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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ok, so we started hand signals in class. The instructor told me the down command was with the right hand and I just watched a video and the hand signal was given with the left hand. So which hand is which or does it matter? I am so confused!:confused:
 

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We use the right hand and it's like making a very quick/abrubt stop sign. Pushing right hand straight out to dog with palm facing out. Some push it more up vs straight out too. At least this is what I have seen more in the AKC obedience route...
 

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A lady in my agility class (who does field trials with her golden) uses her right hand and does the "fist pump" kinda thing except she does it with palm to the sky.... "Raise the roof?" I hope that made sense....

Biggest thing is consistency, whatever you teach stick to it...
 

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Ok, so we started hand signals in class. The instructor told me the down command was with the right hand and I just watched a video and the hand signal was given with the left hand. So which hand is which or does it matter? I am so confused!:confused:
It doesn't really matter, whatever hand signal you decide on can come from whatever hand you want it too.
I made sure when I had to retrain mabel that all commands came verbally, silently, and off of both hands. This way no matter how I choose or have to say it I get the response I need. My down is a flat palm going down towards the floor, but again personal preference. It's one of those things that you seem to choose naturally, I've never thought about how do I want to tell her, I just start using my hand in what feels the most natural and direct way to convey it. Good luck! :)
 
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I also use my right hand. If my dog was on leash I'd have the leash in my left hand.
 
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I should have stated I did not know if it meant a difference in competing. Like for utility.
 

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I should have stated I did not know if it meant a difference in competing. Like for utility.
AKC rules do not describe or specify what signals are given to the dog. That said, AKC Obedience competitors know that you never want to make a judge have to think... you can get dinged for practically anything, so you want to conform to what the judge is probably used to seeing in the ring.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
AKC rules do not describe or specify what signals are given to the dog. That said, AKC Obedience competitors know that you never want to make a judge have to think... you can get dinged for practically anything, so you want to conform to what the judge is probably used to seeing in the ring.
Thank you! I searched and searched AKC's website for this information. Some of their PDF information kept getting stuck before it would open. I will have to watch some videos and see what people are doing. I am wondering why I couldnt point downward with one finger. Thats the hand signal she already knows. Using my hand up and coming to the stop somewhat has her confused b/c I taught her to wave bye-bye. I hold my hand a little lower and wave at her. In the begining thats what she thinks the hand is starting to do. I had also taught her my hand straight up means come. So she is having to really watch this hand closely. I could tell yesterday when doing the exercise for down she was really starting to think about it as she had tried wave a couple times. She was getting it.

Does anyone have an opinion....if that is to many hand siganls with one arm? One would be low(midwaist) with fingers moving, one bent at elbow doing the stop, and one straight up in the air. Or would this teach her to pay closer attention?
 

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Left or right, could it be as simple as...what one is most comfortable with:
- if you where born left handed, use left hand to give dog signals
- if you where born right handed, use right hand to give dog signals
Just my guess, interesting thread.
 

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if you have the intention of ever competing in utility, all signals with one hand is harder for a dog to discriminate because all the motions essentially start the same and it leads to a lot of unnecessary confusion when you start working at a distance. whatever hand you want to use is fine, i use my right arm for drops/downs, left for sit, and right for recalls. i also have a stand command with BOTH hands, depending on if i am in heel position (use the left) or in front of them (use the right). utility is always down, sit, come - and most people have too similar recall and down signals and its confusing for the dogs even up close. dogs can absolutely do it off one hand no problem, but its certainly EASIER to teach alternating hands.
 

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I had to think about what hand I do use for signals. I think that if I'm beside the dog with the dog in heel position I always use my right hand. And I NEVER use any signal that involves wiggling fingers--it's a good way to get points taken off if you are competing seriously.
I use my left arm and hand for signals at a distance: down, sit, stand, come.

I alternate hands for a return to heel depending on whether I'm asking for a flip finish (right hand) or an around (left hand).

Hmmm--I just went and ran a dog through a stand command--seems that is the one exception to using my right hand for a signal for a dog in heel position--I DO use my left hand to signal stand.

I think I do all of this more out of habit than anything else--the first trainer I worked under trained that way and she had a lengthy explanation of why she wanted everyone to train using the right hand/left hand protocol but since that was 55 years ago if anyone thinks I remember the explanation--forget that. I now do it because it's worked with a lot of dogs over the years.
 

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I alternate hands for a return to heel depending on whether I'm asking for a flip finish (right hand) or an around (left hand).
Did you mean to write right hand for flip, left for around? I use the opposite, and figure which hand I signal with is a clue to the dog to which side of my body he should move.
 

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Did you mean to write right hand for flip, left for around? I use the opposite, and figure which hand I signal with is a clue to the dog to which side of my body he should move.
DANG! I can't get this right--no I didn't mean what I wrote--I use the left hand for a flip (finish to the left) and the right hand for the around (finish to the right). Big duh!
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Did you mean to write right hand for flip, left for around? I use the opposite, and figure which hand I signal with is a clue to the dog to which side of my body he should move.
LOL you busted me red handed! Yes, I cant tell my left from right. I use left hand for a flip and right for a place. Which also means that I would be giving 4 different hand commands with the right. (down, come, place and wave bye-bye) One with the fingers moving is a trick not really a command.

I will need to rethink what I will be using for what.

Thanks!
 

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I've always used my rand hand as mentioned earlier about holding the leash with the left. But what ever feels comfortable to you is what you should stick with.
 

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Hmmmm I need to think about hand signals too... and words! What do you guys say for a sendaway?
 

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depends on the dog :)
rah was "ball" to focus him on the spot and "go out" to send him.
berlin and cherry were "aim" to focus them and to send them i say "fire!"
 

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Hmmmm I need to think about hand signals too... and words! What do you guys say for a sendaway?
What I use to send my dog away is I point my finger at him and give it a swinging motion to go forward. While teaching him the command, from a heel (by my side) I would point at him, swing my hand out with my finger pointing in the direction saying "free" and he knows he can go about his own business. After numerous of times training it that way, i just use hands signs now with no verbal command and he listens, wheter its sit, down, come. heel etc. All of my commands are in Korean :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Hmmmm I need to think about hand signals too... and words! What do you guys say for a sendaway?
In agility I always told her "away" to send her ahead of me over a jump. It was from an exercise we did teaching recall. I would send her away to a target and then call her to come.

I think we are going to do that this week in class. I am not sure how it even works. Where am I sending her and to do what?
 

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I am trying to think ahead to working trials... Thanks for the suggestions guys! I already use "go" and "out" for other things, I think "aim" and "fire" is good for a sendaway!

Herb2relax, for a sendaway in UD/X obedience in NZ > Send away drop and recall: between 36–54 metres to a specific area using a natural marker

For WD/X obedience in NZ > Sendaway between 36–54 metres then a redirection to the right or left for a distance of 18 metres and drop with directed. Handler to recall the dog to sit in front of handler, and then finish with the dog sitting on the left side.
 
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