Join Date: Jun 2010
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Congrats on your new pup! As you said, house training will be training priority number one, but you will probably very quickly start sit, and leash walking. As soon as I wasn't carrying Shala every time we went out, she had to sit to have the leash put on. She had to sit to have her dinner (when she first came home, she jumped up and down like a kangaroo when I was getting her food. It was very funny. But it was very easy to teach her to sit). Teaching and practicing stuff before meals is really easy - they have to do something before they get their bowl.
As for classes, we started Puppy Basics just six days after Shala came home. All the puppies had the same level of vaccination (or more), so we started all the basics right away (though, ten months later, a good stay still eludes us. All my fault). And recall started right away, too. I knew I was going to want to be able to have Shala off leash, so that became part of every day training right away.
So it was part organic - I just started to do stuff that felt right from day one - sitting to get the leash, sitting to come in, sitting to get her food (she has a really solid sit!) and then added in the stuff we learned at classes. We didn't have leash issues, but if you do, you will want to work on that right away. You'll figure out what are your priorities - as you said, you have experience. It will all come back to you!
Having a good trainer is gold, though. Even though we haven't had classes for a couple of months, I emailed my trainer this week to get advice about Shala leaping up into people's faces at the off-leash park, and he came out to the park with us for 90 minutes on Friday - and gave me some GREAT ideas that I never would have thought of. It was a huge help - and he didn't even charge me!! So having a great trainer who you like and is really dedicated to helping dogs be good dogs is great.
"Joy and loyalty wrapped in sunshine "
"You become responsible, forever, for what you have tamed."
-Antoine de Saint-Exupéry