6 Speedy Ways To Train A German Shepherd

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Are you excited to begin training your German Shepherd and wondering how to train a German Shepherd because you’re eager to get started?

I’ve trained German Shepherds and will show you the quickest ways to get the behaviors that you want…

While having fun and bonding with your dog!

By the time you’re done reading this, you’ll have learned the best ways to train your German Shepherd in the shortest time possible.

How Long Will I Have To Train My German Shepherd Daily? 

how much time will i have to train my german shepherd
Commit to training your German Shepherd daily.

Be prepared to train your German Shepherd for at least 10 to 15 minutes a day. You should practice basic obedience training, but also include fun training games to keep them interested in their training and engaged with you.

You’ll want to break up the 10 to 15 minutes throughout the day to make sure your German Shepherd doesn’t get bored of the same routine commands.

Aim for five three-minute sessions daily in the beginning, as a minimum.

There are exceptions to this rule since your GSD is a working breed and some GSDs will enjoy training for longer. But start with no more than a few minutes in a short session and gradually build onto each individual session longer times.

During each session work on just one or two commands so that your dog learns the right way to perform the command. You can add in another command they know if they’re struggling to pay attention and keep the session positive and interesting.

Ready to start using games during your German Shepherd training?

Then you’ll enjoy these fun German Shepherd games for obedience training to help your dog stay active, alert, and ready for their daily sessions.

How Long Does It Take To Train A German Shepherd?

german shepherd puppy or adult training times
How long it takes to train a German Shepherd depends on many factors, for example, if you have a puppy or adult.

It takes anywhere from 8 to 12 weeks to train a German Shepherd to learn basic obedience commands.

Usually, most 20 week old German Shepherd puppies are house trained, crate trained, and understand a few basic commands if you’ve trained them correctly.

Crate training will take about a week to introduce slowly and have your dog or puppy go into the crate on their own to relax. But if your dog has had a bad experience with the crate it could take months.

Keep in mind that if you have an adult Shepherd who has already lived with another owner (or many dog owners) then you may have to undo improper training or behavior problems. This means that you have many months ahead of you of training.

Some GSDs are aggressive or reactive and it may take years before they learn to relax around other dogs in a calm manner.

While other German Shepherds have excellent dog social experiences from the start and can mix in with other dogs on a whim and quickly pick up their training basics.

When to Start Training a German Shepherd Puppy?

how long does it take to obedience train a german shepherd puppy
German Shepherd puppies are ready for simple training as young as 7 weeks old.

Your puppy is capable and ready to learn at 6 to 7 weeks old many simple obedience commands. But you shouldn’t pressure a puppy this young with perfect obedience. A 1 minutes session is long enough for a young puppy.

After a couple of weeks, your German Shepherd puppy should know to sit, stay, and down, as well as its name. Although a reliable off-leash come (recall) usually takes about 6 to 8 weeks of proper dog training.

Leash training is rather quick when you gently place the leash on your dog or puppy, use food rewards or play, and don’t use the leash to jerk your dog around the house or neighborhood.

It took me only about a day to train my German Shepherd to sit using lure and reward training. This means, I use one of the best, tasty treats to move her into the position I want, and then reward her with the food.

My GSD took about 7 days to sit and wait at doors before barging out, but…

She only takes a day to unlearn this behavior if I relax on it and let her out without waiting!

A simple trick, such as ‘spin’ took me only a day, but more complicated tricks could take weeks or months. Something complicated like staying in place with tons of distractions (think cats or squirrels running by) might take you at least 6 months to work up to.

Keep in mind that German Shepherd training requires you to work in very small steps and build upon their success. You can’t just let your neighbor’s cat walk right in front of you while you’re walking your GSD and expect them not to lunge if your dog isn’t worked up to ignore this high value distraction.

Think of it this way: In school, you didn’t start with calculus. You started with basic math, then geometry, algebra, and so on. Don’t rush the learning or you’ll take longer to train your German Shepherd.

German Shepherd Training: The Right Way

How long it takes to train a German Shepherd depends on how consistent you are and how well you support your dog to understand.

You must also consider your GSDs:

  • age – are they an energetic puppy or more confident adult
  • previous training – are they fresh to obedience or do they have some basics under their belt
  • whether you are using the right training methods that are simple for your dog to understand

The most effective and easy-to-understand system for German Shepherds to learn is called positive reward training. Using positive rewards allows you to mark the specific behaviors your German Shepherd performs right at nearly the exact moment they do them.

Use a scientifically-based program to learn positive, reward-based training, like this Brain Training for Dogs official program. 

The Brain Training Program gives you step-by-step dog training to help you speed up your success rate and the time it takes you to train your GSD. It’s also a way to see if you’re performing the commands in a way your dog knows so that you don’t waste any time learning bad behaviors accidentally.

Not to mention, it’s affordable. Have you seen the price of in-person German Shepherd training these days? Yep, it’s not cheap. Start from home with online dog training to get a head-start on your dog’s obedience and keep some money in the bank.

Setbacks That Slow Your German Shepherd Training

setbacks that slow down training
Be aware of any setback that will slow down the time it takes to train your German Shepherd.

A German Shepherd will forget everything they’ve learned if you don’t hold them accountable and to a standard, skip their daily training, or let them perform a bad behavior and unintentionally reward them.

Harsh punishments and the wrong types of corrections can cause your dog to become fearful of you. Stick with positive dog training, or reward-based training, for a better bond with your special breed.

Learn to discipline your German Shepherd puppy the right way to ensure you don’t lose the close bond you want with your dog.

Remember, any lack of training on your part is still considered training!

You are the dog trainer and must learn the right ways to train a German Shepherd.

⚡ Here’s the best steps to success for lightening-fast German Shepherd training.

6 Steps To Speedy German Shepherd Training

steps to speedy german shepherd training
There are simple steps you can take to make training your German Shepherd easier and quicker.

These training tips will help you decrease the time it takes to train your German Shepherd while making sure you’re teaching them the right ways to live with you.

Remember…

Your dog is a brilliant breed, but you must give them the time and attention they need in order to see the most success. 

1. Vary up your training environments

When you start your training sessions at home, you probably use a quiet room, turn off the TV, and maybe even close the door to your practice area so that you can pay attention to your training.

While this is great in the beginning phases of training it’s detrimental in the long run.

Why?

Because your dog doesn’t understand the command when you go outside and there’s kids running around, or other dogs and people to grab their attention!

In order to have a trained German Shepherd you must teach them to behave and respond correctly in any situation he’ll face, like:

  • groups of people
  • barking dogs
  • at the groomer or vets
  • in a noisy park
  • around town shopping
  • out on a patio while you drink a coffee
  • when the weather isn’t nice
  • loud cars and motorcycles

Basically…

ANY place or situation you could possibly think of!

Think of real-life dog training environments you’re going to be in. Then, train your German Shepherd to become slowly used to following your command in those places.

Don’t just sit in your living room or backyard and expect your GSD to perform the same in other situations.

2. Train consistently

Training skills will go quickly downhill without regular practice.

Skills you once thought your dog knew can be unlearned without consistent repetition.

If time goes by and you or your family let the training routine slip, an enthusiastic German Shepherd who likes to jump to greet visitors will resort back to their natural instincts to jump on people.

Don’t punish your German Shepherd when your lack of training consistency is the real problem.

Don’t train your dog once a week and expect them to know how to behave. It’s YOUR job to become a consistent teacher if you want a German Shepherd to become trained fast.

Set aside time each day for specific command training, but also remember that every interaction with your German Shepherd is a training opportunity! 

3. Train your German Shepherd throughout the day

You don’t have to use a structured training session to train your German Shepherd.

In fact, I’ve found the best way to get my German Shepherd to learn new commands is by incorporating them throughout the day.

For example: When I play tug with my German Shepherd I have her ‘down’ before I let her have the tug occasionally.

For example: Before I feed her I have her go to her ‘place’, ‘down’, and ‘wait’ until I’m done preparing her food.

For example: When getting ready for walks I have her ‘sit’ and ‘wait’ at the door until I give the command to go out. 

Look for training opportunities during your day to get the most training benefits.

✅ If you want the best results, practice 10 to 15 minutes structured sessions IN ADDITION to using everyday obedience in real-world circumstances.

Don’t miss the small opportunities to quicken your German Shepherd’s training during your normal daily routines.

4. Use high-quality rewards for high-quality learning

Find out what treats really motivate your dog.

Some German Shepherds will work for lower quality rewards, like their regular kibble, while others may need more motivation.

I have a dog that will work for praise and attention, but I’ve found my German Shepherd prefers tiny, pea-sized pieces of treats that are moist.

You don’t need a lot of treats when they’re small!

Ian Dunbar, a renowned dog behaviorist, says that freeze-dried liver treats are the Ferrari of high-quality food rewards.

But you can also choose other healthy treats for a German Shepherd if your dog prefers a different flavor.

5. Don’t rush training

All dogs learn very differently and at a variety of paces.

Don’t feel you need to rush to catch up to German Shepherds you see on YouTube or Instagram.

This will only set you back in your own German Shepherd training! 

Instead, build up in small steps by starting in a distraction-free area with your basic German Shepherd training commands. Even in the most desirable situations, your dog may struggle with particular commands.

Don’t rush the training or your dog won’t learn the skills properly and reliably.

When you see your German Shepherd forget a command, go back to square one – the beginning of the command – and work on the training… again.

If you’re staying consistent and taking baby steps toward your overall training goals, then there’s no need to rush the progress.

Try using your phone to record you training your dog.

When you think you’re not going fast enough, take a moment to watch your training videos to get a better perspective. I bet you’ll be surprised how much you’ve taught your German Shepherd!

6. Use a training program to keep you on track

Staying on top of your training is hard when you don’t know what to teach next.

Instead of just guessing if you’re doing the right thing using a training program designed to build upon your dog’s skills.

Online training is easy and simple to follow, and the step-by-step directions guide you through the correct ways to train your German Shepherd with the best results.

I use the Brain Training for Dogs program for the step-by-step online training from the comfort of home that has a done-for-you schedule.

This training system also includes games to play which improve your Shepherd’s behavior and mental health. And, if you have a puppy it’s perfect for their first introduction to positive training.

German Shepherd Training Lasts A Lifetime

german shepherd training lasts a lifetime
Training begins early… and never stops!

Don’t focus only on how long does it take to train a German Shepherd, as this can cause you to rush through training, make mistakes, and neglect the fun you and your GSD will have training together! 

Instead, concentrate on the good things your dog does and LET HIM KNOW you like the behavior by offering praise and rewards.

Don’t try to train him only when he is being bad, as this means your German Shepherd begins to think that training is punishment. Instead, set up a daily training schedule to help you train them quickly.

You can speed up training by using the right methods to train a German Shepherd…

Which is positive, reward-based training.

But know that all dogs learn at different rates, and it’s better to focus on the fun of training to make the time more enjoyable for both you and your dog! 

Training a German Shepherd lasts a lifetime, and you’re never really done with training.

If you get tired of training, take a short break with these fun ways to make a German Shepherd happy.

😁 I bet you didn’t’ know how much you could make your dog smile!