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Benjamin Franlkin - Senior Tpoo, Apple Butter - mpoo puppy
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I started teaching my puppy before I went to puppy class. We're actually in two puppy classes because I want the socialization, since she is not so sure about other dogs.

Anyway. She's doing really well with training. We do teeny mini sessions all day long. She's good at sit and down and touch. Now that we have joined class, though, I see that the signals I use with her and my other dogs are different from the ones they teach in both classes. My marker word is also a short, clipped "good" instead of "yes." Both of my puppy classes use the same hand signals and the marker word of "yes."

One class leader said I should definitely re-teach Apple using their signals and commands. The other class leader hasn't gotten back to me about it yet. What do you think?
 

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Peggy Sue, Standard Poodle Born May 2019
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Unless there's something wrong with the choices you've made (e.g. too long or complicated or otherwise confusing) I can't imagine why they'd care.

In our classes, we were told it's important to use what works best for us.

It's not all that hard to re-train cues and markers at that age, but did the trainer say why?
 

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Benjamin Franlkin - Senior Tpoo, Apple Butter - mpoo puppy
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
It's not all that hard to re-train cues and markers at that age, but did the trainer say why?
To be honest, that trainer I haven't been thrilled with. She doesn't seem terribly bright. She seems to have a set list that she runs through, and doesn't know how to deviate from behaviors or problems that don't fit nicely into her little checklist.

She told one puppy parent with kids that she should be teaching their 6 month old baby to ask their puppy to sit for pets. (Has she met a six month old baby ever?!) She also tried to pair my shy mpoo up with a much older, larger, vocal, bouncy GSD. I have no problems with GSDs and he was a charming puppy for ME to play with, but when my dog is already afraid I feel like that pairing is not setting her up for the success she needs at this age. I simply said I didn't think we were a great fit and traded partners with somebody who had a larger, braver puppy.

We will still keep going to that class because there are other puppies there that Apple is opening up to. There is a smaller, shyer spaniel puppy that she seems to really like. But we won't sign up for another class with that trainer again.
 

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Yeeeah... I wouldn't take much of what she says to heart either.
I was in the same position with my Raffi, he already knew sit, stand, stay, down. We were in the class more for socialization and for the added distractions of people and dogs during training. Most of my signals were a little different from the ones they showed in class. One of the helpers asked about my signals, and was perfectly happy when I said I had already started using some before. They said as long as I was consistent, and my dog could differentiate between them, any signal is ok.
 

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Our trainers have always told us to use whatever words or signals we’d like as long as they are consistent. Most of our signals are the same but a few are different. I know the “whole world” uses the “Look at me,” phrase 😉 but we use “Eyeballs,” and point to our eyes. Totally silly, I know, but we think it’s a fun way to say “look at me.” I heard the term years ago and immediately taught our previous dog and Bobby was taught it from day one. 😊
 

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There are no standard signals or orders. The only thing I think is sort of a natural is raising your hand up to lure a sit out of a puppy since it works by getting the puppy to put their back end down to look up for the lure of the treat in hand when you start. Give the orders and signals that work for you. The only time I suggest to people to change orders/signals is if they have poisoned their old cues and need to start fresh. And if you really want to you can say spot or pear for anything you want those words to mean. If the instructor isn't adaptable to know those things then they are not necessarily a very good instructor. You have to be adaptable and as I say to my assistant on occasion you have to be prepared to meet people at a place other than your ideal picture of an exercise. You have to be prepared to get them to a good working relationship with their dog as they want it, not at your picture of a perfect performance dog. And Spottytoes one of our instructors at our club says "eyes" for look up. I say "up" for Javelin.
 
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