Progress in Focus Eye Contact - German Shepherd Dog Forums
 
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-05-2010, 11:56 AM Thread Starter
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Progress in Focus Eye Contact

I corrected the slouching and made sure that my body is straight and as you can see Yukon is paying even more attention now. I mainly stopped using the command too.

I also inserted a little sit & down and making it fun for him. I still use my hands to help him with the down but most of you know his story so this is actually great progress in his case. You know, that he's doing it without falling apart and being scared so bad that he's ducking.


At the end you see him doing the dead (Tot!) and Roll over (Rolle) trick. I thought it was a good way to end his little session.

Should I actually use the command "free" to release him? I usually don't use any command to release him at all.

I am trying to completely start over with his training. I know I have to, especially when I want to get more into agility. I figured we have to go back to the beginning and start all over again. Watching the videos online definitely opened my eyes on how to do it the right way. I hope my husband can come with me on monday and film the agility session so you can see why I want to start over because what we are doing is definitely NOT agility as it should be.

Oh yeah, that is Indra in the other room. She hates being excluded from Clicker Training
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-05-2010, 02:28 PM
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I would definitely start using a release command. Ideally, he'll keep doing what you've asked him to do until you tell him he doesn't have to anymore, and that's when a release command comes in handy. You don't want HIM to decide when an exercise is over, and how will he know it's okay to stop if you don't have a cue for that? I use my release command for everything - to jump into the car, to get out of the car, to go out the door, to come in the door, to eat a meal, to chase a ball, to take the bully stick I'm holding, to grab the toy, to get off the mat, to get up from a sit or down, to come out of their crates....

I like to use praise as a "keep going" signal (good dog, that's right, excellent, good job, etc.) when increasing the duration of eye contact rather than keeping silent the entire time. If he seems to get it, you may decide not to do that, but I don't want my dogs to think that because they haven't heard the click yet they're not doing it right.

I like to work on eye contact both on cue, and also uncued, so I think it's good that you're not always telling him to look at you. Eye contact as a default behavior is a wonderful thing, and marking and rewarding it when it's offered up freely by the dog will help make that a strong default behavior.

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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-05-2010, 03:13 PM
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definately what CM ^^^ said

And YES you look great ! Straighter standing and he's "into" it !

I also use a release word, I try not to use "ok" (since they use that alot in the ring and I don't want the dog "jumping" the exercise because someone else said OK)

I tend to use "done",,and then do as you do, lots of physical praise

GOOD JOB

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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-05-2010, 04:10 PM
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I think a good, clear release can function as a very powerful teaching tool. Both Ivan Balabanov and Michael Ellis (I'm sure there are others) use the marker as simultaneously a mark and a release. In other word, the marker word ("Ok" or "Yes") that tells the dog he did something right is also the dog's release word. When the dog does something right and you mark AND release at the same time, things become very clear, very black and white to the dog. Whatever the dog was doing when he got marked/released, THAT was what he did right, THAT is what you are rewarding him for. So in the beginning when I did attention with Ike, I would get eye contact and say "Yes" and that would be his cue that (1) he is getting a treat and (2) he is free to do whatever he wants and we would goof around some and then start the exercise over again. Later on we added "good" as his keep going marker word (keep doing what you are doing, your release/reward is coming). But in the beginning we did lots of start and stop, mark, release, and then reset.

Last edited by Jason L; 06-05-2010 at 04:16 PM.
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-05-2010, 06:06 PM
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Great to see the bonding and love between you!

Watch when you click as a marker. Cause it's SO precise (and I may have read this wrong in the video) but at the very end when you had him sit and clicked.... were you clicking/rewarding the 'sit'? or that he gave eye contact? or something else?

As a marker for 'sit' it should have been when his behind hit the ground.... And if you were clicking his eye contact then you probably did a GREAT job and can disregard my prior posting

Have you added a tug toy to his training/release yet? This REALLY helps with their joy for wanting to train with you. Fun, short and fast sessions with tons of treats, AND the tug toy for a short play session before continuing really keeps their interest.

Those doing obedience can help with the heel position and eye contact more. I know I was told that if I sandwich the dog between a wall and myself, it's a huge help to keep MY body in line with the dogs. As well as prevent the normal bending around our dogs tend to do. This also helps when we add the one step at a time to the heeling. The wall prevents the dogs from having their behind swing around, and WE can keep walking a straight line!

KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK! Main thing is always to have fun and it looks like you are both doing great with that!




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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-05-2010, 07:58 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
but at the very end when you had him sit and clicked.... were you clicking/rewarding the 'sit'? or that he gave eye contact? or something else?
There were two clicks at the end. The first one was for the rolle-over and the last one he made eyecontact and thats when I clicked.

Quote:
Watch when you click as a marker. Cause it's SO precise
I hear you. I hope I am doing it right because I pretty much taught it myself by reading a book and articles on the internet. That's why I figured that it might be a good idea to get a video camera and record it so some of you can point out things that I can do better like this:

Quote:
I know I was told that if I sandwich the dog between a wall and myself, it's a huge help to keep MY body in line with the dogs. As well as prevent the normal bending around our dogs tend to do. This also helps when we add the one step at a time to the heeling. The wall prevents the dogs from having their behind swing around, and WE can keep walking a straight line!
That is an AWESOME idea. I would have never thought of that myself and I especially have that problem with Zenzy. She's NEVER walking straight and always heeling cricked and I've seen the cricket heeling a lot because the dogs are trying to get a better position to look into your eyes and I also noticed that Yukon is sort of leaning over to the other side to get a better look.

Quote:
Have you added a tug toy to his training/release yet? This REALLY helps with their joy for wanting to train with you. Fun, short and fast sessions with tons of treats, AND the tug toy for a short play session before continuing really keeps their interest.
Yes, when I am outside I use his ball but in the apartment I can't use any toys because the downstairs neighbors.

Quote:
I think a good, clear release can function as a very powerful teaching tool. Both Ivan Balabanov and Michael Ellis (I'm sure there are others) use the marker as simultaneously a mark and a release. In other word, the marker word ("Ok" or "Yes") that tells the dog he did something right is also the dog's release word. When the dog does something right and you mark AND release at the same time, things become very clear, very black and white to the dog. Whatever the dog was doing when he got marked/released, THAT was what he did right, THAT is what you are rewarding him for. So in the beginning when I did attention with Ike, I would get eye contact and say "Yes" and that would be his cue that (1) he is getting a treat and (2) he is free to do whatever he wants and we would goof around some and then start the exercise over again. Later on we added "good" as his keep going marker word (keep doing what you are doing, your release/reward is coming). But in the beginning we did lots of start and stop, mark, release, and then reset.
I will definitely try that. Thank you so much for the advise. I love watching your Ike videos by the way


So for the next session I am including a release word and more praise and will get the DVD set for the agility foundation. For the heeling part I have to look where I can find a wall but a fence should do it too, right?
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-05-2010, 08:03 PM
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anything will work, side of a building, your hallway if you have a longish one..

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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-05-2010, 08:04 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by JakodaCD OA View Post
anything will work, side of a building, your hallway if you have a longish one..
Unfortunately we don't have a long hallway. But I could go to the dog park when nobody is around and use the fence there. Or go to the highschool and use the highschool wall.
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