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Discussion Starter #1
This is one thing I have not been able to train my dog yet. He walks pretty much right by my side without pulling with the "let's go" command that I taught him with a prong on, which is great for casual walks. However, I really want to teach him the focused/competition heel that I see in Schutzhund/IPO trials. I just can't seem to figure out which method works best for him. His "out" still isn't 100%, so I'm only using food rewards for training for now. He isn't very good motivated, but I've found that if I withold half his meal and use the food engagement tips from Michael Ellis's Advanced Concepts in Motivation dvd, he will work for food. I want to know what methods other people have used, and why or why not they worked or didn't work for your dog specifically.

These are the most common methods I've found:
Free shaping with a target such as as paper plate
Luring with a target such as a paper plate
Luring without a target

And how long did it take your dog to learn the behavior? Thank you!
 

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A target on the ground isn't what I would do. That would draw attention to the ground, away from you. Its probably the same as Cloud, but to use a toy as a target on you, the dog has to really want the toy and learn to maintain controlled focus on it to get it. It was a little over 2 mos before I ever took a step, but this is the basic sequence of what I did. It all begins with that capping in an attentive sit, and then I step into position. Later on you add drills where he finds the position.
 

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A target on the ground isn't what I would do. That would draw attention to the ground, away from you. Its probably the same as Cloud, but to use a toy as a target on you, the dog has to really want the toy and learn to maintain controlled focus on it to get it. It was a little over 2 mos before I ever took a step, but this is the basic sequence of what I did. It all begins with that capping in an attentive sit, and then I step into position. Later on you add drills where he finds the position.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2axsIrtXV2Q
I'm not pretty like you to make a video :)
 

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Reading this thread, I had a 'doh' moment. Have been trying to lure my pup into position but as she will sell her soul for play and a ball, definitely going to change my approach.
 

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So the general consensus seems to be to teach the dog the "sit at my left side" position, then walking forward, and then introute pivots and finding the position? Most of the videos I've watched and articles I've read started out teaching the dog to keep it's head up and pivot on a target, then find the position, then pivot with you, and then walk forward, backward, to the sides, increase distance, etc. Has no one else done this method, or does teaching the position first seem to work better?
 

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A target on the ground isn't what I would do. That would draw attention to the ground, away from you. Its probably the same as Cloud, but to use a toy as a target on you, the dog has to really want the toy and learn to maintain controlled focus on it to get it. It was a little over 2 mos before I ever took a step, but this is the basic sequence of what I did. It all begins with that capping in an attentive sit, and then I step into position. Later on you add drills where he finds the position.
[/quote] We are working on that now by ourselves. Your video showed me what I'm doing wrong. I introduced fuss right away and he could not control himself. He wanted the ball immediately. Our trainer has us working more in drive than we used to, but for this, I need to go back to capping for calm attention. Why do you put the toy on your shoulder before releasing it? How do you keep him from moving from position to grab the toy? Mine wants to catch it and get away from me so I can't Aus it.
 

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We are working on that now by ourselves. Your video showed me what I'm doing wrong. I introduced fuss right away and he could not control himself. He wanted the ball immediately. Our trainer has us working more in drive than we used to, but for this, I need to go back to capping for calm attention. Why do you put the toy on your shoulder before releasing it? How do you keep him from moving from position to grab the toy? Mine wants to catch it and get away from me so I can't Aus it.
Putting the ball on my shoulder does 2 things. Its a reminder of not coming up for the ball till he has permission because its the same way I released it to him without heeling and later on when I have the ball in my pocket or out of sight or even leave it on the ground he'll still expect it to appear there if he keeps looking at my shoulder.

You teach him he can't take the toy until you tell him he can. That capping in the sit and making him hold the sit till you release and drop the toy with an obvious opening of your hand is one way, but even just tugging, making him pause after an out and rebite on command will help. Keep him on a leash so he never gets the idea of playing keep away.
 

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Putting the ball on my shoulder does 2 things. Its a reminder of not coming up for the ball till he has permission because its the same way I released it to him without heeling and later on when I have the ball in my pocket or out of sight or even leave it on the ground he'll still expect it to appear there if he keeps looking at my shoulder.

You teach him he can't take the toy until you tell him he can. That capping in the sit and making him hold the sit till you release and drop the toy with an obvious opening of your hand is one way, but even just tugging, making him pause after an out and rebite on command will help. Keep him on a leash so he never gets the idea of playing keep away.
Got it. Your shoulder is near your face so if he's looking up there, he's also looking at you. How did you decide he was ready to take a step? You take one step each time. When do you move from one step to a full heel?
 

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Got it. Your shoulder is near your face so if he's looking up there, he's also looking at you. How did you decide he was ready to take a step? You take one step each time. When do you move from one step to a full heel?
Actually, it looks like at 1 year I was still working on position with slow steps, halting, that kind of thing, and then a couple months later I started moving out more. Trying to get my footwork better too.
 

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Also doing a lot of pedestal or box work to teach rear end awareness will make the transition to movement much easier.
If I notice the dog swinging out or in I'll go back to the box and it straightens it right out.
 

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Also doing a lot of pedestal or box work to teach rear end awareness will make the transition to movement much easier.
If I notice the dog swinging out or in I'll go back to the box and it straightens it right out.
Interesting. When I started luring into position with my male, I used hand placement and mirrors to control the back end.
 

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We train in Mondioring, attention heel isn't required, I did it with my Mal just for fun.

My Mal had no toy/prey drive as a puppy (her prey drive turned on when she was 17 months old) so I had to use food for all of her foundation training.

I made this video a while back, it shows her progression from a young puppy to 2 years of age.....
 

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Also doing a lot of pedestal or box work to teach rear end awareness will make the transition to movement much easier.
If I notice the dog swinging out or in I'll go back to the box and it straightens it right out.
Interesting. When I started luring into position with my male, I used hand placement and mirrors to control the back end.
You are correct. hand placement can push the dogs behind in or out. And mirrors are great tools to be able to see what your dog is doing. I used food and luring to first teach position. Doing rear end awareness on the box seemed to make something click for them. Like hey, I can move with him while keeping my position and focus. sometimes they still seem to forget that they can control their back ends. Or have no rear end awareness. So if I notice they are starting to swing either way well do a couple sessions on the box with treats and they're like. Oh yeah, I have Got to pay attention to that also. But thinking about it I am also using hand placement to keep them in line while on the box.
 

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I start it in pieces. I work focus first. Getting the dog to look at me in various position. Next to me, in front of me, between my legs and so on. I will sometimes use a wall or barrier to keep the dog straight. Still no movement.

In another session, I work perch work to teach some rear end awareness. Spinning around a bowl and so on. I will sometimes use a square on the ground and get the dog to pivot around that.

Then a different session, I work luring. Depending on the dog, this can be done with toy or food. Then I slowly start fading out the lure.

With some softer less drivey dogs, I have taught it with a pinch or choke chain. First starting with loose leash walking, then working the focus by popping up towards my face. When they look, big release and praise. Continue this until they get it.

This is Areli as a baby. You can see in the video, I've already started all those pieces.

I don't have any current video, but here are a couple pictures of her from a week or two ago. You can see the progression
21731241_1901168576867899_5091653692172802397_n by Jeremy Friedman, on Flickr
21462869_1901167256868031_6673750928549287646_n by Jeremy Friedman, on Flickr
21462724_1901168406867916_7945332898907319603_n by Jeremy Friedman, on Flickr
21433120_1897678903883533_2913241391083318448_n by Jeremy Friedman, on Flickr
 
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