\nPet Safety, Pet Health and Pet Happiness - these are the core pillars of Bow Wow Labs\u2019 mission. To make sure we continue to innovate our products and services to maximize these outcomes for dogs everywhere, we rely on the cooperation and guidance of leading experts in the field. Since January is National Train Your Dog Month, we spoke with our very own pet training expert, Kim Hawkins, about mastering dog ownership.\nKim is a graduate of the Bergin University of Canine studies, an organization that breeds, trains, and places service dogs. She has trained pups from birth to 2 years in up to 140 commands, and placed them with people that are disabled or have PTSD, in schools and other facilities.\nDog Training 101\n\u201cPuppies are like babies,\u201d Kim says, \u201cIt can be terrifying to bring them home, and you second guess everything you do!\u201d\nEstablishing your relationship with your new dog is a very important part of the dog\u2019s transition into your home. These 5 tips will help you form a strong relationship with your new dog and make the transition into long-term love easy for everyone.\n1.\u00a0Bringing your puppy home\nGift your dog something with your scent on it, so the dog learns your smell - like a t-shirt you\u2019ve worn for a few days and not washed. When you get home, this can go in the dog\u2019s crate to serve as something familiar and comforting.\nMake sure you have everything you need for your dog\u2019s arrival including food, treats, bowls, leash, harness, crate, bully buddy. This will help you form a solid training routine much more quickly.\n2. Toileting\nLet them know where you want them to go potty. Practice going there right after eating and drinking. This is not play time. In fact, if it\u2019s an option, consider using two different doors for each purpose \u2013 one for potty time, and one for play time.\n3. Playtime!\n\nProvide a variety of appropriate toys and rotate them. Consider keeping them in a basket, enabling the pup to self-entertain. You can even train your pup to go get a toy and return it to the basket by singing \u201cclean up, clean up, everybody, everywhere...\u201d What? You don\u2019t sing songs with your dog? Just us?\nTeething toys can be a great soothing and rewarding option for when your pup tries to bite you or other inappropriate things. Simply offer them something that\u2019s appropriate. If biting continues, remove yourself or the object being bitten/chewed.\n4. Crate training\n\n\u201cI know, it\u2019s the least favorite part of training a puppy or a new dog,\u201d Kim says, \u201cbut if you do it right it will become your puppy\u2019s safe place, and he\u2019ll even put himself to bed when tired/overstimulated.\u201d\nTo crate train, take it slow. Encourage them into the crate to explore. Put your t-shirt in there and give them a toy or treat for going in. Gradually close the door, then open it. Lengthen the period of time it is closed gradually. Leave them in the crate with a stimulating toy so they associate the crate with positive experiences.\nThe first night your pup spends in the create alone, they may whine or bark. Don\u2019t give in and let him out. You might say things like \u2018quiet Sammy\u2019 or \u2018settle down\u2019 in a firm but reassuring voice.\n5. Establishing a routine\nEstablishing a routine for feeding time, toileting, training and play time will lead to a successful schedule for both you and your pup. New puppies and rescue dogs alike benefit from structure and routine - it allows them to feel safe in their environment when they know what to expect.\nComing up: More training tips!\nWe\u2019ll be chatting with Kim again about dog training tips for dogs of all ages, temperaments and ages. Next up we\u2019ll look at different dog temperaments and the best training programs for your dog\u2019s personality.