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Puppies Puppies Puppies
Old 01-27-2008, 03:52 PM   #1
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Puppies Puppies Puppies

DW and I - basically on a whim - went out and got 2 Shelties - 7 weeks old. Did this 2 weeks ago. What a mess we had on our hands for the past 2 weeks - even after buying training books. So yesterday, we go to Petsmart and spend $15 on a one hour "Potty Training" session with their trainer. Absolutely the best $15 we ever spent. We came home new puppy owners and could not believe how we got off to such a poor start. Just one example of the bad start - the breeder told us that the puppies would be fine self feeding - so that is what we did. They ate and crapped and ate and crapped and ate and crapped for 2 weeks straight.

After 24 hours, there has already been a dramatic turnaround in our household - we are on our way to getting our family room back and they are on their way to a rigid daily schedule and potty training experience.

We were so impressed with the trainer that we are considering bringing her in to the house for some private training sessions. Has anyone had any experience like this - is it worth it?

Also any other puppy advice is more than welcome. They really are a lot of fun! Our two cats (6 years old) are still trying to figure things out!
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Old 01-27-2008, 04:02 PM   #2
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So the puppies are now crapping outside? If so, I would probably not bother with a private session.

One word of advice: Fabreeze.

The cats will put the dogs in their place as long as they have not been declawed.

I thinkyou now know why I no longer adopt puppies. Adult dogs are a lot easier.
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Old 01-27-2008, 04:05 PM   #3
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Training is essential, and Shelties are very smart. Consider trying agility training, too -- just for fun.

Are your Shelties yippie? That's the one thing we couldn't break ours of. She's noisy and excitable.
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Old 01-27-2008, 06:37 PM   #4
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You are going to have to be sure and watch The Dog Whisperer on the National Geographic channel! Cesar Milan would tell you that you are now a pack leader and you have to act like one. He would also tell you that you have to exercise the dogs every day and exercise their natural instincts (are they herders?) to keep them from acting out.

Cats are so easy compared to dogs!
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Old 01-27-2008, 08:03 PM   #5
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Quote:
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I thinkyou now know why I no longer adopt puppies. Adult dogs are a lot easier.
Same here. That first 6 months is murder. Next time I plan to go the rescue route, minimum 1 year old.
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Old 01-27-2008, 08:09 PM   #6
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DW and I - basically on a whim - went out and got 2 Shelties - 7 weeks old.
7 weeks old? Arc, I'm basically a "cat person" but work with dogs too in my volunteer activities at the local shelter. 7 weeks old is awfully young to seperate pups or kittens from the mom. The mom and other litter mates provide much needed training and socialization. In my experience, it's best not to adopt them until they are 9 weeks of age or older.

My advice is to get all the help you can. The next couple of months will be critical to their social development. If the pet trainer you have worked with is good, by all means invest the time and money for some home sessions. If you spend the time now, you will have two wonderful companions for many, many years.
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Old 01-27-2008, 08:13 PM   #7
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My advice for potty training is always the same. Use a cage/kennel til they get the idea. It has always worked like a charm for us.
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Old 01-27-2008, 08:47 PM   #8
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We have a 10 month old Border Collie. There were a few 'accidents' in the house, but the best part of his training was to Poop and Piddle on command. I think we got Puppies for Dummies or something like that. It gave us some great insights. Now when we take him out we can tell him to go piddle or poop and he does. It saves lots of clean ups in the neighborhood as we can take him to a remote spot first.
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Old 01-27-2008, 10:04 PM   #9
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All great replies and much appreciated.

Regarding yippies - they seem ok now - not sure what to expect later.

Will definitely watch the Dog Whisperer next chance we get.

7 weeks? We got them from a breeder so we could only trust they knew what they were doing. Our two were not the first ones taken. I could be wrong on the weeks.

And am leaning on going through with the training. Like mentioned above - am willing to invest now since they will be around a long time. As soon as I download the pictures - I'll get them on the Dog pictures thread.

And Cats are easy - never thought I'd like them until my daughter brought home kittens several years back. Now am hooked on them too.

Thanks again.
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Old 01-27-2008, 10:38 PM   #10
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Baby pictures!

I would take them to a puppy training class as early as you can (after first shots completed). Good for socialization and fun for the people too. Shelties are great obedience dogs.
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Old 01-28-2008, 05:40 AM   #11
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Better you guys than us. Someone has to raise kids and pets these days .

Enjoy.
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Old 01-28-2008, 07:48 AM   #12
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We hired a very experienced trainer to help us with our very stubborn hound. (who free feeds dry food without a problem.)

I had successfully trained other dogs, but this one was tough and had developed some unacceptable behavior (aggressive with other dogs on leashes). It was a fixed up front cost - not cheap. But, with a lifetime guarentee. Worth every penny.

How stubborn you ask? - Trainer said it generally take 6-8 weeks to get her back on track - and be able to walk with her - off leash. It took 16 weeks - and the trainer stuck with us at the promised cost - and we still call. They agree that she is one of the most hard headed cases they have seen.

The sooner you start training, the less likely the dogs will develop bad behavior that you have to undo. Been there, done that - got the t-shirt and battle scars.
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Old 01-28-2008, 08:37 AM   #13
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Spend money and time on training when they are young and you will be rewarded with polite, well-mannered pets that are a joy to be around. I also like the idea of socialization, so be sure that some of your training is done in the company of other dogs, so they learn appropriate social dog behaviors.
They are a bit on the young side, but SPCA's often adopt them out that young, not too unusual. Good luck and please be sure to crate train them now, it will make for easier travel later, to say nothing of the potty training convenience.
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