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My babies are doing great, they are 12 weeks old today!

2 questions for you..
1. At what age should we start teaching commands like sit, stay, drop it, come, etc? I don't want to expect too much of them too soon, but I also don't want to let them get away with things for too long and make it harder to teach them later. They are somewhat getting stay and come but seem happily oblivious to anything else we try to teach so far.
2. We are using a wire crate, since it's supposed to simulate a den for them, should it be covered? Would they like it better? They are doing well with it, but if they would feel more cozy in there with it covered I'd like some good suggestions on how. Seems like they could get hold of a sheet through the bars and pull it in with them.

Thanks again!
:D Doodlemom
 

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We started working on basic commands (sit, down, stay) with Dexter when he was about 12 weeks old, but honestly, his attention span/memory was really short until he was around 16 weeks old. If I remember correctly, we started training classes with him not too long after that (maybe around 14 weeks). Just keep the training sessions short or we found our dog lost interest.
 
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We started working on basic commands very early, like 9-10 weeks and found that Murphy did really well. He picked up sit, give paw, stay and lay down in a matter of hours.

As for the crate, we too have a wire one- we put a dark colored sheet over the top, sides and back, and keep the front open for him. He seems to like it very much. We haven't had any problems with him trying to pull the sheet through the holes.
 

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Hershey had to have all her shots before she started puppy class, 16 weeks. She already knew her name, sit, lay down, before that, but thats about it. She picked up everything in class faster than all the other pure breds. Their owners were amazed.

We use a wire crate, she loves it. We didnt put anything to cover it (good idea :lol: ) but did have it in a corner out of direct sunlight and pulled a thick window shade down in all the windows to make it dark if she was left in it during the day. That seemed to make her sleep more.
 

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Hi Doodlemom and Welcome!

I am a rookie doodle parent too, and have learned alot from all of the generous people here.

My Lexi is about 20 weeks now. We got her at 9 weeks old.

Within the first week, as soon as we settled in, we began training. Of course potty training was ongoing.

I am in full agreement with Gracielou, attention span is short, but Lexi picked up "sit " very quickly. Then "down" soon after. Next we worked on "give paw". These are all mastered. We are currently working on "stay" and "drop it".

When she masters we will move on. During training she totally gets it. But the carry over when we are not training is not solid yet. We also need to work on "stay" for a longer period of time (right now she will stay for just a few seconds).

But I must admit I used to give her 2 short sessions a day, and I have not been as consistant.

Don't worry too much about being too demanding as long as the sessions are short. I found that Lexi does not look at it as work, she looks at it as play. Its a time where she gets my complete attention, and treats too!

Like Kingston Todd, we were not allowed to start formal training until she finished her shots at 16 weeks. We had our first session last week, but it was just an introduction. Tonight is session 2.

Wish us luck!

I hope this helps.

Good Luck

Maddie
 

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Most of our puppy were crate trained prior to adoption around 12-16 weeks, (over night and shorter times during the day) and some had learn the sit and down command. We spend alot of time one on one with each. In a group "forgetaboutit". They all learned the "play" command..lol.. all the time. We hear they are all during wonderful in their new homes. Smart and beautiful!
 

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we got Max at 13wks old...when he was 15wks old he learned sit and come and well he is a tad stubborn with down :roll:
I would only do 5-7min sessions as he loved it but their attention span is short.

Max is 6mos old and knows his commands quite well but lately seems to have developed "selective" hearing and also ways to get our attention when we're busy hahhahhahaha

I have the closed crate ---the big plastic one and wished I had gotten the open wire one instead. But my fiance bought it as a present sooooo I won't say a thing. :wink: :D

OH Max couldn't do training in the house with distractions till he hit 5 mos old. By distractions meaning my teenagers and or other dogs around.
 
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