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Discussion Starter #1
Hey All,

First time poster here. I just adopted an 8 week old APBT from my local animal shelter here in OC, CA. I was wondering what is the consensus around here for which commands should be taught asap? More so, in which order and how many at a time? I've been on the APBT.info site and read through a lot of the index there, but wanted some opinions from a forum. I don't want to overwhelm the little guy by trying to teach two or three commands at once if some of you APBT experts don't feel like they're capable.
 

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Proud CGC Parent
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Actually, the more commands you teach them when they're younger, the better. They learn so quickly when they're that age.

I usually teach two commands first: sit and come. Sit is a good all-purpose command if you employ NILIF and come is arguably the most important command of all. Now is a good time to teach come because at this age, they prefer to be around you more than anything.
 

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I'd work on teaching the puppy it's name as well as come right now. You can teach as many commands without mastering one first. Just keep the sessions short. Puppies have very short attention spans.
 

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Thank you for the advice so far. Does anyone have any recommendations for their favorite threads/links/videos regarding training? I've read all the stickies at the top, searched some key words on this site that I thought would be good, and read the apbt.info site already, but I'm always up for some more suggestions.
 

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Thanks for the link. I read through that thread of yours the other day. I also "liked" your Facebook page so that I could read what you've got on there. Very helpful stuff!
 

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Dare to dance the tide
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Hi and welcome to the wonderful world of APBT. Patches thread is a great read. I always teach my dogs come you can work on this many many times a day it also re-enforce their name recognition. Then the next most important thing for me is "watch me". I love this it has made life so much easier with Vendetta because if she starts to focus on a dog that I don't want her to I just say focus and she is back on watching me.
 

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Thanks for the link. I read through that thread of yours the other day. I also "liked" your Facebook page so that I could read what you've got on there. Very helpful stuff!
Cool! Give a shout if you need anything. Working with pups is my favorite. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks everyone. As far as teaching them their name, come, and focus, it seems to me it's all kind of one in the same as far as the teaching/training method, but I might be wrong. Patch-O-Pits and My Mikado, would either of you care to expand on the teachings of these three commands? Thank you in advance.
 

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Teaching them their name IMO really isn't a command but more of a skill, but I guess you can also think of it as a "look" command of sorts as you want the dogs attention when you say it, but you could want their attention for any number of things using their name.

To me "come" is different as I don't expect them to come to their name unless I am telling them to come.

Teaching the name is properly one of the easiest prerequisite to training.
LOL I hate typing so I think this will be useful to you:
The Importance of a Dog's Name with Regards to Training - Whole Dog Journal Article

What I do for come is simple, and listed in the thread I wrote:
"COME"
The most important command in my book!!!! This command can literally see their live! It is a must. The pup knowing its name can also really helped w/ this one! As you might want to first say the name to get the pup's attention before you even give the come command.
This commands should start as soon as they are wobbling around.
An easy way to teach it is,just kneel about a foot away extend your hand and say the dog's name and come with your hand with food as a lure right by their little nose and bring them into you then can say YEAAAAAAAA (heheh) make a big fuss!
As they get bigger, you'll do less luring w/ food and you go up on your feet then you will eventually call them from a little farther away. This takes weeks!!!!!!! You can also call them to come and then run away from them a tiny bit to get their attention and motivate them to chase/come to you.
Pups that are stubborn or more independent not as willing to please may need more coaxing or a leash on to help real them into you as you follow the same thing as above...
 

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You want to make sure that if you use the "Pet's name, Come" command that you can guarantee they will come to you. You don't want them to realize that if they wanted to, they could blow you off and run the other way and there's not a darn thing you could do about it. lol.
 

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I can attest that you MUST train as young as possible. I have two dogs. One was well trained as a pup, one was not. There is such a major difference in the overall intelligence of the dogs it is amazing. It has been really difficult to train my older one later in life.
 

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Dare to dance the tide
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The biggest mistake I see people making is to only call the dog to come when you want to end their play. After awhile the dog will not listen to you. So what I do is call my dog to me loe them up and praise them then send them off again to do what ever they were doing I wait alittle bit them I call them again and repeat the whole thing. This way my dogs ever really know when we are going in the house or what is happening but they now that it is not the end to all things fun all the time when I call them.

I teach them their name whe they are young by whispering it in their ear while they are being held. I love nothing more than to sit back and hold my puppy as they sleep and I whisper in their ear alot.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Thank you for all the help everyone. I really appreciate it. So far I've been working on him learning his name as well as the commands look at me, come, and sit.
 

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After teaching the name and come I went with sit. Sit opens the door for a lot of other tricks and commands. It also helps with focus. I brought my pit in for a puppy einstein class when she was 12 weeks. It helped so much and she is well socialized, knows all the basic commands, and is crate trained. All that in 5 weeks! Classes are well worth the investment if you can do it.
 
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