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Old 02-24-2009, 09:02 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Teaching down

How do I get Jada to lay down without placing my hand on the ground in front of her? She will sit on command, she will stay but I have to actually bend over and touch the ground in front of her with a treat (sometimes without) for her to lay down.

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Old 02-24-2009, 09:21 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I wouldnt say we taught Max in a 'professional' manner, but hey we got him to do it......

we would get him to sit, and then say "down" and help move his legs down and then praise and treat. He caught on quickly.....in fact now when we say sait he sometimes goes right to a down cuz he thnks hes gonna get a treat! Definately dont treat or praise then...

How did u get her to stay? we r still working on that one! LOL
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Old 02-24-2009, 09:24 PM   #3 (permalink)
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How did u get her to stay? we r still working on that one! LOL[/quote]

I work with her at night when she is calm and the kids are in bed. She is not perfect but everyday she is getting better. Every time she moves I put her back where we started and tell her to stay again. I have started going out of sight for a few seconds and she is doing so good. She is lazy and gets bored and lays down sometimes. LOL


Thanks for the help with down.
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Old 02-24-2009, 09:30 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Tons of repititions with treats and/or praise.
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Old 02-24-2009, 10:03 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I agree, tons of repitition with treats/praise.

Athena started out with us having to put our hands towards the ground, then we graduated to just pointing to the ground. Now she does it with just the verbal command. Jada will get it eventually, she's still young!
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Old 02-24-2009, 10:09 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Yea Peaches did that as well but as she slowly got older it got better. Now I just say down and she hits the floor. I got frustrated at times and I shouldn't have she was just young and needed the visual cues.
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Old 02-24-2009, 10:11 PM   #7 (permalink)
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We taught Tess by putting the food between our fingers, palm down. We'd show her the treat was there and then lead her down from a sit with the downward palm motion. Eventually she started responding to just a downward flick of the wrist with an open palm and/or the word "down."

Now if we could only teach our little stinker that she can't just release herself from her sits or downs. She's been slipping on that lately...bah, it never ends!
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Old 02-24-2009, 10:11 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Work with her before dinner! Use a treat and a clicker. Ask her to sit holding the treat enclosed in your hand....say it once only...as soon as you say sit, take one step towards her holding the treat at nose level. Gently push down on her rear haunches until she is sitting, click instantly then reward her.
The down is easy. At first get her to sit in front of you...reward as described above for sitting... motion your hand to the floor while saying down, bring the treat all the way too the floor(her nose will follow) if she doesn't go down pull your hand back away from her at floor level...if this doesn't work, place her down by grasping her front paws and gently placing her down. Reward with a click and a treat. Eventually you want to see her haunches out to the side otherwise you have a Dobe that's about to spring back up.
Never praise or repeat a command before they are in the position you want, and never praise her after you've said ok and shes on they way up...she'll think you're rewarding her for this.
I've trained Dobes with and without clickers, the important thing is that you either click or praise as soon as they do what you want. The clicker allows you to give them an audible "praise" as soon as they assume the down or sit, if they even hesitate while your giving praise they'll think this is what your rewarding them for. Get good treats...practice often, but no more than 10 min at a time...and be consistent.
I hope this helps.

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Old 02-24-2009, 11:09 PM   #9 (permalink)
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heres an idea.
Sit on the floor, with a treat. bend your knees enough so pup can fit under you legs...have her come for the treat and crawl under your legs to get it..telling her down, and good girl when she scoots under your legs enough to be completly down.
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Old 02-24-2009, 11:10 PM   #10 (permalink)
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then after she realizes what down is, graduate to down without sitting on the floor , and then to down with a hand signal..etc
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Old 02-27-2009, 08:11 AM   #11 (permalink)
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When Thakoon was really little, I would give him treats for going into his crate. I would shut the door and give him a little treat. Seeing as though he would slide into a "near-down" if I poked the treat through the lowest part of the door, then sit back up, I started to say "Down!" Then make him slide all the way down while in the crate, then treat him. And repeat. He learned in about 30 seconds. We continued to practice "Down" in the crate. (This was still a long time before I finally got him into any formal obedience). Then outside of the crate I would tell him, "Down!" whenever I gave him something really yummy, like a stuffed Kong or a raw bone. He knew he was getting the goodie already, so I just used my flat hand alone to signal while I gave the command. I still make him Down for all his special treats. His down is pretty solid now too; no food reward required. Command and hand signal only.

So, I'm no pro-trainer, or even a moderately experienced one, but if you have no idea where/how to start teaching down, try the crate! It worked for us and we weren't even really trying.
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