I currently have CoCo signed up for an 8-week beginner obedience class from May 23rd - July 11th (she will be 4.5 months old at the start).
There are three issues with this timing, so I think I will need to cancel.
The first is we are leaving on July 8th for a trip to visit my sister in Whitehorse (Yukon Territory), therefore will miss the last class. The second is that we will be gone for 16 days, and CoCo will be at our house with my friend who is dog/house-sitting... so will not have any further training during that period (and may lose what she/we learned?)... The third is that we would like to have her spayed right around 6 months, because of her proximity to her intact male cousins (who are not being fixed until they are older), which would be during the time of these classes.
My question is this: Should we wait to begin the obedience training in August/Sept after we return from our vacation and other summer commitments are out of the way.... She will be 7 months on August 6th? Or, should we try to start as soon as possible, so that she has completed the beginner course and we will have time to work with her before we leave her with my friend?
I am taking her on Wednesday to a puppy socialization class, and hope to get more information then on when obedience courses are being offered.
~Jo & CoCo
I think I would start ASAP...I was told they pick up stuff really quickly at a younger age...But this does not mean you can't teach an older dog tricks...it might just be a little more challenging...It's just easier I guess to have them learn the right things before they even get a taste of the wrong things...because breaking an old habit can definitely be harder...but not impossible...Atleast that is what I was told...I have also noticed that it was easier to get Buck to do things when he was slightly younger (8-13 weeks) than now(almost 4 months old)...because he is going into the "I am a big boy...I do what I want" phase and just being plain naughty because he is less afraid of new and strange things
<3 01/01/2006-03/18/2017 <3
I think you should do it now, too. Our last class is in two weeks and it's just "graduation," so you probably won't miss anything that last class. There were a lot of older dogs in the Thurs night class that were just starting training. I think it's easier when they're young like Coco. Like Buckyball said, they get older and go through that stage, GROAN, and at least you will have a young puppy who is excited about learning right now. Plus the spaying issue.
Maybe you can show your friend the way it's done (it's not that hard) and he/she can work with Coco some, too. It'll be a fun way for them to spend some time. Your friend will probably take it as a challenge, too, to be able to show you what she can still do when y'all get back.
I think I would try to start her earlier as well. If your friend that is watching her would be willing to go to a class or two with you and keep up the training while you would be away that would be great if not you still have the knowledge and can start in again when you get back. As far as having her spayed then I think if you had it done the day after class by the next week she would be ok for class as long as everything goes well and you keep her from jumping and roughhousing.
Otherwise just work with her as much as you can on your own and get her into a class as soon as you can in August. Mocha was a little over 6 months when we started our first class and she's doing pretty good. She's probably not as socolized as I would prefer but she's getting better.
Oh yeah I forgot to mention the socialization with other dogs part too...it's best to start when they are young...That's probably one of the important things about Puppy Kindergarten...They really don't teach the pups anything complicated in Puppy kindergarten...Just Sit, down, stay, heeling and coming when called...but they aren't very hard to practice and your friend could probably work on this stuff with her...it will be good for her and the pup! She will have an easier time keeping the pup under control and the pup will be happy knowing what is expected of her...The most important thing to get Coco trained on now is...Coming when called...it's best to train Coco to do that now when she is very eager to be at your side...and hasn't started the "I do what I want" phase...you absolutely want her to come to you whenever you call her no matter what she is doing...
I am trying to get Buck to be that way ...he's definitely not at the level I want him to be at...
<3 01/01/2006-03/18/2017 <3
I would do both, if possible. There's nothing wrong with taken the beginner class twice. If possible, I would take a Puppy Kindergarten class now and a beginner class in Aug/Sept.
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I agree. So much of puppy class is teaching YOU how to teach CoCo. Missing a week or so will be okay because you just keep working on what you've learned. At 9 months of age, Sami has completed puppy kindergarten, beginner and intermediate. Next up is advanced. But we still work daily on commands that we learned in ALL of the classes. Coco won't forget because you just keep working on them -- even the basic ones.Originally Posted by buddysmom
We got into a puppy kindergarten by the skin of our teeth and I wish we had gotten one earlier. We don't even have our first session for another week and we don't bring Ender at that time!!
He's getting a lot of good socialization, especially with adult dogs on our walks and meeting them at the soccer field... but puppies we dont' run into that often ('cept at doggy day care and he's too big for them)
I would do as many classes as you can do/afford. For me... training is second only to Ender's health and he can never have "too much."
Thanks everyone!* Great advice!
I have been working with CoCo on my own... she now knows:* sit, down, stay (to an extent, but not when I'm out of the room), paw, speak, and leave-it (if its not food, lol!)... and I am absolutely AMAZED at how quickly she picked those things up... Honestly, she picked each one up within an hour, but then had to be reminded a few times since!* lol!
Anyhow, I agree that the classes would be more to train ME then CoCo!* I really want to have a well behaved dog, and I know that means that I have to set the standard.
The puppy-socialization class I am going to tomorrow night is with a different facility then the one I registered at for the beginners obedience classes in late May (and I got in on the first available class).... So, I am going to see if that facility has any obedience classes starting up sooner.*
I know the puppy-socialization class is basically just a play date... you don't register, you just show up and pay your $10 and let your puppies socialize... the trainer is there to give guidance and work on anything you want to though... but it is not an actual obedience class, although I am sure she offers them.
So, I'll see tomorrow night what the story is on this other facility, and if it doesn't work out then at least I am registered for the May class, and you are right - I think my friend would like to work on things with CoCo.* She is divorced and left her two lab-mix boys with her ex (he kept the house, but she still takes them for weekends to her parents!) so she misses having doggies around!!
~Jo & CoCo
I spoke to my breeder about puppy kindergarden and she's not all that keen on it. She's worried about the shots. As for socialization, Miles will spend time with Bailey, my other friends Boston's, Sadie & Lou, and another friend's lab and bernise mtn dog. My breeder is keeping a pup and we are already planning play dates. So, I'm no longer so sure about puppy kindergarden.
Another thing, we might show Miles along with my breeder and the pup she's keeping. I was told not to teach "sit" if I plan to show in conformation. Anyone hear that before? I really want to agility too, if Miles is into it.