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I had been teaching my puppy down from a sit position. Then a video I saw said NOT to do that but teach down from stand. He said it could be “life saving”. I would like advice on which way to do it. Any advice may not matter, I may train her whichever way I feel like. But would like a few more pros and cons on it than just “life saving”.

Thanks!
 

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If you teach down from standing they learn to drop fast. This helps with the down in motion. If you teach it from a sit many dogs will always sit first on their way down.
It all depends upon what you want. If you have taught your dog the down from sitting you can teach the dog to stand, and ask for the down directly out of the stand. If you go rapidly from stand to down and back to stand rapidly they usually get it and start going directly from one to the other.
 

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I am going to go with, "The exact method you use to teach something is much less important than consistency.... while making progress towards your long term goals."

A lot of the dog training videos are created by dog trainers promoting their business and their own methods. The hyperbole of 'my way is the only right way' is particularly high in this community. There are several youtube trainers that appear to have a very deep knowledge of their dogs.... but their insistence that their way is the only right way grates on my nerves.

From my experience, small-town dog trainers can be even worse. It seems that these trainers had a dog who won a contest, so they hung up their dog training shingle. They often seem to be more interested in teaching the owner 'their methods' than they are in having the dog do the activity that they are trying to teach.
 

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If you teach down from standing they learn to drop fast. This helps with the down in motion. If you teach it from a sit many dogs will always sit first on their way down.
This makes a lot of since. Thank you for describing it so well.
I first taught my puppy down by luring from stand to down to stand to down, over and over. Now he has a smooth fold down.
I can see how the speed or a smooth fold down matters in competition but I’m not sure it’s ‘life saving’ elsewhere.
 

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I don't think it's "life saving" either other than if your dog is well trained at the down in motion you could get them to stop before crossing a street if they were chasing something.
 

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@davewis Speed comes from two places, one is the individual dog's pace ( a basset hound will never move like a Mal). The other is from practicing rapid commands one after the other and speeding up over time.

The Malinois that Larry Krohn works with on videos is very fast.

So are Bart Ballon's dogs in his videos.

Both of these trainers work with e-collars. I think that helps to teach speed.
 

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@Jorski, I've been practicing with a string of 4-5 rapid-fire commands in a row using a combination of down, sit, and stand followed by a treat. Ole seems to love the challenge. It reminds me of a second-grader raising his hand, moving to the edge of his seat, and saying, 'oh oh oh I know this' when the teachers ask a question about dinosaurs. :)

I need the self-discipline to invest the time on a good out so I can reward with toys.... but I keep getting distracted whenever the toys come out.
 

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I was wondering about that after watching some Larry Krohn videos. Some of his dogs seem to be so fast that they bounce from a stand to a down to a stand.
Not to confuse or contradict anyone, but just think about it this way. Speed comes from motivation. You can have motivation to avoid a correction or just the pressure of e or whatever collar, but it still involves more reward then release of pressure or avoiding correction to really obtain that quick and clear performance. I'd say its more the toy then the collar and if you were going to use one over the other, thats the one I'd go with.
 

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I know a few people who have taught emergency downs. One trains in SAR, the other is just a sport dog person. I'm still working on it as a new handler - the commands under high states of arousal is still new to me.
Sitting and luring into a down is good for the average pet home. If you are looking for a competition down where they fold backwards, you would teach to down from a stand and in motion. Steel does both but I taught him to fold backwards. My female will actually lift her rear from a sit to flop backwards into a down - she's more consistent and much much quicker.
Ecollar can teach speed, but also just plain eagerness to please can cause that speed you see some dogs perform at. I've never used E on my girl and she's fast (sometimes too fast for her own good).
 

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I taught down from sit initially, but later on used the command from a variety of positions, and more importantly IMO, in a variety of situations by varying the three D's (distance, distraction, duration). That means, in the kitchen, in the other rooms, outside, in the park, on walks, near kids, near dogs, etc. Doing that stuff is way more important than the initial method you use to teach your dog the behavior (IMO).

BTW, even though I taught down from a sit position originally, he doesn't sit on his way to a down normally. Maybe it's because I moved on to "puppy pushups" rather soon--he sits, downs, and stands (all three have their own commands), one after the other, in a variety of combinations. First you need to make sure he knows what each means and knows haw to do it.
 

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I dont think it matters how you start, but varying when and where and from a sit or stand are important to proof the behavior (as CactusWren states). Its important to remember the dog needs to know the down first before you ask it to do it in different situations.

The two toy game (throwing toy, dog brings back, throwing second toy between your legs behind you as dog drops first toy) will teach a very fast recall. You can also put the down in motion in this as well.
 

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I had been teaching my puppy down from a sit position. Then a video I saw said NOT to do that but teach down from stand. He said it could be “life saving”. I would like advice on which way to do it. Any advice may not matter, I may train her whichever way I feel like. But would like a few more pros and cons on it than just “life saving”.

Thanks!
That must have been that big dog trainer around Florida. Ugh. I forgot his name.
I used to teach it from sit for Kias, but I find it both easier to teach it from standing and safer as well. When dropping from a stand they are faster. (Somebody's said this I'm sure. I didn't bother looking through.)
Example: So if he was, say, running up to a car that was moving, you could say "down" and he would drop right where he was, rather than having to slow down to "sit". The few extra feet it takes to sit could mean death. That's my belief.

It seems that there's a little bit of chance teaching it. If you live in a much more rural area with little traffic or things that could run him over (traffic:))then I would say do it from sit. But if you live in a city you would want that fast drop. It depends on you.
 

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That must have been that big dog trainer around Florida. Ugh. I forgot his name.
I used to teach it from sit for Kias, but I find it both easier to teach it from standing and safer as well. When dropping from a stand they are faster. (Somebody's said this I'm sure. I didn't bother looking through.)
Example: So if he was, say, running up to a car that was moving, you could say "down" and he would drop right where he was, rather than having to slow down to "sit". The few extra feet it takes to sit could mean death. That's my belief.

It seems that there's a little bit of chance teaching it. If you live in a much more rural area with little traffic or things that could run him over (traffic:))then I would say do it from sit. But if you live in a city you would want that fast drop. It depends on you.
Again, not understanding the need to down in an emergency. And not picking on you honey, just keeps getting mentioned.
For competition I could see the reasoning but if the goal is safety, teach stop!
It's immediate. No need for anything else. Just stop.
I used to teach it as a safety. It means freeze, right exactly where you are, not one more twitch and wait for my next command.
 

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I suppose I could imagine a few situations where an immediate ‘down’ or ‘stop’ could be lifesaving and also be applicable over a solid recall but not many.

-You drop a glass, it shatters around your dog. ‘Stop’ would be great.
-You’re across the street from your dog for some reason and they are running towards you, a car is coming. ‘Down’ would be great.

So I’ll admit that there is a small chance that a quick and immediate ‘down’ could be lifesaving. But I’d have to agree with @Sabis mom and a ‘stop’ would be better.

But then I’ll also have to admit, this argument is getting a little silly. We’re focusing on the ‘lifesaving’ aspect instead of which order to teach the puppy pushup sequence.
 

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At the end of the day.... for me and Ole what matters is the additions to tonight's training plan. I think this combines the best of the above advice with our overall goals :)

DOWN from STAND. No distance, distraction, or duration. Luring fine.
STAND from DOWN. ''

OUT. Goal: Drop the object to my front within one foot of my feet. No verbal cue. Step 1. Willingly exchange tug or toy for another moving tug or toy.

We will give it a shot tonight and amend or modify the plan was we improve or learn what works best for us. FWIW, this is the real value of this forum to me!!!
 

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There's different reasons for teaching a down a certain way, a lot of them generally are related to a formal obedience that will judge it on correct position and the physical ability to perform in that way. Down, stop, wait, for most people what probably really matters is will the dog obey. A down will usually show a little more control though.
 

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I suppose I could imagine a few situations where an immediate ‘down’ or ‘stop’ could be lifesaving and also be applicable over a solid recall but not many.

-You drop a glass, it shatters around your dog. ‘Stop’ would be great.
-You’re across the street from your dog for some reason and they are running towards you, a car is coming. ‘Down’ would be great.

So I’ll admit that there is a small chance that a quick and immediate ‘down’ could be lifesaving. But I’d have to agree with @Sabis mom and a ‘stop’ would be better.

But then I’ll also have to admit, this argument is getting a little silly. We’re focusing on the ‘lifesaving’ aspect instead of which order to teach the puppy pushup sequence.
Because I use luring to teach sit and down, and because dogs from some genetic backgrounds struggle with down I always initially start with sit. It's easier, imo, to start with sit, phase into the down and seperate them later. Once the dog understands down and is comfortable with it then I can focus on severing the link. Since I don't make puppies work, it has never posed an issue for me but I understand that not everyone thinks that way and if your way works for you and your dog then that's awesome.
 
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