Hardest thing to teach.......No. HELP!

Discussion in 'Labrador Training' started by KrisM, Aug 1, 2018.

  1. KrisM

    KrisM Registered Users

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    The hardest thing to teach my puppy has been the word NO. I say no and she thinks I’m playing! Or she’ll stop what she’s doing only to go do something else naughty! If I say NO in a strong voice with my finger or hand at her, she just wants to bite at me. And now she’s found her voice so she starts barking at me too!

    How do I stop this behavior? She has tons of toys and Kong’s but their not always where we are, like if I’m in another room and her toys are in the living room. I need something for when I can’t just give her a toy plus I don’t always think that’s the answer. Redirection, yes, but to what? Giving her toys just seems like she’s learning that if she acts naughty she gets to play and that’s not what I want her to think. Please help?!!?
     
  2. Stacia

    Stacia Registered Users

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    When you say 'no' your dog has absolutely no idea what it means :) You could teach the word 'leave'.
     
  3. Michael A Brooks

    Michael A Brooks Registered Users

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    Hi Kris, if you leave a sufficient pause between the two activities, then the dog will not learn to do the undesired behaviour in order to get the reward. I would concentrate on teaching the puppy, the association between Yes and a reward. In doing so, you reinforce the behaviour you want. Get engaged with the puppy. Get her to carry things around in her mouth. Positively reward her for doing so that when she is older, you can concentrate on teaching her impulse control and reward her sit stay with a game of retrieving. Don't use a tennis ball. Bad for her teeth as the abrasive material wears down the dog's teeth. Get a firm ball larger than her throat. The ball is easy to carry around in your pocket. The sit or down stay becomes a substitute activity that can be used to reduce the self rewarding undesirable activity. regards
     
  4. KrisM

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    If she doesn’t understand no, how can she understand leave? Plus I tell her no to barking, if I said leave that would sound funny to us humans and I don’t think it would stick.
     
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  5. KrisM

    KrisM Registered Users

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    I tell her no immediately. Trust me, I watch her like a hawk! I do reward her when she’s being good and does what I ask. Both with treats and with play. She’s 8 weeks old, is it that she’s just too much of a puppy yet? I have to figure out something, she is very strong willed!
     
  6. Stacia

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    She will have no idea what 'no barking' means either, to her it could mean, more barking :) Reward the silences between barking, you have to be quick! Or ignore, do not give in what she is barking for.
     
  7. KrisM

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    I’m sorry, really, but I don’t know what you mean. She doesn’t bark all the time and I can’t give her rewards for not barking all the time. She’ll bark at me because I tell her no. After that she eventually stops and I say good girl right away when she stops.

    As far as “no” goes, I think she’ll catch on sooner or later. Thanks anyway.
     
  8. KrisM

    KrisM Registered Users

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    I’m going to add a side note here....I’m pretty much trying to train this puppy by myself and it’s very hard to do. My husband only spends an hour or two with her a day except weekends and we just got her last weekend. I also have fibromyalgia which isn’t helping me.
    I’m trying to do right by her but when she won’t stop doing something she shouldn’t be doing it’s very difficult to wait til she stops and then reward her. I’ve always heard that you have to catch the dog in the act and tell it no right away. Well, I catch her in the act constantly. Sometimes no works but most times it doesn’t. I need her to stop chewing on the furniture right away. I can’t wait til she stops and I think distracting her with a toy or treat is sending the wrong message. I need something to make her stop as soon as she starts. That’s what I’m looking for. And the bitter stuff you put on things doesn’t work as far as I’ve seen or heard from others who have dogs.
     
  9. QuinnM15

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    An 8 week old puppy is very young and just starting to understand things you ask of her. At this age, I would be redirecting her attention from things you do not want her doing and working on basics and learning her name. When he pup is chewing on furniture, call her name and treat when she looks at you - rewarding her looking at you is not reinforcing the chewing. Work on introducing crate/pen to keep her away from furniture you don’t want her chewing.

    Speaking to your pup when she’s barking is reinforcing barking because you are paying attention to her, even if you are saying no.
     
  10. KrisM

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    Thank you for explaining the barking thing. It’s like a kid who’s not getting what they want, got it. She knows her name pretty well and she’s getting the sit. Down and stay are more difficult. I only have a crate thing in the bedroom. Our living room is very small but she has a bed (that she’s to little for and usually rolls right off! Lol. It doesn’t hurt her)

    One other thing she started doing is not coming inside when called. She will get to the door then lay down. I have to go inside and wait a minute than she comes right in. I reward her when she comes in, thinking she’ll realize that she gets a treat for coming in. Maybe it’ll just take time?
     
  11. Michael A Brooks

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    Hi @KrisM, I wouldn't expect an 8 week old puppy to understand no, come or any other command apart from probably her name and even that is something of a tall order. Be patient. Reward her good behaviour with yes and treat.
     
  12. KrisM

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    Thank you Michael!
     
  13. Michael A Brooks

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    Hi @KrisM, in order to build an association between rewarding her for a desired behaviour and saying yes to mark the desired behaviour you have about half a second. Timing is really important in teaching a dog the assoication between cues and desired behaviour. Have fun. She'll learn really quickly if you are fair in your expectations and consistent in rewarding her good behaviour with yes and treat.
     
  14. Granca

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    It’s often a natural reaction to say ‘no’ when puppies are doing something wrong and so the word isn’t specific enough for them to understand. It’s better to use ‘leave it’ if your puppy is chewing or picks up something she shouldn’t. Reward her and praise her very quickly when she stops the action.

    You could also practise recall indoors as well as outside, just calling her (with a tasty treat ready) while she’s busy doing something else. Make it sound exciting and treat her quickly. It should eventually encourage her to come right in for her treat when you call her in from the garden.

    It does take time, but it’s worth persevering.
     
  15. Stacia

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    As you are having to train her on her own, I would suggest you buy "The Happy Puppy Handbook" by Pippa, it has everything you need to know in it and will be very helpful.
     
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  16. Plum's mum

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    I agree with @Michael A Brooks, an 8 week old puppy isn't going to be doing much of what you want it to at the moment!

    Your pup is a work in progress and you will probably spend the next weeks and months training the behaviours you want.

    When they're tiny they do so many things we don't want them to do that they won't be able to work out which "no" is to which behaviour.

    You'll get there with time, persistence and patience.
    Good luck!
     
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  17. KrisM

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    Thank you all. It’s hard to be right by her side to treat her when she does what I want but I will try my best and hope for the best. Please pray for both of us. We’re going to need it to get us through these first couple of months.
     
  18. Saffy/isla

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    Hi KrisM just had to encourage you, it will get so much easier, my pup is 22 weeks and really much calmer.
    Time and patience will pay off and your pup will have learned basic commands and be a joy to be around before you know it.
    That's not to say she won't still have mad moments and be a naughty pup as my girl is! But it will be fewer times than now.
    Try to relax and enjoy her!
     
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  19. KrisM

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    Thank you for the encouragement! I think it’s hard now because she seems to be a morning dog and I’m not a morning person! Lol. She is starting to get somethings down so that helps a little.
     
  20. Debbie

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    I had to comment also, my pup is 17 weeks today. It’s been almost 13 years since my husband and I trained a new lab. I forgot how hard it is. I still miss my old girl. My pup is very dominant and very bitey. I, also do most of the dog stuff alone as my husband is only home 3 days a week. I totally underestimated how hard that would be. Much easier when he is home. Then I found out I have rheumatoid arthritis. Now it’s even harder. I thought weeks 9-13 were the worst. It’s still not a lot better. Right now he’s in kennel due to biting. I recommend obedience classes. I have 1 class left and they were exhausting for me but worth it for both of us. Best of luck. Lots of helpful advise on here. Just wish I had more time to read it.
     
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