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post #1 of 24 (permalink) Old 01-14-2011, 08:15 AM Thread Starter
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New to forums. Need advice.

Hello everyone I am new to this forum. I need some tips and advice on a few things if it isn't too much trouble. My sister was given a 3 month old german shepherd. It is our first time owning a puppy that we really want to train well. My sister has another dog that is about 3 years old and it is a jack russell terrier.

My sister is a busy women with 2 kids so I try my best to help her with looking after the puppy. My sister tends to give up very easily and wants to give the puppy away whenever she feels stressed with cleaning or when the puppy does not listen. Are there other people out there that feel stressed about all the work in taking care of a puppy?

So it has been 5 days since we have gotten the puppy. My sister has bought many things for it. treats, toys, and a big crate. She spent a lot of money for it so I really want to help her train her puppy well.

Some things I have done so far:

For the past 5 days I have been teaching the puppy her name which is Coco. I would give her a small training treat while saying her name. I have noticed that whenever I say Coco now she will look at me.

The next thing I am trying to do is to train her to pee/poop outside the backyard. I am currently using a Go Here Spray to help with the training. Also every time Coco is done eating, drinking water, and napping I would bring her out to the back yard on a leash and see if she goes. When she is done going on the right spot that I want her to go I would praise her or give her a treat. Am I doing the right things? I have had it successfully go in the right spots a few times but sometimes when I bring her out she can't hold it in sometimes and goes in the wrong area. Does anyone know how long I should wait before it pees/poop? I have had to wait about 15minutes before it went. It is so hard to predict.

I am also trying to crate train her in the house we have very big crate that Coco can move around and stretch and we also extended a bit so that we could fit a spot where she could pee/poop. She has been doing very well for the past 4 days and has pee/poop on the area that we sprayed Go Here on. Today though she pee/poop on her bed in the crate instead of going into the small area we made for her. The only reason I can think of is Coco must have stepped onto some of the Go Here Spray and then walked on to her bed and it got onto it. Can anyone give me any advice on crate training? Should I be sleeping next to or near the crate? If so, then I can.

Also sometimes Coco would whimper at night time when the kids are asleep and my sister doesn't want that. Is there anything that I can do in case Coco whimpers? When it does I usually assume that it needs to go to pee/poop outside or get some water. We do not feed it at night time.


Another thing I am trying to do is getting the jack russell terrier and our new german shepherd to get a long. Most of the time the puppy will chase the jack russell terrier around since it is smaller even though our german shepherd is still a puppy. Whenever Coco gets close to it our dog would growl or whimper and sometimes even looks like it would try to bite Coco but not aggressively more like to scare Coco away. Is there anything I can do to stop this? What I am doing now is bringing them away from each other whenever they growl or try to bite each other and saying No. Also is it normal for Coco to be chasing our jack russel terrier? I assumed that they are just playing because sometimes their tails are wagging.

Some other questions I have are how many meals or how many times should I feed Coco? We usually feed it in 1 or 2 hours. We usually fill up her bowl to the top. How many treats should be given? We have different kinds of treats such as treats where you just give the puppy to enjoy and smaller training treats to use when Coco does something right or when we are training her.

Another problem that I have is that sometimes Coco would lick or eat her poop. Is this normal for a puppy? She doesn't do it all the time and when she does I try to get her away from it.

I am willing to do anything for this puppy I really want my sister to be able to keep it. I don't live with my sister but I am helping her for now until Coco is more obedient and trained or at least do things that will not make my sister feel stressed and then wants to give it away. I believe what my sister fears is having to clean up if it pee/poops on its bed or in the house and also waking up the kids at night time whenever it whimpers or whines.

If anyone has had any experience with a german shepherd puppy please give me some tips and advice on what I should be doing or what are the first things to train your puppy. What to do or what not to do? I am new to training puppys and dogs. I would appreciate any advice because I really do need it.

Also is it ok to assume that because Coco is still a puppy it will take some time until she is smarter and more obedient? My sister forgets that Coco is a puppy and she always gets mad that it isn't listening or that it pee/poop in its bed and she has to clean it. I always tell her to give it some time because it has only been about 5 days since we have had it. I am a very patient person and I will work hard to train my sister's puppy.

Please help me with anything if you can. Thank you everyone.
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post #2 of 24 (permalink) Old 01-14-2011, 08:28 AM
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Welcome.

First, please stop calling your puppy an it. She is a living creature. It has no bearing on your ability but just makes me cringe.

I think being frustrated with raising a puppy the first time is normal, I know I was stressed for a while with mine.

You are doing a good job with teaching her name and to go potty outside. She is young so sometimes she can't hold it but that should improve over time. If you say something like "good potty" WHILE she is going and still praise and treat her when she is done, you can teach her to go on command.

For the crate, I know you think you are making things easier for her by giving her a potty area in her crate but all you are doing is teaching her to potty in it and the house. The crate is supposed to be used to house break them and teach them not to potty in the house or the crate. It is their den and they shouldn't want to soil where they sleep. She should have enough room to stand up and turn around in the crate and lay comfortably but not enough that she can pee or poop in one area and then lay in another.

Whimper is normal. German Shepherds can be very vocal and she is just a baby. Where is her crate located? When they are that young, it is a good idea to have them crated in the bedroom with you at night so they don't feel separated from their pack. You can also cover the crate so it is more den like.

How much you feed her depends on what you are feeding. There should be feeding guidlines on the side of the bag that depends on weight and age. Please read those and adjust accordingly. At this age, she should be fed on a schedule - 3 times a day. Would you like eating only once a day?

Eating her poop is normal. Best way to combat it is to pick up the poop right away.

Coco is just a baby. German Shepherds are incredibly smart and easily trainable but she has the attention span of a gnat right now and is the equivalent of a 1 year old.

German Shepherds need a LOT of physical and mental exercise and daily socialization to grow up to be well balanced dogs. Stick around and read some more.

Honestly, if your sister does not want the dog and doesn't want to put in the time and effort to train and socialize her then Coco would be best with another family while she is still young.
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post #3 of 24 (permalink) Old 01-14-2011, 08:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gsdraven View Post
Welcome.

First, please stop calling your puppy an it. She is a living creature. It has no bearing on your ability but just makes me cringe.

I think being frustrated with raising a puppy the first time is normal, I know I was stressed for a while with mine.

You are doing a good job with teaching her name and to go potty outside. She is young so sometimes she can't hold it but that should improve over time. If you say something like "good potty" WHILE she is going and still praise and treat her when she is done, you can teach her to go on command.

For the crate, I know you think you are making things easier for her by giving her a potty area in her crate but all you are doing is teaching her to potty in it and the house. The crate is supposed to be used to house break them and teach them not to potty in the house or the crate. It is their den and they shouldn't want to soil where they sleep. She should have enough room to stand up and turn around in the crate and lay comfortably but not enough that she can pee or poop in one area and then lay in another.

Whimper is normal. German Shepherds can be very vocal and she is just a baby. Where is her crate located? When they are that young, it is a good idea to have them crated in the bedroom with you at night so they don't feel separated from their pack. You can also cover the crate so it is more den like.

How much you feed her depends on what you are feeding. There should be feeding guidlines on the side of the bag that depends on weight and age. Please read those and adjust accordingly. At this age, she should be fed on a schedule - 3 times a day. Would you like eating only once a day?

Eating her poop is normal. Best way to combat it is to pick up the poop right away.

Coco is just a baby. German Shepherds are incredibly smart and easily trainable but she has the attention span of a gnat right now and is the equivalent of a 1 year old.

German Shepherds need a LOT of physical and mental exercise and daily socialization to grow up to be well balanced dogs. Stick around and read some more.

Honestly, if your sister does not want the dog and doesn't want to put in the time and effort to train and socialize her then Coco would be best with another family while she is still young.

Lauren

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post #4 of 24 (permalink) Old 01-14-2011, 09:03 AM
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Welcome to Hyde and Coco. Sounds like you are really trying hard to do the right thing for Coco and teaching her to the best of your ability. I applaud you for trying to help your sister and Coco.

Like the other posters have said it sounds like most of the stuff you are doing is pretty good for a beginner, but you do need to fix her crate smaller so that she doesn't have enough room to use it for using the bathroom. They normally will not use the bathroom where they have to sleep unless they are left in the crate for too long a time or they are sick and can't help it. You probably do not need to use the potty spray to mark where she needs to go, just continue taking Coco to the same area where you want her to relieve herself.

Good luck and continue working with Coco if you can and she will come around as she grows.

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post #5 of 24 (permalink) Old 01-14-2011, 09:36 AM
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Coco is going to be a very big puppy very soon so you should go to a puppy class then an obedience class. She'll stay a puppy for at least a year so it's important to start training soon, but if your sister is talking about finding her a home, that may be the best solution.
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post #6 of 24 (permalink) Old 01-14-2011, 09:41 AM
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PATIENCE ... is key here ! She is young, just a baby, be loving and patient, the rest will follow ...

Welcome to the forum ... we require pictures in case no ones mentioned it


I so hope there is a Doggie Heaven !!!

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post #7 of 24 (permalink) Old 01-14-2011, 10:05 AM
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Hi and welcome!

If your sister has only had Coco for 5 days and is already thinking about giving up because she is too frustrated with her, then the best solution may be to give Coco to a family that has the time and patience to care for her. I have 2 young kids myself, and I can certainly understand how hard it is to take care of a puppy in addition to having children. Kids are enough stress by themselves, and throw in a puppy at the wrong time and boy oh boy! Puppies are a lot of work, and they require a lot! However, if your sister feels that she can get past the frustration and really wants to provide a safe, loving, secure, and stable home for Coco....then you've come to the right place for great advice and support!

Emily
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post #8 of 24 (permalink) Old 01-14-2011, 10:08 AM
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Just to piggy back on what everyone else has said...I think it's wonderful that you are helping your sister out but ultimitately it is her dog right? If Coco is going to be a permanent part of the family your sister will need to put in just as much effort, if not more, to get the pups where she wants her to be. Coco will learn faster than you can imagine but consistent and ongoing training must happen, not to mention all the exercise Coco will need before too long. If your sister is already ready to give up, does she really understand what's ahead? Good luck with your new babes and I hope your sister jumps on board

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post #9 of 24 (permalink) Old 01-14-2011, 10:17 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gsdraven View Post
Welcome.

First, please stop calling your puppy an it. She is a living creature. It has no bearing on your ability but just makes me cringe.

I think being frustrated with raising a puppy the first time is normal, I know I was stressed for a while with mine.

You are doing a good job with teaching her name and to go potty outside. She is young so sometimes she can't hold it but that should improve over time. If you say something like "good potty" WHILE she is going and still praise and treat her when she is done, you can teach her to go on command.

For the crate, I know you think you are making things easier for her by giving her a potty area in her crate but all you are doing is teaching her to potty in it and the house. The crate is supposed to be used to house break them and teach them not to potty in the house or the crate. It is their den and they shouldn't want to soil where they sleep. She should have enough room to stand up and turn around in the crate and lay comfortably but not enough that she can pee or poop in one area and then lay in another.

Whimper is normal. German Shepherds can be very vocal and she is just a baby. Where is her crate located? When they are that young, it is a good idea to have them crated in the bedroom with you at night so they don't feel separated from their pack. You can also cover the crate so it is more den like.

How much you feed her depends on what you are feeding. There should be feeding guidlines on the side of the bag that depends on weight and age. Please read those and adjust accordingly. At this age, she should be fed on a schedule - 3 times a day. Would you like eating only once a day?

Eating her poop is normal. Best way to combat it is to pick up the poop right away.

Coco is just a baby. German Shepherds are incredibly smart and easily trainable but she has the attention span of a gnat right now and is the equivalent of a 1 year old.

German Shepherds need a LOT of physical and mental exercise and daily socialization to grow up to be well balanced dogs. Stick around and read some more.

Honestly, if your sister does not want the dog and doesn't want to put in the time and effort to train and socialize her then Coco would be best with another family while she is still young.
Thank you so much for all of your advice gsdraven, I will take note of this and try my best. I apologize for calling Coco an it I am just used to saying the word it. I will treat Coco and all other animals with the right respect from now on. Coco's crate is located in the living room right now where I am also sleeping, on the couch. My sister and her husband doesn't really want animals in their room for now. Can you tell me what kind of exercise I should give Coco? I have been walking around the back yard with her, and also Coco and our jack russell terrier likes to run around together. Coco chases her. I will read the instructions behind Coco's puppy food. Thanks again!

Quote:
Originally Posted by 1sttimeforgsd View Post
Welcome to Hyde and Coco. Sounds like you are really trying hard to do the right thing for Coco and teaching her to the best of your ability. I applaud you for trying to help your sister and Coco.

Like the other posters have said it sounds like most of the stuff you are doing is pretty good for a beginner, but you do need to fix her crate smaller so that she doesn't have enough room to use it for using the bathroom. They normally will not use the bathroom where they have to sleep unless they are left in the crate for too long a time or they are sick and can't help it. You probably do not need to use the potty spray to mark where she needs to go, just continue taking Coco to the same area where you want her to relieve herself.

Good luck and continue working with Coco if you can and she will come around as she grows.
Thank you 1sttimeforgsd I will continue and try to do my best. I will fix her crate so that there is just enough room for Coco to sleep and not use the crate as a bathroom. I also have a comfortable bed for Coco in her crate but she seems to like laying on a harder surface. Is this because the bed is too fluffy and warm? We also have the heater on in the house so that could be the reason why she is moving to a colder hard surface. Do you know if I should give her the bed or should I just let her lay on the hard surface of the crate?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stosh View Post
Coco is going to be a very big puppy very soon so you should go to a puppy class then an obedience class. She'll stay a puppy for at least a year so it's important to start training soon, but if your sister is talking about finding her a home, that may be the best solution.
Thanks, my sister is planning on taking Coco to an obedience class once she gets all her shots. I am doing what I can to help her so that we can keep Coco.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stogey View Post
PATIENCE ... is key here ! She is young, just a baby, be loving and patient, the rest will follow ...

Welcome to the forum ... we require pictures in case no ones mentioned it
Thank you, I am very patient and I love her a lot. I will do my best. I didn't know that we required a picture I will have it up as soon as possible.
Quote:
Originally Posted by emsoskar View Post
Hi and welcome!

If your sister has only had Coco for 5 days and is already thinking about giving up because she is too frustrated with her, then the best solution may be to give Coco to a family that has the time and patience to care for her. I have 2 young kids myself, and I can certainly understand how hard it is to take care of a puppy in addition to having children. Kids are enough stress by themselves, and throw in a puppy at the wrong time and boy oh boy! Puppies are a lot of work, and they require a lot! However, if your sister feels that she can get past the frustration and really wants to provide a safe, loving, secure, and stable home for Coco....then you've come to the right place for great advice and support!
Hi and thanks! I will help my sister as much as I can to change her mind about giving Coco a chance. I told her to be patient and relax and I will do most of the work. Even though she feels frustrated I can tell she really loves Coco she's just afraid that this might not work out for her.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bunch of Rascals View Post
Just to piggy back on what everyone else has said...I think it's wonderful that you are helping your sister out but ultimitately it is her dog right? If Coco is going to be a permanent part of the family your sister will need to put in just as much effort, if not more, to get the pups where she wants her to be. Coco will learn faster than you can imagine but consistent and ongoing training must happen, not to mention all the exercise Coco will need before too long. If your sister is already ready to give up, does she really understand what's ahead? Good luck with your new babes and I hope your sister jumps on board
Yes, Coco is my sister's dog and I have talked to her about also helping me take care of Coco. I will do most of the work and she will also help when she isn't busy. I think she knows what's ahead she's just unsure of how Coco will turn out. She's also afraid that if Coco gets bigger she might become aggressive and bite the kids or other children and people. She has read about bigger dogs biting people and attacking them so this could be a reason why she is feeling worried.


Thank you so much everyone for your help and support. You all have given me more confidence in becoming a good trainer for Coco. I have also let my sister read your comments and it has seemed to cheer her up and made her feel a lot better that she isn't the only one stressed about having a puppy. Thanks again everyone! I really do appreciate all your help and support.
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post #10 of 24 (permalink) Old 01-15-2011, 09:54 AM
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I think she knows what's ahead she's just unsure of how Coco will turn out. She's also afraid that if Coco gets bigger she might become aggressive and bite the kids or other children and people. She has read about bigger dogs biting people and attacking them so this could be a reason why she is feeling worried.
The best way to prevent this is lots of socialization. Take her to lots of new places so she can experience everything life has to offer. This will help her to determine what is normal every day life and what could possibly be a threat. You want all of her experiences to be happy and positive.

It will be great for you to get into classes with her. Classes are really about teaching owners how to communicate with their dog.

As for exercise, is Coco trained to walk on a leash? Take her for walks through the neighborhood or local parks. This will also help with socialization. Also if you have somewhere that you can trust her off leash to play with you would be nice too. Just letting her play in the yard with the other dog won't be enough exercise. A tired puppy is a good puppy.

So glad you came here. Hopefully you will stick around, read, learn, ask more questions and most importantly post pictures!!
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