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My fiancee and I adopted a 4 month old boxer/hound mix puppy just over a week ago, and overall she has been pretty good so far. We weren't initially planning on getting a puppy when we started looking for a dog we'd like to adopt, but when we met her at a local event and fell in love with her. She is very sweet and loves meeting new people and new dogs, and has not exhibited many behaviors that I think we need to be super concerned about. Every time she meets someone new in our building they comment about how sweet and well mannered and calm she is. She still could use some refinement of course of the normal puppy things like leash behavior, not jumping on her back legs when meeting people, etc.
Things happened fast with her adoption, and I keep getting this worried feeling that we might be starting her off with a bad foundation and creating problems in our ignorance that will inevitably need to be addressed at some point down the road. One of the big frustrations we've had so far is with house training. We live in a high rise building in an urban environment, but we have a dog run area in our building and an ample amount of open green space nearby for her to run, play, and do her business in. I've listened to some podcasts during my commute, read things on this sub and other online resources, and watched some YT videos to try to help figure out how to get her on the right path. But she still struggles with it, and I want to see what we need to fix to help set her up for success.
Schedule: I work Monday/Wednesday remote, so the other 3 days of the work week neither of us are at home during the day. We got her started at a daycare nearby to keep her stimulated and socialized while we are gone the other 3 days of the week. We feed her morning around 6-7 AM, lunch around noon-1 PM, dinner around 6-7 PM. We take her out to potty every couple hours (sooner if she has had a meal or drank water), and we do maybe 15-20 minute walks during those potty breaks. Bedtime is around 10 PM and we wake up at 5 AM. One of us wakes up around 1-2 AM to bring her out to try to potty.
*Environment: * She has pretty free reign of the apartment when we're with her. We have a small one bedroom where we can keep a good eye on her wherever she might be, but we keep the bedroom closed off until bed time. Do we need to maybe get a pen and limit her to a smaller area while inside?
Training: She knew how to sit when we adopted her, in the last week we taught her "paw" mostly by accident from cleaning her paws off when coming inside from a walk/potty break, and she is doing well with learning "down" over the last 2 days. We need to teach her "leave it", "come", and "heel" I think next. Is there anything else we need to work on and prioritize?
Crate Training: The first night we got her, we set up her crate area and she slept through the night without issue in the crate next to our bed. The first day we both went back to work we had crated her, not realizing that we might be creating a negative association between the crate and being left alone. So since that time we've been slowly starting from square one with the crate. For now we feed her her meals in the crate and have done a little bit of familiarizing with the crate to just slowly integrate it. At night she sleeps in her dog bed next to our bed, generally without issue other than some nights when she wakes up because she has to pee.
I guess I'm just trying to figure out if we're screwing anything up so far. I feel like we might be giving her too much freedom too soon and might need to introduce a much stricter regimen of crate training and nap enforcement. Is there anything we need to fix immediately/correct/keep doing?
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