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post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-29-2011, 12:26 AM Thread Starter
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Heeling

Zefra, my 6.5 month old has amazing focus and is totally over the top in everything she does, super-de-duper motivated to work (for anything and nothing alike!) which is fantastic!

One thing I have been thinking about and trying to work on is to get her to settle a bit during her heel work.

Now, she is in position most of the time, super focused on me but..... will jump and nip at my arms, shoulder or leg.

I can't use toys yet to train with her (tried again last week but she is just too drivy and doesn't pay attention) and focuses on the toy to the point that nothing else in the world matters to her.

Food amps her up but not as much as toys, so I have been using this and praise only (no treats OR toys) while working things like heel (for now).

Her sits, downs, stands are awesome and super flashy and fast so now I want to concentrate on her heeling. This is something I struggled (and still continue too) with when training with Stark and I want to ensure I make as little mistakes with Zefra as I can, especially in her foundation work.

My trainer says to use the wall and break it down more again, do not praise/reward the jumping and I agree. Go back to doodling a bit and see if that helps.

What I have been doing is using the wall as a guide, so that she can't jump from the side at me and doing one or two steps with focus and rewarding that with food.

I don't want to take the enthusiasm away because I like the flashy heel work so far with her - totally natural.

I do however want to stop the nipping, jumping while heeling.

I remember Ike (Jason_L) did the jumpy kangaroo heeling and was hoping for some tips.

I don't have any video yet but will this weekend. I do however have a set of photo's of what I mean..
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G Wild Winds Zephyr of Cognac BH, HIC, NTD, ITD, CGN, TT
Wild Winds Archangel Raphael HIC, TT
XX z Weberhaus
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post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-29-2011, 12:28 AM Thread Starter
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Continued with photo's...
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G Wild Winds Zephyr of Cognac BH, HIC, NTD, ITD, CGN, TT
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post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-29-2011, 08:57 AM
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Your trainer is telling you right...no reward for the jumping and take your time and let her figure out that walking along side you (the way you want) will get rewarded. Patience!!!!!!! She is 6 months old, where do you have to go ......just take your time and let her figure it out and build it up slowly.
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post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-29-2011, 11:02 AM
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I would recommend possibly going to some opposition training.....Medo will do the same thing. As soon as we started realizing to he was going to be a bit out of control in his heeling if we didn't go back to base 1 and do something differently I spend a week or so teaching him with a prong that steady pull meant to keep your feet on the ground, pops were taught they were there to stimulate. So if he starts jumping up too much I can do a steady pull with the prong and he'll get his feet back down. I like opposition work because when the dog understands what the pull means (OUTSIDE of heel work!), it's a very effective way to communicate with them...it's not a correction, just a way of telling them what you want. I would definitely stop what is going on now......dogs like that I personally think it's much better to go SLOW but CORRECT from the beginning rather than go for flashy from the beginning and pick up some bad habits that are going to be a pain to correct down the road. You know she can bring the oompf....so learn to control it and then BRING IT when she fully understands where her body is supposed to be. You have a whole YEAR to shape heeling before you can even trial...don't rush it!

Anyhow, it's just s suggesiton...I don't always like giving training advice over the internet....so it's just an idea you can talk to your trainer about if you haven't already thought of it.

J, mom to:
- Elsa - "Da Pookins"
- Medo - "The Beast From The East"
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post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-29-2011, 11:08 AM
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Why not shorten the length you are training the heel. If she is great for 10 steps, then acts up, only do the 10 steps and not allow that unwanted behavior to occur. Do something else. Then heel again for a few short steps. At 6.5 months I would not expect anything more.

Dawn Brogan

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post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-29-2011, 04:37 PM
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She is still a baby. If you push her too hard early, then you could lose that drive and desire to work. Take your time.
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post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-29-2011, 06:36 PM Thread Starter
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Tanks guys, we are in no rush it just that I wanted to see what others had to say.. I have been working with an amazing trainer and trust him but still wanted to get some outside opinions.

Will continue doing the doodling and making it fun for her (she is such a nut! ).

I haven't put a prong on her yet and would like to wait until it is absolutely necessary to put one on. Right now I don't think a prong is the answer personally.

Thanks everyone, will try to get a video tomorrow while working at the club.

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post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-29-2011, 06:56 PM
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Using a prong for opposition and simulation is not the same as using it for a correction per say. You could do the same type of thing on a flat collar.

J, mom to:
- Elsa - "Da Pookins"
- Medo - "The Beast From The East"
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post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-29-2011, 07:54 PM
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She seems to like doing it just for the sake of doing it, so what if when she jumps you immediately give a platz command, walk a few feet away, and make her wait ten seconds or so before going back, having her sit/fuss, and moving forward again? I did this with Kenya sometimes. She's a dog that loves to bounce and worked for praise and my approval and not much else. Telling/showing her that I disapproved of the behavior and then not letting her doing it for a few seconds seemed to keep her from getting overloaded or me having to constantly correct the behavior and start fighting the dog.

Otherwise I agree with more doodling, just don't get her the chance to bounce. Focus on moving laterally, pivots, sometimes I do real quick turns with the intention of trying to trick the dog, one step sit two steps sit three steps sit, etc.
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post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-30-2011, 10:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andaka View Post
She is still a baby.
I agree. Maybe she lacks the coordination and the ability to contain herself to do what you want her to do. You might be causing problems right now that you would never have to deal with if you simply waited to train this behavior for a few months.
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