Two questions - German Shepherd Dog Forums
 
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 11-03-2011, 12:43 PM Thread Starter
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Two questions

First question is what is the correct hand movement for "come"?
Second question--when I am walking Sib and she wants to chase squirrels, I set her down and make her "look at me" Is this when I would use the "leave it" command and if so do I say "leave it" --treat--"leave it " treat etc or do I say "leave it" and no treat till she is settled? Obviously I don't know how to use this command..Thanks ahead for your replies
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 11-04-2011, 11:10 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for all the info--I found what I needed on Google
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 11-04-2011, 12:26 PM
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There are some good videos on youtube for teaching the leave it command. Did you find any? In your example, where she's already looking at you and not the squirrels, I don't think a leave it command is necessary. I use leave it to divert the dogs attention off something and back to me. I would mark the moment the dog turns away from whatever it is (a verbal marker such as "yes!" or with a clicker) and reward when she redirects to me. I don't generally repeat commands, so I wouldn't keep saying leave it and then treat over and over again, (presuming she's not looking away each time) but there's no reason you can't treat several times in a row while she's still focused on you, to reinforce the attention. I usually pair that with praise, and I release when I'm done and the dog can break eye contact.

As far as what hand signals to use for any particular command, there is no "correct" one. You can use anything that seems right and feels comfortable for you.

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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 11-04-2011, 05:20 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for your response--there really is so much to learn to try to do ones best for their family
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 11-04-2011, 05:47 PM
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What Debbie says is very good advice! My boy isn't too frazzled by squirrels, but a cat makes him loco. I use "Leave it" at the very moment he begins to focus on the cat. That is his only warning. Once he turns and focuses on me, I throw him a party! Praise! Treat! And then I make sure we do something else to keep him focused on me. I would not make him sit or any command that requires him to be still. I might heel in figure 8's , or toss a ball to him (NOT THROW IT!). Something to get him to engage in another activity that does not include any opportunity to chase the cat.

I do not use "Leave it" if I missed the opportunity and he has already begun the chase (if he is off leash). I can't reinforce the command once he has lost his mind. At that point it's really my fault.

I only use 'Come' if I want him to come directly to me and either sit in front of me or at the heel position. If I'm using 'come' I'll point my hand either in front of me, or sweep it to my side. 'Come' is a direct command not to be taken lightly.

'Here' is a softer command I'd give if I want my dog to refocus on where I'm at. Like if I'm in the bedroom and he isn't. I'll say 'Here!' and he'll come into the bedroom, but he doesn't have to come and sit or glue to me. If I'm in the pasture and I say 'Here' that tells my dog that he has gotten too far ahead and I want him to come back towards me. He is to change direction and head towards me, but he doesn't have to come directly to me like he would with 'Come'.

Make sense?

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