New puppy Dharma's training journal (contains training tips)
So he has been with us for two weeks now, and we have been focusing on housetraining. Supervision, literal, eyes on him at all times. Have caught him in the act a few times, say "UhUh" and pick him out and run him outside to finish.
Mostly in the beginning, would see him start to sniff around, and out we go, praise, click, treat after he finishes.
That progressed to him going to the door in whatever room we are occupying, happened in about four days. Get him out quickly saying "you want to go out", and let him run to the exit door so he learns to walk there eventually to tell us he needs to go potty.
The breeder did not crate train him, so he has been sleeping in our bed. The first few nights he would whimper and walk around, and we would take him out. After two nights, he slept through the night.
Nippy little guy, so we worked on leave it exercise. Worked on clicking and treating when being petted, as he was getting over aroused from handling and was nipping. Re-direct him to toy. Say "ouch" in high pitched voice and then ignore him (social timeout) if re-direct does not work.
Play tug with him, when I stop tugging that is his signal to "give", which he does, and then I throw toy and label it "take-it" when he picks it up, and say his name to get him back to me. Tug a bit, labeling it tug, then rinse repeat.
He naturally heels when I go from room to room, so I capture this with click and treat. He has finally stopped tripping me.
He settles on his own when I am on computer, so I drop treats quietly with no interaction to teach him to settle. Have moved this behavior to other areas of house. I simply wait for him to settle by ignoring him. Then again drop treats between his legs, Tulip knows settle so she joins in.
When he finally sleeps, I become the prisoner of a small puppy. I don't want to move as he will hear me and wake up and then I have to supervise constantly and train him again. I would rather not move and have a break. Makes it hard for me to pee, and to stay hydrated, but what the hell, gotta get this guy trained so I suffer in silence.
Take him with me when I work when it is cool outside so I can leave him crated in car. This is the one place he does not cry in crate. It took a few days. Have my clients meet him for socialization. Also meets other dogs this way.
I have two boarders now, so he is learning to leave adult dogs alone. Doesn't always get it, so I have to say his name to interrupt the bothering behavior so he doesn't get hurt. These are two little snarky dogs who don't like to be bothered. I click and treat him when he turns away from them and looks at me. Then I go back to working on settle, or playing with him.
He gets to play roughly a lot with Tulip, she is very tolerant but does have boundaries, so he is learning when he has used his mouth too hard on another dog from her.
Like anyone else I have my moments when I think,"what have I done to my life, I hate this". But when I wake up in the morning with him on his back and stretching, and then he notices I am awake and he puts his head on my neck or face and licks me, I remember why I love puppies, and that I am totally in love with him. Amazing how quickly we fall in love and bond with our animals and children, the human heart is a wonderful thing, and It stops us from throwing puppies, babies, and kittens out the window. Thank God. Also prevents our killing our husband's. Feel the love.
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