Basic commands? - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-15-2010, 05:39 PM Thread Starter
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Basic commands?

Hi everyone,

Not sure if you all read my post in the intro. section but anyway, ive finally got a GSD pup at 8 weeks old, its my first dog and im very excited.

I was just wondering, if there are any links anyone would know of where it gives a list of how to teach GSD's basic commands?

Also, with all you peoples experince would you reccomend me trying to teach Mali these basic commands at 8-9 weeks of age?

I'm taking Mali to a GSD training classs on Sunday for the first time just so he can go out and socialize with other GSD's, so that should be good BUT im a bit worried putting a leash on him just because his such a small dog and i don't want to be pulling him around i've already put a collar on him though just so he can get used to it.

Any information would be helpful

thanks in advance.
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-15-2010, 05:44 PM
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YES, start teaching as soon as possible. Puppies can start learning as young as 3 weeks old.

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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-15-2010, 06:17 PM
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There is a whole section on the board ( The Puppy Place - German Shepherd Dog Forums )of how to teach your puppy.... just browse the threads or use the search feature.

Best things to teach a baby pup IMO.. recall/come, sit, focus/watch me, lay down. Also mark behaviors you want when the pup gives them without command.

Do not pull a pup on leash. A lot of people use cheap nylon harnesses for pups to avoid neck damage. Start getting him used to a leash now. If he pulls, stop. Don't let him learn that pulling gets him where he wants to go.


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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-15-2010, 09:51 PM
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There's a ton of great stuff on this site, click on Training Textbook at the top of the page: Dog Star Daily

Free download of Dr. Ian Dunbar's book After You Get Your Puppy:

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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-15-2010, 10:05 PM
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Leashes are no problem at that age. We brought Athena home at 8 weeks and had her walking on a leash the first night. Some of the other commands sit, come, stay, etc... may take some time and aging but the leash is pretty quick for them to pick-up.

Good luck!

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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-15-2010, 11:06 PM
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Most important thing you already thought of, the socialization aspect with people and other dogs (only good meetings though). A happy confident puppy will grow into a happy confident adult dog and that's a dog we can all train. Exercise, housebreaking, CRATE TRAINING and socialization with lots of play play play with you are vital.

You clicker training?


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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-16-2010, 06:29 AM Thread Starter
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thanks everyone, i've heard of clicker training before but i don't know what it is can anybody explain it to me please im very interested.

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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-16-2010, 07:15 AM
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Clicker Training is the best possible training that is based on positive reinforcement out there.

All you need is a clicker and treats (I use high quality treats like cheese or chicken breast or meatballs).

You have to condition your dog on the clicker first. The dog needs to be able to connect the click to a reward. In the early puppy stages that is food and later on it can be a toy, or even a door that opens.

The conditioning and timing of the clicker is the essential part. If the dog isn't conditioned good enough he may not connect to the click so that is very very crucial.

There are different ways to condition. Some throw a handfull of food on the floor and everytime the dog eats a treat they click. Others give the treat out of their hand or throw a single treat on the floor.

What is important is that everytime the dog goes for the treat you click.

You throw the treat and as soon as the pup picks it up you click and you do that over and over and over again. Every day a couple of minutes and after the third or fourth day your puppy knows that "CLICK!" means "TREAT!".

Once your puppy is conditioned you can use the clicker to mar a behavior. Let's say your puppy sits down. That moment your puppy sits down you can click and you do that everytime your puppy sits down. Later on you can add a cue and at one point you won't need the clicker anymore. Or you use a treat to lure your puppy into the position and click. It doesn't take very long for dogs to understand what you want. Especially puppies learn rapidly fast.

After the puppy is conditioned the most important thing is timing, timing and more timing.

There is a lot of great videos on Youtube. I believe MaggieRoseLee has a bunch of very good links handy

Last edited by Mrs.K; 09-16-2010 at 07:18 AM.
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