How to Train a Pomeranian


by James Bennett


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Training a Pomeranian requires patience, consistency, and an understanding of their unique personality traits. These intelligent and spirited dogs respond well to positive reinforcement and enjoy learning new things, making training a rewarding experience for both the dog and the owner.

1. Establish Leadership

Establishing yourself as the leader is crucial in training a Pomeranian. These dogs are smart and can become dominant if they don’t see you as the alpha. Begin by setting clear rules and boundaries within your home. Consistency in your commands and expectations will help your Pomeranian understand their role in the family hierarchy. Use a firm but gentle tone, and ensure that all family members follow the same guidelines to avoid confusing your pet.

Leadership is not about being strict or harsh; it’s about guiding your Pomeranian with confidence and security. Show them love and respect, and in turn, they will see you as their trusted leader. This mutual respect sets a strong foundation for successful training, as your Pomeranian will be more inclined to follow your lead and listen to your commands.

Remember, leadership in training is about balance. While it’s important to assert your role as the pack leader, it’s equally important to nurture a loving and positive relationship with your Pomeranian. This balance will lead to a harmonious living situation and a well-behaved dog who respects and trusts your guidance.

2. Socialization

Socialization is key to a well-adjusted Pomeranian. Start socializing your Pomeranian at a young age by exposing them to different people, environments, and other animals. This exposure helps them become more adaptable and less fearful in new situations. Ensure that these socialization experiences are positive, using treats and praise to reinforce good behavior.

When socializing your Pomeranian, pay close attention to their reactions and body language. If they seem overwhelmed or scared, take a step back and introduce new experiences more gradually. Over time, your Pomeranian will learn to approach new experiences with curiosity rather than fear.

Socialization is an ongoing process that should continue throughout your Pomeranian’s life. Regular walks, dog park visits, and playdates with other dogs can provide valuable social experiences. Remember, a well-socialized Pomeranian is a confident and happy dog that is less likely to develop behavioral problems.

3. Use Positive Reinforcement

Positive reinforcement is the most effective method for training Pomeranians. Reward good behavior with treats, praise, or playtime to encourage your dog to repeat those behaviors. Avoid using harsh discipline or punishment, as it can lead to fear and distrust, making training more difficult.

Incorporate positive reinforcement into every training session. For example, when your Pomeranian successfully follows a command, immediately reward them with a treat and enthusiastic praise. This immediate positive feedback helps them understand which behaviors are desirable.

Consistency is key with positive reinforcement. Make sure to reward good behavior every time it occurs, especially during the early stages of training. Over time, you can gradually reduce the frequency of treats and rely more on verbal praise and affection as rewards.

4. Crate Training

Crate training is beneficial for Pomeranians, providing them with a safe and comfortable space of their own. Start by choosing a crate that’s the right size for your Pomeranian, allowing them to stand up, turn around, and lie down comfortably. Introduce the crate gradually, placing treats and toys inside to encourage your Pomeranian to enter.

During the initial stages of crate training, keep the door open and allow your Pomeranian to explore the crate at their own pace. Use positive reinforcement to praise them every time they enter the crate voluntarily. Over time, you can start closing the door for short periods, slowly increasing the duration as your Pomeranian becomes more comfortable.

Crate training should always be a positive experience. Never use the crate as a punishment, as this can cause your Pomeranian to fear and resent the crate. Instead, use the crate as a cozy retreat where your Pomeranian can feel secure and relaxed.

5. Potty Training

Potty training a Pomeranian requires consistency and patience. Establish a regular potty schedule, taking your Pomeranian outside first thing in the morning, after meals, and before bedtime. Use a specific command, such as “go potty,” to associate the action with the command.

Accidents are a normal part of potty training, so it’s important to remain patient and not punish your Pomeranian for mistakes. Instead, clean up accidents thoroughly to remove any scent markers that might encourage repeat offenses. Over time, with consistent reinforcement, your Pomeranian will learn to associate going potty with being outside.

Celebrate successes with lots of praise and treats. This positive reinforcement will make potty training a more enjoyable experience for both you and your Pomeranian. Remember, every dog learns at their own pace, so patience is key.

6. Leash Training

Leash training is essential for the safety and well-being of your Pomeranian. Start by introducing the leash and collar/harness in a familiar environment. Let your Pomeranian wear the collar or harness around the house to get used to the feel.

Begin leash training in a quiet area with minimal distractions. Hold the leash loosely and encourage your Pomeranian to walk beside you. Use treats and verbal praise to reward them for walking calmly on the leash. If they pull or resist, stop walking and wait for them to calm down before continuing.

Practice leash training regularly, gradually introducing new environments and distractions. Remember to be patient and consistent, and always use positive reinforcement to encourage good leash behavior. With time and practice, your Pomeranian will learn to walk nicely on the leash, making walks enjoyable for both of you.

7. Basic Commands

Teaching your Pomeranian basic commands is crucial for their safety and can enhance your bond. Start with simple commands like “sit,” “stay,” “come,” and “down.” Use treats and positive reinforcement to reward your Pomeranian for following each command.

When teaching a new command, break it down into small, manageable steps. For example, to teach “sit,” hold a treat above your Pomeranian’s nose and slowly move it back over their head. As their head tilts up and back, they should naturally move into a sitting position. Immediately reward this behavior with a treat and praise.

Practice commands regularly, but keep training sessions short and enjoyable to maintain your Pomeranian’s attention and enthusiasm. Over time, your Pomeranian will learn to respond to these commands reliably, improving their obedience and responsiveness.

8. Addressing Barking

Pomeranians are known for their vocal nature, but excessive barking can be managed with training. Identify the triggers that cause your Pomeranian to bark excessively, such as boredom, attention-seeking, or territorial behavior.

To reduce barking, ensure your Pomeranian has enough physical and mental stimulation. Provide toys, playtime, and regular exercise to keep them occupied and content. When your Pomeranian barks for attention, redirect their behavior with a command or activity, and reward them when they are quiet.

If barking is triggered by specific stimuli, like people passing by the window, try to limit your Pomeranian’s exposure to these triggers. Use positive reinforcement to reward calm behavior in the presence of these stimuli, gradually desensitizing your Pomeranian to

the triggers that cause excessive barking. Training your Pomeranian to respond to a “quiet” command can also be effective. Start by allowing your Pomeranian to bark a few times, then hold a treat in front of their nose. Most dogs will stop barking to sniff the treat. At that moment, say “quiet” and give them the treat. With repetition, your Pomeranian will learn to associate the command with the action of being quiet.

9. Preventing Jumping

Pomeranians might jump on people as a greeting or to seek attention. It’s important to discourage this behavior early on. When your Pomeranian jumps on you, turn your back and ignore them until they calm down. Once they are standing or sitting politely, reward them with attention and treats. Consistency is key, and all family members should respond to jumping in the same manner to avoid confusing your Pomeranian.

Training your Pomeranian to sit as a way to greet people can replace the unwanted jumping behavior. Practice this by asking your Pomeranian to sit before giving them attention or treats, gradually introducing visitors to this routine as well. With patience and consistency, your Pomeranian will learn that sitting politely gets them the attention they desire.

10. Curbing Chewing

Chewing is a natural behavior for dogs but can become problematic if your Pomeranian starts chewing on inappropriate items. Provide plenty of suitable chew toys and rotate them regularly to keep your Pomeranian interested. When you catch them chewing on something they shouldn’t, offer a firm “no” and replace the item with an appropriate chew toy.

Using deterrent sprays on furniture or items you don’t want your Pomeranian to chew can also be effective. Ensure your Pomeranian has plenty of physical and mental exercise to prevent boredom, a common cause of inappropriate chewing. Reward them for chewing on their toys to reinforce the desired behavior.

11. Housetraining Consistency

Housetraining a Pomeranian requires a consistent schedule for feeding, potty breaks, and exercise. Take your Pomeranian outside frequently, especially after meals and naps, and always to the same spot. Use a specific command, like “go potty,” to associate the action with the command. Celebrate successes with plenty of praise and treats.

Accidents will happen, and it’s important to respond calmly. Never punish your Pomeranian for accidents indoors, as this can lead to anxiety and confusion. Clean up any accidents thoroughly to remove odors that might attract your Pomeranian back to the same spot.

12. Patience and Positive Reinforcement

Throughout all aspects of training your Pomeranian, patience and positive reinforcement are vital. Recognize and celebrate small victories and understand that setbacks are part of the learning process. Maintain a positive and encouraging attitude, and your Pomeranian will be more likely to engage in training sessions.

Remember that every Pomeranian is an individual, and what works for one dog might not work for another. Be prepared to adapt your training techniques to suit your Pomeranian’s unique personality and learning style. With patience, consistency, and positive reinforcement, you can successfully train your Pomeranian, strengthening the bond between you and ensuring a harmonious household.

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