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Smart but sassy puppy

July 20th, 2004, 12:47 AM
My 3month toy poodle Casey has a whole lot of personality! You can't help but fall in love with him, but he sure is a sassy little guy! I thought that training him to fetch, sit, stay, and lie down would make him get into the swing of seeking positive reinforcement, but he still has a tendency to do things he's not supposed to do, even though he knows it's wrong. If I "correct" him (telling him "no" forcefully with a finger in his face) he often sasses me back. He feigns biting my finger and makes a little barking type noise. It's quite funny, but it seems to be showing a disrespect that could become a problem, right?

He also isn't that good at paying attention to me when we're outside. I've been practising his "tricks" outside a lot and I hope that it will get better soon, but the truth is, when something is really exciting or something on the ground smells especially good, he suddenly doesn't recognise his own name! All the other puppies I've helped raise have been female and didn't seem quite so sassy, and also seemed to have more concentration (although I have to say that Casey learns new tricks extremely quickly, and I know he's bright, possibly the brightest puppy I've known). Any advice???

July 20th, 2004, 04:58 AM
Hi moontamara,

(telling him "no" forcefully with a finger in his face) he often sasses me back.

Ahhh, it's all a fun game! He's 3 months old, life should be a fun game!

My thoughts on this....let him be a pup! For a bit anyway. Give him till he's 4 months old and then try training with sit, stay, heel etc. ( don't start another till you have accomplished the other of course) Right now, just concentrate on recall. That's the most important lesson you can teach him.

Wait till Casey is within a few feet of you and in a VERY happy and excited voice say "Casey Come". Clap your hands, whatever to get him to come to you. Once he does, make it seem like nothing was EVER done as well as that. Make a HUGE fuss over him. YEAH YEAH CASEY!!! GOOOOD BOY!!!! Hugs and pats. Do this as often as you can.

At 3 months old he should be adjusting to all different sights and sounds. Experiencing life! His silliness and personality should be looked at and evaluated but not stifled.

July 20th, 2004, 01:12 PM
Welcome to the world of poodles! :D They are little clowns and the whole world is a game. ;) Den-Den was my "wild-child" and the first I took to obedience school. He "performed" absolutely perfectly during class. He loved people admiring him and strutted his stuff. Soon as we got home, he literally exploded into naughtiness to make up for lost opportunities while he was being on "best behavior". My pantlegs were full of holes! He'll settle down. Don't repress that wonderful little spirit. They are so sensitive and he will all of a sudden want to please and crave that "good" attention, instead of just "all" attention.

July 21st, 2004, 12:35 AM
:p I'm delighted to read both of your responses! Honestly, I love his sassiness and his interest in the world! And actually he does do all the commands I trained him quite well, and the more I practice them outside, the better that's getting too. But at the same time, he has his naughty moments (which aren't serious at all). I just didn't want to make any training mistakes I'll regret later on. Honestly, the less I have to correct him, the better!

Glassglass, when I was in highschool my family had a lovely black female poodle who we put into obedience class as well. She loved it there and she was a real star, but at home she was just as naughty as ever, just like your poodle!!!

Thank you for your insight, both of you. It's very helpful, and pretty much exactly what I wanted to hear!!! :D

July 22nd, 2004, 11:22 AM
Poodles love to steal the show! Right now I'm training my dog for an obedience show. We're aiming for first place, which will be easy since last year at only 6 months he won second place and would have won first if I haden't made the mistake.

July 22nd, 2004, 01:48 PM
Good luck! We'll be cheering for him! :D

July 24th, 2004, 12:01 PM
Thanks! :)