CGC 'leave with a stranger' - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 16 (permalink) Old 10-04-2011, 03:05 PM Thread Starter
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CGC 'leave with a stranger'

When Saber was 4-5 months, we were in puppy class and tried out the CGC test of leaving with a friendly stranger. Saber went nuts barking and pulling to try and get to me when I left, every time. So, fast forward and now she is 11 months old and I decided to try this again. She does not bark and pull but she seems worried and whines.

My question is, is there something I should say to her to key her that I will be right back? They generally have us walk up, hand over the leash and go out the door. This seems, to Saber, to feel like she does not know what is going on and when I will be back.

I thought about putting her in a sit or down stay, but I am pretty sure she would pop up and break the stay while I am gone, out of anxiety. So I don't want to give a command and not be there to correct it if she breaks it.

Anyone do this differently? Should I say "I'll be back" or some other word, perhaps, to cue her that this is an exercise and she should wait quietly? What do you do?

Shawn
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post #2 of 16 (permalink) Old 10-04-2011, 03:09 PM
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In our class, we practiced the "I'll be back" every week. We would backtie the dogs and say, "I'll be back" then walk out of the room. The instructor stayed in the room with the dogs. A handler didn't come back into the room until their dog was quiet and calm. Once a dog was calm and quiet, the instructor would call our names and we'd come back. This way the dog was rewarded for being calm, increasing the length of time each week.


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post #3 of 16 (permalink) Old 10-04-2011, 03:11 PM
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You might train this like I start training for an out of sight stay. I only "disappear " for a moment and the come right back. I very gradually increase my time being hidden. It is a bit of a slow process, but may be needed for an amxious dog. Be generous with rewards for quiet staying.
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post #4 of 16 (permalink) Old 10-04-2011, 03:22 PM
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Halo didn't have any trouble with this exercise, and the way they did it in her test people exchanged dogs so that half the dogs stayed in the room with another person while their person walked out of the room with a different dog, and the other group was walked out by someone else while their person stayed behind with another dog. It seemed to me that some dogs would have an easier time of it one way or the other - being left behind while their person walked away from them, or walking away with someone else while their person stayed behind. We had practiced it both ways in the prep class, so I wasn't worried about her whichever way it went, and I guess it can be done either way according to the rules.

But one thing I've always done is to say "I'll be back" whenever we leave the dogs - when we go to work, when they're in the car and we stop somewhere, if I have to put them out for a bit for some reason, and they're always calm when we leave so adding a cue to leaving and coming back is definitely something you might try, not just in practice for class, but in general day to day stuff too.

I agree with not using a sit or down stay command unless you're absolutely sure she won't break the stay while you're gone. The person is allowed to talk to and engage with your dog while you're gone, don't know if that would help or hurt with Saber.

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post #5 of 16 (permalink) Old 10-04-2011, 03:28 PM
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I like the idea of returning when the dog quiets.
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post #6 of 16 (permalink) Old 10-04-2011, 03:47 PM Thread Starter
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Great ideas! I will talk to my instructor about different ways to do it, and in the meantime I am going to practice out of sight stays and using "I'll be back" as a cue.

The person I left her with fed her treats and it did help. she is all about the food.

Shawn
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"Saber" Jette vom Wildhaus BN RN CAX JJ-N HIC CGC
Kira vom Snoozhaus ZZZ CGC!!!

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post #7 of 16 (permalink) Old 10-04-2011, 04:52 PM
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Quote:
But one thing I've always done is to say "I'll be back" whenever we leave the dogs ...
This is something that I do also when going into another room when I don't want a dog to follow or leaving them in the car (not often here in FL) for a couple of minutes.

I always tell people when I do an evaluation to make sure the dog sees the switch off - handing the leash to someone which would in this case be to me. Then for them to tell the dog to sit, down, stay, wait or whatever command or combination of commands that they use.

TJ aka Theresa A. Jennings
Pyro vom Wildhaus aka Kaleb ~S.T.A.R.~
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post #8 of 16 (permalink) Old 10-04-2011, 04:59 PM
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I am having the same problem with Abby and I am sure she won't pass the CGC for that reason. She is OK at home but in class she won't let me get even halfway to the door before she goes bonkers. We are working on it a few inches, feet at a time but won't be ready in time for the test.
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post #9 of 16 (permalink) Old 10-04-2011, 09:32 PM
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Sometimes a short session of training is not enough to get a dog fully ready for the CGC. I am a slow trainer in many ways, so perhaps that is just a problem I have! Rather than push it and risk ingraining anxiety into an exercise, I might just be willing to spend time training for awhile.
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post #10 of 16 (permalink) Old 10-05-2011, 07:58 AM
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Originally Posted by Samba View Post
Sometimes a short session of training is not enough to get a dog fully ready for the CGC. I am a slow trainer in many ways, so perhaps that is just a problem I have! Rather than push it and risk ingraining anxiety into an exercise, I might just be willing to spend time training for awhile.
Abby is going for 5 weeks (once a week) and the 6th week is the test.
There are not enough opportunities even in that time to be ready for leave with a stranger.
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