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Hi all, we adopted a 5 month old viszla pup yesterday and wondered if anyone else had started house training/ crate training a viszla at this age and could offer any advice. She is lovely natured but has been brought up in outdoor kennels. We tried to leave her to sleep downstairs last night but she was very destressed and started being destructive so I slept on the sofa next to her. We are buying a crate today and
I’ve emailed a puppy training school but due to covid 19 face to face classes aren’t starting yet so any help would be greatly appreciated.
 

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You basically start at zero and take nothing for granted.
My last two V's were girls. One 11 months old, the other 22 months old, when I go them. Their owner, breeder had died after a long illness, so they were basically "placed". I've also started out with an 8 month old male with no training.
The 22 month old was the hardest because she had basically spent 22 months kenneled alone. She didn't have any bad habits, she had no habits! She was basically a blank slate. She was physically very clumsy and never did gain the typical athleticism of a Vizlsa. The 11 month old had bounced around around a little bit, and had some somewhat serious issues to overcome. Extremely head shy, and a bad bladder infection. She also had been kenneled too much. It was three months of work before she would even look at me, and it took almost two years before she would let you stroke her ears, without wailing and crying. ( Someone has "twitched" her ears as part of the force retrieval training process.)
With older dogs you just have to wait it out and establish a bond. Generally a puppy goes from the breeder to the owner at 8 weeks old and do not at that point have their "adult brain", so they are mentally able to deal with the change a little better. They also get lots of attention and affection to bridge that gap.
At 5 months, she has her adult brain, she also has quite a bit of her size. It's very easy to assume that the puppy knows more that it does, but she is still very much a puppy and has all the puppy needs.
When I start puppies in the crate, I sleep next to the crate for a few nights. I cover the front grate and whenever they get anxious I very lightly tap on the grate and soothe them in a low voice. They need to understand that they have not been abandoned. The crate is a temporary measure.
I cover the front entrance of the crate intentionally so that they cannot see me, but they can scent that you are there, so there is reassurance that they are not alone. It als creates a more quieting environment.
Work the crate as fun time during the days and have training sessions with the crate. In and out with rewards for good behavior.
Make a big deal out of her when she comes out of the crate. All happiness. There will be times when she has to be forced into the kennel, which is all part of the training process, but in the beginning it's all positives and soft corrections. Treat her as if she is a 5 kilo, 8 week old puppy. You wouldn't be harsh with an 8week old puppy, don't be harsh with her. She's learning also.
Everything is the same as with the 8 week old. House training, leash training, crate training. Take nothing for granted, and assume she knows nothing.
All the dogs I mentioned above became wonderful adult Vizslas.Two became very good hunting dogs, the third, the 22 month old, never really developed as a hunting dog because she simply would not move away from my side in the field, but she had the most wonderful, soft, quiet demeanor. She was the perfect companion for Gunnr, the 11 month old, who was a high wire act from day one, but was also a very big part of the household.Her energy and enthusiasm were boundless.
That 8 month old male I started was the best, natural, water retrieving Vizlsa I've ever seen, and just a total goofball in the house. He used to think he was invisible!! Athletically, he was the most gifted of all the Vizlsas I've owned.
The point to all of this is take your time. Take nothing for granted in all phases of training and development and let the dog bond with you.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thank you so much for such a thorough response. I really appreciate it and will take on what you’ve suggested. We have got the crate set up and will start with the training process as you advise. Thanks again :)
 
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