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Hi. I am pretty new to the board but so far I love it. So much info! My question is at what age is it realistic for my GSD to start obeying me when I say. I mean right now he is only 12 wks and I did start training emediatly when I got him at 8 wks and although he is doing great I am not sure at what age I should really get heavy with the training. Right now we do the basics like sit, down, stay, and watch me commands and when he has his short calm moments he is awesome and the rest of the time he is in puppy mode which I am sure you all know is more often than not. Any advice would be great.
Thanks
Susan
 

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A group class should be started at around 4 months. Training is nothing but repeating things over and over. Think of when you were in school. Did you remember everything that was taught to you everytime it was asked ? No, of course not. Keep up with the training everyday and make it fun for him. He should catch on very quick. One word of advise is to make sure you correct him WHILE he is not doing what you want. If he is in a sit and he gets up, correct him as soon as his butt leaves the ground. If you wait until he comes over to you then you have corrected him for coming to you and this will confuse the **** out of him.
 

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Sounds like you're doing great so far. With a puppy remember to keep specific training sessions short, 5 to 10 mins max. Repitition is important.

Also use word association when just playing-when he is running toward you, throw in the word "come" or "good come" whenever he is returning to you. Whenever he looks at you, good watch or good focus.

Just be patient-he is a puppy and they have short attention spans.

Now go get out the camera and post some pictures!
 

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Every minute you have your pup, he's in training. You're training him or he's training himself. So be sure that YOU'RE the one guiding him.

I like puppy kindergarten and basic classes as soon as you can get your pup into them. I put my pups into classes as soon as I get them. Eight weeks old, if possible. They're fun, they're good for socialization, and you're learning, and getting reminded to be consistent (which is one of the hardest things for us humans to remember!).

Otherwise, follow Everett's advice. Keep sessions really short. Repetition is important. Keep training extremely fun. (Don't get frustrated and always end on a positive note.) Toss "commands" into play sessions so that puppy learns that "obedience" and "play" aren't separate, but that they go together naturally. (I still do this with my 2 year old and 15 year old adults!).

Finally, I've observed (and the wise trainer Patricia McConnell supports this) that learning occurs mostly BETWEEN sessions. So don't be surprised if your pup struggles with a task for a session or two (or several), then suddenly gets it all of a sudden. Just be patient!

Have a great time!
 

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training starts the minute you get your dog. they start to learn who you are. sit, down and stay at 12 weeks old that's impressive. 12 weeks is young. my boy didn't any formal training untill he was 4 months old. he was in puppy classes at 10 weeks old. we got him when he was 9 weeks old. his first training was house breaking. we never used paper. we took him out alot. he was outside every 15 minutes graduaally increasing his time untill we got him to every 2 hours. then every 3 hours and on untill he could stay crated over night. we only trained one thing at a time. whatever it was we were training we did one thing at a time. we train 3 to 5 times a day but for short periods of time. 10 minutes a session worked for us. now at 10 months old he sits, stays, doesn't walk out of the house even when the door is wide open and that's with people calling him or calling him with their dogs in our yard, downs, he takes hand signals. we don't have sidewalks, our lawn goes down to the road. he won't walk into the road whether he's on our lawn or the neighbors. we also train him in the house and outside, day or night. i guess he's always in training. the cool thing about his training is we talk to him. i mean talk to him like he's human. he responses 97% of the time without me having to repeat myself or raise my voice. i think you to train through the puppy mode as you call it but they do have to have their puppy moments, it's only natural. i never train to break a dog or to dominate them. i partner with them. that fact that you can train them is dominance. if my boy initiates play i do it. when i don't want to play anymore i say "no more" and that's it. he stops. sometimes he'll come over and lay his head or your lap or he'll give you his paw. i take that to mean he wants attention. so i give him some pats, belly rubs and he's good. he doesn't do it often but i like it when he does that. what's heavy training? one thing at a time and i think he'll do whatever you want him to do. are you training your dog yourself or do you have a trainer? good luck, you have lots of time to train new things. something tells me by the time your dog is 10 months old he's going to be doing more things than mine at that age.
 

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I agree with all the posters. Great info.

Just don't stress about the little things, enjoy his puppyhood everyday, as it doesn't last forever.

Socialize him to the max at this age and train as you go. It will all fall into place over time.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks, everyone had some great advice. My husband and I are doing all the training ourselves. We also have two kids (a 9yr boy and 8yr old girl) that we make sure participate also, though not as much. Especially our daughter who is autistic she has a harder time being in command with him but the weird thing is he is so much calmer when he is around her like he understands that she is a gentler soul even though he is soooo active. She comes into the room and he emediatly brings his activity level down.
 

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I agree the sooner the better, and Patricia McConnell is Amazing I recommend to everyone to check out her books
 
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