Administrator & LOTR Addict
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Bloomington, IN, USA
The rear end awareness training is done in the early stages of training so the dog can be rewarded for correct position. Over time the dog will start to correct itself while moving either moving its butt "in", moving "off" of your leg, moving "close" to you, moving "back" into heel position, etc. This is especially true if you take the time to teach these position changes and body awareness exercises and don't move forward, in the training, too quickly. If the dog is already leaning into you or forging/wrapping then I do a lot of left turns, left halts, left pivots and left circles to teach the dog correct body position and so I can reward for the right position. I have used the knee into the dog, but haven't always found this to work well and it can sometimes be counter productive (making the dog worse). Some dogs also respond to a pinch just above the knee (no you don't hit the dog with it or jam your knee into the dog with it) because it makes leaning into your leg unpleasant. This did not work with my dogs.
As Christine pointed out always reward with the left hand and off to the left and never into the front, across the front or with the right hand (though the best heeling dog I ever had was always rewarded out of my right hand). You will also find that toys in front or up on the front of the shoulder will tend to lure the dog around so they are either wrapping or leaning into your leg.
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