Building a relationship with an adopted 3-mo old puppy: looking for advice

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Two weeks ago my girlfriend and I adopted a lovely 3-month old male east-european shepherd (a variation of GSD, basically) mix from a shelter and we absolutely love him.

Things are going well so far, but the thing is that I can't really spend a lot of time at home – i work really long hours – and the dog is getting more and more used to my girlfriend while being rather cautious around me.

He'll follow her around the apartment, will typically come much quicker when called and whenever they play he's obviously having way more fun. The puppy is glad to see me when I come home, but he's more reserved and doesn't follow me around. Sometimes he'll come when I call him, sometimes he won't. He seems to lose interest rather quickly when we're playing, although i do keep playtime sessions very short.

I spend a lot of time with him during the weekend and about an hour on late weekday evenings. I try my best to be as affectionate and fun to him and reward him with treats and 'good-boy's everytime he does well.

About a week ago we vaccinated the puppy so that we could finally go for walks. We contacted a dog trainer who gave us heaps of useful advice on how and what to do outside, however I find it really frustrating to get the dog to listen to me outside – he gets super distracted with everything (we live in a city), pulls on the leash and does almost nothing to acknowledge my presence, it's almost as if I didn't exist!

My girlfriend seems to have more control over him, although he still gets distracted a lot and spooked by all the noises, smells, other dogs and cars outside – I'm sure that's understandable and on par for the course.

I'm starting to think that I'm doing something wrong. Maybe i shouldn't take him out for walks until i manage to get him to listen to me in the apartment as there are zero distractions?

Is there anything I can do here or is it simply about time spent together?

Any type of advice is welcome!

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