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Old 01-03-2013, 09:06 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Advice please!!!

My wife and i recently brought a beautiful female doberman home 2 weeks ago. Shes almost 12 weeks. Ive been working with her for short periods a couple times a day so she doesnt get bored with the "training" im providing. Im no professional by any means but i have trained labs before and theyve been very repsonsive and quick learners. We did tons of research before we decided on a dobie. With everything we have read and have been told dobermans are very intelligent and for the most part are easy to train.... Im having a very diffucult time with the simple things such as SIT, COME, etc. I began without treats because thats how i trained my other dogs. but with more research i found out its better to use treats with this breed. So for the past couple of days ive been using treats and it seems to not get any better. SHes not responding to anything i do; Please somebody give me some advice. ..........AND...shes begun using the bathroom in the house. She was fine for the first two weeks and no matter how often i take her out(i.e., after feeding, after kennel, after playing with her) and no matter how long i walk her or have her in the backyard she comes inside and proceeds to pee and poop in the house. so frustrated... Any help or advice would be much appreciated!!
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Old 01-03-2013, 09:19 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Hey there, welcome to DT! No fair talking about a new baby without posting pics!!

So, first thing's first, she's still such a BABY!!! She is not being disobedient or trying to upset you, she just needs time to learn what your expectations are for her. Getting her into a formal puppy class will be a good place to start. Taking her out to use the bathromm every 30 minutes, and then going wild every time she goes "YEA!!! PUPPY WENT POTTY!!!" like a loon to let her know what she did was great. You could try tethering her to you with her leash while inside the house so you recognize the moment she attempts the potty stance and quickly usher her outside.

Are you able to work with her breeder for assistance?
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Old 01-03-2013, 09:21 AM   #3 (permalink)
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A couple of ideas

Check out the Monks of New Skete. They raise German Shepherds, and have what I think is a great way with dogs. Similar temperament to Dobermans too, wicked smart dogs.

They recommend bringing your dog to "the spot" for all of her business. We did this with Levi the day we brought him home, and praised him mightily each time. Only bring her to that spot until she makes her business, and wait until she does. If you have some snow to stand on that's a good thing as it will make her want to go. Levi is a real hand full, but he learned to go out for his business extremely quickly this way. Also, put jingle bells on the door that leads to the spot. Ring them each time on the way out. Pretty soon she will ring them herself when she feels the need...

Levi is extremely food motivated. The best treat I've ever found is boiled chicken livers. He'll do absolutely anything for a piece of liver.

Once you get recall (for a chicken liver), we found that running Levi's paws off out in the fields was a great way to get him to focus on training.

Good luck!
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Old 01-03-2013, 09:47 AM   #4 (permalink)
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I found that my dogs respond extremely well to marker (clicker) training. They also tend to get bored with overly repetitive stuff - once they "get it" they don't want to be drilled over and over. I keep training sessions VERY short - like 5 minutes, max. If you haven't used clicker training before, I would pick up a copy of Pat Miller's book, "The Power of Positive Dog Training." It's excellent. I also really, really love the book, "Puppy Right Start" Puppy Start Right: Foundation Training for the Companion Dog: Kenneth Martin, Debbie Martin: Amazon.com: Kindle Store. It's really easy to follow and has wonderful information about development in addition to step-by-step training guides.
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Old 01-03-2013, 09:50 AM   #5 (permalink)
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I can help with the sitting part, maybe.

A dog will often sit, when it wants something and can't get it on it's own...like the demonstration of the difference between wolf and dog--->

They put a piece of meat tied to a rope, the other end to a stick...the meat in a cage, the stick outside. The wolf is intelligent enough to grab the stick and pull the meat towards it, but it can't get it through the cage...however, the difference in the evolution of the ancestor wolf and domesticated dog is that the wolf will not turn to the humans (trained wolf, humans present) for help, it will keep on keeping on.

The dog, however, will try to get the meat the same way, but after a short while, give up and look to the humans for help, and sit down in the process. Dogs sit, for many reasons, but one of them is that they are unsure of what to do next.

I used this to teach my dog to sit for just about everything, and I rarely have to say the word. After a while he just began to do it. Wants to go outside and is standing up...I grab the door handle and he tries to push forward, but then I just stand right there and eventually he will sit. This progressed into an immediate sit position for anything he wants, and he does it all on his own, no words.

Now, the actual command for sit...I think is pretty retarded, so I try to use the silent version as often as possible. plus, I don't care if my dog is standing by my side or sitting by my side, if we're out and about and he is calm, he can stand all he wants.

The treats were what worked best to get my guy to sit, and from there I incorporated that into everything else (going outside, play time, etc).

Took around 2-3 weeks of fairly consistent efforts to get him to sit on his own with no commands for me. And this was simply just going through the motions of standing by the door if he had to go out and putting my hand on the handle. By the end of week 3, his butt was on the floor before I could even reach the handle.

Same with his Kong...he loves for me to put treats in it so he can roll it around and get them. He started by picking it up in his mouth and carrying it around, no particular course, just around, then he'd drop it and look at me. This was my cue from him that he wanted some yummies.

So, I took it a step further and I asked him to bring it to me. Of course he didn't the first many times, but I still did the same thing...I'd see him pick it up and carry it around, so I'd go into the kitchen and neal down with my hand out. Sure enough, after a few weeks, he actually stopped roaming about and brought it to me. Dropped it on my foot the first few times, which hurts...a lot, lol, but after that he made it to my hand. Now, I can ask him in plain english "You want some treats? Go get your Kong." And by the time I get to the kitchen, he is waiting there for me...I hold out my hand and he places his wobbler gently in it.

Now, getting him to bring me back the baseball outside when we play fetch...that's been another story. This knucklehead would rather play keep away and wants me to chase him. I've tried everything, no luck as of yet.

As for going potty in the house, just gotta be patient and definitely use treats outside after they go. Use lots of praise when they pee or poop and have a treat ready. She'll get it, just keep on. At that age, bathroom time is going to be every few hours.

As for recall. If my guy is in the back yard (fenced) he'll come if I just whistle or call his name. If he is in any type of excited state, that becomes 10 times harder.

I too had a lab mix and never had to do any type of formal training with him, he was just a bad ass awesome dog.
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Old 01-03-2013, 12:38 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I use the treat method with all my dogs, I always have. However, a treat does not have to be food, my friends dog will do anything for a ball, but absolutely zero for a piece of food. Maybe your girl is the same.

Regards the potty issue.

If I were you I would literally go back to basics and take her out every 10 - 20 minutes even if she doesnt look like she wants to go. Whilst doing this, use a command, I used 'go be a good boy'. If my boy went, I would literally go loopy. I mean over the top happy, happy jump for joy make a big deal out of it.

Of course you may have tried this, so perhaps you will have to wait for a few more folk to respond. Either way, good luck.

Last edited by Toby'shuman; 01-03-2013 at 12:48 PM..
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