Hello, we decided to send our 7 month old GSD girl to a professional trainer who has a good reputation and has been in the training business for a couple of decades. She has been there a little over 3 weeks. Early reports from the trainer said she was timid and he had to go slow with her. Now, he says she is too sad or just not into the training and we should pick her up before the training is complete. Says we can perhaps try again when she gets older.
Is this normal? Maybe separation anxiety? I understand that she may be sad about not being at home and living in a kennel. We may have spoiled her and she just does not like the life at a training facility.
We will pick her up tomorrow. My concern is.. will the separation issues lead to bad behavior? Will this time away cause more issues with seperation? We thought that sending her to professional training would help since she just does not like to listen to basic commands like stay, come and no. Now the trainer seems to have issues with her lack of interest as well. How should we handle the return and work with her to get over her lack of interest in listening and obeying commands? I know how to work through separation anxiety. Our last GSD overcame the issue with very little training. Our new girl is stubborn.
Any thoughts would be appreciated!
To me it seems like there's a lot going on here...
Since you gave so little in terms of what your dog is like at home, what sort of training you've tried, how you motivate your dog to learn, and maybe even a more complete account of what all the BAT trainer actually said, it would be difficult to hazard a guess on any of these things!
A board-and-train can be an awesome option for some people, but I would prefer one that does some initial intake evaluation of a dog so they can set reasonable objectives for your dog, and customize their goals to align with your desires and expectations for their services.
3 weeks is a long time for any trainer to not to have been able to find some sort of motivation for your dog and make training progress. But, like I said, without knowing more about your dog and her general behavior prior to this, who knows. It could be separation anxiety, but it could be other things as well...hard to tell.
Does your puppy know any commands that she complies with dependably? How much time does she spend outside of her home territory, like walks or parks or other places? How is she with car rides? How does she react to other dogs or new people? Do you crate her when you're gone? How much time on average is she alone during the day?
Just for perspective, I am always amazed by the fact that any dog is even the least bit willing, much less enjoys, paying attention to what a human says! Why should they? There has to be "something" in it for them! Some dogs will do anything for food, others like toys, and others are willing participants just for praise...but there has to be something that motivates them!
But please, tell us more about your puppy. How old was she when you got her? What have you done to train her up until now, and what were your observations of her during any training you have done? What is she like with new dogs or people? Do loud noises scare her?