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Hi, we've only just brought our puppy home last week. She's a labrador and is 14 weeks.
I'm getting worried now that I may have more trouble training her than I'd anticipated (and I wasn't thinking it would be a breeze anyhow)
We'd told my sister and her husband that we now had our puppy. They live very close by and we do see them a lot.
They have their own dog, who is quite a large cross breed and not really trained well. She does pull on the lead a lot and she
jumps up a lot which can be hard work as she's big and heavy and rushes about knocking everything flying when she comes to our house which is normally about once or twice a week.
Now obviously everyone has their own ways of training and what works etc but i could tell that everytime I said what I was /wasn't doing with the puppy to encourage/discourage certain behaviours, that they either didn't agree, eye rolling or seemed to think I was being a bit over the top protective and offering "advice" I'm so concerned now that anything I teach her, they will undermine by doing the opposite.
I dont want her getting bad habits and don't think they even agree with walking 5 mins per month , so I'll probably have that argument now too. Theirs is offlead in the local park a lot but I don't want to let ours off yet.
I can get everyone in this house used to what we all need to do to reinforce good behaviours but will it ruin it if visitors don't follow my requests? Eg: don't praise when they come in unless she has paws on the ground. ( I know they've not done this with their own dog so doubt they will with mine)
I'm hoping we can reinforce it enough that she will still get used to this despite non compliance of some visitors.
So basically, am I being neurotic about this or will have to be cautious going forward?
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I'm afraid I can't offer any meaningful advice, however I do share you concerns about letting a dog off-lead. We've had Rusty just over nine weeks now (rescue dog, just over 1.5 years old) and I want to let him off his lead in the fields around us, but I fear I'll never see him again! I will do some recall training at some point, but as with our previous rescue dog Jimmy, they are so easily distracted, and then focussed on, other things.

I'm sure some helpful advice will appear here shortly...
I think you are right, but I also see the potential for falling out with your family.

If they are coming round to your house, as I see it, you have a couple of options. You could tell them, calmly but firmly, that it's your dog, your house, your rules (maybe not using these words, but that would be the basis of what you are saying).

Or, it could always be nap time for your puppy in another room. As dogs get older, I think they have a pretty sound understanding of different people and just because your sister doesn't discourage certain behaviours like jumping or pulling, that doesn't mean Maggie would get away with these things at other times. But I'm not so sure a puppy would understand and you want a strong foundation of good behaviours to start with. So that approach would have to be used for an awfully long time.

For what it's worth though, I had my puppy off lead from walk one, in a safe place - I think everything is so new and strange that they are more likely to stick to you like velcro at that age. But that's a decision you need to make based on lots of other factors like how well she comes to you in the house and garden, and how safe the place is. I also make that first walk just before a meal time, when my puppy is hungry, and carry really good treats.
I'm very conscious that I don't want to fall out with them, that's mainly my issue
My decision to get a dog was based on me being able to train it well ( partly the reason I chose a lab)
I know this might sound mean, but I really can't cope with very badly behaved large dogs who jump on you and nearly knock you over continuously. I just find it so stressful and I don't want to start resenting getting a dog if she starts to behave anything like theirs does.
I'm willing to put in the work but know I will be tearing my hair out if it starts to feel like I'm getting somewhere and they ruin it.
I'm just going to have to make it clear from the start that I get to be the one to decide what I choose to do with her.
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As far as recall goes, I tend to agree with JoanneF - they are more likely to stick close when they are very young. But of course, you need to test this out in a safe place first.

In my experience labradors are the worst for barrelling up to other dogs - or people - who may not appreciate it, and also for jumping up on people, including strangers, so I would absolutely train to stop this, which will include not letting your relations encourage this behaviour (my dog, when mature, was polite but reserved with other dogs, and would get thoroughly fed up of labs who seemed oblivious to his body language or slight grumble). I think you need to work out some clear ground rules, and explain that you are trying the approach you think is best and that they don't have to agree with it, but you would really like them to go along with it, if only to humour you.

I hope they can accept this without falling out, but (just seen your latest post) you already appreciate how important it is to have a well-behaved dog. I'm really happy that you're taking such a responsible approach to bringing him up :)
I am having problems with mine though I didn't do a huge amount of recall training, I used to at weekends when I was in a large empty area of field keep her lead attached and let her walk so far head and if she got too far i'd call her and she would come back, but often she would only walk 20-30 feet or so ahead and turn head and wait for me so I understand when others have said they stick to you more when younger.

Now shes a year old she likes to run off and ignore recall, she got off lead 3 or 4 times in past month alone and ran down the street, once in front of a car but luckily car stopped then ran further down to the park we normally walk until someone caught her. She will partially recall i.e if I turn my back to her and tell her to come she will run a few feet from me then run off in other direction again.
deka, to me it's simple, (well simply said but often hard to actually do). Always carry high value treats, start by calling her in a high happy voice if she looks at you but does not instantly start returning carry on with the happy call and start running backwards. When she gets to you plenty of praise, fussing and a treat or two. Whatever you do never loose the happy voice, I tend to think someone training a dog must sound like a complete idiot to non dog people. And practice practice practice. You have to get it that she knows returning to you is a very good thing.
Just on the recall part. Only today I saw a dog of 8 months off lead and as good as gold, mine is nearing 1 and I am so fearful that he would bolt. The guy today said I should have had him off lead when much younger as they are more needy and will stick close when young and then it is the norm for them.
I felt quite low thinking that my little fellow wasn't like that.
Must admit I think Biker John has the right way treats and more treats. Great advice.

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