Puppy Training

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When we first started writing to the Puppy In Training website our main focus was to chronicle the journey of my guide dog puppy, Stetson and share all of our experiences in puppy training and raising a guide dog.

A couple months after Stetson started his formal guide dog training we were asked to raise a second guide dog puppy in training.  We accepted and so began the chronicles of our next guide dog, Derby and his puppy training.

If you’ve been following along then you know Derby the little yellow puppy in the picture below was career changed the middle of last year.

As time passed this blog has evolved and we enjoyed not only sharing our experiences with guide dog puppy training, but also just about everything that came across our desk regarding dogs and puppies.

It’s been over three years since we first started our guide dog puppy training journey and as many of you know today I am without a guide dog puppy.  However, after writing over 300 articles to this blog I wanted to share some of my favorite and most popular puppy training articles.

Puppy Training

While not all totally about puppy training I’m sure you’ll enjoy these articles and some of the adorable puppy pictures.

  • Top 10 Dogs Good With Children – If you’re looking to get a new puppy I’d suggest checking out your local shelter or rescue.  There are many adorable purebred and mixed breed puppies and dogs at your local rescues and shelters.  If you’re looking for a dog good with kids then check out this first part about dogs good with children.  You can also find the second article in this series here: Dogs Good With Children Part II
  • Can A Litter Of Puppies Have More Than One Father? – When I first started volunteering with the Cuddly Canines rescue I picked up 7 little German Shepherd puppies and they all looked very different.  The owner of Cuddly Canines told me that it was possible that their were multiple father’s of this litter.  I found this very interesting and threw together a short article about litters having more than one father.
  • How Much Should I Feed My Puppy – After raising several puppies over the past few years I noticed some (Stetson) got a bit chunky while eating the same amount as others (Derby) who got very skinny.  I put together a short article about what your bag of kibble recommends versus what we feed our guide dogs.
  • How To Handle Your Puppy’s First Night At Home – We always crate train our puppies.  Some like Derby are easy and sleep straight through the night from day 1.  Others like Stetson and Linus cry, bark, howl, scratch, scream…you name it from sun down to sun up.  This article lists a few hints on how you might be able to make your puppies first night at home a little easier on you and him.
  • Crate Training Puppies – This was a direct response to one of my readers having issues with her puppy and crate training.  I gave 14 tips on how to crate train your puppy.
  • What’s The Life Expectancy Of Your Dog? – I love my dogs and often wonder about their mortality.  I hope they will live between 15-20 years.  However, I wanted to see what average life expectancy was for different dog breeds.
  • The Cutest Puppy Ever – I wanted to put together a series of articles on all the puppies I had raised over the past few years and post a few pictures.  Unfortunately, I didn’t have photos of all the litters, but I did take a lot of Derby, Stetson, Linus, and the litter of seven German Shepherd mixes.  This is the first article in that series.  I already closed the voting poll, but you can still check out the adorable images of puppies.
  • Dachshund Acts As Mom To Baby Piglet – The beginning of February 2008 a story came across my desk about a piglet adopted by a Dachshund and her litter of puppies.  I wrote a short article and posted some pictures.  Little did I know that the story would become and internet phenomenon for Johanna Kerby, Pink, and Tink.
  • Black And Tan Labrador Retrievers – It’s been controversial, but when I first started training Stetson as a guide dog I heard about Black and tan Labrador Retrievers and wrote an article about what I heard at Guide Dog group and read on the internet.

How’s My Puppy Training Going?

What are the state of my dogs?  Well just in case you haven’t been following along.  Over five years ago I adopted my first dog Linus from the Carson Animal Shelter.  About two years after adopting Linus I began fostering rescue dogs and puppies with the rescue organization Cuddly Canines.  About 6 months after working with foster puppies I began volunteering as a puppy raiser with Guide Dogs of America.   Stetson was my first guide dog puppy in training and was career changed (dropped) after two months of formal guide dog training.  Derby was my second guide dog puppy in training and was dropped several months before he had a chance to start his formal training.

So what have we been doing if we haven’t been training a puppy?  As many of you know, Derby was adopted by another loving family and unfortunately we haven’t heard much back from them, but hope that he’s living a wonderful life with plenty of room to run around.  After getting career changed Stetson moved back home with me and Linus my Australian Shepherd mix rescue dog.  Right now me and my two big black dogs are focusing on four main goals:

  • Working on Linus and his behavior around other dogs and people on our neighborhood walks.
  • Working with Stetson and Therapy Dog Training.  We talked about this a while back and have recently been sidetracked.
  • Puppy sitting other guide dog puppies when needed.
  • Taking video of guide dog puppy training and our group meetings.

We’ve also been tinkering with the idea of possibly raising another guide dog puppy, but we aren’t quite sure if we’re ready to take on that responsibility yet.  A secondary option we’ve been considering is possibly fostering rescue dogs and puppies from our local shelters.

It’s been nearly three years since I started writing to this blog and hopefully we’ll continue for another three more.  We’ll continue to do our best to keep you informed about the latest puppy training tips as we continue our journey with Stetson, Linus, and any other puppies or dogs that pass through our lives.

Have you recently raised or plan on raising a puppy?  Let us know if you have any puppy training questions in the comment section below.

Top Picks For Our Puppies

    We Like: Calmeroos Puppy Toy w/ Heartbeat and Heat Packs - Perfect for new puppies. Helps ease anxiety in their new home.
    We Like: Mighty Paw Naturals Bully Sticks - All of our puppies love to bite, nip, and chew. We love using Bully Sticks to help divert these unwanted behaviors.
    We Like: Crazy Dog Train-Me Treats - We use these as our high-value treats for our guide dog puppies.
    We Like: The Farmer's Dog - A couple months ago we started feeding Raven fresh dog food and she loves it! Get 50% off your first order of The Farmer's Dog.

Check out more of our favorites on our New Puppy Checklist.

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  1. I have a 7 month old yellow lab, Enzo. We got him when he was 3 months old. At around 4 months we started to notice some food aggression. We have tried several suggestions from the trainer who led our puppy classes, but it is still a problem. Enzo will literally just sit at his food bowl and growl while he eats. If you take any step near him he will look up at you and growl. If you try to take the food away he will snap and has bit me once. We have tried feeding him out of our hands and we have tried feeding him small portions at a time and taking his bowl away in between. The strange thing is, he only does this at home. He goes to doggy daycamp 3 times a week and the trainers there have never seen any signs of aggression even when they try to provoke it. Any suggestions??

    1. @LabMama, sorry, but we don’t have too much experience with food aggression and we wouldn’t want to advise you on a subject where we have limited experience. Try checking with a dog trainer that specializes in training dogs with aggression issues.

  2. @Xerocomix, I’m not too sure of your exact situation and it would probably be best for you to get a private in-home consultation from a local dog trainer.

    However, from the information you provided I think the best suggestion is to get your dogs more exercise. I usually take my Australian Shepherd mix for a 3-5 mile run to get some of the energy out. I also sometimes take him out in the yard and play ball with him for 20-30 minutes.

  3. I like training up my dogs and giving them some rules to follow but the thing is they are so energetic and don’t want to listen to me they only like playing and biting slippers and other things. I had four dogs you know what should I do? I want them to follow my instructions 🙁

  4. The pictures on this blog are simply ADORABLE! Just GORGEOUS! Thankyou so much for putting them on here. Quick question, mind you, as I find myself with a new labrador pup and a slight problem. What is the secret? How can you train your dog to accept any kinds of rules as though they are simply the natural way of life? After all, he is just an animal, with animal instincts, but I am beginning to tear my hair out a little. I cannot get my dog to do anything! ANYTHING! that I want him to do….. help!
    .-= Dog Lover´s last blog ..Dog symptoms continued =-.

  5. Hi ya,
    If I remember correctly you had a feeding bowl for Stetson that helped him slow down while eating. Could you tell me if it was successful and if so where I could buy one? I have been putting a big rock in the feeding bowl and that works but wondering if a proper bowl would be better. We are enjoying our life with our very own dog. He is the same dog we turned in, just a wee bit smarter, except for the chowing down part. 🙂
    Anne and Dutch

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