Ringo's Training Journal

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Ringo's Training Journal

This is a discussion on Ringo's Training Journal within the Training Journal forums, part of the Dog Training and Behavior category; Ringo is a cattle dog/pit mix. We brought him home on 4/18/16 and he's now 10 weeks old. I've used the clicker and positive reinforcement ...

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Old 05-05-2016, 01:17 AM
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Ringo's Training Journal

Ringo is a cattle dog/pit mix. We brought him home on 4/18/16 and he's now 10 weeks old. I've used the clicker and positive reinforcement training with our adult dog but this is the first time I've trained a puppy from the very beginning. So if anyone is reading and has some tips, please feel free to PM me!

We started with things like capturing calmness and rewarding certain behaviors (eye contact, etc) if/when they were offered.

What he knows now:
Sit
Down
Stand
Touch
Crate
Crawl

What we're currently working on:
Housetraining
Recall
Stay
Take It
Drop It
Leave It
Place

So far I've tested come, sit, down, stand, and touch inside the house, in the backyard, in the front yard, and at my parents' house with little to few distractions (new people). Crawl totally happened by accident but it was so cute, I had to mark it. Trying to put it on cue.

I've been focusing a lot on his recall lately - playing 'follow me' type games and calling him to me randomly throughout the day for lots of treats & praise, and then releasing him to do something fun. I see some improvement. The hardest thing to remember is to make sure I'm really setting him up to succeed and calling him when I think he'll actually come...NOT when he's, say, playing with our other dog or investigating something in the yard. Baby steps.

We practice take it/drop it a lot when we play. He's pretty good about it. Trying to teach him the concept of fetch and we're about halfway there. He'll go get the toy if I don't throw it too far, walk towards me a few steps, and then drop it. He has to be in the mood, though.

I'd like to work more on paying attention, eye contact, and adding distractions. Puppy class starts May 18!
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Old 05-15-2016, 12:48 AM
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Ringo is 11.5 weeks old now! His recall around the house and our yard is great, so this week we worked on adding distance and distractions. I decided to test things at the park yesterday. I called him while he was playing with our other dog, and right away he came running from about 30 ft away. A huge achievement for us!

Housetraining is back on track. Had a few accidents that were my fault but I've been way better about taking him out every 30 mins or so and making a big deal when he goes. He's starting to stand at the door now when he needs to go.

I started LLW in the house with no leash and just rewarded him for being close and following me. Moved it to the backyard. Added a leash and kept practicing inside the house and out, a few minutes a day, until we were able to walk up and down the driveway. Now we go for short walks around the neighborhood. He does get excited and start to pull when he sees a dog or a person. So far I just stop moving when he pulls, and c/t as soon as there is slack in the leash.

Today we met 8 neighbors on our walk, watched kids play baseball, and practiced some some basic obedience away from home. I tried having him sit before he even had the chance to jump up on anyone but it happened a lot anyway, and of course they told me it was fine and continued to pet him. I have a hard time speaking up but I probably should've said something!

The rest is just more of the same...reinforcing good manners, eye contact, finding ways to wear him out physically and mentally with it being so hot outside. He tries to get on the couch sometimes (he's just a tad too short still) so I've been trying to make his dog bed seem like THE BEST THING EVER. We've also just started working on 'place' (go to bed) and downstay. He's such a fun little puppy and I can't wait to start our first class on the 26th.
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Old 05-28-2016, 03:00 AM
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Our first dog, I used a food lure a lot. Probably too much. Even now, at five years old, I feel like she spends too much time waiting for me to 'tell' her what to do and then watching my hand. I'm determined not to make that mistake this time!

This week we've been working on bath time and shaping Ringo to use a step-stool to get into the tub...and tonight he made the final leap! He found so many yummy treats in the tub, he didn't want to get out. Maybe next time we can actually turn on the water. I also showed him how wonderful the spray bottle (shampoo + water) can be. Anyway, this is the first big thing we've really shaped aside from entering his crate and settling on the mat so I'm pretty excited. I can't wait to see what else we can shape!
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Old 07-15-2016, 01:06 AM
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We passed the STAR Puppy test tonight!

That being said, the first half of class was super frustrating. There was a new puppy in class and he was just so distracted. We moved to the furthest corner of the room and I had to act super silly to keep his attention. He even stopped taking treats. But he did fine when it came down to the actual test. It was kinda funny because at one point, I was talking with my hands and must've done something close to the hand signal for "roll over" because he randomly did it.

He knows:
Crate
Come
Sit
Down
Stand
Touch
Leave It
Drop It
Place
Go to Bed
Spin (left and right)
Roll Over
Pivoting on a book (for heel work)

We're improving our:
Sit Stay
Down Stay
Heel Side
Back Up
Duration of touch (for heel work)
Backing up onto different surfaces
Leave it with backing up
Calm greetings (sit for attention)

I've been trying to use touch during heel work but he keeps getting ahead of my hand (in anticipation of a treat maybe?) even if I don't have any on me.

We start basic obedience Monday. He knows a lot of the commands already, not just at home but at the park, pet stores, etc., but just seems to lose his mind when there are other dogs around in our training class. Luckily my trainer is awesome and lets me take things at his pace. We did have a few really good classes where he was attentive and ignored the other dogs but tonight was not one of those nights for whatever reason!

On a good note, his release cue is awesome. I testing it out by saying 'cheeseburger!' and he didn't move until I said 'break.' Proud moment.

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Old 07-19-2016, 12:46 AM
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First night of obedience class. It was pretty much a refresher for him but we're excited to learn some new things next week. It was really cool to meet some different dogs, though. There is gorgeous Giant Schnauzer in class, as well as a pretty BC.

He was a rock star tonight as far as paying attention. He did get tired towards the end and lose interest, but after giving him a break he was ready to go again.

Our goal this week is to get out of the house each day to work on polite greetings and practice the things he knows around more distractions. Overall, I'm really pleased. He's such a happy, laid back, goofy dude.
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