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Thread: Proper heel position Reply to Thread
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Topic Review (Newest First)
03-05-2014 12:28 PM
mego You dont need a prong, but a leash could be helpful here so if your dog starts to step forward you can give a slight pressure backwards. I also prefer to train this with no leash

Side note.. expanding on what David Winners said

I read a really great article about marker words. We use "yes" for correct + treat, "good" for keep doing what you're doing, "nuh uh" for hey you are starting to mess it up, I'm not going to correct you but stop what you're starting to do, "no" for a correction.... When my dog starts to creep forward in a turn or move a front paw to forge, I say nuh uh and she stops- it gets her thinking. If you use a marker like a click or yes for correct things, it can be really helpful to mark the bad things with your voice to help them understand what things you don't like too, a really fluid stream of communication.

Tug under the armpit works good or make a habit of releasing reward toy behind dogs head in right turns so she's less likely to forge forward during them
03-05-2014 11:55 AM
Jax08 Is she following your leg or your shoulder? Try dropping your shoulder so it turns last (if that makes sense) and see if that helps. Your dog should be moving with your leg. I would do some turning exercised (off the platform) starting from a sitting heel position and turning. Make and exaggerated movement with your leg until she is moving properly.
03-05-2014 11:44 AM
Merciel
Quote:
Originally Posted by Deno View Post
I really don't get the box thing, my advice would be to use a prong collar.
The point of the "box thing" is to teach rear-end awareness and, later on, help the dog find the desired position from a variety of angles and approaches. Depending on the size and orientation of platforms that you use, it can also be extremely helpful in teaching correct position changes (Sit to Stand to Down and all combinations of those three basic positions) and building the dog's core strength (dogs with less core strength tend to Sit sloppily, can't hold the position as long, and may throw their front legs forward when going into a Down, instead of lowering themselves in a fixed position).

Personally I really dislike using a collar of any sort, let alone a prong, to teach heelwork. It can work, and it can work beautifully, but it's not my preferred path. I've seen dogs who did just fine with it, but a lot of other dogs trained the same way exhibited a lot of stress and avoidance behaviors, and it's just not something I want to see in my own dogs ever. It's not that difficult to teach competition heeling via shaping, platform training, and targeting; I don't see a need to use compulsion to get there.
03-05-2014 11:21 AM
Okin
Quote:
Originally Posted by David Winners View Post
I take it you are doing focused heeling for competition of some sort and not just walk heeling. You can go back to the box until the dog understands the position and transition better. You can make the box smaller so the dog doesn't have as much freedom of movement. You can give a negative mark at the point that the dog steps past you and reset the position and only mark for correct reps. You can over or under exaggerate the position so the dog is successful and mark correct reps. You can use leash pressure to hold the dog in position. You can use the e-collar to make a safe zone that decreases in size until the dog remains in perfect position. You can use a touch stick with the e-collar to move the dog where you need.

Lots of options.

I would recommend the Focused Heeling DVD by Michael Ellis. It teaches leash pressure work, and allows you to fine tune the dog's position with very little pressure on a prong collar.

Michael Ellis and his Dog, Pi Demonstrating the Heeling Exercise "Find the Left Leg" - YouTube
Somehow I lost track of this thread and didn't see the reply. Thanks that is exactly what I am looking to do. Not for a competition just something to work towards. While on the box she lines up perfect because she is moving with her legs on the box. I can bring the box back in and try to really rienforce it. Maybe I need to work on this with a leash since I have been working without one. She does find the leg but she overshoots then settles back in to it. Having the leash on might help with that. So far I am not even working on really walking with her other than a few steps at a time. I do what they showed in the video and have my left leg back and then forward so she always lines up with it. I'm looking to get this part really solid before trying to get her to do extended walking in this form. Also maybe I should try to use some type of tug like they do in this video she if more driven to tugs/balls than food.

Honeslty this stuff is for me as much as it is for her. I am trying to learn how to really train my dogs as much as I am trying to get her trained. This site is really great resource with so many accomplished trainers.
03-01-2014 09:29 AM
MaggieRoseLee
Quote:
Originally Posted by David Winners View Post
Thanks.

Got the idea from MaggieRoseLee
Then you know it's a great idea!
03-01-2014 09:27 AM
David Winners Thanks.

Got the idea from MaggieRoseLee
03-01-2014 09:18 AM
Deno It doesn't, and I love your new avatar.

Thanks again for your service.

Deno
03-01-2014 09:13 AM
David Winners
Quote:
Originally Posted by Deno View Post
It seems like every time I kick a bush, you come running out.

How do you find the time to train?
I'm in Korea without a dog.

Sorry if my presence on threads you post in offends you.
03-01-2014 08:36 AM
Deno It seems like every time I kick a bush, you come running out.

How do you find the time to train?
03-01-2014 08:20 AM
David Winners
Quote:
Originally Posted by Okin View Post
I trained my dog how to do the heel position using a box that her front feet were on. We practiced with me going around the box until she knew to move in to the correct position. Now without the box she knows the position to go in to. The problem is that when I turn to my right she wil take a step in front of me and then step back next to my left leg. This isn't a problem when I turn left because she just backs up. Is there something I can do to help with this? When she does line up she lines up pretty well but I don't think she should be stepping in front of me and then backing up to my leg.
I take it you are doing focused heeling for competition of some sort and not just walk heeling. You can go back to the box until the dog understands the position and transition better. You can make the box smaller so the dog doesn't have as much freedom of movement. You can give a negative mark at the point that the dog steps past you and reset the position and only mark for correct reps. You can over or under exaggerate the position so the dog is successful and mark correct reps. You can use leash pressure to hold the dog in position. You can use the e-collar to make a safe zone that decreases in size until the dog remains in perfect position. You can use a touch stick with the e-collar to move the dog where you need.

Lots of options.

I would recommend the Focused Heeling DVD by Michael Ellis. It teaches leash pressure work, and allows you to fine tune the dog's position with very little pressure on a prong collar.

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