The "No" command and Toilet Training

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TheAristocrat's picture
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Joined: 2011-09-09

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Hi,
I am the proud owner of a nine week older Doberman, my first of this breed. He is a very happy and self-assured little pup, nothing seems to bother him at all. This somewhat goofy demeanour is making it very hard to get my commands through to him. I take him out regularly to do his thing outside, and praise him when he is finished. I keep a watchful eye in-doors, but he gives little warning. In the early hours of the morning, roughly 5:30am, he will whine for me to take him out, but the rest of the day he is inconsistent. How can I deal tackle this problem?

My next issue. The "No" command. When he bites me too hard, or does something he shouldn't I hold him by the mussle and say in a sharp deep voice, "No". He doesn't seem to be very bothere by this and pays little attention to it, and carries on at his leasure. I don't understand why this isn't working, I have been consistent with this since day one, just like my many other dogs!

Any help gratefully received, thanks for your time.
Regards

HarleyBear's picture
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Joined: 2011-08-17

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Welcome to the forum!  You will get great advice on here from the resident experts.  

In my novice opinion and experience, mouthing was easily solved with a high pitch yelp that startles him.  He would then give me a lick to apologize.  It doesn't happen over night, but they soon get it.  Harley is 5 months now and all mouthing pretty much ceased after we had him for a month.  

It is also important to give him an alternate chew toy.  When Harley started mouthing me, I would yelp (not move my hand, he has to move away) and then offer him his teething keys.  Worked like a charm.

I am going to let the other experts help with potty training.... as we have not been too successful.  I set a timer for every 45 minutes, but sometimes there are accidents.

Welcome again!

KevinK's picture
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Joined: 2010-07-15

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"no" is not a command.  It's not telling your dog what to do.  Instead of trying to teach a dog what not to do, like harleybear said, teach an acceptable alternative.  Every time your pup nipps you, which is 100% normal, give him something that he is allowed to chew on, and praise him for chewing the toy.  Don't grab his muzzle, or do anything negative.  Just replace with the toy he is allowed to chew.

For potty training, I think you're expecting a bit much.  At this age, you can't blame him for going if he goes in the house.  He doesn't have control yet, so when he has to go, he will go.  If he is inside, then he will go inside.  It is your responsiblity to take him out as often as needed.  If he is going in the house, he's not outside enough, so add a trip.  If he continues going in the house, add more trips outside, and praise him for going.  If he goes in the house, do nothing, clean it up, and make a mental note that he has to go out more often.

poogie's picture
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Joined: 2011-06-01

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I haven't gotten alot of experience but when I had a boxer puppy all the family used the same word so "go pee pee" or something like that so eventually they can almost wee on command.

TheAristocrat's picture
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Thanks for the welcome and the advice :)  it's actually a relief to hear that the potty training is not going badly. He is a very good pup, and I do try to take him out as often as I can, the whole family does. But sometimes it's hard to catch him. How long does it take for a Doberman to develop control?

Regarding the biting. I have been trying those steps as well. I see your point KevinK, I will avert from a negative approach in future. He has actually softened his bites, which was to be honest, not very hard to begin with. Just his teeth are incredibly sharp, more so than my Siamese cats lol.

Would you say that it's a bad habbit wrestling with him at this age? I'm mindful of the fact that these dogs are enormous as adults, but he loves his wrestles. Nothing over the top. What else would you recommend I do to stimulate him? There is so much I want to do with him, but I don't want to push him to hard. But already at nine weeks I see an intelligence in him that I haven't seen in any other dof I have owned before.

jeshykai's picture
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Joined: 2010-09-02

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9 weeks you can wear them out with fetch, tug, or practicing a "sit"... they will have bursts of energy and then will nap it off and will be ready for more.

Anything you allow now, be prepared to allow at 90+ pounds.  If you think it will be appropriate that your large dog wants to wrestle people... that is your choice.  Just be mindful of any behaviors you do not don't only mean permitted by you -- they will try and play that way with every human.  When he's older, you can teach it as a game and allow it to go to a certain level and then break.. but wrestling just is another way dogs test placement in the pack.  I typically prefer not to rough house with my dogs, I find other games to do.

"NO" is still an okay response to the biting, an "ouch" or "no" and then redirecting to a better toy.  You can also get up and walk away if the mouthing persists.  There are plenty of threads on this buried in the Puppy section.. many helpful tips.  It depends on your puppy on what will work.

As far as potty training - every time up from a nap, drink some water, eat some food, break in play -- time to go out.  They don't have a sense of "holding it" and when they gotta go, they go! 

Everything in time.

 

Welcome to the group.

von Cosack Dobermann (not verified)
von Cosack Dobermann's picture

Your pup sounds very normal and his manners will come along very quickly as long as you understand that being a full step ahead of a Dobermann is a requirement for "peace"!!! He is still very young and when he feels his bladder hes gonna releave himself its what pups do. The Dobermann if bred correctly is a medium sized dog (on the top of the Standard) male is 28" to the withers and 80 to 85lbs, with work abilities so his activity level will remain high in comparison to other breeds you might have experience with.

As to biting hes going into teething slowly so he needs some relief, you can take a toy that can be frozen and pop it in the freezer at night. Also a helpfull home made toy is a knotted towel, you can play tug with him introducing the towel with a tug command "on"and then slowing the tug game down and then ending the game with an "end" command. Same with any wrestling games you start the game and you end it and theres bo BS about it. The towel will also make a nice frozen chew toy for his aching teeth. Biting is what this breed is all about, their the only breed bred for Personal Protection for a person and family. The tug toy game is exactly how we introduce commands that coincide with the beginning of PP training. This is also a great way to gain control when the pup is mature enough to bark at the door bell/knock and you have a command in place (tug game) to "stop" (end) the vocalization. This is being a full two steps ahead hahahaha!!! Make your commands clearly and meaningfull and avoid repeating yourself. As to hard bites or simply him being an ass redirect onto a toy if hes focusing on you just grab him by the scruft of his neck (closer to the top of the neck instead of near his shoulders)and raise his front paws off the floor and keep him there for a few seconds. Explain "No Bite" to him then redirect again onto a toy, repeat as needed!! I use compulsion training along with redirection, misdirection to avoid incerrection hahahaha. No one method will usually work on working breeds especially if their a dominant dog. Being consistant with your commands given, being a step ahead, and setting up a routine to go by (times of the morning, noon and night) will be a huge help in training your dog. Working breeds work best with a steady routine. "train em up" 24/7. Von