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Hello Poodle friends!

As some of you may know, I brought home my first ever puppy last week! Lillie is a now 10 week old red Miniature Poodle puppy and I love her to bits. However, as I'm sure many of you know, training a puppy is hard! We've already run into a few road blocks, so I was inspired by the many other training threads on this forum to start one of my own! It'll give me a place to ask many of you who are more experienced than me for tips, and also give me the opportunity to look back on successes and failures later on!

So far in the first week, Lillie's done pretty well. She's mastered 'sit', and is pretty good at 'lie down'. She's walking well on the leash, although her manners will definitely need shaping once she can take more substantial walks (right now we're just doing 2 10min walks a day). Her recall is great when she wants to listen. :lol: Tomorrow I'm going to start keeping treats on me all the time and just randomly calling her over and treating her when she comes. I want 'come' to be branded into her head!

Our biggest issue so far is crate training. Or any kind of confinement, honestly. Lillie was flown in a cargo plane from Prince Edward Island on the Eastern coast of Canada to Vancouver on the Western coast. In total, she was in her kennel for 8.5 hours! :ahhhhh: Understandably, she now HATES her kennel. The moment she realizes the door is locked, she freaks. And I don't mean normal puppy crying. I mean yelping, barking, howling, panicked panting, the works. She basically has a meltdown. She has the same reaction in her playpen, and in the car.

I've been working on her freakouts in the playpen by not touching her and just saying 'off' when she starts jumping up on the side, and then reaching in to pet and praise her once she has all 4 paws on the ground. She seems to be calming down significantly faster, but the moment I walk out of the room and she realizes I'm gone, she freaks again. Her behaviour in the car has improved as well basically just through repeated short car trips. She no longer screeches, just cries a bit and never seems to settle. She constantly tries to climb me/the seat to see out the windows.

I know she's only 10 weeks and we have tons of time to work on these problems, but I hate seeing her get so stressed over these things! And I also hate that it takes me an extra 30mins to fall asleep at night because I have to make sure Lillie is calm in her pen first.

Any advice at all is greatly appreciated!
 

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Do a search on "crate games", using the Advanced function. This comes up a lot, and you'll find a lot of good info to help you and Lillie with her crate. I'd expect that at least part of them will translate to the car, and playpen.

You'll all get thru this :).
 

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Yes, crate games will really be very helpful to you!


As to the car, that is a little different. First question I have is how are you having her situated in the car? Is she loose, crated, harnessed, in a car set? Since she is not happy in the crate in the house she may be not happy in a crate in the car for the obvious reasons. I personally use SleepyPod harnesses and a back seat hammock with the harnesses clipped to tethers. I don't use crates in my vehicle for a couple of reasons (Javelin's crate is too big and I think potentially a dog can be hurt by a crate that suffers damage in a crash). The SleepyPod harness is crash tested and gives my dogs the chance to sit or lie down and the hammock lets them shift position without falling into the foot well. I never allow anyone in the front seat.


To help Lillie to get used to the car you should consider just putting her in the car in whatever way you intend for her to ride and treat her for showing a relaxed manner without turning the car on. Once good with that do the same but turn the car on and don't go anywhere. Then just back down the drive way and back up it. Then down the block and back. The early stages may take time, but the later parts should go pretty quickly. Also AND THIS PART IS REALLY IMPORTANT make sure that trip end many places other than the vet's office, but also occasionally go to the vet and have a party in the waiting room and leave. Trips in the car should not be heavily associated with being poked and prodded.
 

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How are your days with Lillie now, is toilet training going well, does she love her food, any toys that she plays with more often
 
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