First Time Training

Discussion in 'General Dog Training' started by Dustinhunt, Jun 1, 2011.

  1. Dustinhunt Member

    Hello all,

    I recently bought (4 days ago) an 8 week old Husky puppy. I have had dogs in my house growing up but I never had to personally train them. I researched Huskies a bit before I bought one. I read that they need tons of exercise so I have been jogging and walking with her almost daily. I have also been playing with her in the backyard.

    My roomate also has a large boxor that is a little too hyper for her at the moment. He is very playful but my husky gets afraid of his size. So, whenever I need to leave the house I take her to a friend's to play with his dogs.

    The first two nights she slept in a crate, but she howled all night. She started biting at the cage and eventually went bathroom in her crate. Though, I think she was a little sick because she was still nursing when I took her to my house. She has diarrhea and was throwing up but the last two days have been fine.

    I bought the crate pretty large because she will grow large - though should I pick up a small one so she doesn't have an abundance of space?

    The last two nights she has been sleeping on a blanket on the floor next to me and she is totally fine. I take her outside every 2 hours and she goes right to the bathroom.
    My questions are:

    1. I thought about using a clicker to train her. When is a good age to start that?
    2. How will she get used to the crate? She does have a habit of falling asleep under tables, beds and desks so I know she likes her "den".
    3. How much should I feed her? How regularly?

    Thanks so much. If you have any helpful hints for a first time dog trainer, please let me know!

  2. Dodge Well-Known Member

    :love:awww,first of all a very warm welcome to you and your little ickle baby:love:
    Just wanted to say that her howling and biting at the crate may have been an indicater that she needed to go out to do her stuff outside,as she ended up doing it in her crate,she s still a baby and may not be able to go through the night yet(y)also,you may want to think about having the crate next to where you sleep,it may make her more comfy first of and then move it little by little to where you would like her to have her sleeping quarters(y)
    Clicker training you can start NOW,the earlier the better))clap clap((
    I m not very good with puttining links to other threads,but someone on here will point you in the right direction,have fun with your ickle babe,puppy breath is the best smell in the world:LOL::love:
    abby_someone likes this.
  3. abby_someone Well-Known Member

    What day was your puppy born on? I just got my little guy, his BD is April 1st :).

    Here is a great thread on crate training:

    I am new to the "clicker" but I have seen videos where they are training dogs that are only 4 weeks old. I don't know how well that works, but I know that I have seen amazing things with 8 week old puppies. I am sure that many veterans can give you great advice. Reading the articles and watching the videos in the classroom tab above or: is also a good idea. Also, Kikopup's YouTube channel is really good: There are several others but I am at work and can't think of any off the top of my head.

    One more thing, Victoria Stilman's "It's me or the dog" on Animal Planet is also a good resource:

    Good luck!!
  4. mewzard Experienced Member

    OK lots of stuff to say.:giggle:
    Firstly please don't jog with your baby pup just yet!! She is MUCH too young to do lots of exercise, over-excercise is one of the main causes of joint problems in big dogs. 5 minutes of excerise for every month of life until they are a year old. So a 10 minute walk is sufficient at 8 weeks, 2 or 3 times a day is enough. Play is a much better way of tiring pups out!! Also does she have all her vaccines at 8weeks?
    Oka has a 4 foot long crate; at 8 weeks we used a divider to block off enough space for her to stand and turn around in, this discouraged her toileting in there. the howling was because she was left alone for probably the first time ever. To be honest i just let Oka get on with it. I wasn't going to let her in our room to sleep and moving the crate was impossible, she'd worked it out within 2 nights. Plus going down to let her out to toilet meant she wasn't left for long really. The sickness and diarrhea was probably from stress, she just moved from the only life she has ever know to a strange place smells, people and dogs. different food will do that too!
    1) Clicker training is from what ever age(y)- it's totally postive training so the pup can only benefit. Teach recall early with a Husky then they are safer offlead! I started with the clicker and Oka, the day after we got her. Did you know how to start out clicker training or would you like a quick run through?:)
    2) Either move her in there when she is falling/ fallen asleep. Put her in gently and quietly, close the door and sit next to it til she goes back to sleep. then walk away...BUT pay attention to when she wakes up and open the door before she realises it's shut - you don't want her to panic about being shut in. Other option is to put her in there with a chew toy/Kong and close the door till she is done with it so she associates it with nice things. Oka only really started going into hers of her own accord for naps at 10months... every dog is different!
    3)I am assuming she has kibble or wet food. Look at the packet, it's probably on there how much per day, take that amount and divide it by 4, feed her 1/4 first thing, 1/4 for brunch, 1/4 mid afternoon, then 1/4 about 2 hours before bed. As she gets older you increase the amount of food but drop one meal (around 5/6 months), then drop one more meal around 8/9 months. Some people feed only once a day but i do 2.
    - you could use that food to train with the clicker if you like :D
    Dodge and Lexy88 like this.
  5. Lexy88 Well-Known Member

    I agree with Tash - jogging with your puppy will be far too much for her now! Just playing at home will be enough for her. Also agree with the question - has she been fully vaccinated? If not, it isnt really safe for her to be going out in public - and are your friends dogs vaccinated? She shouldnt visit them if they are not.
    In regards to the crate - try covering it up will a blanket to make it dark and warm for her. She may feel safer in there.
    Clicker training can start straight away (y) And just remember, if youre giving her food treats during training - cut back on the amount of food she gets at meals times. Or she will become fat. Puppies generally need x3 meals a day up to around 6-8mths.
    Also if she is afraid of your room mates Boxer - she can be put away in her crate where she is safe when you go out. Puppies need to go out to the toilet every couple of hours, even through the night.
    In regards to her vomitting and runny poo - she may have been a bit stressed about the new home etc. Are you feeding her the same puppy food as the breeder was feeding her? If youre going to change the food she gets, it should be done very slowly over a couple of weeks.
    Good luck with your puppy. Hope you have photos to share soon!
    Dodge likes this.
  6. jackienmutts Honored Member

    Hi and welcome to DTA. You've been given lots of great info above, and I'm not going to overwhelm you with lots more - just add a tiny bit more about the crate. Remember one thing - your little puppy came home to you, and was just taken away from the only home she ever knew for the first time. Can you now guess why she howled all night? And messed in her crate? Well, that may have had more than one reason... BUT - she's a baby, and she's got a huge adjustment she's trying to make right now, she's scared - so go slowly with her, give her time to adjust, and she'll be fine. For now, put that crate as close to you/your bed as you can. Remember, she's used to sleeping with her littermates - and now you're asking her to sleep alone, in this big scary den (the crate). Put it close to you, and if she gets scared, even hang your arm over next to her so she has 'you' close by for comfort. Many times that's all they need. As she relaxes and grows up a bit, you can then move it to a more desired location. Do remember tho, dogs are pack animals, and like to sleep near their families. Just re-read your thread, and she's sleeping next to your bed on a blanket. Good spot - you may want to try the blanket in the crate with the door open, right next to your bed. Or, at different times, play little games with her to get her to start going in the crate for a few seconds here and there with the door open - for a treat, a toy, etc. Again - lots of patience and time, she'll get it.

    Also, do remember, as someone else said above, puppies need to be taken out every couple hours - even all thru the night. You said you're taking her out every 2 hours, which is fabulous, but not sure if you're doing it all night too. She's very very young, and can't wait all night to go potty. If you don't get up and take her out, then yes, she's gonna go in her crate - and that's something you don't want her to get used to doing, and her little bladder is way too small for her to wait all night long. Think newborn babies, and how many times new parents get up in the night to change diapers. O_o Yep, you've got a new baby who needs to be taken out every couple of hours .. all thru the night. Aren't puppies fun?? :p Yep, they really really are!!!! If you are taking her out during the night also, then kudos to you!! Keep up the good work. I'll just say .... they do grow up, so hang on, you can catch up on your sleep in a few months. :LOL:

    I bet she has fun with the boxer at times, but keep a close watch, and when play starts to get too wild, do seperate them and give her a break. You don't want her getting hurt, nor scared. Puppies go thru fear stages, and wild play with hyper big dogs at the wrong time could be detrimental. And everyone is right - she's way too young to be jogging with you, and at 8 weeks, she shouldn't be out too much as she probably hasn't completed all her vaccinations, and you don't want her getting sick. Good play periods with you are terrific, and she's a great age to start clicker training. If you have any good (positive) training facilities nearby, find out if they have any puppy preschool and puppy kindergarten classes. They're wonderful for socialization and info, and they can help you get a really good foundation for your little girl.

    Have fun - and we love pictures!!
    Dodge likes this.
  7. Dustinhunt Member

    Thanks for all the help!

    In regards to jogging, I only jogged maybe 30 feet with her then walked the rest of the way. I am now 6 days in with her and started the click training. I have looked up some youtube videos and articles about it. I give her treats after the click. I will start associating "sit" with the click as well.

    Thanks for the advice on the crate. It will help a lot when she is comfortable in the crate. I have been taking her out every 2 hours. I am feeling quite restless but it is worth it.

    I have been giving her lots of toys and stuff to chew on. She didn't like the Kong stuffed with peanut butter though. She took one bite and never again.

    The first night she was there I actually layed next to the crate on a sleeping bag. I will move the crate next to me and have me lay next to her. Currently, it's about 15 feet away and kinda hidden from view.

    This is the crate I bought her:

    Here is the picture of the Husky with my Mother. Enjoy!

  8. sara Moderator

    I just want to say.... OMG she's ADORABLE!!!!!!!!!!

    You've been given alot of great advice, so I wont add my say... but she's soooo cute!!!
  9. Lexy88 Well-Known Member

    Awwwh she is soooooooooo CUTE!!!!! :love: I want oooooone! Hehe
    bekah1001 likes this.
  10. reveuse Well-Known Member

    She is as absolutely adorable!
  11. abby_someone Well-Known Member

    What a gorgeous baby!:love::love::love::love:
  12. jackienmutts Honored Member

    Aaaaaa- dorable!!! :p
  13. mewzard Experienced Member

  14. Dustinhunt Member

    Hello all,

    I have been out of the country for 11 days so my girl has been staying at my Mom's. She loves to play with the dogs over there. Currently, she only knows "No". I've been trying to train her with the click trainer and it works decently. She doesn't know her name yet. Any advice to that? When should she know it?

    She is starting to bite at everything. I give her hard raw hide to chew on and she loves that. Has anyone ever owned a husky? She growls a lot if you pick her up to take her outside. Is this normal?

  15. Dlilly Honored Member

    Just curious, where did you buy her from?
  16. mewzard Experienced Member

    Firstly don't correct a growl! EVER. (just in case you are). It's a warning and important. Can you not just lead her out, or call her.... knowing she doesn't know her name yet, you can use "pup,pup,puppy" as this is what most breeders use to call thier little charges...a year on this still works on Oka :LOL:. I didn't really try to teach Oka her name till she was 12/13 weeks as before then she followed me everywhere.
    She may be nervous of you a little as you've been away for a while - i'm not much good at understanding the reasons for growling as Oka hasn't ever growled. Try not to lean over her as you pick her up, kneel down and scoop her up, feed her treats. try luring her with treats, If she is chewing, exchange the chew with something of higher value (sliced ham, cheese), pick the chew up and take it with you, then give it back when you are where you want her. Always exchange something like a chew with something MORE valuable...then you shouldn't get possession issues. Go slowly with this though as some dogs are more possessive than others (and rightly so, you'd be peeved if someone gave you,say, an x-box and then just took it away in the middle of your game with no explaination).
    NAME...If you feed kibble/dry food do this with it (when she is hungry), or use treats. Sit in front of her and say her name. If she looks Click and treat, wait til she looks away say her name and C&T. If she doesn't look the first time, just wait til she looks at you (it will happen, patience!) then say her name and C&treat her. After about 4/5 repetitions she will cotton on.
    As she is a husky, you need to get her to learn her name and then start recall training ASAP. Huskys can be roamers and neutorious escape artists, they (like my Oka) have a "whats in it for me?" attitude that is part of the package.
    Dodge, jackienmutts and running_dog like this.
  17. Dustinhunt Member

    I bought her from a litter in town.

    I started the click training before I left to Uganda. I would click when she wasn't looking and give her a small treat for 5 minutes in a row. She now understands it, unfortunately I couldn't dive deeper. I have the whole day free so I am going to try today. She also associates a snap with click. Is that okay?

    So, I've read to teach her name with the click is to click and say her name at the same time for awhile then take the click off?
  18. sara Moderator

    No a name is a "command" to look at you and wait for the next signal. So you want to say her name first, then wait for her to look, click as soon as she looks at you. at this point, I would have her on a leash, (only so she cant runn off, dont pull or jiggle the leash) and show her that you have treats, she will look at the treats, so be fast, say the name, then click (only if she is looking in your direction) then treat, repeat for 5 or 10 times, then change the criteria.

    Remember a click is like taking a picture (in the dogs mind) of the exact moment the dog is doing what you want her to do
    Dodge and running_dog like this.
  19. Dustinhunt Member

    She has been doing great so far. The only thing I am concerned about is I bought ehr a kiddie pool to play in. She loves the water. She started doing that with the water bowl outside. It's cute and all but I don't want her to do that with her water bowl inside.
  20. Dustinhunt Member

    She also freaks out in the bath - not sure why. Maybe the running water scares her. It's ironic.

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