Down on recall - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 08-03-2011, 09:12 AM Thread Starter
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Down on recall

What is a fun way to teach down on recall? I hope I am saying this correctly.. the flow is ..stay: come, down, come, finish. YES!! Treats!

I feel like Tim hesitates to come if he thinks we are going to do "down" when he is running toward me.

Any good videos, (Leerburg?) or ideas?

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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 08-03-2011, 09:32 AM
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The way you describe the way you do are rewarding ultimately for the dog *finishing* .....stay: come, down, come, finish.....THEN you are rewarding the finish.

I would send the dog out for an away. This is easily started by placing a small piece of food a few feet from the dog....saying the word *away* or whichever you with the dog...when the dog gets to the food, mark it and try it again...eventually the dog learns to go away for the reward, and thus you can introduce the *down* whilst the dog is awaying from you.......Or do it as you are doing it, but, when you ask the dog to down, and the dog downs...THEN reward...example: Doing it your way: Stay....come...*down*! ( if the dog downs.....YES! whichever your marker word is, and reward.

Mix it up so the dog does not anticipate...hence Tim hesitating....remember to do recalls...sometimes with a down...and sometimes with *no* down, always rewarding for a recall, when there is no down.

Awaying for the reward always makes it fun for the dog...doing it the way you have done it can also be made fun, as long as the dog is rewarded for that 1 command..not a chain of commands, the dog does not know he was told 1,2,3,4 commands and is rewarded for all 4...he thinks he was rewarded for number 4 command.....the age and training of the dog also plays a part of course.

Last edited by Zarr; 08-03-2011 at 09:42 AM.
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 08-03-2011, 12:32 PM
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Indy had a bad habit of hesitating as he would come in on a recall in anticapation of the down command.
What I did was mix my recalls up, so the dog never knows if they will come straight in or down, and the whole time the dog is coming towards me I say encouraging things to speed them up.
I also have used a toy and thrown it then as the dog comes toward me at full speed I give the down command, as soon as they down I throw the toy again. Since Indy's favorite part is chasing the toy this gets to be a real fast paced game of throw, retrieve, down, throw again I get as much exercise running to him as he downs to throw the toy as he gets running after the toy.

frank(Rosehall's Duke of Hearts CD, BN, RN) gsd
indy (Indy Bluestorm CD, GN, RN,CGC) BC
king bc mix
Rowdy (MyHearts Red Treasure) Australian Shepherd
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 08-04-2011, 02:14 AM
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Drop on recall (this is a video of Reagan and me, the local big box pet stores are a great place to practice because of all the distractions!!)

First step: teach the cue down

Second step: proof the cue down

Third step: cue for down while dog is not right next to you (such as wondering around the yard)

Forth step: cue for down after calling the dog (start from short distances away, build up distance)

Each step takes time, most people attempt to rush through them and assume their dog is ready for the next step because their dog can do a down when asked in the kitchen near the treat jar... or because their dog can do a down outside on a quiet day after having explored and decided there's nothing of interest!

The more time you spend working on reliability, the better your down on recall will be!

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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 08-04-2011, 07:59 AM
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My friend and I are having the same issue with our green Open dogs. With our dogs, they so want to be right and the timing of the down is unknown, so they sit.

This usually gets better with time and confidence. We are having to always do a down but just varying when it is cued during the recall. If there is a mess up make no issue of it just redo it. Lots of praise snd super good rewards. We have broken out the high value stuff to keep drive high. You can lay a yardstick down and teach them to down behind that for awhile so they have an extra cue and confidencd. Vary its placement. Mostly repetitions and happy succees are the key.
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