Trouble training a female dog
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By Mossman15 - 3/20/2013 9:06:09 PM
I've got a 3 month old female retriever having trouble doing even basics. Our last dog was a male and did a great job. I was told by a few other dog people that training female's is a lot harder. Well, although it may not be true, Im having a heck of a time. I don't really ever get down on her and never even swatted her bottom or anything like that but as soon as I tell her NO! or something like that she gets really down and goes and sits in the corner without coming over to me, even avoiding me for up to a half hour or so. Almost like she is angry with me for telling her no, like a child. I strapped a leash to her today to let her walk around and drag it to get use to the feeling on her collar and she didn't leave my side and was shaking like crazy. Any one have any ideas for me? I have taken my time with everything, slower than I would think to even progress but she is very "moody" and its causing issues with even simple obedience commands because she gets down and is done for the day. Help! Running out of ideas! 
By Tim Price - 3/21/2013 8:16:52 AM
Are you using a puppy program. I.e. Merten's Sound Beginnings? You aren't actually doing Basics now at least you shouldn't be. Actual basics don't start until 5-6 months. Puppy Basics are totally different. You want to be introducing things, having fun and building confidence in your pup. Too much discipline too early and you can do damage. Obviously you are teaching right from wrong but not heavily handed at this point.

I strongly advise you get Sound Beginnings so you go thru the right steps to help encourage the pup to get back on track. I have seen dogs do what you are saying. Some are more inclined to do that due to genetics but most were the result of the trainers demeanor.

Good luck 
By Mossman15 - 3/21/2013 9:22:00 AM
Thanks Tim! Yes, I am using sound beginnings. I am just doing pretty much what she is on the video, treats as a reward a few fun bumpers and call her back.... just fun things but as soon as you say NO or anything like that, she is done.... Ill keep trying. Thanks!
By Tim Price - 3/21/2013 5:01:37 PM
I would suggest you heap on the praise whenever it applies in hopes to build her confidence. I normally don't do so but in your case you need to get over  this hump. Today's training methods allow for soft dogs to be trained successfully so don't worry too much. Were either  the pup's parents soft? 

The pups in good hands with regards to the training material which is very important. Keep doing what Jackie says to do and keep us posted. Best of luck
By flannel - 3/25/2013 1:11:26 PM
Interesting post, I myself have an 11 month old yellow female and is the first female I've trained. Though I'd guess only a coincidence, my female is much "softer" than my males ever were. I've found that very positive reinforcement has been the key to this dog and even a harsh "No!" will make her melt to the floor. What works for me in this situation, is to move (even just a few steps) to refocus her attention on the task and boom- she's golden! I certainly agree that since your pup is much younger than mine, your primary focus needs to be on introductions and building a relationship of familiarity and trust-good luck!