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Puppy training advice please

Discussion in 'Dog Training and Behaviour' started by Hanwombat, Sep 13, 2013.


  1. Hanwombat

    Hanwombat I ♥ dogs with eyebrows !!

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    So I've had my 8 week puppy for almost a week now.
    She just doesn't seem to want to listen to me 9 times out of ten.
    If she chews something I am saying 'Leave' then squeaking a toy and if she stops I give her a treat.
    BUT she only seems to want to do this when I give her a treat and I can't keep giving her treats all day long.
    Its the same with any command, if I say 'Down' when she is trying to get on the sofa she only does it if there is a treat.
    I am doing the whole redirection, by offering her a toy if she chews something I don't want her to but it doesn't seem to be working all that much.

    Now I know she is a puppy and they like to chew everything, and she properly doesn't quite know what this commands mean yet but shes managed to learn Sit and Stay quite quick.

    Same with the lead, she obviously doesn't like it and is trying to chew it, if I say 'Leave' and squeak a toy and she knows I have treats she stops but if I don't she doesn't

    I just need some advice please, I get up at 6am to play with her until 8am, then I go off to work, a puppy sitter comes round twice during the day and then when I get back shes with me again for another 4-5 hours.

    Its difficult as my boyfriend didn't really want a puppy so I am doing everything, thus I am shattered.
     
  2. evuze

    evuze PetForums Junior

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    It's very tiring isn't it, I can relate to that hehe.

    What we try to do is instead of giving the treat straight away, make them move away from the object and then sit or lie down and then give the treat. Maybe don't always use the treat as a reward, sometimes lots of praise, some times a game, or a toy she's not seen for a few days, etc.
     
  3. Lizz1155

    Lizz1155 PetForums VIP

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    She sounds like a perfectly normal puppy. If you're concerned that in the long run she will only do what you ask when she can see the treat, you could try clicker training. With clicker training you click for the right behaviour, then deliver the treat - the dog does not normally get to see the treat beforehand (so has no opportunity to decide whether the treat is "good enough" or not).

    This is the Karen Pryor site, it's got some really good clicker-training advice on it: Karen Pryor Clicker Training | The Leader in Positive Reinforcement Training

    Are you crate-training the pup? Crates can be pretty invaluable when you just need to have a break from the puppy. IMHO, they also make housetraining a lot easier; I probably wouldn't have survived puppy-hood without a crate.

    If you don't have access to a crate, remember tethering is always an option when you need a 10 minute break from the pup (although they shouldn't be left completely unaccompanied if tethered). Find something sturdy to attach the pup's lead to, place their dog-bed or a cushion there, along with something really good to chew on. The pup should settle and chew, and possibly chew itself to sleep.

    Puppies sleep 18-20 hours per day (with lots of toilet breaks in between) - so with 2 hours in the morning and 4-5 hours of your time in the evening she is getting enough attention.
     
  4. Hanwombat

    Hanwombat I ♥ dogs with eyebrows !!

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    Thanks, I will consider clicker training and will give the crate a go - I do have one I just didn't want to put her in it until bed time but perhaps I shall use it to take a break from her when she is very very VERY hyper
     
  5. Meezey

    Meezey Slave to the Black & Tans and the Trundle Bugs.

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    Right now, although it will seem she knows what you want her to do, she doesn't :D so you can use the treats to your advantage, Rottweilers are generally a breed that are head strong, and they tend to do things if there is something in it for them, they also love food so you can use it to your advantage :D For only having her a week she has learnt a fair bit already :D

    Over a period of time, if your consistent with words, actions and what you want from her, and treats she will get the jist of what you want, you can do clicker training if you want, but tbh I've personally found it easy to train them with just food, over a period of time, I'd start reducing the amount of treats you give her when asking her to do something, Cian is 6 months and I still do all training with treats, I still used them when my other Rottweilers where 8/9 years old, you wouldn't work for free would you ;) Give her time, she will pick it up not problem at all, a Rottweiler will sell it's soul for food, so she learn quick and as I said you can start reducing the treats once she understands what you mean ;)
     
  6. tabulahrasa

    tabulahrasa PetForums VIP

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    Brock's 13 months...still using food here mostly. With his rock solid commands I can tell him to do them and he will no matter what and be happy with just a good boy, but to be honest only his sit is 100% rock solid, down is 99% there and others are 100% in the house and garden, less so outside :rolleyes:.

    I carry a pocket full of his food in case I'm caught without treats - it's much easier to make sure they absolutely will do it before having to get them to do something just because you want them to.

    One of the good things about having a large breed dog though is that I've found you can give as many rewards as you want, he needs so much to eat that it's still a tiny proportion, lol.

    I clicker train, I don't need to, but, it's brilliant for teaching tricks and of course rotties love to be busy and Brock's had to have weeks of crate rest for a medical problem, so it keeps him entertained and works off some of that energy.

    While it's mostly food I use, sometimes he just gets a good boy and a fuss, sometimes it's a toy or a game as a reward...it depends what he's doing and what I want him to do. If he's trying to initiate play inappropriately for instance, he's still jumping up and mouthing occasionally, the reward for calming down and sitting is a game with a toy because that's what he wanted to do.

    Mostly though what you have is a baby and she'll need training with a reward for ages before you can think about withdrawing rewards to only occasionally. :)
     
  7. Hanwombat

    Hanwombat I ♥ dogs with eyebrows !!

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    Thank you all for the advice, I'll let you know how I get on :)
     
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