How to Train a Miniature Schnauzer

Easy
8-12 Weeks
General

Introduction

Steele is a handsome Miniature Schnauzer--bright, energetic, friendly, and adaptable, all characteristics of his breed. His family adores him and he adores them! Steele learns quickly and is usually very obedient, however, he can be highly distractible. His terrier personality really comes out when outside on walks, when he is mesmerized by every little creature that moves within 100 yards of him. Steele sometimes pulls on his leash or fails to come when called if he has become fascinated with a bird or even a butterfly.  

This little house dog can be quite prey driven and independent, and training him will require keeping him focused on you. Establishing yourself as his leader is very important to achieve focus, and these sensitive, independent dogs learn better from positive reinforcement. They generally do not require or respond well to punishment or heavy-handed tactics. Be firm, consistent, and ensure your pooch is well socialized and respects you in order to be successful training your Mini Schnauzer.

Defining Tasks

Mini Schnauzers make excellent pets. They are usually good with children, protective of their families, playful, smart and energetic. Miniature Schnauzers are usually considered easy to train, but because of their intelligence, energy, and natural prey instincts they can lack focus and be stubborn, especially around distractions. Successful Mini Schnauzer owners make themselves the center of their dog's world, by being a strong leader and making sure their dog recognizes that they are the source of all good things: food, play, rest, and affection. 

Miniature Schnauzers benefit from early training and socialization and positive reward-based training. Your Mini Schnauzer will need to be house trained and learn basic obedience commands like 'sit', 'stay', 'down', and 'come'. Good off-leash recall and learning to walk on a loose leash can be challenging for inquisitive Mini Schnauzers, but are especially important to establish for your dog's safety and your peace of mind. Because they are athletic and smart, Mini Schnauzers can also excel at doggy sports like flyball and agility trials, so you might want to incorporate these into your training regime to keep your bright little pup's mind busy and engaged.

Getting Started

It is important to stay positive and not become frustrated with your Miniature Schnauzer during training. Make time to train when you are free from distractions and in a positive mood. Use treats, toys, and praise to train your Miniature Schnauzer. Because they love to play, typical of a terrier breed, play can be an excellent positive reinforcement. By using play as a reward you can avoid the danger of overfeeding your little house dog, which can be a problem. Miniature Schnauzers tend to be pretty food motivated and while food is an excellent reward, it can be combined with affection and play so that it is not overused.

The Start Young Method

Most Recommended
8 Votes
Step
1
Keep sessions short
Start working with your Miniature Schnauzer as soon as possible. Even a young puppy of 8 weeks old can start learning. Be sure to adjust training sessions so they are age-appropriate for your dog’s maturity level, and keep sessions short for young dogs.
Step
2
Socialize and expose
Socialize your miniature Schnauzer and expose him to a variety of situations so that he gains confidence and learns to be adaptable. This also keeps your dog's mind busy and engaged, and prevents him from being bored and picking up bad habits.
Step
3
House train
Teach your young Miniature Schnauzer household manners like using a crate and where to go potty. Potty train by using a crate or supervising your dog and capturing when he needs to go for a potty break and taking him outside immediately. Establish good bathroom habits when your dog is young, as this is the easiest way to house train. Usually, Miniature Schnauzers house train relatively easily as they can be quite fastidious, but your young dog will need direction and opportunities.
Step
4
Obedience commands
Teach your Miniature Schnauzer basic commands like 'come', 'sit', and 'stay', using rewards like treats and play. Start with simple requests or only short sessions. A young dog can only focus attention for a short period of time, work within your dog's limits.
Step
5
Outdoor activity
Apply basic training to walking on a loose leash and off-leash recall. These are the most challenging behaviors for these terriers to learn, as they are easily distracted. Start training your dog to walk on a loose leash and come when off-leash in a relatively controlled environment, like indoors. Move to an enclosed yard, then apply while out on walks where more distractions are present.
Recommend training method?

The Be the Leader Method

Effective
2 Votes
Step
1
Provide food
Be the provider of all good things. Control your Miniature Schnauzer’s resources. Make sure he understands that you are his food provider by remaining with him after you give him his meal, while he eats.
Step
2
Provide fun
Provide lots of affection and play. Produce toys and chew items for your Mini Schnauzer. Cuddle and pet frequently. Handle your pup. Take him on car rides and excursions.
Step
3
Provide exercise
Take your mini Schnauzer for lots of walks. Practice both controlled walking at a heel or on a loose leash and free walking with lots of nose time and opportunity for investigating, which your Mini Schnauzer loves.
Step
4
Be assertive and calm
Be firm but reasonable--avoid punishment and yelling. Give commands in a clear, firm voice with assertiveness. Use treats and toys to motivate.
Step
5
Give commands once
Do not repeat commands. Give a command once or twice at most. If your mini Schnauzer doesn't respond, correct him or remove him from the situation.
Recommend training method?

The Handle Bad Behavior Method

Least Recommended
1 Vote
Step
1
Don't reinforce unwanted behavior
Don't give your minute Schnauzer attention, even negative attention, for bad behavior.
Step
2
Remove attention
Practice extinguishing bad behavior by removing your dog from the situation or withdrawing attention and affection when appropriate. Resume play and attention when negative behavior stops.
Step
3
Reinforce desired behavior
Reward and reinforce positive behaviors. Provide treats or toys and attention when your pooch responds appropriately to commands.
Step
4
Provide alternatives
Distract from unwanted behavior and provide alternate activities or items, such as chew toys, to redirect behaviors.
Step
5
Use name positively
Use your Mini Schnauzers name in a positive way when calling him to provide food, exercise, or attention. Do not use your dog's name before reprimanding. You want his name to be something he responds to so you will have good recall and be able to get his attention, not his avoidance.
Recommend training method?
author-img

Written by Laurie Haggart

Published: 02/27/2018, edited: 01/08/2021

Success Stories and Training Questions

Training Questions and Answers

Question
Rufus
Miniature Schnauzer
4 Months
1 found helpful
Question
1 found helpful
Rufus
Miniature Schnauzer
4 Months

Struggling to control his barking at other dogs/people

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
817 Dog owners recommended

Hello Sue, Check out the article linked below and use the "Quiet" method and the "Desensitize" method. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Also, check out the PDF e-book download linked below and the information about how to socialize puppies found in that short book. www.lifedogtraining.com/freedownloads Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Rufus's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Daisy
Miniature Schnauzer
3 Months
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Daisy
Miniature Schnauzer
3 Months

How to teach her to sit

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
817 Dog owners recommended

Hello Emmanuel, Check out the article linked below and the Treat Lure method especially: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-german-shepherd-puppy-to-sit Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Daisy's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Belle
Miniature Schnauzer
9 Weeks
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Belle
Miniature Schnauzer
9 Weeks

I'm having trouble potty training. I've tried puppy training but she always uses the bathroom beside the pad and not on it. I didn't want to do the crate method because I don't work close enough to take her out at the appropriate time. Please help me understand how to at least get started puppy training.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
817 Dog owners recommended

Hello Candice, I suggest switching to a real grass pad because many dogs associate the pee pad with fabric like carpet and naturally try not to soil it. Either way when you have a couple of days off, like over the weekend I suggest using the crate training method from the article I have linked below while home from work just to teach her the concept of where to pee and ensure she doesn't pee else where and is rewarded for peeing on the pad when she does go potty on it. After using the crate for a couple of days to help her associate the pad with peeing, then switch to the Exercise Pen method from the same article I have linked below since you will have to go back to work. She will still need the close confinement of the exercise pen to keep the pan nearby for awhile even after doing the crate training method over the weekend. The exercise pen will also keep her safe during teething and later jaw development chewing phases during the first year. Also, if you want to put a bed in the exercise pen with her, use a cot type bed or something like www.primopads.com - something non-absorbent. Exercise Pen and Crate Training methods - it mentions a litter box but you can use a real-grass pad instead: https://wagwalking.com/training/litter-box-train-a-chihuahua-puppy Real grass pad brands - most found on amazon too: freshpatch.com doggielawn.com porchpotty.com Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Belle's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Teddy
Miniature Schnauzer
1 Year
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Teddy
Miniature Schnauzer
1 Year

I am having a problem with teddy off the lead, he has virtually no recall and when there’s other dogs or people he bolts for them and refuses to come back when called or if we go to grab him. We are struggling and I feel embarrassed when we have to chase after him in-front of other dog owners. Any help or advice would be greatly appreciated as we love teddy more than anything and would love to see him more safe off the lead.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
817 Dog owners recommended

Hello Matthew, Check out the Reel In method from the article linked below: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-whippet-to-recall Follow the Reel In method, and check out this article linked below for additional tips to improve the come: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/train-dog-to-come-when-called/ Working up to distractions while using the long leash is an essential part of reliability with the recall - expect training field trips to places like the park to practice once pup is doing well close to home. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Teddy's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Finn
Miniature Schnauzer
4 Months
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Finn
Miniature Schnauzer
4 Months

I have had Finn for 2weeks. He is going pee outside all the time but I am not having the same success with him going poop outside. I always go out with him. The yard is fenced. He eats at regular times and in the morning he usually poops outside. But after his evening food he resists and will be out for over 1/2 hour and not poop, but within minutes of coming inside he will poop. How do I break this behavior?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
817 Dog owners recommended

Hello Sheila, First, know that many pups will need to poop 15-45 minutes after eating and after running around. So keep timing in mind. It sounds like the main issue is distraction and habit though. Check out the crate training method from the article linked below. Whenever you take him potty and he doesn't go, immediately return him to the crate inside for fifteen to thirty minutes, then hurry him back outside to try again. Repeat that until he goes. Don't give him freedom in the house until you know he is empty. When you take him, walk him around slowly on a leash to keep him focused and help him move around to keep things going. Tell him to "Go Potty", which will teach him with practice to go quickly on command. Reward with several treats and praise when he does go, each time he goes. Crate training method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-german-shepherd-puppy-to-poop-outside Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Finn's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Wilson
Miniature Schnauzer
13 Weeks
1 found helpful
Question
1 found helpful
Wilson
Miniature Schnauzer
13 Weeks

Hello, my dog is 13 weeks old and we have had him a little over a week now. We are struggling with biting and barking. He often bites hard. We respond to his attempts by handing him a toy, which he often pushes to the side in order to bite us. We then yelp in a high pitch voice and ignore him. This usually makes him aggravated and he barks and/or bites our legs as we walk away. His bites are painful so it is often hard to ignore. He usually responds to being ignored by biting furniture, hiding under the couch, or leaving the area to use the bathroom. He also often barks when one of us walks into a room. We feed him the recommended amount, provide plenty of teething toys, and let him out regularly, so I am not sure how to address the problem. Any advice would be greatly appreciated!

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
817 Dog owners recommended

Hello Taylor, Check out the article linked below and teach use the Leave It method. This will take a little time to teach so practice frequently to speed up that process. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Also, it sounds like he is often over-tired and over-stimulated when the biting is at its worst a lot of times. Puppies can actually get more wound up when they are overdue for some down time. When he gets like this, put him into a crate or an exercise pen with a food-stuffed chew toy to give him time to wind down and play calmly. When you put him in the crate or pen, he will likely bark at first, ignore his barking. Check out the Surprise method from the article linked below to help with the barking when confined. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate For the barking while loose, check out the article linked below and the Quiet and Desensitization methods. Quiet is a useful command to have to stop the barking, but he likely needs to be desensitized to people entering and leaving the room in general to make that less exciting for him. Follow the Desensitization method for that, and also check out the video linked below for an example of someone doing this at a front door (you can do the same type of training for just entering into rooms and not just the front door though). Don't ever give treats while he is in the middle of barking; wait until he is quiet - even if that's only a second, before rewarding, so that your timing rewards the quietness and doesn't encourage more barking. Quiet method and Desensitization method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Desensitization door video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DxPrNnulp5s The video channel above also includes a few other barking videos in Kikopup's channel if you need further examples. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Wilson's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Bosley
Miniature Schnauzer
3 Years
1 found helpful
Question
1 found helpful
Bosley
Miniature Schnauzer
3 Years

I have Miniature Schnauzer that I bought as a pup. We lived in a residential area and had a fenced in yard and he was quite easy to potty train and was a really good little boy. We moved to MPLS and now live in a little farm house in the country. Since moving he has been a very naught pup. He want to chase people down the road he goes potty in the house (ever since we had to get a cat for mice) and he barks excessively. We are at our wits ends with him. I love him dearly but i don't know what to do with him. He is so stubborn that the training collar doesn’t phase him most of the time. What can i do to correct his bad habits. I don’t want to get rid of him. He is my emotional strength.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
817 Dog owners recommended

Hello Roxanne, First, the peeing is likely marking if it only began when you got the cat. If that's the case, then have him wear a belly band while inside (which is like a male diaper that can be washed and you put disposable pads in it to catch urine). When you see him start to squat or lift a leg to pee while wearing the belly band, clap your hands loudly a couple of times, then rush him outside. The purpose of the belly band is to prevent him from spreading his scent successfully - which is a marking dog's goal. You need to break that cycle if the potty training issues are scent related and not due to a lack of understanding or other issue. You also need to clean up any new or old accidents from him or the cat with a cleaner that contains enzymes. Only enzymes remove the smell fully and any remaining urine or poop smell will further encourage pottying in that spot. Make sure you are not using ammonia containing products to clean also - since ammonia smells like urine to a dog. Introduce the belly band using lots of treats and supervise him while he wears it the first several times, interrupting him anytime he tries to bite at it. Second, check out the article linked below on teaching Come. Before you can use an e-collar and it be effective you have to lay a good foundation for Come or the e-collar will be ineffective and can actually add to the frustration. Come - especially the use of a long leash and premack principle for a while: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/train-dog-to-come-when-called/ Next, once Come is well established through repetition, check out the video below for an overview of how the e-collar should be used to make it effective for training: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rtJxSXu4rfs&t=429s Check out the video below for how to find the right collar level for your dog and to make sure it is fitted properly: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1cl3V8vYobM For the barking you need to establish what type of barking is it. Is he barking due to territorial behavior? Fear? Being overly sensitive, Bordedom?. If he has become overly sensitive or it's because of boredom, then barking is actually a self-rewarding behavior and it needs to be interrupted with a corrector, but it he also needs to be desensitized to whatever he is barking to while in a calmer state using rewards, so that he doesn't feel the need to bark so much. If it's territorial, he needs a lot more leadership, and to be shown that you don't want him to display that behavior - one alert bark is fine but then stop. If he is afraid, he needs to be socialized around what he is fearful of and taught "Quiet". Check out the videos linked below for desensitization and how to teach the Quiet command. There may be something additional that needs to be addressed too depending on why he is barking. I would need more details about him to help more though. Quiet command... https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Desensitization video: video 1: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jp_l9C1yT1g video 2: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bpzvqN9JNUA Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Bosley's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Jax
schnauzer
7 Years
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Jax
schnauzer
7 Years

He doesn't like men, when on walks he growls and tries to pull towards them. I rescued little over a week ago and he has been VERY stressed out and very high anxiety. Now when I see a male approaching I turn and go a different way but I want to be able to take him to the campgrounds???

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
104 Dog owners recommended

Hello, Jax will need time to adjust to your home and his new environment. I guess you do not know his history but its sounds as though there may have been a problem with a male figure in his past. You may need to hire a trainer to give you a hand if you are unable to change this because it will make things very tough for both you and Jax in social situations. Please consider it - look online for a trainer with this type of experience. In the meantime, take a look at these information guides: https://wagwalking.com/training/not-attack-strangers The Establish Leadership Method. Train Jax to walk calmly and give him a focus while walking so that he has no interest in who's walking by: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel The Turms Method. Train, and train. Work with him every day and make it fun. Sessions don't have to be long -15 minutes a day - but consistent. As well, https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-doberman-to-listen-to-you. All the best!

Add a comment to Jax's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Sophie
Schnoodle
5 Months
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Sophie
Schnoodle
5 Months

Having trouble with some basic commands. Leave it, off, down come.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
817 Dog owners recommended

Hello Brenda, Check out the articles linked below. Leave It method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Down-Stay: https://www.thelabradorsite.com/train-your-labrador-to-lie-down-and-stay/ Come - Reel in method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-whippet-to-recall Off- section on The Off command: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-train-dog-stay-off-couch/ Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Sophie's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Buddy
schnauzer
16 Months
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Buddy
schnauzer
16 Months

How do I specifically train a timid schanauzer? He is well house trained. But he likes to walk away when coaxed and even cowers a bit when handled, even with a reassuring voice.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
817 Dog owners recommended

Hello Daniel, Work on getting pup used to touch and handling. Use pup's daily meal kibble to do this. Gently touch an area of his body while feeding a piece of food. Touch an ear and give a treat. Touch a paw and give a treat. Hold his collar and give a treat. Touch his tail gently and give a treat. Touch his belly, his other paws, his chest, shoulder, muzzle and every other area very gently and give a treat each time. Keep these times calm and fun for pup. Check out the Come article linked below. I suggest using the Reel In method, but when you do so, reel pup in very gently, and when you call pup act really happy and run away from pup a bit to encourage a chase response. Praise and reward pup genuinely when they arrive, even if you had to gently reel them in first. You can also keep a drag leash on pup, to be able to gently enforce coming around the home. If you call pup happily and they do not come, simply calmly walk over to the end of the leash, pick up the end of it, and lead pup back to where you called them from. Release pup after, and repeat calling them again when they walk away. Do this until they come willingly when called - when they do, reward with several treats, one at a time and let pup go rest. Your attitude should be happy and calm, even if it takes a lot of repetition. You are building trust while also teaching pup that they need to listen whether they want to or not - consistency helps teach this, not intimidation in any way, and since pup is already nervous, you want to be super consistent with expectations but also super calm and patient while training. Lure Reward type training and things like agility can also help nervous dogs in general. Having pup overcome agility type obstacles can help pup feel more confident. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Buddy's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Archie
schnauzer
4 Months
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Archie
schnauzer
4 Months

Having trouble getting him to stop barking at people when they enter our house.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
817 Dog owners recommended

Hello Ashley, Check out the video below and work on desensitizing pup to people. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bpzvqN9JNUA Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Archie's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Sheridan
Miniature Schnauzer
9 Weeks
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Sheridan
Miniature Schnauzer
9 Weeks

Hello there

Our gorgeous little guy is picking up some great habits and skills but he is VERY bitey when we play, or when he’s super excited. We tried the “Yelp” method which seemed to excite him more, so we’re trialling “no biting” command followed by us removing ourselves from play (we leave the room or pop him in a puppy time out in his pen). We’re hoping these will work overtime but have concerns that he may not quite associate us leaving with the biting.

Any extra tips would be amazing.

Thanks!


Matt

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
219 Dog owners recommended

Hello! Here is some information on nipping/biting. Nipping: Puppies may nip for a number of reasons. Nipping can be a means of energy release, getting attention, interacting and exploring their environment or it could be a habit that helps with teething. Whatever the cause, nipping can still be painful for the receiver, and it’s an action that pet parents want to curb. Some ways to stop biting before it becomes a real problem include: Using teething toys. Distracting with and redirecting your dog’s biting to safe and durable chew toys is one way to keep them from focusing their mouthy energies to an approved location and teach them what biting habits are acceptable. Making sure your dog is getting the proper amount of exercise. Exercise is huge. Different dogs have different exercise needs based on their breed and size, so check with your veterinarian to make sure that yours is getting the exercise they need. Dogs—and especially puppies—use their playtime to get out extra energy. With too much pent-up energy, your pup may resort to play biting. Having them expel their energy in positive ways - including both physical and mental exercise - will help mitigate extra nips. Being consistent. Training your dog takes patience, practice and consistency. With the right training techniques and commitment, your dog will learn what is preferred behavior. While sometimes it may be easier to let a little nipping activity go, be sure to remain consistent in your cues and redirection. That way, boundaries are clear to your dog. Using positive reinforcement. To establish preferred behaviors, use positive reinforcement when your dog exhibits the correct behavior. For instance, praise and treat your puppy when they listen to your cue to stop unwanted biting as well as when they choose an appropriate teething toy on their own. Saying “Ouch!” The next time your puppy becomes too exuberant and nips you, say “OUCH!” in a very shocked tone and immediately stop playing with them. Your puppy should learn - just as they did with their littermates - that their form of play has become unwanted. When they stop, ensure that you follow up with positive reinforcement by offering praise, treat and/or resuming play. Letting every interaction with your puppy be a learning opportunity. While there are moments of dedicated training time, every interaction with your dog can be used as a potential teaching moment.

Add a comment to Sheridan's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
iris
Miniature Schnauzer
10 Months
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
iris
Miniature Schnauzer
10 Months

Iris keeps barking at other dogs on her walk

and on weekend she went to her dog hotel Where she normal stays and lady said all she did was bark no stop at other dog . But here at home she didn’t bark .

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
817 Dog owners recommended

Hello Carla, I recommend working on calmness, the barking specifically, and more socialization. For the calmness, I suggest working on the structure of your walk first. You want pup to be working during the walk - having to stay behind you, focus on you, perform commands periodically, and not have his mind on scanning the area in search of other dogs. The walk should start with her having to exit your home very calmly, performing obedience commands at the door if she isn't calm. She should wait for permission ("Okay" or "Free" or "Let's Go") before going through the door instead of bolting through if that's an issue. When you walk she should be in the heel position - with her head behind your leg. That position decreases her arousal, reduces stress because she isn't the one in charge and the one encountering things first. It prevents her from scanning for other dogs, staring dogs down or being stared down, and ignoring you behind her. It also requires him to be in a more submissive, structured, focused, calmer mindset - which has a direct effect on how aroused, stressed, and reactive she is. Additionally, when you do pass other dogs, as soon as she starts staring them down, interrupt her. Remind her with a gentle correction that you are leading the walk and she is not allowed to break her heel or stare another dog down. It is far easier to deal with reactivity when you interrupt a dog early in the process - before they are highly aroused and full of adrenaline and cortisol, and to keep the dog in a less aroused/calmer state to begin with. Staying in a calmer mindset also makes the walk more pleasant for her in the long-run. Once pup can walk past other dogs more calmly, you can carry small, soft treats hidden in a treat pouch or plastic bag in your pocket. When pup's body language stays calm, they remain focused on you, or are very obedient when other dogs are within sight, reward pup with a treat and very calm - almost monotone praise (too much excitement can make the situation harder for pup). Thresholds: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-w28C2g68M Heel article - The turns method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel First, you need a way to communicate with her so I suggest teaching the Quiet command from the Quiet method in the article I have linked below - don't expect this alone to work but it will be part of the puzzle for what I will suggest next. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Next, once pup understands what Quiet means you will choose an interrupter - neither too harsh nor ineffective. A Pet Convincer is one example of an interrupter. A pet convincer is a small canister of pressurized, unscented air that you can spray a quick puff of at the dog's side to surprise them enough to help them calm back down. (Don't use citronella and avoid spraying in the face!). In situations where you know pup will bark or is already barking (catch them before they bark if you can), command "Quiet". If they obey, reward with a treat and very calm praise. If they bark anyway or continue to bark, say "Ah Ah" firmly but calmly and give a brief correction. Repeat the correction each time they bark until you get a brief pause in the barking. When they pause, praise and reward then. The combination of communication, correction, and rewarding - with the "Ah Ah" and praise to mark their good and bad behavior with the right timing, is very important. Once pup is calmer in general after the initial training, practice exposing her a lot to the things that trigger the barking normally (make a list - even if it's long). Whenever she DOESN'T bark around something that she normally would have, calmly praise and reward her to continue the desensitization process. Finally, work on calm socialization, and don't skip rewarding pup or calmness around other dogs once she is doing better on walk and is calm enough to reward it! That can help ultimately. Do things like joining obedience classes, trainings clubs, group dog hikes and walks, canine sports, ect...Your goal right now should be interactions with other dogs that have structure and encourage focus on you, calmness around the other dogs, and a pleasant activity with other dogs around - opposed to roughhousing or tense environments with tons of unpredictable dogs loose which increases adrenaline. If pup does really well playing with other dogs, have one-on-one play dates with a friend and their well socialized dog and intermittently practice obedience with them together so they learn how to also be calm and responsive to you around another dog. Recruit some friends with well mannered dogs to go on walks with you and your dog, following the Passing Approach method and Walking Together method to help the dogs learn how to be calm around each other, while also continuing socialization. Passing Approach and Walking Together methods: https://wagwalking.com/training/greet-other-dogs Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to iris's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Jax
Miniature Schnauzer
10 Weeks
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Jax
Miniature Schnauzer
10 Weeks

I don’t understand how I am supposed to remove attention or not reinforce bad behavior if my puppy is actively biting fingers/toes and is not responding to “no”

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
219 Dog owners recommended

Hi there. Here is some more detailed information on nipping/biting. Nipping: Puppies may nip for a number of reasons. Nipping can be a means of energy release, getting attention, interacting and exploring their environment or it could be a habit that helps with teething. Whatever the cause, nipping can still be painful for the receiver, and it’s an action that pet parents want to curb. Some ways to stop biting before it becomes a real problem include: Using teething toys. Distracting with and redirecting your dog’s biting to safe and durable chew toys is one way to keep them from focusing their mouthy energies to an approved location and teach them what biting habits are acceptable. Making sure your dog is getting the proper amount of exercise. Exercise is huge. Different dogs have different exercise needs based on their breed and size, so check with your veterinarian to make sure that yours is getting the exercise they need. Dogs—and especially puppies—use their playtime to get out extra energy. With too much pent-up energy, your pup may resort to play biting. Having them expel their energy in positive ways - including both physical and mental exercise - will help mitigate extra nips. Being consistent. Training your dog takes patience, practice and consistency. With the right training techniques and commitment, your dog will learn what is preferred behavior. While sometimes it may be easier to let a little nipping activity go, be sure to remain consistent in your cues and redirection. That way, boundaries are clear to your dog. Using positive reinforcement. To establish preferred behaviors, use positive reinforcement when your dog exhibits the correct behavior. For instance, praise and treat your puppy when they listen to your cue to stop unwanted biting as well as when they choose an appropriate teething toy on their own. Saying “Ouch!” The next time your puppy becomes too exuberant and nips you, say “OUCH!” in a very shocked tone and immediately stop playing with them. Your puppy should learn - just as they did with their littermates - that their form of play has become unwanted. When they stop, ensure that you follow up with positive reinforcement by offering praise, treat and/or resuming play. Letting every interaction with your puppy be a learning opportunity. While there are moments of dedicated training time, every interaction with your dog can be used as a potential teaching moment. Please let me know if you have additional questions. Thank you for writing in!

Add a comment to Jax's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Daisy
Miniature Schnauzer
10 Weeks
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Daisy
Miniature Schnauzer
10 Weeks

Hello Ive had Daisy for over a week now shes really good at potty training and eating but when it comes to bed time is the end of the world for her as soon as we get her ready to get her to sleep on her crate she starts crying howling and barking! I do try to talk to her to calm her down i also leave a light on so its not dark im not sure what else to do any suggestions will be appreciated thank you.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
817 Dog owners recommended

Hello Jocelyn, First, when you crate her, try to not make a big deal of it - ignore the crying when you know she doesn't need to go potty and is otherwise safe. At night, I would also keep a the light off - a small nightlight is fine, but you want her body to think that it's dark so that melatonin and sleep cycles help her fall asleep and adjust better. Most pups cry because being alone is simply new to them, and they still need to learn the skills for that type of independence, which takes practice. At night, if it has been less than 2 hours since pup last went potty, ignore the crying. When pup wakes after at least 2 hours (use an audio baby monitor to listen out for pup if you can't hear them from your room), then take pup potty outside on a leash - keep the trip super boring - no treats, play, and little talk. After pup goes potty, immediately and calmly return them to the crate and go back to bed, ignore the crying until the next potty trip - pup should learn to settle and go back to sleep with consistency - if you return and give attention this tends to take longer because it teaches pup that crying is the way to get what they want. During the day, you want to teach pup that quietness and calmness is what they should do in the crate and for them to also think that that's how they get you to return. Check out the Surprise method from the article linked below to help pup learn calmness in the crate. For longer periods of crating, also give pup a dog food stuffed chew toy to entertain themselves with during the day - don't give food at night though. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate/ Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Daisy's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Moxie
Miniature Schnauzer
9 Weeks
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Moxie
Miniature Schnauzer
9 Weeks

My puppy drives me in despair because off his biting and nipping. He does not stop and it seems mostly me he is doing it too. He is very well socialized and loves people. When I take him out he is mostly very good in company. But at home he keeps on nipping a bad biting. I have to take him away from the situation and put him in his carrying bag. I keep him in there for about 15/30 minutes. No toys and I close the bag. In the beginning he cried a bit but now this stopped. When I take him out he seems to be calmer for a while and than it starts again. I tried a water bottle and spray it in his face when he bites me to hard. I use the pet corrector, or the high pitched sound. Nothing seems to help. I am at my wits end. I make a high sound to warn him, it only makes it worse. When he is calm I pet him a lot and talk to him in a positive tone.
I do not know how to deal with this. I have had 5 dogs but they were never this way. Do you have any suggestions
.

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
219 Dog owners recommended

Hello! Here is information on nipping/biting. Nipping: Puppies may nip for a number of reasons. Nipping can be a means of energy release, getting attention, interacting and exploring their environment or it could be a habit that helps with teething. Whatever the cause, nipping can still be painful for the receiver, and it’s an action that pet parents want to curb. Some ways to stop biting before it becomes a real problem include: Using teething toys. Distracting with and redirecting your dog’s biting to safe and durable chew toys is one way to keep them from focusing their mouthy energies to an approved location and teach them what biting habits are acceptable. Making sure your dog is getting the proper amount of exercise. Exercise is huge. Different dogs have different exercise needs based on their breed and size, so check with your veterinarian to make sure that yours is getting the exercise they need. Dogs—and especially puppies—use their playtime to get out extra energy. With too much pent-up energy, your pup may resort to play biting. Having them expel their energy in positive ways - including both physical and mental exercise - will help mitigate extra nips. Being consistent. Training your dog takes patience, practice and consistency. With the right training techniques and commitment, your dog will learn what is preferred behavior. While sometimes it may be easier to let a little nipping activity go, be sure to remain consistent in your cues and redirection. That way, boundaries are clear to your dog. Using positive reinforcement. To establish preferred behaviors, use positive reinforcement when your dog exhibits the correct behavior. For instance, praise and treat your puppy when they listen to your cue to stop unwanted biting as well as when they choose an appropriate teething toy on their own. Saying “Ouch!” The next time your puppy becomes too exuberant and nips you, say “OUCH!” in a very shocked tone and immediately stop playing with them. Your puppy should learn - just as they did with their littermates - that their form of play has become unwanted. When they stop, ensure that you follow up with positive reinforcement by offering praise, treat and/or resuming play. Letting every interaction with your puppy be a learning opportunity. While there are moments of dedicated training time, every interaction with your dog can be used as a potential teaching moment.

Add a comment to Moxie's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Onyx
schnauzer
8 Weeks
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Onyx
schnauzer
8 Weeks

It is getting cold and rainy where we are and she doesn’t have all vaccines ( only 1) and although we have set up a play pen outside for her to pee/poo we are worried to potty train her outside without her vaccines and with cold dnd wet weather. We have a long freezing winter ahead of us and not sure what would be the best way to potty train her ( pads vs outside in pen) now. Any suggestions? Thanks

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
219 Dog owners recommended

Hi there. It sounds like the best route to go is potty pads. I will send you information for potty pad training. Choose Your Spot Pick a space in your house where you want your dog to go. Obviously, you’ll want this spot to be a low-traffic area. Make sure this spot is easily accessible to your dog, and make sure the floor surface is linoleum or tile, as opposed to carpet. If your dog “misses,” it will be easier to clean up. If the only spot you can put the pee pad is a carpet, you might consider getting a small tarp to put underneath the puppy pee pad to guard against spillage. Choose a spot that is outside of your “smell zone.” An important tip to remember is to make sure not to let your dog decide the spot he likes. Not only might he pick an area you won’t like, but he’ll learn that he is in charge – not you – which can cause a host of problems down the line. Monitor Your Dog When you are potty training your dog, full-time monitoring is an absolute necessity. It’s impossible to correct bad behaviors if you don’t see them happen. Dogs have very short memories. It is important to catch your dog in the act. If your dog goes on the floor, and you try to correct him hours after the fact, he will be confused and upset, not knowing what he did wrong. This can hinder training and your relationship with your dog. Puppies, in particular, must be watched constantly. They have less control over their bowels and will go when they have to go. If you miss these moments, you lose precious training opportunities. Of course, it’s nearly impossible to be with your dog 24 hours a day, but try to spend more time at home during the weeks you are potty training – it will pay off in the long run. Learn Your Dog’s Schedule Dogs, for the most part, are predictable. They will go to the bathroom at predictable times. You should be able to learn when your dog has to go based on timing as much as on his signals. Take some time to study your dog’s bathroom habits. You’ll learn the amount of time after he eats or drinks that he has to go, and you’ll get in rhythm with his daily bathroom schedule. This will help you reduce accidents and speed up the potty training process. Studying your dog’s habits can also help you identify his bathroom “triggers” – like having to go after a certain amount of playtime. Once you learn your dog’s schedule, use it to your advantage in potty training. Bring him to the pee pad a few minutes before he normally goes, and encourage him. This will help him get used to going in the right spot, and help you establish repetition in your training. Choose a Command Word Dogs have keen senses – they respond to sight, smell, and sound. When you begin pee pad training, choose a command word and use it every time you take your dog to the pad. Just about any word will work. The tone of your voice is more important than the actual word. Try phrases like “go on” or “go potty” in a slightly elevated, encouraging tone. Make sure to repeat this same command, in the same tone, every time you take your dog to the pee pad. Avoid Punishment When your dog has an accident, it’s just that – an accident. When you punish your dog during potty training, he will become confused and scared. He doesn’t know what he’s done wrong, and can’t understand why the person he loves most is mad at him. Most importantly, it will not help his potty training. Positive Reinforcement Both human and dog behavior is largely based on incentives. Dogs’ incentives are very simple – they want to eat when they are hungry, play when they are excited, and sleep when they are tired. But the most important thing your dog wants in life is to please you. Use this to your advantage. Whenever your dog goes on his potty training pad, shower him with lots of praise. If he sees that he gets praise for doing his business on the pad, he will be incentivized to keep going on the pad – and he’ll be excited to do it! Potty training – whether it’s a pee pad or going outside – will take time, but if you do it right, can take less time. Many dogs are potty trained in less than two weeks. Just remember that you and your dog are partners. Do everything you can to help him learn the proper etiquette, and you will enjoy a long, quality relationship together. Please let me know if you have any additional questions. Thank you for writing in.

Add a comment to Onyx's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Augie
Mini Australian Shepterrier
11 Weeks
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Augie
Mini Australian Shepterrier
11 Weeks

biting with attitude on corrsction

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
817 Dog owners recommended

Hello Pam, What is pup doing when giving you attitude? If you are connecting using your hands - like a spank or muzzle slap, I recommend switch to a different method. Check out the article linked below and I recommend following the Bite Inhibition method while also teaching the Leave It method. You can use the Bite Inhibition method right away, but the Leave It method will take some time to teach. Ultimately you want pup to know leave It to help. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Also, work on getting puppy used to touch and handling. Use puppies daily meal kibble to do this. Gently touch an area of puppy's body while feeding a piece of food. Touch an ear and give a treat. Touch a paw and give a treat. Hold his collar and give a treat. Touch his tail gently and give a treat. Touch his belly, his other paws, his chest, shoulder, muzzle and every other area very gently and give a treat each time. Keep these times calm and fun for pup. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Augie's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Zoey
Miniature Schnauzer
6 Years
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Zoey
Miniature Schnauzer
6 Years

I want to make my dog be nice to the family but vishis turds people she doesn't know

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
219 Dog owners recommended

Hello there. It sounds like you have your hands full. I am going to provide you with information on how to correct this behavior. You won’t be able to solve your dog’s overprotective behavior in one day. In the meantime, you don’t want to put your life on hold. You can still invite guests into your home as long as you prioritize managing your dog’s behavior. You’ll need a short-term strategy to start showing your overprotective dog what behavior is unacceptable while also keeping your guests safe. There are a few ways to do this. Leash: Keeping your dog on a leash while friends are visiting gives you control over your dog’s actions. Leash him up before the doorbell rings and keep him close as you greet your guests. During the visit, you can let the leash drag and only use it if you have to. Muzzle: If you feel his behavior warrants the use of a muzzle for the time being while you work on solving this problem, then it may be a wise choice. Separate Room: Your dog won’t get better without practice, but sometimes you have to weigh the risks versus rewards. If your overprotective dog is in the beginning stages of training, keeping him separated from guests might be best. You don’t want to put a friend’s safety at risk or needlessly stress out your dog. As long as you keep working toward stopping the behavior, separating an overprotective dog from company is a temporary management solution. Start Obedience Training Obedience training is a must for every dog, and it’s especially important for overprotective dogs. Working with your dog on things like “sit-stay,” “down-stay,” and “heel,” will help build his impulse control. He’ll start seeing you as a capable leader and will turn to you for guidance. A mistake many pup parents make is stopping obedience training once their dog masters the basics skills. Being well-trained is about more than knowing how to sit when a person holds a treat in front of their face. It’s a lifetime lesson, and even senior dogs need regular training. Commit to training your dog several times a day for short periods of time. Make Your Dog Work for Affection You can’t help but smother your dog with love every time he’s within petting distance, but that isn’t always what’s best for him. He will start to feel entitled to your attention, and that’s part of the problem. To remedy this, initiate a “work for it” program that allows you to show your dog affection as long as he earns your attention in appropriate ways. Make him sit, stay calm, and do whatever else you ask before doling out whatever it is he wants. If he’s excited for dinner, make him sit and leave it before digging in. If he wants in your lap, ask him to do a trick first. Never give your dog attention if he rudely nudges your hand or barks in your face. He needs to know polite behavior, and polite behavior only, is how he gets what he wants. You ignore everything else. Involve Other People in the Dog’s Life Most overprotective dogs choose to guard only the person they feel closest to. It’s usually the same person who fills their food bowls, takes them on walks, and handles training. They become obsessively attached, and a strong bond gradually mutates into overprotective behavior. Putting some space between you and your dog will help him learn to trust other people. Enlist the entire family’s help and take a step back in your role as primary caregiver. Have someone else feed the dog a few times a week, and encourage other people to engage her in playtime. This will help him be more comfortable with different people. Socialize Socialization is best done during the puppy stages, but even adult and senior dogs benefit from new experiences. Exposing your overprotective dog to new places, experiences, and people, will help him learn that not everyone is out to hurt you. Make sure each new experience is positive, and encourage your dog without forcing him to interact. If your dog is afraid, you don’t want to make things worse. Take socialization at the pace he’s comfortable with. If he seems overwhelmed, back up and try something a little smaller. These are some general ideas and they can be modified to fit your dynamic. These behaviors do take time, I am talking months, to correct. And sometimes the behaviors get worse before they get better. So just push through that time if that starts to happen. Please let me know if you have any additional questions. Thank you for writing in!

Add a comment to Zoey's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Buster
Miniature Schnauzer
11 Weeks
1 found helpful
Question
1 found helpful
Buster
Miniature Schnauzer
11 Weeks

Biting

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
219 Dog owners recommended

Hello. Here is information on nipping/biting. Nipping: Puppies may nip for a number of reasons. Nipping can be a means of energy release, getting attention, interacting and exploring their environment or it could be a habit that helps with teething. Whatever the cause, nipping can still be painful for the receiver, and it’s an action that pet parents want to curb. Some ways to stop biting before it becomes a real problem include: Using teething toys. Distracting with and redirecting your dog’s biting to safe and durable chew toys is one way to keep them from focusing their mouthy energies to an approved location and teach them what biting habits are acceptable. Making sure your dog is getting the proper amount of exercise. Exercise is huge. Different dogs have different exercise needs based on their breed and size, so check with your veterinarian to make sure that yours is getting the exercise they need. Dogs—and especially puppies—use their playtime to get out extra energy. With too much pent-up energy, your pup may resort to play biting. Having them expel their energy in positive ways - including both physical and mental exercise - will help mitigate extra nips. Being consistent. Training your dog takes patience, practice and consistency. With the right training techniques and commitment, your dog will learn what is preferred behavior. While sometimes it may be easier to let a little nipping activity go, be sure to remain consistent in your cues and redirection. That way, boundaries are clear to your dog. Using positive reinforcement. To establish preferred behaviors, use positive reinforcement when your dog exhibits the correct behavior. For instance, praise and treat your puppy when they listen to your cue to stop unwanted biting as well as when they choose an appropriate teething toy on their own. Saying “Ouch!” The next time your puppy becomes too exuberant and nips you, say “OUCH!” in a very shocked tone and immediately stop playing with them. Your puppy should learn - just as they did with their littermates - that their form of play has become unwanted. When they stop, ensure that you follow up with positive reinforcement by offering praise, treat and/or resuming play. Letting every interaction with your puppy be a learning opportunity. While there are moments of dedicated training time, every interaction with your dog can be used as a potential teaching moment.

Add a comment to Buster's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
asshole
Miniture schnauzer
6 Years
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
asshole
Miniture schnauzer
6 Years

he poops everywhere

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
219 Dog owners recommended

Hello! I am sending you quite a bit of information on potty and crate training just in case you want to use the crate to help with potty training. Potty training: Know Your Pup. As you spend time with your puppy, learn your puppy’s love language. Just as some people prefer gifts, touch, or time spent together, puppies can be the same way. Some puppies love praise or pets, while others prefer treats. As you get to know your puppy, consider what reward your puppy loves the most. Create a Daily Schedule. It is best to have a routine for your puppy. A schedule helps them understand when to eat, play, and “go to the bathroom.” Your puppy should go out frequently and the routine should be the same every time. When? Start the day by taking your puppy outside, and repeating based on age and ability. They should also go out after napping, chewing, playing, and within 10 to 15 minutes of eating. Although some puppies can sleep for seven hours, it is important to set an alarm and take your pup out during the night. When you do, don’t make a fuss about it. Quietly take them outside with minimal stimulation and light. Praise them if they go to the bathroom and gently return them to their bed or crate. You don’t want them to get stimulated and ready to play in the middle of the night! As you get to know your puppy, you will become aware of their individual habits. Click here to learn more about house training schedules for puppies. Where? Take your puppy to a specific area to urinate or defecate. Be consistent. You can create an area by using urine-soaked paper or bowel movements to help create an aroma to stimulate your puppy. How? Take your puppy out on a leash so they can focus on the desired activity. This will help prevent them from wandering off to play. Once your puppy is in the selected area, use your verbal cue, such as “Hurry Up,” “Poopies,” “Go tinkle,” or any phrase your puppy responds to. What? Know the signs that your puppy has to go to the bathroom. Every animal may have a different “I gotta go” gesture, which often include restlessness, sniffing around, circling, scratching at the door, barking, and, eventually, squatting. At the first sign that your pup has to go, calmly and quickly take them outside to their bathroom spot. Deal with Accidents. Accidents are a normal part of house training a puppy. What to Do If you see your puppy in the process of urinating or defecating inappropriately, calmly and quickly interrupt them in the act. Tell them to stop (either by a jarring sound or command), and immediately take them to an appropriate location for elimination. After your puppy goes to the bathroom, lavishly praise them and offer a treat. Thoroughly clean up accidents, so your puppy is not attracted to this area again. Create a consistent feeding and watering schedule. Depending on the age of your puppy, they will eat three to four times a day. A consistent feeding routine can create a regular bathroom schedule. Take away water about 2 hours before bedtime. Learn more about ideal dog schedules here. What NOT to Do Don’t punish your puppy when they have an accident. At that point, it is too late. When a puppy has an accident in the house and they walk away, within seconds they have already forgotten about what they did. Taking them to the scene of the crime and yelling and/or rubbing their nose in it does not help and, in fact, can harm your puppy! Supervise. The best thing you can do is to prevent accidents and the best way to do this is to supervise your puppy at all times. You can tether your puppy to your waist with a five or six-foot leash and carefully observe them for signs that they need to go to the bathroom. If you can’t supervise, then crate or confine your puppy. The more accidents your puppy has in the house, the more confusing it will be for them and this can delay house training. Reward, Reward, Reward. It is important to give your puppy a reward for their good behavior. This can be for commands such as sitting and coming to you, or for appropriately eliminating outside. In a puppy, a reward can be a couple kibbles of puppy food or a treat, such as a small piece of meat. The treat should be exciting for them and only available as a result of good behavior. Crate training can take days or weeks, depending on your dog's age, temperament and past experiences. It's important to keep two things in mind while crate training: The crate should always be associated with something pleasant and training should take place in a series of small steps. Don't go too fast. Step 1: Introduce your dog to the crate Place the crate in an area of your house where the family spends a lot of time, such as the family room. Put a soft blanket or towel in the crate. Take the door off and let the dog explore the crate at their leisure. Some dogs will be naturally curious and start sleeping in the crate right away. If yours isn't one of them: Bring them over to the crate and talk to them in a happy tone of voice. Make sure the crate door is open and secured so that it won't hit your dog and frighten them. Encourage your dog to enter the crate by dropping some small food treats nearby, then just inside the door, and finally, all the way inside the crate. If they refuse to go all the way in at first, that's OK; don't force them to enter. Continue tossing treats into the crate until your dog will walk calmly all the way into the crate to get the food. If they aren’t interested in treats, try tossing a favorite toy in the crate. This step may take a few minutes or as long as several days. Step 2: Feed your dog meals in the crate After introducing your dog to the crate, begin feeding them their regular meals near the crate. This will create a pleasant association with the crate. If your dog is readily entering the crate when you begin Step 2, place the food dish all the way at the back of the crate. If they remain reluctant to enter, put the dish only as far inside as they will readily go without becoming fearful or anxious. Each time you feed them, place the dish a little further back in the crate. Once your dog is standing comfortably in the crate to eat their meal, you can close the door while they’re eating. The first time you do this, open the door as soon as they finish their meal. With each successive feeding, leave the door closed a few minutes longer, until they’re staying in the crate for 10 minutes or so after eating. If they begin to whine to be let out, you may have increased the length of time too quickly. Next time, try leaving them in the crate for a shorter time period. If they do whine or cry in the crate, don’t let them out until they stop. Otherwise, they'll learn that the way to get out of the crate is to whine, so they'll keep doing it. Step 3: Practice with longer crating periods After your dog is eating their regular meals in the crate with no sign of fear or anxiety, you can confine them there for short time periods while you're home. Call them over to the crate and give them a treat. Give them a command to enter, such as "crate." Encourage them by pointing to the inside of the crate with a treat in your hand. After your dog enters the crate, praise them, give them the treat and close the door. Sit quietly near the crate for five to 10 minutes and then go into another room for a few minutes. Return, sit quietly again for a short time and then let them out. Repeat this process several times a day, gradually increasing the length of time you leave them in the crate and the length of time you're out of sight. Once your dog will stay quietly in the crate for about 30 minutes with you mostly out of sight, you can begin leaving them crated when you're gone for short time periods and/or letting them sleep there at night. This may take several days or weeks. Step 4, Part A: Crate your dog when you leave After your dog can spend about 30 minutes in the crate without becoming anxious or afraid, you can begin leaving them crated for short periods when you leave the house. Put them in the crate using your regular command and a treat. You might also want to leave them with a few safe toys in the crate. Vary the moment during your "getting ready to leave" routine that you put your dog in the crate. Although they shouldn't be crated for a long time before you leave, you can crate them anywhere from five to 20 minutes prior to leaving. Don't make your departures emotional and prolonged—they should be matter-of-fact. Praise your dog briefly, give them a treat for entering the crate and then leave quietly. When you return home, don't reward your dog for excited behavior by responding to them in an enthusiastic way. Keep arrivals low-key to avoid increasing their anxiety over when you will return. Continue to crate your dog for short periods from time to time when you're home so they don't associate crating with being left alone. Step 4, Part B: Crate your dog at night Put your dog in the crate using your regular command and a treat. Initially, it may be a good idea to put the crate in your bedroom or nearby in a hallway, especially if you have a puppy. Puppies often need to go outside to eliminate during the night and you'll want to be able to hear your puppy when they whine to be let outside. Older dogs should also initially be kept nearby so they don't associate the crate with social isolation. Once your dog is sleeping comfortably through the night with the crate near you, you can begin to gradually move it to the location you prefer, although time spent with your dog—even sleep time—is a chance to strengthen the bond between you and your pet. Potential problems Whining: If your dog whines or cries while in the crate at night, it may be difficult to decide whether they’re whining to be let out of the crate, or whether they need to be let outside to eliminate. If you've followed the training procedures outlined above, then your dog hasn't been rewarded for whining in the past by being released from their crate. If that is the case, try to ignore the whining. If your dog is just testing you, they'll probably stop whining soon. Yelling at them or pounding on the crate will only make things worse. If the whining continues after you've ignored them for several minutes, use the phrase they associate with going outside to eliminate. If they respond and become excited, take them outside. This should be a trip with a purpose, not play time. If you're convinced that your dog doesn't need to eliminate, the best response is to ignore them until they stop whining. Don't give in; if you do, you'll teach your dog to whine loud and long to get what they want. If you've progressed gradually through the training steps and haven't done too much too fast, you'll be less likely to encounter this problem. If the problem becomes unmanageable, you may need to start the crate training process over again. Separation anxiety: Attempting to use the crate as a remedy for separation anxiety won't solve the problem. A crate may prevent your dog from being destructive, but they may get injured in an attempt to escape. Separation anxiety problems can only be resolved with counterconditioning and desensitization procedures.

Add a comment to asshole's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Lily
Miniature Schnauzer
10 Weeks
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Lily
Miniature Schnauzer
10 Weeks

Our puppy really does not like a collar. She cries, constantly scratches her neck and then gets mad and lays down in defeat and does not move. When it is on outside she refuses to use the bathroom and acts like it is hurting her. I try putting it on her every few days but the behavior continues to be the same. Do you have advice on how I can get her use to it, how long I should make her wear it on a daily basis or if I am doing things all wrong? Thank you for your help!

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
817 Dog owners recommended

Hello Sharese, Once you get to the point where pup can wear the collar most of the time, it's normal for it to take pup about a week to get to the point where they don't pay attention to it. If you can, when starting out, instead of trying to get pup's head in the collar all at once, spend one day simply laying the collar on the ground and sprinkling treats around it several times a day. Do this until pup is comfortable touching it without you holding the collar - go at pup's pace. Watch their body language and stay at this step until pup is relaxed again around the collar. That may take one training session or a week - depending on how suspicious pup is of the collar at this point. Practicing for short periods multiple times a day can help things go more quickly. Once pup is comfortable just touching the collar, hold it in your hand and have pup eat treats out of the hand that is holding the collar. Do this until pup isn't worried about you holding the collar up anymore - don't try to suddenly put it on pup yet or that will set you back. Practice at this step until pup looks happy and confident again with the collar just being held up. End the training session while pup is still doing well. Next, loosen the collar as much as you can so that it makes a large loop, hold the collar up with one hand and hold the treats through the collar's hole with your other hand, so that pup has to move their head toward the collar hole to eat the treats - don't require pup to put their head through the hole yet, just in front of the hole. Do this step until pup is happy and confident about the collar being held up and approaching it - do NOT suddenly try to throw the collar over pup's head or move it toward them - pup is the one moving, you are keeping the collar still at this point. Practice that step until pup is relaxed - even if that takes several sessions. Next, hold the collar the same way, but offer the treats a bit closer to the collar, so that pup has to poke the end of their muzzle through the collar loop to take them. Practice this until pup is comfortable doing that. As pup relaxes, move your treat hand a bit further back so that pup is poking their head through the collar more and more as they improve - again, don't move the collar toward pup at this point. Let pup move their head in and out of the loose collar freely to get treats. Practice until pup has no issues with placing their head through the collar. Go back a step and practice at that step for longer before continuing if pup becomes nervous again. Next, once pup is comfortable poking their entire head through the collar, move the collar very slightly back and forth while holding it up, and holding treats in the collar for pup to move their head through it - you are just getting pup used to the collar moving, not putting it on yet. The collar should still be a large loop at this point - not fitted. Practice until pup can handle the collar moving. As pup improves, gradually increase how much the collar is moving back and forth while pup reaches their head through it. Next, have pup poke their head through the collar, and reward pup with several treats at a time for keeping their head in the hole for longer. Gradually increase how long pup holds their head in the collar for by spacing out rewards as they keep their head in the hole. Next, when pup can hold their head in the collar for longer, have pup poke their head through the collar, sprinkle several treats on something that's at pup's chin height so that your hands are free, and slide the buckle that adjusts the collar size back and forth while pup eats the treats. Start with small movements then stop touching the collar - you are just getting pup used to you messing with the collar a bit. Practice this until you can gradually work up to being able to adjust the size of the collar completely without pup feeling worried, while they eat the treats off the object at chin height. Once pup is can hold their head in the collar for several minutes while you adjust it, without being worried, adjust it to the proper size and leave it on pup for at least two weeks, to help pup get used to the feeling of wearing it around. Most dogs will scratch at it and feel like it's itchy for at least a week when you first have them wear a collar. Choose a collar that's safe for pup to keep on - such as a durable plain buckle collar - not a prong or choke or other training collar that could tighten or accidentally correct. When you catch pup itching at the collar, distract pup with a fun toy. Check out the video linked below for an example of getting pup to poke their head through an opening. The dog in that video wasn't afraid of the harness during training - so the training was done in one sitting for the sake of showing the steps, but expect your pup to need several sessions between each training step - moving too quickly will likely set pup back. Pup needs to get to the point where they are completely relaxed at the current step before you proceed to the next step - how long that takes will simply depend on pup's specific temperament. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tn5b8u1YS_g&feature=emb_title If you have a fenced in yard, you should be able to take things slow enough with the method I went over above. If not, you can try using a harness while pup is still adapting to the collar. If neither of those things are an option, another option is to simply put the collar on pup and leave it on for a week straight. You will need to work extra had to distract pup when itching at it, encouraging pup to follow you around with lots of silly dancing to get a pee while outside, and potentially hand feeding pup kibble as training treats and toy stuffing if pup won't eat out of the bowl due to the collar at first. Use a very light weight collar either way when introducing one at first. Most puppies struggle with a collar at first. Generally a breeder will introduce one before a puppy goes to their home so you never see the struggle. When not introduced until later, many puppies will react to the collar for 1-2 weeks. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Lily's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Bruno
Miniature Schnauzer
9 Weeks
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Bruno
Miniature Schnauzer
9 Weeks

How to stop him biting and peeing everywhere

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
817 Dog owners recommended

Hello Millie, For the peeing, I recommend following the Crate Training method from the article I have linked below, or a combination of the Crate Training method and the Tethering method - also below. Crate Training method. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-german-shepherd-puppy-to-poop-outside Make sure that you are also cleaning all accidents up with a cleaner that contains enzymes to fully remove the pee smell - so pup won't be encouraged to go potty in the same location again by the smell of old pee. Only enzymes tend to remove the smell at the level dogs with sensitive noses need. Many common pet cleaners contain enzymes if you read the cleaner bottle label to look for the word enzyme or enzymatic. For the biting, I recommend teaching the Leave It command. that will take a bit to teach so until pup is good at Leave It, you can use the Bite Inhibition method found in the article below also. Leave It method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite I also recommend desensitizing pup to touch. Use puppy’s daily meal kibble to desensitize pup to touch. Gently touch an area of puppy's body while feeding a piece of food. Touch an ear and give a treat. Touch a paw and give a treat. Hold their collar and give a treat. Touch their tail gently and give a treat. Touch their belly, their other paws, their chest, shoulder, muzzle and every other area very gently and give a treat each time. Keep these times calm and fun for pup. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Bruno's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Milo
schnauzer
4 Months
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Milo
schnauzer
4 Months

Still having potty accidents inside the house occasionally, even when he's been outside right before for 10-15 minutes and as soon as he comes in and roams house he goes potty.

Also, he bites when we attempt to take something from him he should have.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
817 Dog owners recommended

Hello Tania, Is pup going potty inside right after being outside when pup didn't go potty while outside, or is pup going potty outside, then peeing inside again right after? Assuming pup is not going potty outside then having the accident inside, I recommend the crate training method from the article I have linked below, and specifically crating pup for 30-45 minutes when you take them potty outside and they don't go, then taking pup back out every 30-45 minutes until they go when you take them out. Crate Training method. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-german-shepherd-puppy-to-poop-outside If pup is peeing inside right after having just peed outside, I would check with your vet to see if pup may have something like an infection causing incontinence. I am not a vet. Another possibility is that the peeing is happening due to pup acting submissive or overly excited. This is common in puppies and keeping a drag leash on pup when you can supervise to make sure it doesn't get caught on things to minimize touch during times of excitement and keeping interactions with pup calmer, teaching directional commands like Place, Leave It, Out, Down, and Sit to tell pup where to go and what to do, so that interactions and communication are calmer. Make sure that you are also cleaning all accidents up with a cleaner that contains enzymes to fully remove the pee smell - so pup won't be encouraged to go potty in the same location again by the smell of old pee. Only enzymes tend to remove the smell at the level dogs with sensitive noses need. Many common pet cleaners contain enzymes if you read the cleaner bottle label to look for the word enzyme or enzymatic. For the biting, I recommend teaching Drop It and Leave It commands to help with him picking up objects he shouldn't have. Reward pup for obeying those commands willingly. Drop It command: https://wagwalking.com/training/drop-it Leave It method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite I also recommend desensitizing pup to touch. If you are using any methods that involve physical roughness with your hands, then I would switch to a different method. Use puppy’s daily meal kibble to desensitize pup to touch. Gently touch an area of puppy's body while feeding a piece of food. Touch an ear and give a treat. Touch a paw and give a treat. Hold his collar and give a treat. Touch his tail gently and give a treat. Touch his belly, his other paws, his chest, shoulder, muzzle and every other area very gently and give a treat each time. Keep these times calm and fun for pup. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Milo's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Book me a walkiee?
Pweeeze!
Sketch of smiling australian shepherd