How/when/where do you guys train? - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-14-2009, 08:38 PM Thread Starter
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How/when/where do you guys train?

What's your training program like? And how much time per day do you guys train your dogs for? I train wini and buddy outside or in the basement and I try to do 1-2 training session. There fairly short. Unless its more of an exercise/recall training session. What do you guys do?
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post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-14-2009, 08:44 PM
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Re: How/when/where do you guys train?

I train and exercise daily rain, snow or shine for at least a half hour otherwise my UberBitches are impossible to live with

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post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-14-2009, 09:09 PM
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Re: How/when/where do you guys train?

I train every day. Whether I want to or not. Such is the curse of living with a reactive dog in the city.

On workdays, we go for a 2 mile walk every morning. I always have treats with me so that we can work on desensitization.

In the evenings during the week, I usually work with her on some new behaviors or we brush up on her freestyle moves for 15-30 minutes.

Weekends are pretty much devoted to Risa. We go for long walks (involving more desensitization training), play, and work on freestyle moves.

We also attend a freestyle 'class' once a week.


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post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-14-2009, 09:21 PM
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Re: How/when/where do you guys train?

With my previous dogs, I made it a point to always train at LEAST once a day. I usually had regular training sessions for at least so many minutes.

With my current dog, while I still have "sessions", I also now use whatever situation I happen to be in to practice some sort of training, usually obedience-based. I even intersperse training randonly during play time. I believe that when they're hot and heavy into a game of fetch, tug, playing with other dogs, or whatever, it provides the BEST time to train around distractions, even if it is only for a minute or two.

I also make it a point, if it's during time of play, no matter what, to make training end with play. For example, if I'm playing fetch, I sometimes make the dog sit and stay when I toss the object. Sometimes after throwing, I make her do a down, then a sit up, then release her to go retrieve the object. Then I throw it without commands a couple of times before play time is over.

Sometimes, I work heel in the middle of play time, too, then end with some sort of additional play.

The result is a dog that is ALWAYS, without fail, responsive to me, no matter what. And, I mean, 100% of the time, this dog will look at me when I call her name, and come WHENEVER I call her. I also noticed that from a very young age, my dog has been VERY good off-lead. In fact, the only reason I use a leash now is for her safety more than anything else. And, this dog is only 7 months old.

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post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-14-2009, 09:34 PM
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Re: How/when/where do you guys train?

I train everyday. I also incorporate training into play sessions. Typically I will use unoccupied tennis court in early morning and evening to play ball. I also use Home Depot as a training venue in the evenings at least twice a week. Otherwise I do training at home and my wife is always doing training with her during the day for 5 minute sessions. I do tracking training with her 3-4 times a week just short sessions.

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post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-14-2009, 10:30 PM
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Re: How/when/where do you guys train?

Mine varies all over the place. It really depends on the weather, the health of the dog, what events we are prepping for, what training classes are currently offered at the club...

I try to take Nikon "out" somewhere (with people and dogs) once a week (when he was little I took him everywhere, even if dogs weren't allowed I would have him ride in the car and practice waiting in the crate/car). He goes to SchH club every other week. Right now Kenya is in 2 training classes on Wed. nights, sometimes I take Nikon along to socialize and work on distraction in a corner. Nikon starts conformation class in March and will also do an advance puppy or beginner OB. We do 1-2 short training sessions each day at home. Recalls happen throughout the day and at this stage, I try to have a reward for every single one and only use it when I mean it and know it will be reinforced. Nikon also does tugging and prey drive activities (if you can call it me it's more like play and exercise) once a day.

Kenya I'm training for a Dog Sport trial in May, the RE title at some point (haven't entered shows yet, but maybe the AKC cluster show in late May), and possibly UKC rally at the UKC Premier in June. Like I said she is in 2 classes right now. She also comes to SchH club with me every other time. For a while I was good about doing a decent session of formal obedience and long heeling patterns once a day OUTside but the weather turned horrid again so I've been working on her positions and sit out of motion indoors.
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post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-15-2009, 12:36 AM
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Re: How/when/where do you guys train?

I don't have specific training times every day anymore - I did back when I was trialing my dogs but these days it's all about manners at home so I don't set specific parameters to my training.

However, like MrLeadfoot, I take advantage of most of my interactions with the dogs to train. I have four girls and I may single out one to do something, and then another, or I may do group exercises ("okay girls, everyone DOWN!"). I have a shop area here and we go out there for play/training times. In addition, I work my Service Dog on practicing retrieves inside (I have her bring my socks, shoes, a dropped remote control, my keys, etc.).

I also will do a brief bit of training when I go places. I'll pop the dog out of the car and do a heeling pattern in a parking lot, or a sit-stay on the sidewalk in front of the store. Mostly this is when I'm feeling good (not so often lately) and it's really valuable for the distractions. I want my dogs to focus on me even when people are walking by, grocery carts are rattling past, etc.

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post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-15-2009, 05:15 AM
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Re: How/when/where do you guys train?

Because we are a combo of extremely overenthusiastic, strong-minded, reactive, pushy, dominant dog.. paired with a shy, soft, disabled handler, we train daily-- just like Jamie and Risa.

During walks 3 - 4 times per day: I keep the heeling so that his paws don't go ahead of mine. Youthful overexuberance, even with excersise, means it's tough for him to walk next to a shufflin' grandma.

In the livingroom: Directed retrieves, 2-toy retrieval games, some heeling mixed in, some downs and sits mixed in.

Work: Grimm must carry my gloves, or my flashlight, or the newspaper when our walk draws to a close. He must carry the object across the parkinglot, up the stairs (outdoor stairs in a hillside), along a sidewalk, then into the apartment building.. then up the steps, then into the apartment... then he must turn around in heel with me in the entryway, and only release the glove/flashlight/newspaper/hat etc. when I have my hand on the object and say "Aus!"

Interwoven into our day, you will find a few downs, sits, recalls in the house.

Outdoors when Grimm is running free in the field, we may weave in some off-lead heeling (EXCELLENT for his brain!), downs with me walking away from him.. and returning to him.... some sits, and a few fun retrieval games. In the end, I always keep the retrieval toy or ball.

Basicly, Grimm is still to young-n-crazy for me NOT to interweave training into daily life.

In spring when the weather is better: We will, as in the fall, go down into the village to do heeling, sots, and downs around cars, bikes, kids, people, etc. I bring treats to work him there.

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post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-15-2009, 05:47 AM
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Re: How/when/where do you guys train?

this thread is making me feel a bit bad, i don't train with my dogs nearly enough (Tilden in particular) but our situation isnt as crucial as some/most. he isnt a puppy, nor is he dominant, aggressive, reactive, disruptive, or destructive - so its purely recreational for us. i do however fit in home-training and general socialization as much as possible. they sit to eat, wait at doors, bring me certain toys by name, and practicing recalls is constant because they're almost always off leash.

so aside from the above, we have another area of 'casual training' which tilden has to do for 10 minutes before he's allowed off leash at his play group which is 3-4 times per week weather permitting. sit-stay, down-stay, heel, come, and focus.

formal training right now is once a week in a small group specifically for dogs working towards their TDI but have not yet passed their CGC.

we've tried herding, participated in an agility seminar type course... but we're still looking for Tildens "niche".

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post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-15-2009, 08:03 AM
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Re: How/when/where do you guys train?

I train every day in one form or another. Some days it is just having to do a few things when chasing the ball or going for a walk like random sit/down/stay, fronts, etc. Or I may do fronts and a few other things in the house (my house is really too small for much more). In the spring through fall, during trial season, I do more official training 4-5 days per week. Some of those days will be just tracking or just obedience and then a couple will include all three phases. I work on specific things on those days trying to keep the sessions short and intense while building my dog up for competition. I also now train myself 5 days a week to keep in shape so I can keep up with my dog.

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