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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
So my (almost) 5 month old is doing fabulous in her training thus far. She heels perfectly, sits when I stop, does the standard sit (sit stay) with distractions (90% of the time) and has been a wonderful puppy to teach. Yesturday we made great strides as I took her out front of a walmart which was busy and had her in heel and also did a lot of standard sits with her and people walked past and she was fine...

This morning on our walk/training session I got so frustrated! She went from being near perfect the last few weeks to this morning being out of control. It started when we walked down the driveway, a dog and his owner were walking past and right near the end of the driveway Penny lost it! She started barking, which I know for her is not play as when she wants to play she has a high pitches "talk" and is just generally mouthy sounding but never barks. But she was full out barking at this dog when it got to close. Even on other walks we have walked past this dog and have met this dog and she was fine. I had no idea how to correct her! So I gave her collar a "pop" and tried to get her attention and only when I brought out a treat did she pay attention to me and went into a sit followed by a standard sit.

So the horrible start to the walk with her barking at that dog, turned into a horrible walk. She had her nose the the ground and kept pulling even though I went back to the training technique that we learned in training that taught her her wonderful heel, which is as soon as she gets in front of me (her ears past the hem of my pants) I whip around and go the opposite direction. Once I got her to heel I stopped to get her into an automatic sit, which she did not want to do, the entire walk! I had to keep putting in the sit. She did do a standard sit twice though, but I had to correct her several times before getting her to do so.

So how do I correct this behavior? Was my correction at the start where she was barking at the other dog not strong enough? Should I have turned back and went back home and tried maybe 5 - 10 minuets later? I really dont know what happened to my little angel this morning. :(

Im going to take her back out as usual in a few hours for her afternoon training session (thank god I work from home and can take several of these breaks a day) and hopefully she will be back to her usual well mannered self. And I will mention this to her trainer next week, but was wondering if you folks could give me some tips or advice?
 

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Discussion Starter #2
I will also add that we ran into the same dog and owner later in the walk and she was fine...no barking
 

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when my pup forgot his manners, i would ditch the obedience and work on engagement training strictly... name calling and maybe a recall word here and there, high reward, low intensity, no corrections whatsoever, and with whatever distractions you can mess around with.
sounds also like you are expecting much too much from a 5 month old. my pup is 13mo and i do not expect him to sit everytime i stop on a walk, even though we train that way.
 

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Im sorry but I do not think I am expecting to much from my pup. She knows her commands and she has been following them perfectly for the past several weeks. She is going to be my first competition dog, so yours may be over a year old and your fine with it not doing everything 100% of time, but I cannot and will not allow her to get away with doing such things as if you give them an inch they WILL take a mile and they will always think they have leeway to push their boundaries which is unacceptable to me.
 

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what is she 4/5 months old? She IS still a puppy basically, and even tho she's been good the past several weeks, there will be days like the one you just experienced..

I do agree with Jae , work on building a good bond/relationship with her as well. Dogs get 'bored' and well when they are bored they are going to act out, do what they want, especially younger dogs.

Put some "FUN" in your training as well, you have to be more interesting than whatever is going on around you..

As for the barking/going nutso at a dog walking by. I probably would have turned around, gone back to the house, let her chill out/calm down, and tried it again..

YOu might try exercising her before you take a walk to, she was probably amped up , ready to go and wasn't interested in training..
 

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She is still a pup and will have off days. Just reinforce her training. Some days you have to go back to basics. It is the joy of having a puppy
 

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Discussion Starter #7
She will be 5 months old on Sunday. She did excellent on her walk this afternoon. I will try to make myself more fun, but when its time to train its time to train, but I guess she is still a young pup, she still needs "fun" in her training.
 

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she will 'always' need fun in training:)
 

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I don't think you are asking to much of your puppy to learn. I also have a five month old and he is learning all the same things. However, 5 months is adolescent stage. This is the time they push boundaries. They have boundless energy and get bored. They have more energy than focus. blah blah blah blah. Sometimes they have an off day. I think you handled it fine. No need to get frustrated. Just stay calm, assertive and consistent. Minor corrections, lots of positive reinforcement and lead by example. If you want her to ignore other dogs on walks....you must ignore other dogs on walks and give corrections while walking past if she barks. I would NOT turn away from the dog. I feel like this is reinforcing whatever anxiety she was feeling at that time, causing her to bark. I think you are doing fine. Take a deep breath and continue tomorrow :) Sounds like a wonderful pup. And yes, keep things fun and interesting for her!
 

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I have a pup that sounds to be the exact same age, he has been through 5 weeks of training thus far and is fantastic....but some days he just loses his mind :D, on days like this I just take him out back and play tug and fetch for a bit untill he seems to have expended some of his energy....then i go on the walk...its super hard (trust me i know :) ) when heel command goes to crap all of a sudden.....i don't know how you trained him to do it but for me the start was alot of slapping my leg and short leashing and sitting ever few steps untill he got the idea....so on the days he loses his mind :crazy: and starts pulling I quickly reverse direction and start patting my leg and try to sound as excited and happy as possible, as soon as he is at my heel i put him in a quick sit and reward...normally a few times and he is back to normal :).

5 months is also a big testosterone surge time....so that never helps :)....like i said my pup is just shy of 5 months so if you ever get bummed out with you pup and wonder if your alone lol shoot me a PM and im sure Ender has recently done something awful in relation, best of luck!!!


EDIT..sorry its a "she"
 

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Fiona is twice the age of your pup and I admire your tenacity with your pup. My trainer says I let Fiona get away with too much. He says to exercise her before training her to get some of her energy out first. Your instinct to turn around and wait was a good one. They also pick up on our reactions. Fiona knows the dog a few doors down and we were outside training with her trainer and this dog came a long. I freaked out because she was in heat and he is a boy dog. It was an inner freak out but Fiona picked up on it and started barking her head off. Making me freak out even more. The trainer had to take Fiona. But the very next day, I was ready. Calm, put her in a sit stay and she was quiet.


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