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Cobber

Help explaining importance of puppy discipline to better half??

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Alright, this one is going to be asking for some thoughts, ideas, and personal experiences to be shared if possible!

Getting a new chocolate lab pup in May/June time frame and it is very important to me that the dog is given the opportunity to understand (as best it can, and at a reasonable pace) that rules are rules- such as no jumping, playtime is for outside/relaxing time is inside, the couch and furniture are off limits, and that when a command is given such as "come", the dog knows to comply. Aside from normal reasons for the desire of a dog that listens, it is a safety item as well since I have a 1 year old son, and the dog will quickly grow to a size that could be dangerous to him if rowdy/etc.

As I'm sure many of you have experienced, she has expressed her excitement to play and interact with the puppy, which is wonderful! My question comes into play here-

*Question) How do you explain the importance of sticking to the rules (calm inside, following commands such as sit/come/etc.), as well as explaining that bad behavior such as whining cannot be rewarded?

She is home during the day while I am at work, and it isn't that I'm worried about her not caring about the rules that are set- it's more of a matter that she's very softhearted when it comes to animals and gives in easily. If she understands the importance of the training and the consistant messaging I know that she will be great with the dog. The challenge is- communicating that imoprtance to her in a way that will make it NO question that commands are followed, and rules aren't bent.

Thanks for the help everyone!

-Cobber

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A good puppy training class would do wonders. Even if you are an expert trainer, there are countless advantages to these classes.

1. Your pup will become socialized with other animals

2. Your wife will be getting advice and tips from someone other than you. (I know with my wife, criticism is better left to strangers.)

3. Your pup will learn and your wife will become confident when it comes to discipline and training.

4. Both You and her can take on the responsibility of training at home.

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I can relate 110%. Main thing is to stress exactly what your saying (consistency!!) without being too hard on her (the better 1/2). They are definately wired different than us, and mine's soft side comes out first about 90% of the time. She can get "tough", but it's only after it's too late. My problem was I was probably too tough on my wife a few times, and discouraged her for a while to do anything. My bad...

She's gotten better, but my "pup" is a year old, and he's having a tougher time figuring out his rank now (after a full year), than if she'd been "tough" / consistent early on.

EXERSICE is another key, for sure. A dog not full of spunk is alot easier to teach than a wired, 1/2 nuts dog, esp. as a pup. That's might be something they can both do since she's at home.

good luck.. i hope you can learn from my mistakes.

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A good puppy training class would do wonders. Even if you are an expert trainer, there are countless advantages to these classes.

1. Your pup will become socialized with other animals

2. Your wife will be getting advice and tips from someone other than you. (I know with my wife, criticism is better left to strangers.)

3. Your pup will learn and your wife will become confident when it comes to discipline and training.

4. Both You and her can take on the responsibility of training at home.

Excellent, no, essential idea. I thought we'd learned what we needed with my first Vizsla at puppy classes. Our first one is a gentelman compared to our second. Even though he's just growing out of the puppy stage (getting beter), I regret not taking him to puppy class. I'm not near the trainer I thought I was.

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I am going through a puppy right now. Have your wife read the book "leader of the pack" it is short and simple and really explains how dogs learn and function. Have patience and just make sure your wife does not train in something that has to be trained out later. She might suprise you, my wife did. I am the one who started to get up with the dog at 5am when she was whining and now today it is like my alarm clock, I messed that one up not her.

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If she is in compliance as to the main reasoning behind getting a new pup, understands that the window of time is of major importance, trusts what you have to say as a husband, then all you need to do is explain to her what is needed. wink

Unless they are (family in household) are training along side you, the bond between the pup and them will never be exactly the same as between you and the pup. The main idea is to make sure you are spending the majority of the time with the pup and your training will become all he knows, to a point. They are not stupid or dumb. They will find out who is in charge and who is not, almost right away. Their little puppy minds will exploit this and almost no training (keeping the pup as a house dog) is thorough enough to prevent this. Once this is established I actually use this connection in a fashion with the rest of the family as them being the outside world. The same as Grandma who comes over and kneels right away to pet and sets another obstacle in the training process. Again there is nothing that can prevent this so it is a good thing to focus on after a week or so by seeing how the pup acts with other members of the family. You do not want to exclude them from the pup as this helps build the pups expansion with his social skills, so unless you are taking the pup out in society, this a great tool to bring society to the pup with your training. wink

What I have come to find is that my family just needs to know how to use and properly say "No" and "Come" and execute in the proper fashion. Then I just ask them to stay out of the rest till the other commands are firmly established. I have also found the more they try to learn to train and get involved between the time the pup comes home and month 4, the more I am spending my training time correcting backwards. The pup will learn one way but gets confused or worse when being trained two ways, even if they are very close. In the end I almost prefer them to just play with and treat him as a regular old puppy without using commands, unless it would involve a special correction I am trying to establish that directly involves them. Jumping, nipping, licking, feeding and so on. Then the no command is used with a correction action I established.

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Another idea is see if you can get her to watch The Dog Whisperer on the National Geographic Channel.Cesar seems to do a lot with the women that are involved in the training of the family dogs. He seems to be able to explain things that a lot of the women will understand. Some people agree with him and some don't but it is better than doing nothing.

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i know exactly what your going through too! it was tough telling the fiance what she can do and cant do with the pup; its getting alot better now, but she still tells him different words and I have to remind her that he doesnt know the english language, and being consistent with the commands. chew toys, playing fetch, throwing sticks, were topics she doesnt get and gives me grief about them as she grew up with a ankle biter and is used to different ways of playing and such...

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"Sticks are for play, dummies are for practice, birds are for real!" Keep it simple and say it slow! They'll catch on!

Wait...what are we trying to train here?

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Just tell the better half that the dog is an investment as much as it is a pet. While it will be a loving family member it is also a fine tuned hunting machine.. you gota oil it just right. I think she will understand. I agree with shack no matter how well trained the dog is when you are gone and she is in charge the dog knows what it can and can not get away with and they try to exploit it.

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I'd agree with all the above.

1-puppy classes right away at 8wks

2- they're brain is like a sponge till 4 months, do as much as you can each day or twice a day

3-walks or exercise helps alot in training and being less of a terror in the house

4-consistency, with rules and commands

5-1 negative and it takes 10 positives to correct the unwanted behavior

6-socilization, 3 new people a day, especially men and children. I took my pup to the kids playground and and baggie of treats as often as I could.

7- be ready, every moment can be a mini training session, I carry treats in my pocket when the dog is with me and be ready to praise and reward for good behavior.

8- there are many training methods, books etc. find one that works for you or you like or even a combination of methods.

I can relate totally. my kids and wife let the dog run the house and he knows better with me. I've never beat him or put a E collar on him but was consistent with commands and what I wanted. Sometimes I've really had to think what is he seeing or thinking. How can I get him to figure it out? Try not to get frustrated, if the pups not getting it, just stop and try to end the training session on a positive note with something he knows. Then come back to it another day when you and the dog are fresh.

He runs circles around the kids and wife, he thinks its a game. As soon as I step in the room or he heres my voice, he instantly stops what he wasn't suppose to be doing. he knows better. That's been my hardest training obstacle is getting them on the same page. It's both sad and kinda funny though to watch him with the family, he knows exactly what hes doing and can get away with.

I'm no expert, just sharing my exprences. But one thing you will find is alot of people think they are experts or Dog Whisperers. take peoples advice but use your own judgement if you think its good training advice or not.

good luck and have fun with the new member of the family.

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