Category Archives: Video

Dog Connection Adventure Camp Homework – Down

DOWN

Remember to follow the principles of “SAY IT – SHOW IT – PAY IT”.

1. Start by using treats to lure your dog into the “DOWN” position. For some dogs, its easier to start from the “SIT”, while others will go easier into a “folded” “DOWN” where they bent their body back from a standing position into a sphinx-like position.  For some dogs, gently petting them along their side, will also encourage them to go into the “DOWN” position so they can roll on their back for petting.  Experiment with your dog, to see whats easier for him.  Once they can reliably go into the down position, you’ll want to make sure they can do it from both a “SIT” and a “STAND”.

2. From a “SIT”, bring a treat from your dog’s nose, downward along his chest all the way to the ground.  If he lowers his head to follow the treat, praise and reward.  He doesn’t have to go into the down yet, you want to ease them into it, be patient. Repeat this exercise, pulling the treat away further each time, so your dog must stretch down and forward to get it. Reward each increment.  If your dog goes far enough down, that the elbows touch down on the ground, give him a handful of treats and praise lavishly to let him know this is what you really wanted. Repeat and praise several times.

2b. From a “STAND”, bring a treat from your dog’s nose, downward along the chest and back between the front legs toward the ground under the belly.  If he lowers his head to follow the treat, praise and reward. Reward each increment and once the elbows touch the ground, praise and reward lavishly.  Make sure the rear has lowered to the ground before you allow your dog to take the treat.  Repeat and praise several times.

3. When your dog is offering to “DOWN” consistently when you lure with the treats, start naming the behavior.  Say “DOWN”, then show the treat to help them into position. Praise and reward when they do.  At this point, you want to introduce a release word like “OK” or “FREE” which will signify to your dog that they can get out of the position and move freely.

4. Now without the treats in hand, give your “DOWN” command. You can use similar hand motions to those you used when luring with the treat.  When your dog goes into position, praise and reward, then give your “OK” before they move out of position.

5. Start teaching your dog to stay in position for longer and longer time, by giving more than one treat in succession before giving the “OK”.  If your dog moves before the “OK”, help them back into position but wait a few seconds before your reward again or give your “OK” word.  If your dog moves up, as you stand up, try to time your motion with them eating their treat, then bend back down and feed before he’s done eating. You want to teach your dog that your
standing up does not mean they should move out of position.

6. As your dog understands the game, wait longer between treats and move around and add distractions.  Always make sure your dog is being successful and make the excercise easier if they are having trouble at some point.  Pretty soon you’ll have a dog with a happy and reliable “Down-Stay”.

Copyright Dog Connection 2011

Dog Connection Adventure Camp Homework – Sit

SIT

For teaching your dog a new trick, its always a good idea to remember “SAY IT – SHOW IT – PAY IT”.  Say your cue word or command, what you want your dog to do.  Show them what you want them to do by luring at first, or helping them into position.  Pay your dog with a treat, a pet and lots of praise for doing what you asked.

1. Start by using treats to lure your dog to move their head up and back. When the head moves up, the rear comes down.  Praise and reward when the rear touches the ground.

2. When your dog is offering to “Sit” consistently when you lure with the treats, start naming the behavior.  Say “Sit”, then show the treat and praise and reward when they do.

3. Now without the treats in hand, give your “SIT” command. You can use similar hand motions to those you used when luring the sit.  When your dog sits, praise and reward, then give your “OK” before they move out of position.

4. At this point, you want to introduce a release word like “OK” or “FREE” which will signify to your dog that they can get out of the position and move freely.

5. Start teaching your dog to stay in position for longer and longer time, by giving more than one treat in succession before giving the “OK”.  If your dog moves before the “OK”, help them back into position but wait a few seconds before you reward again or give your “OK”

6. As your dog understands the game, wait longer between treats and move around and add distractions.  Always make sure your dog is being successful and make the exercise easier if they are having trouble at some point.  Pretty soon you’ll have a dog with a happy and reliable “Sit-Stay”.

Copyright Dog Connection 2011

Well Trained Working Dogs :-) – updated with video

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Yesterday, Sheyla Gutiérrez from the Dog Connection training team was in St. Petersburg, FL filming a commercial with three of her dogs: Minnie the Pug, Fanta the 9 month old Border Collie, and her “borrowed dog” Dealer the 9 year old Border Collie.  For Dealer, who’s owned by her friend Annette Alfonso, TV work and even movie work is a fairly common thing, but though Minnie had been on TV shows before, this was her first time working in a commercial.  For baby Fanta, this was her first job ever and a chance to show off some of her tricks and test how her training is coming along.  All dogs did remarkably well.  They had to drive more than 5 hours to get to St. Petersburg, stay at the Hilton Hotel there, then wait in their soft crates (quietly) for their turn during the day.   The filming was done in a Park setting, and then inside a house.  The park was full of joggers and people, and of course distractions.  The house was pretty crowded with people and equipment.  The dogs had several different behaviors to perform within these distractions, with Sheyla standing outside behind the camera.  Minnie got the best deal, as one of her scenes involved licking peanut butter off of the lead character’s face!  Dealer had to walk nicely on leash, while Fanta got to “play dead”.  All scenes were finished on time and according to the director’s wishes. This was only possible thanks to the dog’s training!  Everyone had a great time and the dogs got a lot of attention from crew and cast alike.  All in all, another memorable experience thanks to well trained working dogs 🙂