Originally Posted By: Dozer I even tried a toy and he was a bit better. When I bring him off leash in a field he has full attention on me because I throw a stick and he LOVES his stick but in class I cannot bring a branch with me, lol. He loves to chase my Cairns and they motivate him.
That's all prey drive. Get a ball on a rope, play with him with it, building drive by not letting him catch it, then insert a command, he'll comply, and release and let him catch it, the play tugging, and then "Out" (let go)...it will be the reward. Make it your toy, only used for short daily training sessions. Kept short to leave him wanting more, always ending on a success.
You can cut a couple of pieces of old rubber garden hose,about a foot long, to use as sticks, and play with those, tossing, fetching trading one for the other to teach the OUT. Safer than a stick, doesn't bounce crazy like a ball.
There is nothing you can't teach him employing that drive in a positive way. Formal classes often tend to go on too long for boredom not to kick in, but serve well to help socialize, and proof under distraction the commands you work on outside of class.
And don't just work at home, train the schoolyard, at the park, in an empty parking lot...it generalizes the commands so they are understood and complied with everywhere.