Mexican writer and translator, pretender, pet-lover, and a mess at 1 in the morning

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Mika AM

Writer, daydreamer, procrastinator. Always late to the party but loves platypus(es)