Is It Hard to Train a Cavapoo? (Tips and Tricks)

If you’ve recently adopted a Cavapoo puppy or are waiting for your Cavapoo to arrive, you may be thinking about potty training, basic commands, and the behavior of your Cavapoo.

You will want your dog trained in obedience, but you may be wondering will it be difficult or easy to do and how much time will I need?

It’s all a question of motivation. What will motivate your Cavapoo to follow basic commands?  

Is It Hard to Train a Cavapoo

The Cavapoo

A Cavapoo is a hybrid dog breed that is the result of crossbreeding between the Poodle and King Charles Cavalier Spaniel. 

At the end of the 1990s, this mix was created to join specific qualities from the parent breeds such as the intelligence and the hypoallergenic fur coat of the Poodle with the good-natured temperament of the King Charles Cavalier Spaniel. 

The Poodle Parent

Poodles are considered to be one of the most intelligent breeds of canines, and as such requires a good deal of mental stimulation.

But your Cavapoo may resemble a poodle parent, that because of their exceptional intelligence, easily becomes bored, so don’t be surprised to find your Cavapoo losing interest.

When dealing with boredom or distraction, using a variety of training techniques can aid you during training.

The King Charles Cavalier Spaniel Parent

Cavaliers love everybody and this is one trait that the Cavapoo has inherited, but they also harbor an independent streak, so you may run into a few bad habits along the way. Positive reinforcement can, however, can overcome this.

The Difficulties When Training a Cavapoo

      • They can be stubborn
      • They may bore easily
      • They are fussy eaters so treats may not always obtain the desired effect

The Advantages When Training a Cavapoo

      • They are lovable and affectionate
      • They are highly intelligent and fast learners
      • They like to please

Motivating Your Cavapoo

Every dog is a story unto itself. This is true when two dogs are of the same breed. For this reason, before you barrel into training, take some time to get to know your Cavapoo.

Look for what motivates your puppy. Is it a favorite toy or a treat, or lavish affection and praise? Whatever motivates your Cavapoo will be the key to training him or her.

If your dog is not responding to your commands, it may be that the dog has not understood the command correctly or they are not properly motivated to carry it out. That is why it is so important that you understand your pooch to facilitate training.

It’s likewise important not to punish your dog or to react harshly by yelling or screaming when they do not follow commands. This will confuse your dog as they do not necessarily connect actions.

Positive reinforcement is a much better and more productive tool because you will be rewarding correct behavior and your dog will be motivated to please you even more.

Training Techniques

Positive reinforcement makes use of rewards when training, and there is an important difference between a bribe and a reward.

A bribe is a bribe because, without it, a dog will not obey a command.

A reward is given when a dog exhibits the correct behavior even if not requested. A reward should be given immediately when a command is followed. Rewards may include

      • Treats or food
      • Toys
      • Play or a favorite game
      • Verbal praise
      • Physical displays of affection

Eventually, commands should be followed even if no specific or preferred reward follows.

1.) The Use of Treats

Treats are the most popular and often used form of reward when working with positive reinforcement.  They are available in numerous sizes, flavors, textures, and even in the number of calories they contain. 

Food-based treats may not always be efficacious with Cavapoos because this breed is somewhat finicky when it comes to eating.

Food-based treats Cavapoos

So, what may work today, will not necessarily function tomorrow, and the situation may dictate the kind of treat that achieves the desired behavior. 

Commercial dog treats may work well when the Cavapoo is following simple commands and is enjoying doing so.

If, however, you need your dog to do something that it does not want to do or does not enjoy doing or your dog is immersed in distractions, you may require a special kind of food treats like a morsel of raw or cooked meat, or a bite of cheese. Use these sparingly and only when really needed.

2.) The Use of Toys

Cavapoos particularly enjoy playing, so toys may be an optimal choice as a reward during training.

Because the Cavapoos are prone to excitement, the use of toys should be well-managed otherwise you will be exciting your dog more than training it.

After a short training session, you can reward your Pooch with its favorite toy or game such as tug-of-war or similar.

Training sessions should never exceed fifteen minutes, as your dogs’s attention span will not last long and there is no point in tiring or frustrating your Cavapoo.

3.) Praise and Sounds When Training Your Cavapoo

With Cavapoos, verbal praise can be an incredibly effective technique during training. Cavapoos enjoy approval and seek to please. Your volume and tone of voice will communicate a lot to your dog.

Speak to your Cavapoo in a happy voice, especially when wanting to praise it. Use lower intonation and slower speech when requiring attention. A higher, louder pitch may alert your dog to a hazard and one day save its life.

Praise as a training technique should be utilized sparingly otherwise it will not be effective. Also use the same vocabulary when training (sit, stay, heel, etc.) and use your dog’s name only once during a command. If you repeat the name numerous times, it will not achieve the desired effect.

4.) Training with Touch

A caress or cuddle can also be used to reward your dog after a command has been executed. A physical reward can be anything that your Cavapoo enjoys such as a belly rub, head pat, or scratching a favorite place like under the chin.

As exceptionally affectionate dogs, physical rewards may be even more appreciated than other options.

See also: When Should I Start Training My Cavapoo Puppy?

Will I Need Much Time to Train My Cavapoo?

A lot will depend on the single Cavapoo and the command that you are imparting. Your dog’s age will factor in as puppies are receptive but easily distracted.

Basic commands like “sit” or “stay” may require a couple of weeks. When educating your Cavapoo to walk on a leash or to recall, much will depend on how many repetitions you do.

Unwanted Behavior

In the event that you want to teach your Cavapoo not to behave in a certain way, the best action is to ignore the behavior.

If your dog jumps on you or barks incessantly, you will need to ignore this and introduce a new desired behavior in its place. This may take several months to achieve so be patient.

A Final Consideration

Cavapoos, due to their intelligence and affectionate nature, are reasonably easy to train. Positive reinforcement is the best tool.

Do not yell at or punish your dog, as your Cavapoo will not make a connection, and therefore will not understand.

It’s important that you reserve some time daily for a mini-training session. Constant repetition, patience, and love will help you and your Cavapoo to achieve your training goals.

Susan R Elliston

I have over 11 years of experience as a vet working with a wonderful variety of species of innocent and lovely animals. Whilst I still work two days a week for a local practice, I realized that I could help more people by sharing my knowledge and experience with my readers.

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