What pro dog trainers use, step-by-step to train your dog. How to train a dog to come, walk and sit in dog obedience training.
What pro dog trainers use, step-by-step to train your dog.
How to train a dog to come, walk and sit in dog obedience training.
Dog Obedience Training
The Command “Come!”
During dog obedience training, on service, in any situation, the dog must quickly come to the trainer, after receiving the command or seeing a gesture. This skill disciplines the dog and develops attention to the trainer.
The command “Come!” and the gesture – lowering the left hand to the thigh bone, previously raised sideways on the shoulder height; the flat of the hand is turned to the dog.
Reinforcement – give the treat, stroke, and sometimes tighten the leash.
The movement is implemented from the first days of walking the dog. The basic method of the dog training is food. with dog training treats.
The training is held in the area with the least amount of distracting stimuli. The dog must be hungry or half-starved and good at walking.
The exercise is performed in such a way.
- During the walking of a dog, the trainer calls the dog’s nickname, draws his attention to the piece of meat in the left hand and gives the command “Come!”
- The treat in the hand is kept by the thumb.
- At first, the movement of the hand is free, then the left hand is put out and raised on shoulder level.
- Step by step, the raised hand becomes a signal about a treat for the dog. If the dog is coming slow and sluggish, the trainer should run from him, backing away.
- During one two-hour training, this exercise is repeated 10-15 times with an obligatory treat for the dog.
- If the dog does not respond to the dog training treats with the command “Come,” the trainer draws attention by his behavior and by an easy tightening of the leash, bringing the dog to himself and stroking, and giving a delicacy to the dog.
When the dog on the command “Come” and gesture, interestedly and quickly runs up to the trainer with a long distance leash, the following complications are introduced:
- control of the dog separately by the command and by gesture;
- training to sit in front of the trainer after coming closer;
- the systematic increase in staying in a sitting position in front of the trainer after it comes closer;
- calling the dog from any position, training to sit near the left trainer’s foot after staying in a sitting position in front of the trainer;
- training for non-failure working in the presence of a variety of distracted stimuli;
- control of the dog without a leash;
- calling the dog in different positions of the trainer – standing, sitting, lying down, in motion, from behind a cover, etc.
- When calling the dog, the trainer should not use unpleasant mechanical stimuli for the dog.
- The best means for getting a dog to come are giving him treat and petting.
- The skill is down when the dog on command or gesture in a difficult situation, being at a distance of 30 meters, quickly runs up and sits down in front of the trainer.
Possible errors of the trainer and their results:
- Systematic pronunciation of the dog’s nickname before the command “Come”; repetition of this command.
- Using painful, unpleasant stimuli for the dog after it has come to the trainer.
- The systematic calling of the dog in different positions of the trainer – standing, sitting, lying down. This prevents the dog from staying in these positions.
The skill of changing into the stand-at-ease in any situation is necessary in the setting of training while working and in any other cases when the dog needs to have some rest.
Gesture – point to the right (left) hand towards the dog’s direction of moving.
Application markers — fatigue of nervous, muscular and other systems, which activate the reflex of freedom. This command is practiced from the first days of training; this skill is to be improved throughout the training course and canine working. The trained reflex is developed in parallel by using verbal command and gesture.
The exercise is performed in the following way.
- The trainer pulls the long leash towards the collar and holds the dog by his side. With the walk command pronounced in an approving tone and gesture to the right, the dog is pushed off.
- Then he should run briskly 15-30 ft while repeating the walk command.
- The hand directed aside (gesture) is held for 2-3 seconds and then placed on the hip.
- After the small walk, the trainer permits the dog to walk freely on the long leash. 1-2 minutes later, he calls the dog, pets it, gives a treat and repeats the exercise
- While performing the exercise, the following rules should be observed: the initial walking is to be done only on the long leash; loud commands and abrupt snapping should be prevented; while walking, the dog should be within eyeshot of the trainer.
When the dog quickly passes to the stand-at-ease on the walk command and gesture, the following complications can be gradually introduced:
- control of the dog discreetly at the command or in gesture;
- walking with adherence to the outlined regime at certain time intervals followed by the gradual rise of exercising duration and the reduction of rest time;
- passing the dog to the stand-at-ease from any position: while sitting, staying, being down, etc.;
- walking close by different stimuli accounting the particulars of the dog’s deportment;
- alternate walking unleashed in the absence and later in the presence of a stimulus. While walking unleashed the dog should be muzzled;
- improvement of walking in a zig-zag pattern at the command or in gesture.
The skill is deemed perfected in dog obedience training when the dog agility moves fast in the given direction at the walk command or in gesture, passes to the stand-at-ease under any environmental conditions and does not extend farther than 100 ft away from the trainer while tracking him.
Potential mistakes of the trainer and further consequences:
- Provision of stand-at-ease to the dog with a choke chain and being on a short leash.
- Giving commands in the excessively high tone, with leash snatches while walking.
- Frequent affordance of stand-at-ease while sitting, being down and staying that prevents stamina development in these positions.
- Misuse of leash-less walking, which loses the dog’s discipline.
Sitting represents the basic and initial position of the dog for the performance of further actions, both in the course of training and while working. This skill reduces the dog to discipline.
“Sit” and gesture — the frontwards rise of the freely stretched right hand bottom-up, palms up, to the eye height.
Reinforcement — leash snatching, putting pressure on coupling, petting and giving a treat.
The skill is introduced in 5-6 days since the beginning of training after establishing good contact between the trainer and the dog and conditioning to the commands “Come” and “Walk.”
- The main training method is contrast-based.
- The initially trained reflex is developed on the territory that is familiar to the dog with a minimal range of stimuli.
- The dog should be fasted or half-starved.
- The exercise is performed in the following way.
- The trainer holds the dog in front of himself, turns the collar with the ring up, takes the leash in the right hand 6-8 inches from the collar, commands “Sit” and 1-2 seconds later, makes a snatch with the leash up and back, at the same time putting pressure on coupling with his left hand.
- Once the dog sits, the trainer pets it and gives a treat.
- After keeping the dog in this position for 5-10 seconds, he gives the dog a stand-at-ease.
- The exercise is practiced for 35-40 times during the working day with 2-3 minutes between the sets.
- This mode is maintained for 4-5 days.
- It is advisable to exercise on a daily basis.
- The other commands are not practiced during the training of the sit command.
The dog can be also trained for sitting using the other method.
- The trainer brings the dog in front of him and then steps on the leash in order to limit the dog’s movement.
- He takes a treat in the right hand, gives the command “Sit,” and after 1-2 seconds, brings a treat to the dog’s nose, then he raises the hand behind its head and makes the dog sit.
- After the dog is in a sitting position, the trainer gives a reward.
- The initially trained reflex is deemed perfected when the dog sits quickly after the command without reinforcement and stays in this position for 10-15 seconds, and if the dog does not scoot after the trainer makes 2 side steps.
In a follow-up, complications can be introduced. It is recommended to develop sustained stamina while sitting along with an increase of the distance between the trainer and the dog, observing the following rules:
- the distance between the trainer and the dog, especially up to 10-12 yd, and the holding period should be increased gradually by 1 step and 15-20 seconds every other 2-3 trainings;
- it is not recommended to call the dog after holding it at a distance. It is preferable to approach it, give a treat and pass on to other exercises;
- if the dog scoots, the trainer returns it to the initial position and gives the sit command in a belligerent tone, supported by unconditioned reinforcement, and sits the dog down;
- it is preferable to sidestep the dog backwards, meaning that the trainer is facing the dog while steadily watching it. Hereafter, it is possible to walk in any preferred manner and at any pace (at a footpace or at a run).
Exercise in the formation of a trained reflex to the gesture.
- When the dog is in front of the trainer, he takes the leash in the right hand 1.5-2 ft from the collar and sits it down by the bottom-up movement of the hand.
- In order to enhance the impact on the dog, make the step forward.
- After the executed action, the dog is petted and given a treat.
- Besides that, performed exercises can train the dog to sit while being in different positions discreetly at the command or in gesture.
- At the same time, the effective training should be practiced in the presence of distracting stimuli.
- The dog is trained both on the leash and without it in different positions of the trainer: while standing, sitting, lying down, in motion at different paces, or from behind cover.
- The skill is deemed perfected when the dog sits without any hindrance at the first trainer’s command in rough conditions from any position and at a distance of 25-30 yd from the trainer, and also being upon behavior for 5 minutes.
Potential mistakes of the trainer:
- The repeated command to sit before reinforcement.
- The regular calling of the dog while sitting or giving it the stand-at-ease after the limited waiting.
- Untimely correction of the dog’s wrong position while sitting.
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