Sounds like a dumb question... but the responses on a related thread got me to wondering.
I've been studying Bill Hillman's stuff and it seems to me his demos begin when he's working with about a 10-11 week old puppy and they seamlessly progress all the way up to and through transition.
So, for instance... do you define "formal" obedience as that stage of training when you insist on the pup doing the basic commands you've been teaching him since puppyhood? Or is it something that begins when he's a particular age? Or is it "formal" only in the since that it's "foundational" and precedes field work?
Hillman's traffic cop routine essentially starts when the very young puppy is learning his first "sit" lessons... and there is never more than minimal (i.e., lowest perceptible stimulation level) pressure throughout. Were those "formal" obedience sessions?
So maybe the question shouldn't be WHEN to do formal OB, but WHAT IS "formal" OB.