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Discussion Starter #1
im having difficulty with my puppy coming when called.

If i ask him to do so it sits down and looks around like he is trying to ignore me.
If i bring out treats he MAY come to me but eventually he will stop and if i try to alternate between not giving a treat and giving one to ween him he stops completely.

If he is on a leash he knows it and comes. If the leash is in front of him on the ground so he knows he has it he will come. Then eventually he stops again and even if i reel him it he just goes limp.....

I don't feel like im teaching him "either u come when i ask or you come anyway" because im just dragging him and hes non-responsive.

He just sticks to his spot like glue and is entirely unresponsive. When he does come i shower him with praise and treats if i have them but it doesn't seem to have an effect
 

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How old is he? How long have you been training him? What treats are you using? Have you ever used the "come" command and then done something to him he doesn't like?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
How old is he? How long have you been training him? What treats are you using? Have you ever used the "come" command and then done something to him he doesn't like?
he is now about 6 months old. The treats vary and he reacts the same to an iams biscuit as he does with steak trimmings.

the answer is yes. I don't want to make a long post that gets to be a tl;dr but i in short yes from confusion on both sides
 

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Discussion Starter #4
basically it started because we when went to the door in the morning he would pee once we got there while i was getting his leash.

So i yelled no and continued with him outside.

He kept doing this so I decided to make him lay down as soon as we got downstairs thinking he can't pee if hes laying down because he won't want to pee on himself. This went from him pretending to lay down with his back feet slightly up so he could pee to him peeing when i pushed him over onto his side so he was completely laying down.

Each time telling him off for peeing.

Here is where the sides become confused.
He went from peeing because he couldn't hold it and was ready to be outside to peeing submissively went i made him lay down. I didn't catch this so he continued to get punished and told no even when he laid down (though in his mind he didn't even know he was peeing).
As for his side...he started to avoid following me downstairs to the door. So i would tell him come (originally he knew the command) and he would come, lay down, and pee. I saw him peeing as he always had because he couldn't wait to get outside and he saw it as him getting in trouble for being called to come.

So now he doesn't anymore. This was month or 2 ago and went on for probably a week before i figured it out. But in all the time since them i have rewarded and praised him even if he pees when he gets to me.

So i just don't grasp how him "learning" that come means stay for one week totally overrides teaching him the opposite for nearly 2 months.



Also i have had 9 dogs in my life and none have them have ever peed submissively. He even does it when we are play fighting sometimes.
 

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It sounds like he is getting fearful. I would try NO corrections or punishments, only positive reinforcement. Some dogs are softies and can't handle being yelled at. It seems like he is peeing because he thinks you are going to yell at him.

Although, you shouldn't yell or say NO to a dog anyways. It doesn't teach them anything, just that for some reason you are mad. Dogs don't understand "no". Stop all yelling, screaming, NO-ing, and telling off. It is really not going to have any positive influence on him or his behaviors, if anything it will be negative and make him distrusting and scared and not ever pee in front of you.
 

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I agree that you may have inadvertently made him fearful. He is just a puppy and might also be going through a "fear" stage, and also, as I'm sure you know from past experience, different dogs have very different personalities. It sounds like for whatever reason, all this yelling and pushing over has made a big negative impression on your pup.

My first piece of advice is to treat your dog like the "soft," sensitive dog it appears he is right now. That means eliminate all negative treatment, yelling, physically pushing him (maybe you have already done this). It's just not going to help, and it is likely to make things worse. Regardless of your experiences with your past dogs, it's better to use the training methods that are most likely to be effective with this specific dog. Obviously harsh treatment has not proven effective for this little guy.

My other advice is to treat "being afraid of you" as something you need to countercondition. Give your dog little tasty treats for being near you and looking at you or paying attention to you without any commands. This concept is called "voluntary attention" and the whole point is to teach your dog that paying attention to you leads to good things. Coming when called follows from there. Have you tried clicker training at all? It works great for this.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I agree that you may have inadvertently made him fearful. He is just a puppy and might also be going through a "fear" stage, and also, as I'm sure you know from past experience, different dogs have very different personalities. It sounds like for whatever reason, all this yelling and pushing over has made a big negative impression on your pup.

My first piece of advice is to treat your dog like the "soft," sensitive dog it appears he is right now. That means eliminate all negative treatment, yelling, physically pushing him (maybe you have already done this). It's just not going to help, and it is likely to make things worse. Regardless of your experiences with your past dogs, it's better to use the training methods that are most likely to be effective with this specific dog. Obviously harsh treatment has not proven effective for this little guy.

My other advice is to treat "being afraid of you" as something you need to countercondition. Give your dog little tasty treats for being near you and looking at you or paying attention to you without any commands. This concept is called "voluntary attention" and the whole point is to teach your dog that paying attention to you leads to good things. Coming when called follows from there. Have you tried clicker training at all? It works great for this.
i guess i didn't think of it that way because i've never had a dog that was a "softy".

Im not going to ask for advice and then ignore but i can't really agree that saying no accomplishes nothing. If he chews on something I don't want him to and tell him no, he then stops and never does it again. He definitely understands it means its unwanted behavior. In this case he just misunderstood what that behavior was because he wasn't purposely peeing.

I'm trying to be nice to him but its really hard because he can be very frustrating a lot of the time and he doesn't seem to care about our attention very much. He wags his tail and is excited when he gets let out of his crate in the mornings but otherwise doesn't really care if we give him attention. All my other dogs can't get enough of it and wagged their tails at the slightest glance given to them.
Im thinking maybe this is just a stage and when he gets a bit older he'll become more loyal and attention seeking?
Again this makes it hard to praise him. If i say "GOOD JOB!!!", get all excited, and pet his head when he does something right he doesn't even give the slightest wag.


another thing that makes it hard when he pees is that he completely pees. He doesn't make a couple of squirts as if he is frightened for an instant, he just lays down and relieves himself completely.
 

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Okay, because your dog has already peed in the house you're going to need to get rid of the smell for both him and you, or else this will just lead to more house breaking problems. (I will do a write up of how to get rid of a pee smell at the end of my post)

Some dogs do not care for human affection, and being pet. Also, he may just be afraid of you, so therefore it seems like he doesn't want affection. It's too hard to tell right now. I myself, have one of each type of dog. One who LOVES affection, and one who is like "Just give me a toy, and leave me be". So, try not to be too offended by this.

Next, you sound like you're being inconsistent with some of your methods. You should do one thing and stick to it.

You need to regularly exercise your dog. This means walking twice a day, play time with toys, and loads of potty breaks, and training sessions through-out the day. Your dog is still a baby and is just trying to get things right.

You will only frustrate yourself and the dog more by yelling, or being negative toward it.

Asking for advice is definitely a step in the right direction, so congrats!

Okay, now for the potty mess clean up.

For messes on the carpet: (you can use a black light to find them, or your nose, your choice)

1. if you have a steamcleaner/carpet cleaner, go over all the potty spots, first and get as much pee up as you can.

2. Get white vinegar (a lot), and put it on all the potty areas, soaking it very well. This has to not only get on the carpet, but the padding and everything beneath it to work properly. Then, use a scrubbing brush, or a toothbrush and work it into the carpet. Let this sit for at least an hour.

3. Blot up the vinegar with a towel, or paper towels or whatever. Then, sprinkle baking soda over the vinegar/potty spots. Let this sit for at least thirty minutes.

4. Next, mix 1/2 cup peroxide with 1 teaspoon dish soap, for each potty area.

5. Once the baking soda is dry vacuum it all up. You may need to use the scrubbing brush to loosen some of the baking soda.

If the areas are very heavily soiled you may need to repeat the process. However, this is a very, very, very important thing to do to make sure your dog doesn't want to continue to soil in your house.

If you want to spend more money, you can also just use an enzymatic cleaner from the store, like natures miracle. However, the recipe I gave is much cheaper, especially if you have many areas to cover and works wonders!

For tiled areas just mop over with vinegar.

Good luck with everything! =]
 

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Sidescroller,
It appears you have a fearful and now YOU-shy pup on your hands. It's unfortunate, but you have realized that the punishing at the door was causing more problems and have stopped that, so good for you for recognizing that. You do need to understand though, that when it comes to fearful/negative experiences they can "stick" with just one event, especially in a puppy who is in a sensitive socialization period (ie pre 16 weeks). This is why, even though you have been working at it, it seems you are not moving as fast as you would like. Moving past fearful experiences is difficulty Unlearning that experience even more so.

This is much bigger than just having trouble with your "come" cue and response. It is very likely that he thinks coming to you will be a negative event and he's associated the previous occurences with being in your presence.. so there are a few things I would like you to look at/think about:

I would recommend not calling him, but instead just dropping a good tidbit nearby and turning your body/head away from him for a while. Get him more accustomed to good things happening when you are near that do not involve physically handling him or leaning over him. Make sure that when you DO have to interact with him that your body language is soft, low to the ground and with minimal eye contact. Be very aware of where your body is and whether you can be perceived as leaning over him. Do not pet him on the head, instead offer gentle touches and rubs on his chest or under his chin. He has likely perceived your hands as scary so you need to move slow on this. He doesn't trust you. This is not his fault, so be patient.

Look up calming signals. Go to the library or bookstore and find some of the books listed in the sticky area as recommended. Learn how to read the dog and relieve social pressure and try and find yourself a good positive reinforcement based trainer who can help you with your pup. If you fix this stuff now, without adding to his stress, you can make up for the past and get him over the hump. Then you will be amazed at how much this sensitive dog will teach you, if you let him.
 

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Sigh. My communication skills are rusty: I meant go to the sticky sections in the forums HERE to find the LIST and then go to the library.

Also, regarding saying NO: a forceful verbal no is likely to increase his fear. He doesn't understand WHAT no means, he just understands something scary happened. Interrupting does not have to be scary. REDIRECT him to something appropriate and reward that, and then puppy proof a bit better or even put a leash on him and lead him away and reward. Then, once you have the relationship thing working better...work on a good "leave it" by teaching the method in the video by Susan Garrett "Its Yer Choice"
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
Sidescroller,
It appears you have a fearful and now YOU-shy pup on your hands. It's unfortunate, but you have realized that the punishing at the door was causing more problems and have stopped that, so good for you for recognizing that. You do need to understand though, that when it comes to fearful/negative experiences they can "stick" with just one event, especially in a puppy who is in a sensitive socialization period (ie pre 16 weeks). This is why, even though you have been working at it, it seems you are not moving as fast as you would like. Moving past fearful experiences is difficulty Unlearning that experience even more so.

This is much bigger than just having trouble with your "come" cue and response. It is very likely that he thinks coming to you will be a negative event and he's associated the previous occurences with being in your presence.. so there are a few things I would like you to look at/think about:

I would recommend not calling him, but instead just dropping a good tidbit nearby and turning your body/head away from him for a while. Get him more accustomed to good things happening when you are near that do not involve physically handling him or leaning over him. Make sure that when you DO have to interact with him that your body language is soft, low to the ground and with minimal eye contact. Be very aware of where your body is and whether you can be perceived as leaning over him. Do not pet him on the head, instead offer gentle touches and rubs on his chest or under his chin. He has likely perceived your hands as scary so you need to move slow on this. He doesn't trust you. This is not his fault, so be patient.

Look up calming signals. Go to the library or bookstore and find some of the books listed in the sticky area as recommended. Learn how to read the dog and relieve social pressure and try and find yourself a good positive reinforcement based trainer who can help you with your pup. If you fix this stuff now, without adding to his stress, you can make up for the past and get him over the hump. Then you will be amazed at how much this sensitive dog will teach you, if you let him.
it actually seems its more focused on being called from what i can tell. He doesn't cower down or act afraid if i pet him and doesn't care if i pick him up. He is also really relaxed if i need to do something like bath him or clip his nails.

He really doesn't have much of a bathroom problem nuclear. He is down to going out about 2-3 times a day.

As far as this difference between "no" and "leave it". If it is directed at the dog when its chewing on something it shouldn't for example....doesn't it have the same meaning but just a different sound? Either way you are telling the dog to stop what its doing and "leave" whatever it is alone. right?

I understand there is a difference between Yelling either one but so far telling my dog no has worked fine. I can leave him anywhere and not worry about him chewing or getting into stuff. Also we kind of use no, leave it, and a tsssk sound interchangeably as a "stop what you are doing" thing.

My dog isn't generally scared of me at all, its pretty much entirely the "Come" thing. My posture AT FIRST made a difference just like when i coax him with treats. If i sat down and crossed my legs, he would come to me. Now it doesn't matter, I can lay down facing the other way and he sits still. This is even though he is rewarded everytime. Its like i can trick him into "misbehaving" and then he remembers he is supposed to stay still when i say come.

When u call come he immediately sits down and looks around to "ignore" me calling him. Through bad communication he is thoroughly trained that "COME" is exactly the same if not a more serious "STAY".
 

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As far as this difference between "no" and "leave it". If it is directed at the dog when its chewing on something it shouldn't for example....doesn't it have the same meaning but just a different sound? Either way you are telling the dog to stop what its doing and "leave" whatever it is alone. right?
No, not really. "Leave it" is a command that you consciously teach your dog using the same methods you use to teach your dog to do anything else. It has a specific affirmative meaning: "leave that thing alone." "No!" isn't really a command - unless you have consciously taught it (and it's so commonly used in conversation that IMHO it wouldn't be the best choice of word anyway) - it's usually just a way to interrupt your dog. I think some dogs do come to understand that "No!" means "cut it out!" but it's a much more nebulous concept to a dog than "leave it." So basically, "leave it" is telling your dog to do something, while "no!" is telling your dog not to do something. Because dogs don't generalize well, the affirmative command is easier for the dog to understand. Does that make sense? I do see your point, but these are not really different words for the same thing.

If your dog is sitting down and looking around rather than coming, I think he might be exhibiting calming signals because coming to you makes him anxious. Please just entertain the possibility.

Otherwise, have you considered using a new command word instead of "come," such as "here"? Maybe you've just burned the word "come" by using it too many times when the dog doesn't know what you're asking. That can happen.
 

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If your dog is sitting down and looking around rather than coming, I think he might be exhibiting calming signals because coming to you makes him anxious. Please just entertain the possibility.
hamandeggs is right. that is a classic calming signal. the dog is communicating "i'm just a dog, over here, being harmless, don't hurt me." I know it sucks that your dog is afraid of you, but rather than denying it, you need to deal with it.
Otherwise, have you considered using a new command word instead of "come," such as "here"? Maybe you've just burned the word "come" by using it too many times when the dog doesn't know what you're asking. That can happen.
I think you've definitely poisoned "come". Use a new word, ditch the yelling and punishments and use really great treats to reteach the command. Here's a really good video on teaching recall:

 

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Discussion Starter #14
yes. I did try here. quickly he learned it meant the same thing as "come" and reacts to it the same way.


He looks as if he is ignoring me the same way my other dogs ( as well as him) do when i put food in front of them and make them wait until i say they can have it. When i used to have 3 danes and i sat them all down and gave them food but made them wait one of them would do that.
Do you think thats what it is?

Because of this and him seeing "come" as "stay" I thought he was trying to show "hey, im ignoring you! im not coming, see!"


Again, I HAVE tried a new word using the same training methods with treats and leashes and eventually he just saw he was doing the same thing as when i said come, so he stopped. I don't really get it, since he doesn't have any negative association with that word. Its like he is smart enough to put together he is doing the same thing and connects it with "Come" but not smart enough to see from the get go it has only been a "trick" that was rewarded and he has no reason to stay put.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I know it sucks that your dog is afraid of you, but rather than denying it, you need to deal with it.
Yeah but how do i do that? He is only "scared" for this command and even after months of showing him its okay and if he comes nothing will happen except i will reward him, pet him, praise him, and get excited for him he still doesn't get it.
Since he sees that as "stay" if i try to start it over as a new trick with a different word he somehow relates it to "come" and puts a stop to that too.

Its not like my dog is scared of my presence. Just now he walked over to the chair and looked up at me because he wanted to jump up into my lap. Its just this one thing.
 

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Your other dogs aren't ignoring you when you have them wait for the food. They're more likely ignoring the food because looking at it when they know they can't have it makes them anxious. It's like that famous study on delayed gratification, with the little kids who were told not to eat the candy bar. The kids who did best were the ones who physically refused to look at the candy.

Similarly, your dog is not looking at you because something about the "come" scenario is making him anxious and stressed.

I think you're asking way too much. Generally if the dog won't do the thing you want them to do, it's because you're making it too hard for the dog! I would train it a different way and start super small. Get a clicker, click/treat to reward the dog just for paying attention to you. Then for looking at you when you say his name. Then, for following you. Wait until the dog is already coming when called before saying the command word. Otherwise you'll just burn the word.

Did you look at the Kikopup video Amaryllis linked? It's really good. I would start even smaller, by rewarding the dog for paying attention to you, but once you've got that down you should try what the video says.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Your other dogs aren't ignoring you when you have them wait for the food. They're more likely ignoring the food because looking at it when they know they can't have it makes them anxious. It's like that famous study on delayed gratification, with the little kids who were told not to eat the candy bar. The kids who did best were the ones who physically refused to look at the candy.

Similarly, your dog is not looking at you because something about the "come" scenario is making him anxious and stressed.

I think you're asking way too much. Generally if the dog won't do the thing you want them to do, it's because you're making it too hard for the dog! I would train it a different way and start super small. Get a clicker, click/treat to reward the dog just for paying attention to you. Then for looking at you when you say his name. Then, for following you. Wait until the dog is already coming when called before saying the command word. Otherwise you'll just burn the word.

Did you look at the Kikopup video Amaryllis linked? It's really good. I would start even smaller, by rewarding the dog for paying attention to you, but once you've got that down you should try what the video says.
would that really do anything though? He knows his name and looks at me every single time i say it and he follows me around the house all the time.

i don't really get clickers. Isn't the point just to convey to them they did something right? If they can learn thats what the clicker means then why can't you just use some specific word in the same way?
 

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Yes. It would do something. The point is to show him that good things come from you. It's all incremental.

As for the clicker. You can use a specific word in the same way - the clicking sound is just a marker. However, it's better than using a market word for a few reasons. First, the click is a unique sound that doesn't mean anything else, unlike a spoken word. Second, clicking is faster than saying a word, and therefore more accurate. I mean, neurologically, your response time to squeeze the clicker is faster than your response time to say the word. This means that the sound will come closer in time to the desired behavior. All of which helps the dog learn faster.

There is a reason clickers are so popular! But hey, I'm not going to sit here debating with you. I've said my piece and you've gotten some great advice here. You came here asking for help, so I don't get the point of arguing about it. Why not just try this stuff? What's the down side there?
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Yes. It would do something. The point is to show him that good things come from you. It's all incremental.

As for the clicker. You can use a specific word in the same way - the clicking sound is just a marker. However, it's better than using a market word for a few reasons. First, the click is a unique sound that doesn't mean anything else, unlike a spoken word. Second, clicking is faster than saying a word, and therefore more accurate. I mean, neurologically, your response time to squeeze the clicker is faster than your response time to say the word. This means that the sound will come closer in time to the desired behavior. All of which helps the dog learn faster.

There is a reason clickers are so popular! But hey, I'm not going to sit here debating with you. I've said my piece and you've gotten some great advice here. You came here asking for help, so I don't get the point of arguing about it. Why not just try this stuff? What's the down side there?
I'm sorry. I guess I just thought it would be something more obvious I didn't know or think of and half the info seems to be to make the dog like being around me...which he doesn't have any problems with.

I guess the clicker i may try. For some reason i have always disliked them so I didn't like hearing that either but i think i changed my mind. This is because I always thought of it as something "dog trainers" and people who can sometimes take it too far do. I also don't want to be crippled by not having it around.
Yesterday though I saw one at petsupermarket for like 2 bucks. They are really small and be kept on a key chain.
I also suppose it doesn't prevent you from getting the dog to do things because it is a reward AFTER they do it not something to get them to do it. As with any command or trick they should eventually do it enough they don't need any reward (my dog for example sits and lays every time). So maybe I will try that.

another thing that led me away was I want to adopt another dog soon and she will possibly be deaf, so I wanted to be able to use the same methods with both.
 

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I think there are some people who are on here who have deaf dogs who could advise you about that. I believe there are ways to use a unique visual signal in the same way you use a clicker.

We have a bunch of clickers laying around the house. The best thing I did was to attach one with a mini carabiner clip and ring to the handle of Biscuit's leash. That way I always have it with me when we're walking, and I can take it off if I want to work on something off leash when we're out and about.

Anyway, I don't think we necessarily mean that your dog doesn't want to be around you. Obviously, you're saying he does, and you would know! What I have been trying to get at is that for whatever reason your dog is afraid to come to you when you give the command -- just in that one specific situation.

Question. Are you working on this in the same location as the submissive peeing incidents? Maybe he has a negative association with the location, and you could give all this stuff a try in a new spot?

The clicker is a good way to eventually not need to give treats because there is a natural way to stop. Once the dog has got the behavior down cold, you continue clicking, but fade the treats so you only give the treat every two or three times. Then even less often. And eventually you stop. You can use the clicker with luring too (using a treat to get them to do the behavior), but for most things I would advise hiding the treat and clicker behind your back so the dog is not focusing on the food. When you're not luring, but instead rewarding the dog incrementally for getting closer and closer to the desired behavior, you can tell that the dog is thinking and figuring out what he needs to do. It's much more fun that way.
 
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