Monday, July 30, 2012

Charlie & Calvin demonstrate "Watch Me"

When first teaching your dog the cue "Watch Me" or "Look," we put the treat in the dog's nose, and then directly up to your forehead.  This is food luring the dog into the Watch Me cue.  Once the dog gets the idea of what's going on and does it without to much lag time, it is time to add the actual verbal cue of saying, "Watch Me."  After you and your dog have progressed to where the dog is following this step of the cue 80-90% of the time, we add the "T position."  This is basically the same, but making the dog work a little harder to figure out that I want you to look at my eyes, and not the treat.  For this you begin as before:  put the treat in the dog's nose, then run your arm past your face as you reach both arms out into a T position.  The dog will look back and forth at your arms and face...WAIT for the dog to look you in the eyes.  Timing is very important here!  The instant the dog looks in your eyes, say good and treat.  To progress your training, wait longer each time the dog looks into your eyes before you say good and treat.  1 second, then 2 seconds, etc.  Remember not to move forward too quickly.  If your dog is not doing what you ask 90% of the time, move back to the easier version of the cue.

In this video, Charlie and her dog Calvin demonstrate a proper "Watch Me" using the T position.  Notice how Charlie waits for Calvin to look her in the eyes before saying "Good," and treating.

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