Our first week with Napoleon, Steven and I booked the week off of work so that we could get him settled in his new environment. I’m really glad we did this as it gave us the extra time to get training underway.
We were careful not to stay home the entire time as we didn’t want it to be too much of a shock for Napoleon when Steven and I went back to work the following week. When we leave him alone he is in his gated area which includes his crate, water bowl, Kongs stuffed with kibble, and puppy pad. At night, he is in his crate with the door closed.
Crate training was the most difficult task of the first week. The first few nights he whined, cried, and made sounds I didn’t even know were possible from such a little guy! Steven and I stuck to our guns and didn’t let him out when he cried except for every two hours to let him use the puppy pad. He didn’t need to use the puppy pad each time, but we weren’t sure how often he was “doing his business” or at what time, so Steven and I took turns getting up with him. We decided to use a notebook to track every time he did his business, we record the time, the location, and if it was a #1 or #2. This notebook has been incredibly handy as we can now predict when Napoleon needs to do his business. It also allows us to track his progress of holding his bladder for longer and longer periods of time.
We want Napoleon to love his crate so we have a few special toys and treats that we only give him access to during the night in the crate. Each day he gets better and better about the crate – crying less and sleeping longer. At the end of our first week, he now whines only for a few short minutes or not at all.
The focus of our training during week one was:
- Crate Training
- Come Command
- Sit Command
- Understand his name
- Leash Training and Walking
We were able to make great progress with crate training, sitting, and walking.
My favourite moment from week one was when Napoleon was watching Game of Thrones with Steven and I on the couch. He seemed to be enjoying the show as much as we did – here are some cute pics from our Game of Thrones night: