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I have 2 dogs, a 13 year old Beagle (Quincy) and a 2 year old Whippet/Cattle Dog (Rosie) mix. Quincy passed Canine Good Citizen about 10 years ago. Rosie got out of a dog shelter 6 months ago, and does not appear to have been trained by any previous owner, we understand that she was picked up stray.

We have done some training with Rosie at the trainer's facility, but at home training with Positive Reinforcement methods is a problem. Quincy invades and breaks up the training session wanting treats. I am wanting to train everything from Sit to Quiet around cars and trucks (which she goes crazy over).

It would be easy to isolate him in another room, but he will whine and bark knowing there are treats being given out. The same thing will happen outside. I am pretty sensitive to the whining and barking, and I will break up the session just due to his whining.

I can take Rosie off to the high school for training sessions to avoid the issue, but the stuff with cars and trucks has to be in the house.

What methods have you guys used to keep one dog happy while the other dog is being trained?
 

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I crate the ones I'm not training. They just have to manage until it's their turn. I don't mind if they get a little worked up. When it's their turn, they just work harder.

If the noise bothers you, feed your dog something great and frozen out of a kong. That will distract him while you are working the other. If I am going to do short sequences and rotate through my dogs several times, I have them all outside near where I train. This is really over-stimulating for the non-working dogs. To calm them, I give them raw butcher bones. They are good enough that the dogs will work on them even if I am running agility with another dog. The chewer is happy to become the trainee, but when they return to the bone, they are still happy to chew again.
 

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I have a mat in the room. The dog I'm not working with is sent to the mat and has to stay there until he/she is called. I throw treats at regular intervals so they're rewarded for staying on the mat. The begin with you throw loads of treats, probably more treats than you give to the dog you're actually working with, but then gradually they learn to stay there and then you only throw the occasional treat.

If they get up they're told to get back on the mat, if they break twice they're sent out of the room. That teaches them pretty quickly that the only chance for reinforcement is to stay on the mat.
 

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I'm likely to have to deal with this challenge soon myself when I bring home a foster. I know Jubel would be unhappy and whine/fuss if I took the foster down into the basement for training and left him upstairs (or vice versa). I think he'd do fine with me doing 1-2 commands with him then 5-6 with the foster, then back to him for 1-2 commands and back to foster. But I don't know how the foster would do with that and I may need more focused attention/time with the foster. I guess I'll be finding out in a few weeks when I bring the foster home.

If I need more focused one on one time with the foster I'll probably give Jubel a frozen kong and leave him on a different floor. Should give us 15-25 minutes which is would be enough individual focus time I think. I kinda hope the side by side training works well and the foster can learn from Jubel, most of the dogs I'm looking at as potential fosters right now have very little if any training. Pretty much starting from scratch most likely as far as sit, stay, down, come, etc are concerned.
 

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I have a mat in the room. The dog I'm not working with is sent to the mat and has to stay there until he/she is called. I throw treats at regular intervals so they're rewarded for staying on the mat. The begin with you throw loads of treats, probably more treats than you give to the dog you're actually working with, but then gradually they learn to stay there and then you only throw the occasional treat.

If they get up they're told to get back on the mat, if they break twice they're sent out of the room. That teaches them pretty quickly that the only chance for reinforcement is to stay on the mat.
This is what I have been doing with my two as well. I try to work on more distance commands with Luke (2 yrs), having him stay or go from a sit to down while staying on the "spot" while I do things with Zoey (8 months) on the other side of the room. Then I will switch them but keep Zoey on the "spot" for shorter periods of time (shorter attention span). I also try to do some things with them side by side, trying to teach them to wait for their turn, also trying to get them to do some syncronized tricks! If I really need to have just one dogs attention, I will put the other one in my husbands office with him and they just have to wait their turn.
 

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I have several dogs, and have encountered this issue many times. The way I've dealt with it is to first train two dogs together on very simple things, like sit. Even if they have it down, they do it together, but with the addition of having to wait for their treat until their turn. I've got this down to where I can have my dogs sitting around me in a semi-circle, and call out their names to give out treats. My Aussies jump up and carefully take their treats when called, and my Newfies wait calmly for theirs (it really isn't safe to teach a Newfie to jump up for much of anything). Then I expanded to sit/stay and down/stay. One would perform this, and inevitably another would try to horn in, but I'd gently block them and only give them praise or treats on their turn. I also used this to allow me to give attention to one of my dogs while the others are around, without getting mobbed. I just block with my body and only give attention and praise to the one who I'm focused on. When another dog sits or stands calmly and waits, I'll switch over to giving them some attention. This has worked for me.

I've read about others who use mats as places to keep dogs while training another, and this is excellent advice. I haven't mat-trained my dogs yet, but I've seen it work. Crating is also an option if your dog doesn't create a fuss that distracts your other dog(s).
 

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I'd put the beagle in a crate and treat him periodically for quiet/calm while you work the other dog.

Any chance we can see a pic of Rosie? Whippet x ACD sounds...intriguing!
 

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Interesting comments, actually just what I could have expected. I am really sensitive to the whining and barking of my dogs now, probably due to the emotional disaster in my life. I use frozen kongs now, but they are not lasting long. I was recommended to wet the dry kibble before doing the peanut butter plug to make it last, I am going to try it with my next batch.

I assume mat training is done one at a time, with the other dog crated, yes?

Is there a problem of keeping the other dog crated in another room, or is it best to keep both dogs in the same room?
 

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Interesting comments, actually just what I could have expected. I am really sensitive to the whining and barking of my dogs now, probably due to the emotional disaster in my life. I use frozen kongs now, but they are not lasting long. I was recommended to wet the dry kibble before doing the peanut butter plug to make it last, I am going to try it with my next batch.
Check out Busy Buddy's Squirrel Dude toy. It's like a kong, except that small rubber prongs face into the hole to help hold food in. My extremely food-motivated dog will spend hours trying to empty it.
 

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Whoever is "not" working (although they end up working anyway) practices down-stays off to the side. At first there is a lot of breaking and replacing, but they get very good very quickly IME.
 

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I assume mat training is done one at a time, with the other dog crated, yes?
Only when you first teach it. It took me maybe 10 minutes to familiarize my dogs with the mat by getting them to lie on it and giving tons of treats. Then you can have the other dog out doing simple things and just keep rewarding the dog on the mat for staying. When I first started, I sat right beside the mat and fed the resting dog treats while doing simple commands like sit, down, stand and shake with dog 'in training'. So you really don't need to crate for long. In fact, if you have 2 mats, you could mat train them both at the same time probably.

My dogs now have their mat as their default position. When I bring the treats into our training space, they both automatically go and lie on their mats and wait to be called.
 
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