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I feel I'm way behind in the training of my GSP... I have been working with him since he was two months.
He's potty trained, does basic commands (sit, down, stay, leave it/release -however he will test me, recall not good at all, jumping trouble area, he walks well on a leash but off leash to him it free time follow by catch me if you can... in which I can't, hunt his poop even though i repeatly tells him no). When he gets in the play zone which is 95% it's hard to get him to focus. He's mouthing and at times it looks like he's trying to asert himself (maybe I'm reading more into his behavior). Sometimes I visit youtube and I see dogs so well behaved, very focus and etc.
We walk, play with flirtpole, train but I can't seem to get him to focus... he just wants to play...
 

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I would take him to a class, start NILF, clicker training worked well with mine. By now he should have good manners and a fairly reliable recall. The play and mouthing are normal for his age, he just needs to work
 

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Sometimes I visit youtube and I see dogs so well behaved, very focus and etc.
We walk, play with flirtpole, train but I can't seem to get him to focus... he just wants to play...
He's a puppy!
Break your actual training sessions into short spurts 10-15 minutes tops. Throw in lots of fun play during the session so he looks forward to it.

There are exercises you can do to gain better focus but after your dog has learned the basics like sit, down, stay, you can praise and sometimes treat for these behaviors as they happen sporatically through the day. So if he walks up to you out of the blue and sits, praise and treat, that kind of thing.
Training doesn't always have to happen during a set time, it's something you do by just reinforcing and acknowledging a dogs good behavior .

Don't let Youtube drive you crazy. Everyone trains at different speeds and for different reasons...and really...how many people put up videos of their dogs being buttheads?:)
 

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I feel the same way. I know my dog is behind the training curve. LOL But I keep plugging along since every dog is different. I agree with Whiteshepherds...everyone does train at different speeds and for different reasons...so just keep being consistent and always reward the try.
 

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Elaine, I think GSP stands for German Shepherd Puppy. just my guess ;)

To Justin,

at 6 months it seems like your doing alright. no dog is trained perfectly that young. clearly sounds like you've got a couple things to work on, but don't feel bad. I do too, and my gsd is 11 months
 

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and keep in mind every dog is different:)

I have always had gsd's that were very bonded to me, obed training was a breeze, I've never had one that I couldn't trust off leash even at a young age.

I also have the luxury of spending alot of time with my dogs..Obed training goes a long way , and no dogs are perfect, they learn at different rates, require consistency, loads of exercise, and classes are a plus:)
 

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You asked so I will answer - my expectations are higher when I've had them from puppyhood to 6 months. I expect a very good recall, no biting and nipping (people say it's totally normal, and it is - but should be corrected in a matter of days to a week - this should not be a long term months on end problem).

Have you taken your puppy through a quality obedience school (outside of petsmart/petco type classes)? Often times it helps to get an outside perspective, and helps encourage daily training sessions. I know I will slack a little and then remember Dante hasn't had his 3 sessions that day and remind myself to keep at it. It helps that he loves training, and looks forward to the sessions. But if we were't attending class weekly with an instructor that would absolutely call out those who aren't working hard at home then I might be a little more inclined to skip days here and there. Don't get me wrong, he is being "trained" throughout the day, but on leash obedience is done several times a day.

The recall - your puppy thinks this is a game. You need to ensure that the puppy thinks it's more fun and more of a reward to come to you. Use a high pitched voice, and turn and walk the other way. Make the pup curious what you're doing and where you're going. Make sure you have some high value treats to reward readily when he does come. Do on leash training initially so the pup can't just blow you off and go the other way. If he's on a leash, you don't have to chase him around and make him think it's a game of catch me if you can. When he comes, act like he just won the lottery. Lots of praise, petting, treats. Tell him what a good boy he is! Repeat constantly. Everytime you call him for anything, reward reward reward.

The recall is, IMHO, the most important command. And perhaps "stay." Nothing matters more than being able to call your dog back to you no matter the situation.

Have you practiced focus training with your pup? Training in that your puppy must look at you and be calm to be rewarded. IE: I started with Dante and each time he would sit and look at me, I gave him a click and reward (clicker). He learned VERY quickly to sit and look at me, and now it's translated into additional training. Now he looks at me constantly and is watching and waiting for the next command.

The whole video is worth watching, but here is an example of what I followed with Dante from day one at 10 wks old. Key in on the video at a little after 5 minutes when they talk about focus training.
http://leerburg.com/playem.htm?name=flv/9-15-10-expen.flv
 
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