Input on Training my Rat Terrier Pup (LONG POST)

Discussion in 'Dog Training Forum' started by Batman, Nov 18, 2004.

  1. Batman

    Batman I'm a Rat Terrier

    Nov 18, 2004
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    1 puppy, 2 cats, 2 ferrets
    Toronto, Canada
    We just got our first puppy (a male Rat Terrier) on Saturday. He just turned 9 weeks. I am determined to do everything I can to help him become as friendly and well behaved as possible. I would really appreciate advice from experienced dog owners.

    We are crate training him. He goes to the washroom on our balcony (in a doggie litter box) or outside. He has not done any poops inside and it is very clear what his pooping schedule is. He has a couple of pees inside everyday. I know it is my fault because I turn my eyes for too long, or lose track of the time. I am logging all his poops and pees to find a pattern. The only time we put him in the crate is overnight and while we leave our apartment. At all over times he is allowed to run around our living room. Does this sound OK? I feel aweful everytime I miss a pee, because I know it is a lesson that he missed out on. If I catch him in the act I grab him say "no" (but I don't yell or get angry) and take him outside. He has had accidents in his crate. One day we left him for 4 hours so that was understandable. Today it was 3 hours and he did a small pee. Last night he peed in his crate, which was really odd because he seems to sleep from 11pm-3:30am and then he needs to go.

    His crate sits on a chair and is slighlty lower than out bed, but high enough he can see us. We did that because first of all the first night he had already had a 5 hour drive from the breeders with us (we all needed sleep), and we have kept it that way because on the floor he cries and barks. We can't let him bark at 11pm as we live in an apartment. My thought was to gradually move him further away from the bed and lower until eventually he is on the ground. From there we will start putting his crate in different locations so he is cool with that.

    "Come here"So far Batman will ALWAYS come when called. I then make him sit and then give him tons of attention.

    "Sit" He is sitting sometimes all by himself when he hears the word, sometimes he needs a slight push on the bum and occasionally he needs me to make him sit. He seems to stay until I tell him "OK" and give him this toy. I have read that you should only say the command once... but sometimes he seems to forget that I said it to begin with. How does that part work???

    "Drop it" He loves playing fetch. I make him sit before I through the rope and when he brings it back I hold his collar and press on his mouth (read about that somewhere). This seems to make him drop it. I make him do it so that it drops to the floor and then I pick it up and tell him he is great etc... Is there a better way?

    Leash - He is great on his leash. He usually walks behind me or in the past two days I can get him to walk beside me. When we walk he will sometimes put on the breaks because he sees something that he should be ignoring. I tell him "come on" and he sometimes will start trotting along again. Sometimes he is stubborn and I just sort of pull on his leash and say "come on" and that usually gets him going. Am I doing this correctly?

    Socialization - I have been letting him meet other dogs, which he loves and people which he loves. (He gets really bent out of shape if strangers don't give him attention) I make him walk on tons of surfaces, he walks by big buses and trucks. We have enrolled him in a puppy class for when he is about 10 weeks or so. However now i have read that we shouldn't let him outside?!? Is he too little? To me it would seem natural for a dog to go outside even as a young pup. I had originally heard that puppies are OK once they get their first couple of shots which he has had.

    Jumping up - He loves to jump up at us when he gets excited. It is so cute, but I don't want to encourage it because it won't be cool when he is full grown (14 pounds). Currently when he does that I take him and have him sit and the say "OK" and then we play together.

    Other things we do:
    *Pin him belly up until he relaxes. Then we tell him "good boy" and we play.
    *We look him in the eyes until he looks away.
    *We go through doors first.
    *We ignore him if he trys jumping up on the couch when we are on it. When he quiets down, we ask him to sit and will let him snuggle (only at night before bed time)
    *Starting to make him sit for everything
    *When he bites we say "NO" and push him away and then ignore him for a couple of minutes. When he the time is up we get him to sit and then play with him.
    *Sometimes he gets overly tired AND excited. This is when he starts mouthing at EVERYTHING without thinking... almost crazed like. When he gets like this I give him a bone and pat him until he passes out.

    Sorry that this pratically a book but I thought it would be best to just do one HUGE post. I would REALLY appreciate any input and ideas. Also thoughts of when he I can add more training. I was thinking of adding in lie-down soon, and then practicing until he can do all of them very well and then adding in more complicated ones, like heel.

    Thank you SO much!
  2. Renee750il

    Renee750il Felurian

    Dec 20, 2003
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    Good grief! Why do you think you need more advice? Sounds like you have things under control - and with a Terrier, too! They're so smart and clever . . . and stubborn, but it sounds like you've got Batman started out right on target. Congratulations!

    Keep us posted, and post some photos in the picture gallery, too, please.

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