Hi there. I can see that you are trying to do the best for your puppies, & it is certainly confusing, as so much contradiction in training methods on the Internet. Choosing a trainer who uses positive reinforcement is the first step. The trainer will show you how to train certain things, & then you use that training method Only ...use the same word for the same command every time ....& everyone else in the house Must use the same word. If you don't do this, you will end up with puppies who are very confused & do not know what is expected of them. Your pups are very young & do not know how to do anything. It is totally up to you, to show them what you want. Teaching them their names needs to be done separately, so one pup stays in another room with someone, whilst you work with the other pup. You get your pup's attention by saying its name ....when it looks at you, you immediately say Yes! & give it a tasty treat. You can use a clicker instead of saying an enthusiastic Yes! I found clicker training really easy to use, but my husband preferred Yes! You repeat this several times & do it several times a day. You will be amazed at how quickly your pups will respond when you are training this. If they only do it a couple of times & lose interest, that's fine. End training & do it again later. Lots of praise when they get it right. No frustration when they don't.
They're nigh impossible to seperate though, wherever one is, the other one is always near, if I keep them in seperate rooms they start whining and baring (which is a problem), I have had success training them like you said though, they do come back when called.
Next command to teach is usually Sit. Go onto YouTube & look at Kikopup videos ....they are simple & effective. She uses clicker, but you can replace with Yes! seconds before you treat for correct behaviour. At the start, you will be Gently guiding puppy into a sitting position by gentle pressure right at base where tail joins body. Don't say Sit yet. When pup is in sitting position click or say Yes! & reward with yummy treat. Repeat. Soon your pup will sit automatically for you without any help & when that starts happening, you add the verbal command to the action .....so you will now say pup's name & Sit command, click (yes!) when pup sits & immediate treat & praise. When pup loses interest, stop training & do again later. All basic commands are easily trained using this Kikopup method. My boy picked up Sit within one day at 8 weeks old, but other commands can take longer. Each pup is different. Remember, train your pups separately.
I need to start printing these posts out and taping them up around the house so my whole family knows what's what.Like I said though Elsa sits already without being prompted when I click my tongue (since I don't have a clicker and am used to that working with horses), yet when I go to praise her Gelert charges in demanding attention.
As far as treats go, is there anything I should watch out for? I've been giving them carrots as rewards but I don't want them having anything they could choke on.
I would certainly feed them separately too. Your boy is obviously the more dominant of the two pups, & nothing you do is going to change that. Your girl won't mind it. The behaviour of pushing her out of the way when you are petting her etc, is a jealousy/dominance issue. My boy is a dominant puppy & he was always doing this when our six year old papillon came up for attention. My trainer told me to ignore both dogs when this happened, but to ensure our papillon got lots of cuddles when the pup was occupied or sleeping. He is almost six months old now, & he gets on very well with the small papillon, but will still sometimes try to push in when the older boy comes for attention. Other times, he will look on & not be bothered, as he knows he will get cuddles when he comes over for them.
Any ways besides feeding seperately? I've been trying to think of ways to curb the jealousy issue and not getting that far at all, even when I give both attention he's dominant and aggressive trying to hog all the attention constantly so it does come off as jealousy and dominance, I'm tending to take Elsa's side as she is my dog
I only used the crate for overnight sleeping. During daytime, Loki was either with me or my husband all the time, or if there was no-one home, he went into the big exercise pen, set up in our large dining area at end of kitchen. Ex-pen was also used for Timeout if misbehaviour could not be dealt with .....infrequent & only needed a few mins to calm down. Have not had to use Timeout for a while now. Barking issue is more difficult. I would say that he is either not getting enough mental/physical stimulation so not tired. Or it could be that crate has been used for punishment, so he does not want to be there. My trainer told me very early on, after Loki had barked the entire night at nine weeks old in his crate ......wait til he falls asleep at your feet, then gently lift him up & carry him to his covered crate. Place him in the crate, close door & drop cover over the front & walk away ......so he will snooze in the crate & wake up in it, & it will have been a pleasant experience. Keep doing this, & he will get used to sleeping & waking up in crate. It worked a treat for us & I only had to crate him like this for a few days during the day, & after that he was happy to go into crate & sleep all night. I then allowed him to nap at our feet during the day again. You boy is not aggressive. He is just a dominant puppy & training will help him control that & help you to control it, but it will take many weeks. Chewing on everything ...nipping ....perfectly natural in a golden pup & they stop doing it when adult teeth come in. Loki has turned into the most awesome six month old pup. Your guys will too. Just takes time ...lots of patience ...consistency ....& training. No rolling or pinning. Will make matters worse.
I did try leaving a sheet over the cage last night, it worked well but they were so exhausted that I'm not about to say the sheet did anything, it isn't a clear thing at all as far as that goes, I tend to let them just sleep wherever in the kitchen (they've taken to sleeping on a rug or under the table come to think of it).