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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-10-2009, 03:13 PM Thread Starter
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Breaking Focus

When Anna zeros in on something, she zeros in. While her focus is exceptional and great for training, it's hard to break when I want her to. So two questions:

1. Should I try to break her focus, especially if I'm thinking of doing agility with her.

2. If so, how should I go about this. She knows "watch me" but when she's zoned in on something (squirrel, cat, etc), it doesn't work. Even treats don't seem to work that well.

Thoughts?


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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-10-2009, 03:17 PM
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Re: Breaking Focus

1. if her focus is NOT on you)

2. If mine happen to zero in on something (a critter), I usually give a good yell and run in the other direction)

Work on setting her up with distractions, I have been soooo lucky that my gsd's have always had excellent recalls off "critters" ,, my aussies,,well not so much ))

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post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-10-2009, 03:17 PM
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Re: Breaking Focus

She knows Leave It? Do you use that when she's focused on what she shouldn't be?




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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-10-2009, 04:16 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Breaking Focus

She knows Leave It (thank god!) but when she zeros in, she just stares and focuses and I literally have to get in between her and the object or walk her away, but she'll still try to look.

If on leash, I can get her to walk with me by saying "leave it" and we'll go the other direction, but if it's something in the yard or house or whatever, especially any type of "prey" item like a squirrel, coon or cat, she just deadlock's on.


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Tiffany; mom to:
Annabelle "the Diva"- GSD born 9/21/08
Duncan- Shep Mix adopted on 2/14/00 TDI
The kitty amigos: Simon, Alley and Mia
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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-10-2009, 04:19 PM
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Re: Breaking Focus

someone suggested a whistle to me to break focus. I wonder if that would get her attention back to you? Along with Leave It. Have you tried an e-collar?




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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-10-2009, 05:14 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Breaking Focus

A whistle may work...I'll try that, or maybe a clicker since we don't currently use one. Typically, if she sees something, if I say leave it she'll sit and stay, but keeps her eyes on whatever it is.

I'm not a big ecollar fan personally, so I don't plan on using one.


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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-10-2009, 05:19 PM
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Re: Breaking Focus

so she is listening to you just not returning her focus completley to you. A whistle should work then. I think anything to "jolt" her back would do.

She's really young yet. Jax just turned two and I saw an amazing difference in her when she was about Anna's age. I think you'll be really surprised at her maturity over the winter.




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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-10-2009, 05:42 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Breaking Focus

The more I think about it after writing it out, I keep forgetting she's still young and that squirrels are waaaay facinating! Thanks for following along and helping me to figure this out...I'll get a whistle or something though to help jolt her out of "the zone".


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Tiffany; mom to:
Annabelle "the Diva"- GSD born 9/21/08
Duncan- Shep Mix adopted on 2/14/00 TDI
The kitty amigos: Simon, Alley and Mia
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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-10-2009, 05:50 PM
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Re: Breaking Focus

You might try using the Premack principle. Clicker training is a good method to try if you want to use it.

Premack and distractions:
http://dogzone.co.za/index.php?option=co...ssons&Itemid=49

This might also be helpful, more about distraction training/Premack:

http://www.clickertraining.com/node/2082


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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-10-2009, 05:57 PM
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Re: Breaking Focus

The key is to get her attention back on you BEFORE she zeros in. Once she's 'in the zone' you just don't exist.
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