Down training - German Shepherd Dog Forums
 
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 09-17-2018, 11:41 AM Thread Starter
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Down training

I have just started training my 12wk old pup to down. After some investigating I read it was best to teach from standing, I understand the reasoning why, so decided to do that.
However my pup is consistently of his own accord (ok we've only done the down about 10 times) offering me to sit first, then go down. I'm not giving him the command to sit, he's just sitting and going down.
So I figure my technique is off?
Will this come with age and time to 'snap' into the down? Or should I stop training it until he offers me the correct motion down?
I do hope that makes sense!!
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 09-17-2018, 12:19 PM
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Originally Posted by MOzak View Post
I have just started training my 12wk old pup to down. After some investigating I read it was best to teach from standing, I understand the reasoning why, so decided to do that.
However my pup is consistently of his own accord (ok we've only done the down about 10 times) offering me to sit first, then go down. I'm not giving him the command to sit, he's just sitting and going down. H
So I figure my technique is off?
Will this come with age and time to 'snap' into the down? Or should I stop training it until he offers me the correct motion down?
I do hope that makes sense!!
I have no idea what you're working toward with your puppy, but at 12 wks I personally wouldn't worry about him offering a sit first. Just keep training short and fun and rewarding for the puppy...technique can easily be refined later just by switching the order of your training routine. Keep him guessing...and always fun!

My dog has a very snappy down, but more so from a sit than from a standing position. The key, at least for my dog was to make myself very animated, make a game of it. And switch up the order of commands given to keep her guessing, and reward and praise profusely when you get the behavior you're after! My dog is now 20 months, and I'm getting a fairly snappy down about half the time from a standing position. When she does snap down I make a HUGE deal of it...when she doesn't I offer much less enthusiasm. It is a process.

It's not the size of the dog in the fight, it's the size of the fight in the dog. Mark Twain

Tim
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 09-17-2018, 01:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MOzak View Post
I have just started training my 12wk old pup to down. After some investigating I read it was best to teach from standing, I understand the reasoning why, so decided to do that.
However my pup is consistently of his own accord (ok we've only done the down about 10 times) offering me to sit first, then go down. I'm not giving him the command to sit, he's just sitting and going down.
So I figure my technique is off?
Will this come with age and time to 'snap' into the down? Or should I stop training it until he offers me the correct motion down?
I do hope that makes sense!!
What are your goals with this puppy? Do you envision him as being a well behaved companion, or are you looking toward obedience competition of some sort?

Train the dog in front of you.
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 09-17-2018, 01:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MOzak View Post
I have just started training my 12wk old pup to down. After some investigating I read it was best to teach from standing, I understand the reasoning why, so decided to do that.
However my pup is consistently of his own accord (ok we've only done the down about 10 times) offering me to sit first, then go down. I'm not giving him the command to sit, he's just sitting and going down.
So I figure my technique is off?
Will this come with age and time to 'snap' into the down? Or should I stop training it until he offers me the correct motion down?
I do hope that makes sense!!
Hes 12 weeks old. You can continue to lure him into a down. Wont be "snappy" but it'll teach the proper down. It doesnt matter what position the dog is in before. It matters what position they are in at the end. Just have fun.
I've never called a down, a "snappy down". Its a down. Speed is added when you start adding control and rewards. Its training with enthusiasm on both sides

Snitches get stitches.
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 09-17-2018, 04:01 PM Thread Starter
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Id love to, long term, do IPO with him but for the moment I just want an obedient dog, we do run a working farm so he will work somewhat as an aside.
Im really training him at the moment because were still waiting on vaccs to go out so hes bored with what limited exercise I can give and this is what we can do to zonk him out.
The snap is my novice way of trying to describe the down Ive witnessed. They almost concertina backwards into the down, whereas hes butt first and inch down.
Im glad that can be worked on, if it is not correct per se, was concerned that hed learn it wrong and itd be impossible to correct if need be.
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 09-17-2018, 04:36 PM
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Originally Posted by MOzak View Post
Id love to, long term, do IPO with him but for the moment I just want an obedient dog, we do run a working farm so he will work somewhat as an aside.
Im really training him at the moment because were still waiting on vaccs to go out so hes bored with what limited exercise I can give and this is what we can do to zonk him out.
The snap is my novice way of trying to describe the down Ive witnessed. They almost concertina backwards into the down, whereas hes butt first and inch down.
Im glad that can be worked on, if it is not correct per se, was concerned that hed learn it wrong and itd be impossible to correct if need be.
The easiest way to start training a dog to keep his front feet stationary for sit, down and stand, and only move the back legs, is to use a position box. It will keep him from being able to move his front feet forwad. You do this with luring (food). For the down, youd want to basically push back into him with the lure, forcing him into a sort of sphinx style down. It can also be done while in motion. So, if youre luring to heel, change it up every once in a while and have him go into a down while youre heeling (not by issuing a command, but by physically pushing your hand backward and down while holding the food, guiding him into a down). Same with sit. Stand Ive done differently, and also later on when the puppy is a bit older. I know many who teach it right away though. Its just eben personal preference onmy part there, lol. I probably wouldnt be using commands right now for this. Build the muscle memory and add commands later. I would actually maybe even have two sets of commands down the road, too. Perhaps German for the formal stuff and English for general house manners.

If youre looking for other ways to occupy his brain while you wait for vaccinations to be complete, you can start teaching him to track. Start with a scent pad and get him used to eating and hunting for kibble on the ground. Might as well lay the foundation for that now if you hope to compete in IPO.

Train the dog in front of you.
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