As you did so good with your first homework, you're getting some more this time 🙂 No worries if you don't manage to do everything in 2 weeks, you can always come back to those tricks. Post wherever you end up, we learn the most through problems, so you want to post those too! 🙂
1. experiment with different toys and ways to play with your dog. Tape his favourite game to give some new ideas to other participants (and me!!!)
2. instead of a plate, find something a little higher this time to give them a better feeling of where to keep their front legs, click first for front feet on an object (should be easy, you want the same thing as on a plate) and then observe hind legs and click for ANY movement (even just a weight shift) and then shape from there to more&more steps around the object. I first click both directions and once I get a quarter of a circle, start clicking one direction only and reward with a head away from me in order to get a full circle. The final goal is full circle in both directions, with you static (don't help the dog to circle with your movement!) - I think those that have my heeling video can already do that exercise, though 🙂
3. take the plate and hold it in different positions to see if the dog understands it's the same thing even when you hold it higher, under angle, to his left/right etc. Try when he is standing, sitting and lying down. If you didn't name touching an object with a paw, it's time to do it now! Also, try to change objects for this exercise, sometimes also use a hand as a paw target. Once he can do all that, you're ready for next two tricks we will get out of the paw touch:
- crossing paws: tell the puppy to down (or shape it if he doesn't know it yet), then hold the plate (or, you can use another, smaller and more convenient object, like a plastic lid or a piece of paper) close to left paw and only reward touching it with left paw. Then hold it closer and closer to right paw, still only reward left paw touches, then hold it on right paw and eventually on the other side, jackpoting the touches of left paw on a right paw now in order to eventually get rid of a target.
- sit up: tell the puppy to sit (or shape it if he doesn't know it yet), then put the plate (or just use the hand if he will recognize that as a target) low enough first that he can reach it with a paw, but then every next time, hold it a little higher - not that high that he would stand up, but high enough that the other leg leaves the ground a little bit too. Jackpot.
4. observe your puppy and try to find situations when he would back up - it usually happens when they're moving out of your way - or sometimes when you're working on ignoring the food in the hand. You can try to sit down on the floor with treats in your hand and click first step back with hind foot. Don't wait for more than one as they usually sit down then. Click&reward the first one and reward by throwing a treat towards the dog. Rewarding at distance will help you add more&more steps and more&more distance from you. At one point, switch to rewarding with a toy, it's easier to throw.
5. 2on2off - find an object big enough for the dog to go on with all 4 feet easily - maybe just put your first 4in object upside down? - Click for 2-3 legs on and then don't click the fourth one, you don't want any duration standing there! Only click again when the dog is leaving the object, try to catch him with 2 front feet on the ground and deliver the treat while he is still in this position. You want them go on an object and off immediately, stopping with front feet on the ground. Click&reward several times for a position, then say "go"/"o.k."/"free"/whatever your release word will be and throw a treat away so that he needs to leave the position to get it. Do this enough times that the dog starts to expect the thrown treat after "go", so that then you don't need to throw it in advance, but only after he leaves the position on "go". Do not help with body language that you want him to leave after "go" - if he doesn't know it yet, go back to throwing a treat and progress more slowly.
Another note: I'll be able to answer your questions this coming week with no problem, but then the week after I have seminars here, so I'm not sure if I'll be able to keep up. If not, we'll just add another week to this class.
I hope that i am not repeating my post- but can’t find it on the site. I loved everybodies skills. I too want to steal stick um up and I use Bang instead ofplay dead!
I will try to send a video with the crossed paws later but we are just getting it. Our poodle Wrigley does it naturally and so I got her to offer it within 2 clicks by moving her target up and to the side. Cuby not so easy
We are doing the circling around the perch great up high and on a fairly big target so I am trying to get him onto a lower and smaller perch. My editing skills are not as good as many of you- I am so impressed!
Here is my video on pivot work. Elsa was pretty comfortable with the clockwise circles so in this video I’m concentrating more on the counter-clockwise pivoting although she goes back & forth offering both. Delivering the treats the correct way was a bit of a challenge for me 🙂 Elsa is so quick & can be a bit forceful about grabbing the treat that sometimes my priority is not getting my fingers pinched…:) Wondering if anyone else has problems with their dogs nipping fingers while taking a treat. I have worked with her on gently taking the treat which she does fine with if we are training for gently taking the treat-- but when she gets excited in a training session for some other behavior she forgets “gentle”. I hate to discourage her if she is really offering great stuff in a shaping session so I put up with the snappiness…but maybe I should rethink this? Or wear gloves?…:)
Ooh, love the two full circles!!
Yes, my MinPins are snatchy and I have taught them that I offer the treat between two fingers and I will not release it until their mouth is soft. It takes some time and initially some “chomping”, but both my fingers are well into their mouths holding the treat and not releasing until the mouth is soft. That’s what I do, but it takes a little work to train it. Treats to not get released from my fingers until the mouth is soft and my fingers are well into their mouths, so it’s not something everyone is comfortable doing.
Thanks Amy! I’ll give your method of releasing the treat a try. Hope I don’t lose any fingers in the process. 🙂
I have one who is a bit grabby at times too. I also don’t want to discourage him for this behavior after he has done something great…so if he is in a snapping mode I just toss the treat for him.
Yes, but the problem is that with some tricks, it’s not ideal if you need to toss for every try…
With my cattle dogs I worked on nipping in any way stops the game during play and away from other training. Used a glove -- golf gloves are great because you can buy them as singles -- when training not to loose motivation As the excitment goes up so does the hard mouth so working the nipping during play seems to solve the problem in the long run as they learn control.
I totally agree with you! I should have clarified. My grabby one (Sheltie) just takes treats harder than I would like when he is excited, but because he doesn’t get excited very often, I let it slide. Callie (BC) on the other hand gets over the top and has actually nipped me in the leg or been careless on the tug toy. With her the rule is…your teeth tough my skin…game over. After a minute or so, she got another chance at playing. It took a long time and many bruises, but she is quite good now.
Great job!!! Great speed and coordination! I would still remind her with “gentle” if she gets snappy. If she knows the idea of it, I don’t think it will discourage her or kill the enthusiasm. It’s important she can control herself even when excited.
Thanks Silvia! I think Elsa’s speed & coordination comes from running along the shore--which here in Maine is mostly granite rocks covered with seaweed. When I first adopted her she had no coordination whatsoever and would slip & slide & fall between the rocks. But she learned quite quickly that if she wanted to get from point A to Z fast (she wants to do everything FAST :)), she needed to know where all her feet were. Now she flies over the slippery rocks--a joy to watch!
Saying “gentle” when she gets snappy taking a treat in a training session is helping. Still have to remind her a lot but we’ll get there. 🙂
Yes, off leash running on difficult surfaces is definitely very important! I love the woods we have here where we live now, it’s very wild and unpredictable, holes filled with leafs, benches and trees on the ground, different levels of steepness… Perfect dog fitness woods! 🙂
Ok, so this is where we are so far:
1. Maia’s all time favourite game is fetch -- soft frisbees are her favourite, followed closely by balls, then by sticks she finds on our walks. She also loves to tug on her sheepskin tug toy and on her soft frisbee.
2. Pivoting: she will finally pivot all the way around but only to the right. She starts to stress and offers everything under the moon when I want her to pivot to the left. All I can get so far is a few steps to the left. So we will work on this some more.
3. Paw touch: well, she prefers to paw at the target rather than touch and hold the target (as seen in the video). When sitting up, she paws a lot unless I let her rest her paws on my hand or something. When laying down to do the crossing the paws, she ends up scratching the target and this is how she came up with a ‘new’ trick -- hide the target under her fur! She will take the target and usually with one quick swipe hide it under her chest and lay on it. It was so cute, I had to click and reward for it -- so now she loves doing that. So we are not anywhere close to getting her to cross her paws. I have to hold the target with my hand or else it will end up under her chest.
4. She loves backing up. We are also practicing it with her in the down position.
5. 2on2off: we are not practicing this because she was taught this for her original contacts and I am retraining to running contacts. She will do the 2on2off but I am not asking for it right now.
Oh, and still NO froggie! Not even close… :((
The sit pretty with the weaving is so cute! Sure it is harder to hold balance with busy paws but it is so cute, and isn’t the whole point of balancing acts that they are a bit hard to balance and the dog builds up the balance because of the trick 🙂
You guys are doing great! I had the same issue with Bean not wanting to pivot in the “other” direction. Starting with lowered criteria (foot wiggle, one step, then two) really helped. Maia looks like she is well on her way with a bit of a turn in the other direction. I absolutely love her “hide the target” trick!!!! She is so clever and so deliberate about it!!!
Diane and Bean
Love it! Great idea to kneel. Think I will try that with my Sheltie. He might be more active if I’m not standing over him.
Yesterday, Da Vinci started offering scooting backwards from a down during the “ignoring treats” practice. Think I’ll keep encouraging it. I’ve been using that as a warm up for sessions. Never know what I’m going to get so its fun.
I know, isn’t it fun! I got the scooting backwards from a down and this new trick of hiding things under her chest fur while shaping other tricks 🙂 They are so funny and cute -- I really love watching them think things through.
I used to sit on the floor when shaping the pivoting. That did not go well. Then I put my hand with the clicker above her head, but I did not move my hand in any way to lure her, and she just started to spin around the hand -- but that is not what we want, so I took my hand away. She then did not spin around again. But when I put my treat hand behind my back while I was kneeling, she started to spin -- go figure -- sometimes a change in our position is all it takes! Now to get the spin in the other direction…
Yes, with smaller dogs, kneeling down is better!
Loved the hide the target trick! 🙂 Maybe you can then just use your hand for crossing paws? The pivoting to the right is great, so I would definitely jackpot the steps to the left she is offering in between too, it’s just less frustrating way to get left circles too and no, I don’t think it will be too confusing 🙂 Nice back up -- but make sure you reward when she is still backing up. Try to get a step or two more now, she seems to do the same distance every time and then stop for a treat. Sit up is actually very nice, no problem she is moving her paws. Did you try the leg stretches in dead dog position? Maybe like pushing off the sofa with hind legs when lying on the side? This is how I got it with Bu, other ways just didn’t work with her.
Hi to everyone from Cindy and Cosi,
Just wanted to update on how we are doing with Lesson II:
1. Cosi’s favorite fun game is to chase big size child’s balls around our back yard. We throw or kick the ball and she herds them, bops them with her nose, or barks and chases them -- it’s so funny to watch and good exercise for her 🙂 The only time she stops is if the ball goes in the garden (she’s not allowed) or ends up stuck in a corner of the fence- lol.
2. Pivoting. We are about 2/3 of the way around the object clockwise with me not moving. This seems to be kind of hard for her, a herding dog… we will keep working on this. It helped that I got a larger bowl diameter for her to balance her front paws on (dumb owner, duh…)
3. Paw cross with both front feet. She is doing great with right paw over the left with good duration. I say “cross” for this. But now I am trying left paw over right and she looks at me like I’m crazy and keeps offering the right cross. I am trying to say “other” for left over right to distinguish the one action from the other. Any ideas? or should I just keep working 🙂
Sit up. Is going well. She likes to do this and will balance and touch with either paw or both to my hand or/and an object.
4. Backing up. She likes doing this and it is going well. I am working for more distance. She backs about 8 feet from me so far and then sits down.
5. 2on2off. Going well. She likes to do this…She has good duration, we are working on holding the position for more than 12 seconds, also I am trying different object for her to leave her back feet on.
We also now have a good frog -- it took 3 weeks 🙂 I’m really enjoying everyone’s comments and videos and learning a lot -- Thanks!
Sounds great! Bi loves those balls the best too, but they don’t last very long… For the other paw crosses, maybe you could first start with those in sit position, just so that it looks like a different exercise and then try it again in down after she knows already she can do it with a right paw too. Interesting she sits down after the back up… Do you reward by tossing a treat/toy to her front legs?
Oh thanks for the good idea! She didn’t see any sense in what I was telling her to do, lol. Yes, I’ll try left paw over right with her sitting, then when we have that, try it in a down… No, for the backing exercise I have been tossing the treat behind her so she then gets up to get it, I call her back to me and we try backing again… I will try tossing to her front legs so she doesn’t try to sit. Thanks so much for the suggestions 🙂
You’re welcome! 🙂 Have fun!
Terra als sits down pretty often in the end of backing up… And unfortunately, too many times I clicked that by mistake 🙁 But now he is getting better, I allways try to click and stop him before he sits and if he shows any signs of sitting, I will reward him with a treat thrown behind him to get him up. Ih the beginning he also did a lot of sit-backups, his rear was very close to the ground and when he stopped he would immediately sit. 🙂
I hope it’s OK that even though I am just an auditor to post a video of my dog’s favorite toy as it might give others the idea. It’s SO useful to use training weaves with my dogs. It’s a basic horse lunge whip. They LOVE it, as you can see!!
Too funny!! 🙂 Great toy idea!
I have a toy like this. I think it is called a Chase-It. Da Vinci loves it and I actually just shot video of it today. Will post. It has a toy on the end too. Big fan of this type of toy
OMG -- I just looked up the Chase-it! I love it. I’m going to have to buy one. I think my two will love it -- especially Chinook, who does not tug or ‘play’ with toys other than playing fetch. Thanks for the suggestion!
You bet. I posted video of it finally. The toy itself doesn’t hold up to hard tugging, but that is easy enough to replace with your own toy.
Kristin, mine seem to prefer it toy-less. They like just grabbing the rope part or my MinPin likes just the very end, which has a little knot and tassle. I tried the toy one, but they were not as crazy for it. They like it, but not like the plain lunge whip.
Yeap, I love that game, I do tons of it with my puppies to get them as much into chasing as possible. The toy on a leash you can see above is my home-made version of this toy 🙂
We are starting to get Frog, yea. Here is her pivot so far and her paw. We haven’t started sit up yet.
Question: When I do paw and try to get her to cross she is moving her whole body. Suggestion?
I saw a person use the spoon. Great Idea..I’ll try that with a smaller spoon.
I just watched your videos. Great job on the froggie. The pivoting is coming along nice too. Did you dye her tial? 😉 She is so cute when she is thinking.
Yea:). Colored her tail with a blow pen. The fun of small dogs;)
Getting there! What a cute frog! Maybe you can try crossing legs close to the wall, so that she can’t move?
last week of dynamo:
This week; didn’t get much done. About same place….
OK, I don’t normally train them ALL out at once; this was to get video cause I haven’t done much that way yet….. Probably great video for how not to train. Poor Ta-Da! got pushed out by Dynamo….And Poor Poor Basenji got nothing. Wasted Opportunity there….. I’ll make sure that doesn’t happen again!
Dynamo is 4 months and growing fast.
I’m behind on working some of the items
Is there anyway that you can allow non-facebook users, like me, to view your video’s on facebook?
Carol, I can`t watch your video but I would like to do so. Could you work with You Tube? Thank you.
I finally recorded some play video this week. Just put it all together in one movie. Da Vinci loves to chase but I can’t run for the next month…I’d love suggestions on different games we can play while my knee heals.
The first game is one of his favorites. The Chase-It toy which is like the horse lunge whip suggestion from Amy. This will evolve into a “hunting” game. He has an automatic sit when it is time to start and he has to make eye contact with me before being released to it. Later, this game may transfer to ball play (which we do with our BC) and it becomes more challenging…ex. toss the ball, dogs has auto stay while I walk to different location…recall to me…and then get released to ball after making eye contact…games begins for a few tosses with me moving each time…after the last toss, recall and we leave the “hunting grounds” where she releases the ball to me and waits for the next hunt. (If anyone is interested, I can video my husband playing this game with Callie since it is hard to explain)
The second game is the one I need the most help with. He doesn’t like to bring the toy back to me. In this clip, he did good for the first two, but what you see next is pretty common. I find I need two toys to be even somewhat successful. He is better than he used to be. Maybe he is learning that it is a lot more fun to bring it back. He is pretty good when we play with two balls, but he is sort of a toy thief. He doesn’t seem to understand that tugging happens when he brings it back…and he loves to tug. He is much better inside when we play fetch in the hallway. Help.
I would say you need to run away from him t get him to chase you with the toy, but I guess you can’t do that with your knee… You could teach a “bring to hand” as a trick, the easiest way to do it is simply asking for a nose touch to your hand when he has a toy.
To teach them to fetch, I always start the game from tugging, then let the toy go for a second and grab it again for more tugging so that they see the game is not over when I let the toy go. I then introduce more&more steps/running backward and have them chase me with a toy in their month for more tugging. It’s much easier when you can move, so for now, I would only do it in situations you know he will bring it back.
#1. We have no fenced back yard and no flat area. We do have wild life, deer that come through. When I train, I am by myself. So these are my favorite games, I have to keep it wild & fun. It is a great work out for both of us. It is very steep.
#2. I discovered just putting my hand up to feed her after 1-2 steps she would just spin around my hand. They I saw her looking to see which hand had to treat, rt hand meant counterclockwise and left meant clockwise. I saw that on video. So I put my treats on the ground and my hands behind my back & got her to go both directions.
#3. Paw touch -- the most difficult especially laying down, she wanted to get up. I went better with a business card size paper. My hand was too confusing for nose touches. The had problems switching to other leg.
Sit up -- wow it worked so well with the paw touch, 3 times with paw touch and she was offering it with out paw touch. Again I didn’t want a lure so I put the treats on the floor.
Question: At first I didn’t reward in the position because she couldn’t hold it long enough. Then I rewarded while she was up. To increase duration you can see it was kind of a lure because the food was keeping her up while I click treat click treat. Is that ok.
Or should I just keep delaying the click to increase duration?
Who has a good name besides beg or sit up?
#4. Backing up -- is it better to place food in between front legs or throw over head behind them? I demonstrated both. How do you get more distance? With all my other dogs, they would back a few steps and you kept having to say back back back to keep them backing. How can I prevent that? Ideas for keeping them straight? I just back against a wall and do both sides, video was just one side. If you toy how do you use it, throw over there head so they have to get it or throw in their mouth?
#5. 2on 2 off -- Lots of questions.
1. If I put my hand in fast after click to reward, it seems as a lure to keep her in the position.
2. I am guessing they are supposed to hold the position prior to releasing?
3. What if they leave the box after you click and reward but didn’t release them? Ignore?
4. As I went she was turning into me more & more and looking at me. I kept reward in front of her, didn’t seem to matter.
5. Do you want head down?
6. Should I feed her looking away from me?
7. Do I reward if she is crooked in front of me?
8. So do you want run up on box quickly go to 2 on 2 off click & treat and hold. release, throw food after dog leaves?
9. I practice running with her and running past the box to see if she would stop with me running past. Is that what you want?
GREAT job! Really impressive how far you got with all the tricks! What a smart puppy and what a great trainer!
Great pivoting in both directions, you also almost have crossing paws in both directions, the sit up is great already! Feeding her in a position is a quick way to get to the duration, but yes, they like to cheat when the hand is there, so I start adding duration by delaying the click first and start feeding in the position only when they’re good enough at it that they don’t try to lean on my hand anymore. For backing up, I prefer rewarding between front legs, but I would start throwing it there as she is still somewhat dependent on staying within your reach. You can use a toy instead, throwing it in her month or between her front legs. Then, just don’t click for usual number of steps anymore and wait for one or two more to add more&more distance and only name it when you get enough distance. To keep them straight, the wall can help.
The 2on2off, you’re doing it right -- your reaction when she leaves the box without the release is right too: wait for her to go back, only reward either in the position or for leaving on a verbal cue. As soon as the dog has an idea about the position, I start rewarding by throwing a treat between their front legs and start to vary my position so that they don’t cue from that. How exact you want to be with their position etc. depends on weather you want to use it for contacts or not. I don’t go into too many details as I don’t use it for contacts, my only reason to teach it is to teach the release word in this first step and then rear end awareness in the other version of this trick (that will be your next assignment).