First of all, let me congratulate you on your new four-legged friend. secondly, let me show you How to Train a Puppy to Sit, Stay and Come!
Training your puppy to sit, stay, and come are the first three commands you should focus on while your puppy is 7 to 8 weeks of age. By this age, your German Shepherd puppy is ready to get its training and ready to understand what you are saying, or at least is ready to try.
German Shepherd puppies are very intelligent, strong and trainable puppies. If you bring your German Shepherd puppy home in his/her 7th week of age, lucky you! You have a very good chance to shape his/her personality, train him/her well. Moreover, you are going witness a lovely, loyal, and super active German Shepherd dog growing up.
When and Why should you start training your puppy?
Training your puppy some basic puppy training commands will help you bond with your puppy, and control his/her attitude and behavior. Don’t forget that puppies can get too hyper, sometimes, even if they are well-trained, but according to their nature; they are so active and energetic.
Therefore, when you train a German Shepherd puppy to sit, stay and come in that very young age, he/she will grow up knowing that when you ask him/her to sit, stay or come, you are not playing with him/her, and they should learn how to listen.
The training phase can start in your puppy’s 7 or 8 weeks old. In that age, your dog is ready to adopt new skills, learn more about you and the language you speak, and know more about what you want him/her to do.
In fact, if you didn’t start teaching your puppy those basic commands in that very young age, he/she will be missing a great opportunity to learn fast and easy. Because in that age puppies are so eager to know and very smart to learn and understand.
On the other hand, if you started teaching your German Shepherd puppy when he/she becomes older; it will be so hard for both of you because there will be a lot to learn, in a very short time while a lot of distractions are around both of you.
How to Train a Puppy to Sit, Stay and Come?
When you start training your puppy in the 7th or 8th weeks of age; you need to be gentle, patient, and use positive reinforcement. No negative reinforcement is allowed in German Shepherd puppies training, in fact, you shouldn’t use negative reinforcement with your dog at any age!
Negative reinforcement can not only hurt your dog, physically and emotionally, it also can put you in danger if he/she grew up not liking you, or afraid of you. Once he becomes strong enough, he can hurt you, or run away.
And I believe that in both cases you will be hurt because even if we tried wrong teaching methods with our dogs, we still love them, and we didn’t mean to hurt them. Therefore, we are here to learn more about how to train a German Shepherd puppy to sit, stay and come; using the positive reinforcement.
Before we start talking about training methods, let me clarify what is the difference between positive and negative reinforcement:
Positive reinforcement VS. Negative reinforcement?
Well, for those who don’t know the difference between Negative and Positive reinforcement; here ‘s a simple guide:
Positive Reinforcement is when you reward your dog for something he/she did, and ignore those other bad behaviors. So, if he/she did understand your command, you give him treats, tell him/her how good he/she is, or even give your dog a new toy to play with. In that case, your dog will be happy doing it again.
Negative Reinforcement is when you focus on your dog’s bad behavior and start taking his/her stuff away tell your dog starts listening to you. Or inflicting pain, which is not just heartbreaking to your dog, but it also puts him/her in a lot of pain and it will make your dog listen to you, because he/ she is afraid of you, not because he loves you.
Now, let’s know who to train our amazing puppies.
3 Stages of puppy training
First thing you need to know before you start training your dog is that he/she will not get your command immediately, therefore, you should be calm and patient, and keep in mind that there are 3 stages of training:
- Understanding: You need to make sure that your puppy understands what you are saying at the first place, remember that he/she is not speaking the same language; so when you tell him/her to sit, he/she doesn’t know what the word ‘sit’ means.
- Repetition: Not all the dogs are the same, so be ready to repeat yourself till your puppy fully understand your command, However, if you keep repeating your command, your puppy will learn that he doesn’t need to obey before you repeat the command several times.
- Reinforcement: Pick something you know your dog really loves it, and cut it in small pieces, then hide it in your hand; Once your puppy sits when he/she listen to the word ‘Sit’ give him/ her a treat. Repeat this for the 15 minutes of daily training and TA-DA your puppy is ready for your next command.
Find the proper environment
When you start training your dog, you have to find the perfect environment for training him/her. German Shepherd puppies can get distracted by anything around them; any sound, smell or movement.
Therefore, the training should be in a quiet environment, so your puppy only focuses on you and your commands. On the other hand, you might also consider training your dog before his/her meal, so the treats become more effective, and training becomes faster and easier.
Hand signals for faster and easier training
Your dog will understand better if the order he/she is hearing from you is paired with hand signals. But, you have to keep your hand signals simple and reinforced with behavior. Now, let’s see;
How to train a puppy to sit:
This is probably the most common hand signal for dog training. If you need your dog to sit, you should open your hand palm facing the sky, keep it that way as if you are holding something on your hand.
How to train a puppy to stay:
The ‘stay’ hand signal is very simple, yet very important. When your German Shepherd puppy knows the hand signal of ‘sit’, start teaching him/her the hand signal of stay; open your hand palm in front of your chest and order him/her to stay. Make sure he/she stays that way till you order them to come.
How to train a puppy to come:
Now, open your hands, as if you are holding a piece of paper on it and pointing to the ground, then quickly raise your hand in front of your shoulder; as if you are throwing something behind you.
Make sure that you are doing those hand signals clear, slowly and with treats, tell your puppy fully understands them, then repeat it faster. And if you are looking for more commands you can teach your German Shepherd in that age, check this article.
Why you should know How to Train your Puppy to Sit Properly?
It’s very important to evaluate your puppy in every stage of his/her life, so if something went wrong you will be able to come with a solution or ask for professional help.
Therefore, while you are training your German Shepherd puppy how to sit, it is very important to train your puppy how to sit properly, so he/she doesn’t her/his back on the long term.
Normal Sits VS. Sloppy Sits:
So, when you ask your puppy to sit, make sure his/her back is straight and his/her legs are tucked closely and equally to the hips; that’s the normal sit.
The sloppy sit, legs are loose and away from each other. Other puppies may keep both legs off to one side, it’s also known as they lazy sit.
In the puppies young age, they get lazy and sometimes little bored while training. Therefore, you should pay attention to those little things, to help them grow normally and healthy.
However, it won’t be easy. So, if you noticed that this is a repeated issue, you should try to ask your dog to sit a narrow place or to next to the wall; so, he/she forced to sit properly so he/she can fit. If this didn’t work, ask his/her veterinary what you should do.
When you Should Consider Calling a Trainer?
Well, most probably, in that age, you will not need a trainer to teach your dog those basic commands. All you need is to have the time for him/her, and the patient to let your German Shepherd puppy take the time he/she needs to fully understand the command.
However, if you know that you don’t have the time, or patient for your puppy to teach him/her and bound with your puppy; you can call a trainer to train your dog the basic commands.
But, we really don’t recommend that because training your dog means spending more time with him/her, knowing his/her needs, letting your puppy know more about you; what makes you happy, what makes you angry with him/her. It’s a really important phase in his/her and your life, so I believe that you should be there for your dog.
Why knowing How to Train your Puppy to Sit, Stay and Come is very important?
Well, the sit command is the first command owners usually teach their puppies, not just to teach him/her to sit. But, also it is very important because it teaches your dog to behave, and listen to what you are saying even if he/she doesn’t like it, or busy doing something else.
The stay command is a very useful command when you know how hyper your dog is on some occasions. So, this command can help your dog stay calm in public, when you have guests, and when they really want to play, but you are busy.
And, the come command is a life saver, you can use it to save your dog from running if he/she slips out of his/her leash. Moreover, you can use it if you left your door open, and your dog ran out.
Therefore, if you chose the right command and the right positive reinforcement, your dog will be happy to come quickly. After all, your dog knows that when he comes to you, he/she will only find nice things; a treat a pat on the head or a toy.
ONE LAST TIP!
Puppy’s behavior management is not a hard thing to do, yet not so easy. Puppies can be stubborn, distracted, or playful. In that age puppies are like little kids, all they need is having fun, trying new tricks and eat tasty food.
Therefore, you need to make the training time, fun time. They are just puppies, play with them and make the 15 minutes training time count.
How to train a puppy to sit, stay and come is actually the very beginning of a lot of training in different stages of his/her life. But, those basic commands are very important tools to prevent unwanted behavior and teach him/her to behave.
Now, why don’t you tell us how was your first day training your puppy? and, How long it took him to follow your commands?