Sunday, July 29, 2012

Basic Manners Class #4--Notes

Basic Toxins for Dogs:
Over the counter Drugs

There are many reason to teach you dog to leave something alone.  The list above is just some of the basic household items that are toxic to your dogs.  Other things you want your dog to leave alone may include the stinky dead animal on the side of the road, or a small animal running in front of a car.

Leave It:
Means to your dog, you can't have that and/or don't pay attention to that.  Teaching your dog this cue will help develop your dog's self-control.

As with teaching any new cue, you first must get the behavior before you add the cue.  To teach the Leave It cue we start very simply.  Put a treat at the dog's nose level and say NOTHING.  Wait until the dog turns their head away from the treat, when they do, say good and reward.  When teaching the Leave It cue you NEVER give the dog the thing they are being asked to leave alone.  You reward the dog with a different treat.  Repeat this exercise until the dog starts to "get it."  At this point you may begin to add the cue.  This exercise is practiced in two ways.
1.  Treat in your hand.
2.  Treat on the ground (under foot).
Once your dog has been doing well with the Leave It cue with the treat in your hand, move onto putting the treat on the floor under your foot.  Remember to never let your dog get the treat they are asked to leave.

Watch Me Cue
The T position with treats in both hands
Can now add the verbal cue "Watch Me"

New Cue:
Means to the dog to stay in the position I put you in until I come get you or until I release you.
This is not the same thing as Wait.
Means to the dog stay here until I ask you to do something else.  Another cue will follow the wait cue.

There are 3 parts to the Stay Cue:
1.  Duration
2.  Distance
3.  Distraction

To teach the Stay Cue, put the dog into the Sit position next to you.  You will use a hand cue and verbal cue (shown in class).  Give the hand cue and verbal cue of "Stay."  With one hand holding the hand cue, rapidly deliver treats with the other hand as the dog stays.  Before you run out of treats, give the release cue.  NEVER deliver treats after the release cue is given.  We want to reward the dog for staying, not for being released.  Remember to not give all the treats in your treat hand before releasing the dog.  This may teach the dog that I am released when there is no more food, not when I tell you.

To improve the cue, begin adding time between the delivery of treats.  So instead of rapid delivery, treat, wait 2 seconds, treat...move on, treat, wait 5 seconds, treat....then wait 10 seconds, treat.

It is important to practice the Stay Cue as much as possible.  It is hard for many dogs to listen to this cue when something exciting is just beyond my reach.  Practice this cue before meal times and at doorways.

Back to the three parts of the Stay Cue:
To improve the cue, first we add duration.  Once a dog can stay for an extended period of time, you may add distance.  Once these two parts of the cue have been developed, you then add distraction.  It is important not to add too much too fast, and never add more than one part of the cue at a time.

Loose Leash Walking

Leave-It (impulse control)

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