|09-30-2013 12:18 AM|
|09-30-2013 12:08 AM|
I have read that you should always walk over to your dog before releasing them and that "come" should never come after "stay." Is this correct?
I'm less worried about increasing duration at this point and more just trying to teach her that she doesn't need to get so worked up waiting for the release cue. She's happy and excited, which I like, but I know that for longer stays it would be much more comfortable for her to settle and we'll make more progress on the duration if I get a handle on the mindset first. She's very good about *understanding* the cue and if I give her a verbal correction she will lay back down.
I might try practicing this during boring tasks at home and see if she gets it. That seems like a good idea. I'm not sure if I should be correcting her at this point beyond a verbal "no" or not. Down-stay always confused me on this one because it seems like it could be infinitely difficult in terms of duration and distractions, so at what difficulty level would you correct for errors? It seems like even though she is very compliant, she is still at beginner level and I should keep things positive.
She does not have an "autostay," If I tell her to sit or down and then start moving, she heels or comes to the front and sits depending on whether I am beside her or in front of her. The release word for sit or down is just "yes," or "good," if we are stationary, but I usually give this after a few seconds and don't expect her to hold position unless I tell her to specifically.
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|09-28-2013 03:44 PM|
Oh also another thing that could help... I actually use a different cue for the stay depending on what is going to happen next. This could also help because your dog won't expect to be leaping up and running around right away. What I taught is "wait" which meant I will be asking for another behavior soon, such as a recall, calling them out of the stay or asking for another position or something-- keep in position until I call you or give another cue. So they were alert for another cue and would come out of the "wait" position when I gave one.
I tried to use "stay" only when planning for an obedience type stay, and when I said "stay" they knew it meant to stay in place until I specifically return, come around behind until standing back in heel position, and then give the release word. In other words I return as in a competition stay. I found this helped make my dog's stay very solid, because she knew that no matter what crazy stuff was going on she was not to get up until I was back at her side and also gave the release word. My Golden won several group down-stay "contests" and I could run around/in front of her playing games with shouting kids and a tennis ball for long periods without her breaking the stay (kids and tennis balls were two of her favorite things).
Of course I could still return and give the release word for a "wait" but I just tried to separate the two so as to keep the sequence for the "stay" cue consistent.
I guess if you teach "auto stay" with no cue to stay except saying sit or down this wouldn't work though.
|09-27-2013 07:38 PM|
If you want to focus on reducing tension first, I'd suggest starting with the Relaxation Protocol (maybe splitting the early lessons up into shorter durations, because I think it starts off at 5 minutes and goes up to 15, and that may be too much for your dog right now). The standard protocol puts the dog in a Sit-Stay rather than a Down-Stay but you can adapt it to reinforce the Down if that's what you'd rather have. Or you can practice a Sit. It doesn't really matter, the point is to get the right emotional state, the position can come later.
If you want to focus on the dog just holding the Down-Stay without worrying too much about the underlying emotional state, just build more duration into the Downs a few seconds at a time. Try asking for a Down while you are doing REALLY BORING stuff inside the house, and then practice it when you're not doing such boring stuff (like when you're preparing a meal for your dog or filling a Kong) -- pick something that's in your daily routine and takes a couple of minutes, so you remember to practice it every single day for moderate durations. In a couple of months you should have a pretty decent Down-Stay with minimal actual effort.
Most dogs will eventually relax into the sort of Down where they're rolled onto a hip. Some won't (Pongu won't, especially not in an outside environment, so I'm resigned to him just doing his five-minute Open stays in a sphinx Down. Whatever, he can do what he wants as long as he doesn't move).
You can also teach the relaxed, rolled-on-one-hip Down as a separate position and put it on a separate cue, as Chicagocanine described (one of my instructors teaches this as "Curl"), and use that for longer-duration Down-Stays because it's more comfortable to the dog. Eventually the use of that signal operates as a cue to the dog that you're going to be asking for a long Stay. But, again, the usefulness of that technique depends on whether your dog actually does find it more comfortable.
fwiw it sounds like you're basically doing fine and just need more practice to build up duration. If you have a 20-second Stay, you can eventually have a 20-minute Stay, you just have to raise criteria gradually until you get there.
|09-27-2013 04:35 PM|
|Lilie||Curious - when you release her from her command - how do you do it? What is her reaction?|
|09-27-2013 04:16 PM|
|Chicagocanine||I taught my Golden "relax" which meant she should lay down comfortably. If I said "relax" when she was in a down/stay she would roll onto one hip or over onto her side, rather than in a "Sphinx down".|
|09-27-2013 04:07 PM|
I've always taught the down to be a position that doesn't get left until released. I basically do what Jane mentioned and use a leash to enforce the position so they can't self reward and dash for it.
Keep it very neutral but firm, I allow the head to move to sniff and look around but all four paws stay flat on the ground. It's a easy command to teach when you're reading a book, watching tv, etc. Sit on the floor beside her and put her in the down, I use a verbal correction "Ah!" if I see movement or restlessness as a reminder that getting up is not allowed. You can reward with a treat or a pet or a calm "good girl" and I reward if they flop on their side or really relax with a gentle belly rub. Move to standing up beside her, moving around, etc but keep the leash so you can catch and reinforce the down if needed.
Once they get the idea inside, then Add in more distractions over time and reward when she keeps the position
|09-27-2013 03:42 PM|
Can you train outside? I'd backtie her on a line, keeping some slack in it, and have another long line on another collar that you have in front of her. Walk away a few steps, as you walk away re-enforce the down stay verbally. If she gets up the backtie will correct and stop her. We usually put the backtie on a prong, but you can do it with a flat collar.
Turn around & face her and give her a few seconds. Then walk back to her and give her a treat between her front paws, but don't release her, gentle praise keep it unexciting. Walk away again and repeat a few times.
Eventually you will move further away. The long line will be used when you increase the time you are away and you can gently tug towards you while giving the down command. When we do this at training, we are lengthening the time, still giving treats, and lengthening the space as well.
Then we add in distractions, but there is always another dog on the field working, so the dog in the down is use to that.
You can use a 'place' pad for this to teach it....I'd rather not use one because I want my dog to stay/down where ever I place him.
|09-27-2013 02:15 PM|
...Chillax during a long down?
My dog has learned down-stay for up to about 20-30 seconds with me walking around to other parts of the room. However, her body is coiled tight as a mousetrap the whole time. She is ready for action! I think she associates stay with playing tag and tug because i used these games to get her excited about "freezing." How do I teach her that she should just chill out and get comfortable for a while?
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