Clicker training the "straight sit." - German Shepherd Dog Forums
 
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-13-2012, 02:11 PM Thread Starter
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Clicker training the "straight sit."

Kopper has an automatic sit from heel, but he sits at a 90 degree angle facing me. . . the easier for me to hand him his reward of course! My instructor suggested that I might benefit from teaching him "get in" or "scoot in" where he's sitting at an angle and I cue him to move in to the straight sit. I'd like to teach this but am having a hard time visualizing it. For those of you that have taught this behavior, how did you teach it? Do you have any video? Thanks in advance! Right now I'm trying to kind of lure him into it but he just looks at me like I'm a moron.


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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-13-2012, 11:10 PM
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I've taught Rayne to cue with a head tilt to "fix" herself if she sits crooked or is a little forged on her automatic sit. Did you ever use a wall or short barrier when first teaching the heel position? My trainer just put a couple 2x4 pieces of wood together and laid in on the ground, so that it wasn't tall enough for her to lean on but provided a subtle barrier to keep herself straight.

We would start against the board, then take a step forward (still against the board), she would automatically sit, with the board there it would be straight and I would mark it, repeat that until we reached the end of the board. Then I would take one step past the end (no barrier now) and if she still sat straight I would mark it big. And just build from there. Some dont like using barriers or props, but it worked for me

I can't really remember now exactly how I taught her to fix herself (she swings her butt back and a little behind me). I think she just eventually figured out that she got many more rewards when she would swing that butt back and sort of picked it up on her own. Because I would tilt my head to the side to check to see if she was straight, and if she wasn't I would tell her "nope, free" and set up again. If she was straight the next time, mark and reward.
So the head title turned into a cue to fix her butt, which has actually been a great tool to use for her left turns (an idea I got from the Michael Ellis heeling DVD). Because I can title my head just as I'm making a left turn and she will swing her back end really nicely. I'll eventually fade out the head cue for the left turns though.

One of the things that really helped Rayne's heeling was teaching her rear-end awareness, something I completely skipped and then figured out I really needed it. A good thread that helped me out:
https://www.germanshepherds.com/forum...-training.html

~ Cayla


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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-13-2012, 11:14 PM Thread Starter
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The board suggestion is great! I tried the wall but like you said he just leans on it. I'll give that a shot.


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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-13-2012, 11:52 PM
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Nikon's sit is not perfect but Pan has a perfectly straight FAST sit out of motion (or auto sit when I stop moving). I attribute this to doing a TON of work with him sitting in heel position (not working on doing the sit while heeling, but at first I have him sit and then *I* make myself right to him) and feeding him treats. It has been so much easier keeping him straight from the very beginning than trying to fix Nikon's sit. I think in order for the sit in heel or sit out of motion to be really correct the dog needs a firm understanding of heel position and that heel IS a position, not just walking, and when you stop or say sit they need to maintain that position.

If you want him adjusting himself relative to you or flipping in, I would do a lot of perch work for rear awareness and getting him to pivot relative to you.
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-13-2012, 11:55 PM
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Interesting Liesje. I am going to keep that in mind for when I start Rocket's formal heel.
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-14-2012, 12:06 AM
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I would do this *before* starting the formal heel. I did that exercise for about 5 months, then it only took a few weeks for the dog to go from sitting in heel with eye contact to BH kind of obedience. I kind of went against what most people do which is building the heel step by step. I just really hammered home the concept of the heel position and the eye contact. It was so second nature to the dog that he never even realized I'd started moving and now he was heeling.
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-14-2012, 01:12 AM
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Yes that's what I meant, sorry. He starts all walks in a very good position but sometimes gets a bit lazy on the auto sits. This is just loose leash walking but I'm going to start paying more attention so the formal heel will be correct from the beginning.
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