A well-trained Rottweiler remains happy and obedient without exhibiting aggressive disposition or behavioral issues. Smart, faithful, and intelligent, a Rottie is a delight to train when you tread the right path. With a proper Rottweiler training, you can inculcate social skills in your dog and turn him into a great companion for years to come.
Rottweilers are among the strongest guarding dogs and known to be fiercely loyal. Their independent nature, dominant temperament, and muscular strength are likely to make them stubborn, disobedient, overprotective, or aggressive when not trained and socialized properly. Here is a 7-step Rottweiler training guide for an owner to teach his dog the right manners and make him a perfect family dog.
Rottweiler Training Step #1: Understand Your Dog
You must understand the common personality traits and temperament of a Rottweiler and plan his training accordingly. The dog’s instincts favor a dominant owner rather than a feeble and inconsistent one. Rotties are more disposed to training methods that appeal to their protective instincts. The dog is calm and watchful. He closely monitors the owner’s behavior to learn and react. If he finds any of his actions rewarding for family members, the dog loves to repeat it. They thrive on physical contact with family members.
The breed is not mentally agile and likes to focus on one task at a time. Rottweilers have high work ethics and are quick to learn and perform a task if you are consistent with your training methods. They prefer a “wait and see” to reacting instantly. Rotties are sensitive to human feelings and don’t like to be dealt with harshly.
Rottweiler Training Step #2: Start Early and When Young
Start training your dog as soon as he arrives home. The best time to start Rottweiler training is when your dog is aged between 8 weeks and 6 months. A puppy is more amenable to training than an adult and independent dog.
Training a young puppy has more chances of success, as his span of attention is limited, and you can easily make him focus on your words without too much time, effort, and patience. If your Rottie is beyond this age, you still have a chance to train these intelligent dogs with rewarding reinforcement and proper communication.
Rottweiler Training Step #3: Select the Right Time
Train at the right time and for the right amount of time. You need to make sure your Rottie is physically and mentally fit to reciprocate while training. So, train your dog when he is relaxed and alert. The output may not be up to your expectations if you train a dog when he is sleepy, injured, or sick. A Rottweiler is able to focus on your teachings when he is not alert and without any ailment.
Keep your Rottweiler training sessions short – 10 to 15 minutes. Repeat each command 5 to 10 times. Teach him how to react to a command and relate an action to a word. For example, make him sit after saying “sit down.” Observe the reaction of the dog after each command and reward positive behavior. There should be three to four training sessions a day.
Rottweiler Training Step #4: Teach To Obey Commands
It is the most crucial part of Rottweiler training. A puppy is a naïve pet unable to understand what you expect him to do. You have a task in hand to make him understand your words, relate it to a particular action, and do that action. Use simple commands that are easy for the dog to learn and understand. Ensure your voice is friendly and devoid of any anger. Keep him focused. Let the dog feel that his actions please or annoy you to learn the right manner.
Here are some basic commands and tips as to how to teach them.
- Command “Sit”/ “Get Down”: When the puppy is standing before you, tell him firmly to sit pointing to the floor. First, make him sit 4-5 times by repeating the command. If he obeys, give him a reward. If not, just show him the reward repeating the command. Place the treat at his nose level and move it backward to convince him to perform better. Meanwhile, repeat the verbal command to help him relate to the action. Once he learns to do so, praise him and give him the treat. Repeat what he has learned.
- Command “No Bite”: Play the act by placing a toy or your hand in his mouth. If the puppy nips, firmly tell him not to bite and leave him alone to convey your displeasure. Repeat the act after a while. Do this until he learns not to nip or bite. Reward him to show your pleasure if he does not bite.
- Command “No Chew”: If you see the Rottie chewing anything, firmly tell him “no” and remove the item. Make sure he understands your displeasure. You may replace the item with a toy to tell him what he should touch and what he should not.
- Command “Quiet”: When a Rottweiler puppy is unnecessarily barking, firmly tell him to “be quiet.” If he obeys, give him a small treat or verbal praise. If not, repeat the command a few times and leave him alone. Try to convey your expectations with repetition. Barking is natural for a guarding dog, and he needs time to learn.
- Command “No” / “Stop”: Consistent in using the command whenever you want to stop your Rottie from doing something. Be firm in your voice, as Rottweilers are more likely to obey dominant Start it with crate training. Repeat the command until he learns it. When not obeying, keep yourself away from him to tell him that you are not happy with him. If he obeys your word, cuddle and praise him.
- Command “Come”/ “Stay”: Use the command according to the situation with a firm voice. Reward him with praise or cuddling when he obeys your word. You may use signs like hand waving, clapping, throwing a toy, whistling, or slapping your thighs to help your dog understand your word and follow it. Reward him for obeying and repeat the command often.
- Command “Paw”: Say the word paw and take his paw in your hand. Repeat it a few times. Then, speak the word paw. If the dog advances his paw toward you, reward him for obeying your command. Repeat it to help him learn.
Rottweiler Training Step #5: Reward Obedience
When you devise a reward-based Rottweiler training, you will see your dog learning faster. Rewarding immediately after his action is the key to conveying it to your dog that you are happy with his behavior. Fiercely loyal and faithful, your Rotties will stick to such manners and conducts to keep you pleased. If you fail to reinforce his good behavior, it is likely that the dog will become confused and unable to find out what you exactly expect from him.
Rewards may be in the form of treats, verbal praise, toys, or more playtime. Using food as a reward has its share of demerits in the long term. Gradually, replace treats with other verbal and non-verbal incentives.
Rottweiler Training Step #6: Be Consistent and Repeat
These dogs have high work ethics, and they just love to work. This also leads them to expect their trainer to be consistent in his command, approach, reward, and behavior. Rottweilers are thoughtful and observer dogs. They may disobey commands that are inconsistent or confused.
So, plan your Rottweiler training with a consistent approach and simple and clear commands. Make the training fun so that your dog feels relaxed and comfortable. Don’t lose your cool and keep patience, as you are teaching a kid unaware of everything. Repeat the commands on a daily basis for a few days.
Rottweiler Training Step #7: Understand Training Basics
While training a Rottweiler, establish it clearly that you have set a few rules and the dog has a duty to follow them. Be kind to your dog and avoid yelling at or hitting him. Don’t use a crate as a punishment.
Observe the reaction of the dog and use it to your advantage. Encourage good behavior while discouraging nuisances and aggression. Don’t try to control the dog or assert yourself; just be friendly to win over his loyalty. Be prompt in rewarding the dog.
There should be no harsh or physical punishments during Rottweiler training. This may make the dog fearful of being with you or forcing him to react. A puppy frequently punished at a tender age is more likely to be disturbed, stressed, and aggressive when he becomes an adult.