Hiya all. My first post here, and I'm wondering if anyone could give me a bit of help.
I recently moved to Australia to live for a year. My family here keeps pure bred Staffordshire Bull Terriers, and breeds them, too. Towards the end of last year, their current pair (both beautiful and with the best temperaments you could ask for in a dog) bred and produced a lovely, healthy litter of... I think it was seven pups. Well, they sold all of them on except for one, because they'd wanted a blue female.
Now she's about four or five months old, and I'm here, I've gained responsibility for walking her and what-have-you. She has a nasty habit of running willy-nilly across roads however, which is a culture shock for me since my last dog (a 17-y/o mutt who died a couple of years ago) wouldn't think of breathing without my say-so, bless his paws.
Anyway, this brings me to the point that I'm now training this puppy who has never been trained before, and who needs to learn if she's ever going to be allowed off the leash.
I've been doing basic with her (sit, stay, come, lay) for the last few days, and she is responding well to it, but I've noticed that she is very fearful of me when I issue the commands. I'm not sure why she ends up with her tail tucked, cowering, ears back and shaking within ten minutes. The training is like this:
Sit: Treat above head, sometimes nudging her back end down. Pause 5 seconds, puppy sits still. Give treat and fuss.
Down: Treat above head, gently push her back to encourage her to lay. Pause 10 seconds. Give treat and fuss.
Stay: Treat in hand. Tell puppy to sit, then STAY. I walk a few metres and pause for 5 seconds. I then return and give treat/fuss.
Come: Tell puppy to STAY. Walk a few metres away, pause for 5 seconds, then call her name (I want her to come to her name because that's how the family calls her). When she comes, give treat/fuss.
I raise my voice, but only to be clear, and I'm not rough when I am manoeuvring her into a sitting or laying position, which she has started to do those herself anyway. I do the training in a long corridor with no distractions, because mum and dad get in my way and hers if I try it outside on the yard.
As I said, she is responding well to the training (which surprised me; I've not trained a dog in over a decade), but she ends up a shivering wreck within the space of ten minutes, which is when I call it quits and lead her back outside.
Is there anything I can do to make her more confident and less scared of me when we're training?
(Something that might be worth mentioning is that she spends all her time with mum and dad, and I wonder if she gets anxious when I remove her from them.)