New puppy - having a hard time training him. - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-18-2016, 12:05 AM Thread Starter
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Unhappy New puppy - having a hard time training him.

Hi guys, this is my first puppy, he's 8 weeks, we got him from the breeder 2 days ago. We've been trying to train him... Have a crate and all of that, but it hasn't been going well so far.

Day 2, and he doesn't know his name, doesn't know how to come etc. We bought him a leash and collar, he seems completely OK with the collar, but even if let him sniff the leash, and let him drag it, take it on and off, over and over, till he's use to it (trying not to tense him) - he doesn't react well to it. He doesn't wanna go for walks as well, so it's really hard to burn off his energy.

We try to teach him his name, and use treats, but he doesn't care to listen either. We try toys, that doesn't help either. He follows time to time, other than that.. We haven't been progressing so far.

I've tried watching multiple YouTube videos for training, and we WILL be taking to obedience school, but... He needs all his shots.. And that's gonna be a little while till he gets them all..

So, guys, what can I do to train my puppy to listen? To walk on the leash, to respond to his name, and to come when called. That's what I wanna start off with. I was really hoping he'd be slightly determined to be taught, but he seems a little stubborn and lazy so far, and sleeps a lot.
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post #2 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-18-2016, 12:22 AM
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Sounds completely normal. This is a time for bonding and love with your new pup. No way could he know his name, understand what a leash is, or come when called at this age! Some are even baffled by a collar at 8 weeks! You are a few weeks away from all of that.... To work on these things, crouch down very low and call the name for your little guy. Eventually he will come to you, esp if you are holding a tasty treat or interesting object. Celebrate and praise as he makes his way towards you! Encourage him and encourage him more! He is just a newborn really...it's a time for bonding now and not much else- you can expect these milestones at 3-4 months old. Congratulations and enjoy your little one - you won't believe how fast the time goes.
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post #3 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-18-2016, 12:24 AM
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Omgosh.. Not to be sounding harsh, but he is only 8 weeks old! AND you've only had him 2 days! He is pulled from his mom and liter mates to people and routines he doesn't know, experiences he has never had and expected to be a doggie genius and learn a name (dogs don't naturally speak English or any other human language) and walk on a leash and things he has never done before... Just relax, give him time to adjust He will be a wonderful and probably extremely smart boy who will be a lovely loyal friend, but give him a break and recognize that he it would be like taking a 1yr old kid from his home and expecting him to feed himself, know his name and communicate with you and trust you without any problems... Not happening.. Dogs do learn faster then we do, but give him at lest a week to adjust
.. Congratulations on the new addition though
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post #4 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-18-2016, 12:27 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by annabirdie View Post
Sounds completely normal. This is a time for bonding and love with your new pup. No way could he know his name, understand what a leash is, or come when called at this age! Some are even baffled by a collar at 8 weeks! You are a few weeks away from all of that.... To work on these things, crouch down very low and call the name for your little guy. Eventually he will come to you, esp if you are holding a tasty treat or interesting object. Celebrate and praise as he makes his way towards you! Encourage him and encourage him more! He is just a newborn really...it's a time for bonding now and not much else- you can expect these milestones at 3-4 months old. Congratulations and enjoy your little one - you won't believe how fast the time goes.
I know, I absolutely love him and adore him. It's just slightly a bit frustrating because he has no interest in the treats, right.. So I'm scared like, how am I gonna teach him his name, to walk on the leash.. And to come, if he isn't responsive to treats.

This behavior is completely normal for an 8 week old pup? Like is it OK to play, and bond with him and allow him to "free-bird" himself (do what he wants, but must sleep in the crate at nights) until he's older to start training? Or, must be at 8 weeks old, asap?

We've been praising him as much as possible, but even when calling his name, and or, trying to get a toy, or any of that to get him to come he doesn't wanna come we're all bonding with him though constantly, he gets attention 24/7 so far and everyone plays with him, he constantly naps too, I think because he's bored.

Lots of worrying, haha.
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post #5 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-18-2016, 12:29 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Hineni7 View Post
Omgosh.. Not to be sounding harsh, but he is only 8 weeks old! AND you've only had him 2 days! He is pulled from his mom and liter mates to people and routines he doesn't know, experiences he has never had and expected to be a doggie genius and learn a name (dogs don't naturally speak English or any other human language) and walk on a leash and things he has never done before... Just relax, give him time to adjust He will be a wonderful and probably extremely smart boy who will be a lovely loyal friend, but give him a break and recognize that he it would be like taking a 1yr old kid from his home and expecting him to feed himself, know his name and communicate with you and trust you without any problems... Not happening.. Dogs do learn faster then we do, but give him at lest a week to adjust
.. Congratulations on the new addition though
Thanks, I'll do that, I'll relax and take it easy, you're right, I think it's mostly because of the pressure from my friends, they all saw my photos of him, and want to come visit, I allow them to see the pup and all these negative comments fly towards me and my pup. "Oh, what's wrong with his back" and "oh he needs to respond right away"

Looks like I'm stressing for nothing, hewh.
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post #6 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-18-2016, 12:35 AM
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Lol.. New parent syndrome.. Seriously, it is OK for the puppy to be a puppy! Yes, slowly in short increments keep encouraging the training of name and leash, but at 8 was, you aren't going for long walks.. No attention span.. A few weeks will make a large difference, but even then, it is slow and steady.. Don't let others put pressure on you or your puppy.. You have plans for education (which wouldn't even start until 16wks at minimum, some prefer 6mos of age) which good. You are spending time working with him and bonding, this is good... UT enjoy the puppy stage where everything is new and exciting for him.. His attention span and fatigue could easily be due to the changes and stress he has been under for the past 2 days.. Even new food can do this, let alone all that was stated in previous post... You are doing fine and the pup is too.. All is normal
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post #7 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-18-2016, 12:45 AM
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Just like a rescue, puppies need time to acclimate. Give him two weeks to get to know his new life. Crate when you can't give him 100% attention. No stressing him or bombarding him with attention. Just let him be. Let him explore to an extent.
What kind of treats are you using? I prefer smelly, soft treats. Carry them in your pockets. Whenever he comes to you, or interacts with you, reward him. He will associate who you are.
Why do your friends ask what's wrong with his back? I want to say more about them questioning telling you how he should be, but I guess it's no different than how we are responding with advice.

Last edited by cloudpump; 05-18-2016 at 12:52 AM.
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post #8 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-18-2016, 12:47 AM
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Please read as much of the puppy section as you can. Your expectations are excessive and pushing a puppy who is just beginning to get used to being without littermates and mom could cause trouble. You should be bonding, playing, protecting, and potty training and that is about it. Training occurs over the next 2 years so slow down and enjoy.

Edit:and just like babies and people, sleep is very important for growth and development. He sleeps because he is a baby.

Karin
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Rescue GSD - Freyja (Husband's Dog)
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post #9 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-18-2016, 12:50 AM
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Aw.. 8 weeks is so tiny Congrats!

First and foremost - nothing ever is instant with them except for their reaction and quick wit. Everything takes time. Teaching his name alone may take a few days to a week and not very reliably. Practice is everything. Also keep in mind that puppys have very little attention span. Train for a minute or two, and play a bit, then let him play alone and he'll probably be asleep for a bit. Let him wake up and play for a bit on his own, then train for a few minutes, rinse and repeat. Of course with frequent potty breaks.
You need to establish some routine - they love that. And try sticking to it.

Make sure everyone in the household follows the same routine. Consistency is the key.

Dogs learn by association (at least for the most part) - they associate actions to our verbal commands, so clear communication is the key. All you left to do make them do what you want, then give it a name - command.

If you already do that, that's great! Then just be patient and give it some more time. And try not to teach many commands at once - just focus on one at a time. They learn faster and more reliably. Keep using everything he knows regularly so that he doesn't forget.

Another idea, if you can afford of course, maybe take 1-2 private lessons in-house. This way you don't need to worry about the shots, and even in one lesson an experienced trainer who loves what they do will show you the ropes and how-to's.

Good luck and keep him happy!)) He is a puppy still. Play more train less. Show him love, fun. Restrain when needed but firm and calm. Like annabirdie said, it's time for bonding, earning trust. And trust goes both ways. Show him that you are a worthy replacement to his own mom

And before you know it, he will be running happy when you call him.
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post #10 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-18-2016, 01:02 AM Thread Starter
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My friends own small dogs, none of them have ever owned a German Shepherd puppy, so they say "what's wrong with his back" and "why is he so big for an 8 week old puppy" - stupid ridiculous stuff like that, his back is absolutely gorgeous and there's no problem with it, he's very healthy and a perfect size for a GSD 8 week old puppy. And they all are literally confusing me, telling me to do this and that with him. "You need to be firm with him, and strict." Ridiculous comments.

We have a hallway in the house, and so my brother and I, 10 minutes ago went on both sides of the hallways, and called his name, telling him to come, and saying his name, he'd run up to me and I'd praise him and say yes. Then, turned him around when he got tired and started to get distracted, and kept repeating and he kept coming. Then let him go get water, he kept responding, maybe about 4 - 5 times, and when he didn't we faced him to the other person, and called. Then the last time he laid on the stomach and relaxed, and then I allowed him to go roam and now he's passed out on the carpet.

Should I keep that tactic up?
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