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Obedience training for an adult dog???

MushkosMom
January 28th, 2009, 10:05 PM
Hello everyone,

I know it's bad but I've never put my dog through obedience school. This is something I've always wanted to do but have always been too busy. And yes, I know that's what everyone says but please trust me, I'm busy. :shrug:

Anyway, I adopted my dog when he was probably a little over a year old. He knew sit but that was it. I was able to teach him several tricks very quickly. He heels when I walk him on a leash, stays when I tell him to stay, and leaves anything alone when I tell him to leave anything alone. Still, when new distractions are present, or when we're in a place we've never been, Mushko's ability to follow my commands decreases significantly. I know this is somewhat common and know it's especially common with malamutes but I wonder if there's anyway to improve his obedience. Like I mentioned, I've thought about obedience but don't know if it'd help much. He'll know most of the tricks but I assume being asked to perform those tricks in front of other dogs might be good practice. I've also thought about hiring a private trainer but I'd prefer not to break into my savings account and trainers seem to be pretty expensive. I've read a few books and require Mushko to obey commands a couple times a day but if there's another dog on the beach, he's going to introduce himself. Anyone have any suggestions or recommendations? Thanks! :dog:

lUvMyLaB<3
January 28th, 2009, 11:14 PM
I think u r right, the breed has a lot to do with it.. I think the best thing to do is practise practise pratise.. go to places with a little distractions, and when he masters that move up gradually to busier and busier places.. repitition.. he'll get it! Obedience classes are never a bad thing. But if you got him doing all the basics down, and you need to save the money than I am sure that you can do it! It's just the time... maybe if they could add another day of the week to those of us that need it... really you got most of it done.. lots of dogs get distracted in situations and have trouble listening when they are excited.. but a dog of any age can learn anything. Good luck with it!

allymack
January 29th, 2009, 12:48 AM
i agree with iluvmylab. i dont htnk it is bad that you never took your dog to obedience, it just might be more helpful, and since he knows most of the basic commands it would just make for good practice. Just start out with low distractions ( prehaps a dog far off ) and build up to more distractions ( maybe closer to the dogm or in a more open environment )

growler~GateKeeper
January 29th, 2009, 01:04 AM
when new distractions are present, or when we're in a place we've never been, Mushko's ability to follow my commands decreases significantly.


He'll know most of the tricks but I assume being asked to perform those tricks in front of other dogs might be good practice.

The thing with Mals (& Sibes too) is they are smart, stubborn & like to push the boundaries - I already know how to sit :rolleyes: why should I do it now? :dog: :D Training needs to be something fun & constant through their lives.

IMO The most important things taught in obedience school are stay and recall, both of these are essential for all dogs to follow without exception no matter what the distractions, especially if you ever have your dog off leash. Even for people who never let their dogs off leash those 2 commands should always be followed. Alot of situations may come up where you need Mushko to reliably obey - ie if a guest/repair person forgets to latch a gate or close a door properly & next thing you know he's heading for the road, etc.

If you can get in for OB classes the trainer may have some methods that work more effectively for recapturing Mushko's attention when he does get distracted. :D

MushkosMom
January 29th, 2009, 03:12 PM
Thanks everyone, that's great advice! It's funny, I remember reading exactly what you all advised but then forgot, lol. I'll try to work on his obedience (and my patience) more frequently and in the appropriate environments.

I just get jealous because my roommate has a lab who will do whatever anyone wants, no matter what. Oh, aren't the variations between different breeds and even different dogs so interesting!? No one is perfect... :angel2: