Adventures in Shaping

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Postby pitbullmamaliz » October 21st, 2009, 7:01 pm

I met with a new trainer (who I absolutely ADORE!!!) and she taught me how to put a relax cue on command. So I've been working with Inara, trying to teach her that she gets a click/treat when she sprawls flat on her side. It was a long process because I didn't use luring at all, just shaping.

I decided she would start earning every piece of her kibble for dinner. I started with clicking her for a down, then waited until she shifted onto one hip while down. This didn't take too too long. Then I hit an impasse - she wouldn't scootch any more onto her side unless she was completely throwing herself onto her back and then jumping back up to see if that earned a click. It was very hectic and not at all what I wanted. I was getting super frustrated and very close to emailing my trainer - "WTF am I doing wrong???"

So I changed tactics. I noticed that before she threw herself onto her back, her head went down towards the ground sideways (cheek-first). So I ignored her hips and started clicking when her cheek turned towards the floor. She caught on pretty quickly, so I raised the standards and waited until her cheek was facing down and close to the ground. Then I waited until her cheek was on the ground. This was an amusing stage as she was doing her best to lay straight but with her head all twisted so her cheek was on the ground and she could still watch me. Very funny.

So I clicked/treated the cheek on the ground several times, and then one time she just calmly rolled flat onto her side. Click and treat treat treat treat treat, a whole bunch in a row, while she was on her side. Then I tossed a treat away from her to get her up and moving, and when she came back, I said, "Inara, relax" and she paused for a minute...and then gently laid flat on her side. I clicked and dumped out the treat bag for her as a jackpot and we ended.

Tonight we practiced it in different areas of the living room, and alternating between me sitting and standing. Sheesh, what a difference each change made! Regardless, she was figuring it out quickly. Each of our sessions is approximately 30 minutes long, which I know is long, but she's earning her dinner and staying engaged so I think it's okay.

I'm pretty excited. Once she gets this solid inside, I'll take it outside and to pet stores. My trainer even said she'd be willing to let us come practice it outside her classes, which would be fantastic. Eventually I'll combine it with a mat and hopefully she'll learn to associate the mat with relaxing. Very neat stuff, this shaping. :)
"Remember - every time your dog gets somewhere on a tight leash *a fairy dies and it's all your fault.* Think of the fairies." http://www.positivepetzine.com"

http://www.pitbullzen.com
http://inaradog.wordpress.com
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Postby Hundilein » October 21st, 2009, 7:56 pm

Click and chocolate for you Liz!

I LOVE shaping. It's so fun to see the dog figure it out. I've found with Renee that I have to get good at seeing very small movements. Sometimes I have to click tiny weight shifts. It can be frustrating for me trying to figure out what step to click next. And Renee is quick to give up if I miss it the first or second time. But I'm getting better at just giving her a break so I can take a minute to think about what to do next.
Sarah and Renee - aka wild child
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Postby mnp13 » October 21st, 2009, 9:34 pm

isn't it fun??!!!

Ruby is a riot with this stuff, she tries to figure it out then gets annoyed at me and just stands there and barks at me. Then I start laughing and it all falls apart....

:rolleyes2:

I wanted to teach her to find my keys for me, I should go back to that.

I want to take a bridge and target class sometime. I think that's the one the training that they used for the poodle that saves the stuffy on the bridge?
Michelle

Inside me is a thin woman trying to get out. I usually shut the bitch up with a martini.
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Postby amazincc » October 21st, 2009, 11:38 pm

mnp13 wrote:

I want to take a bridge and target class sometime. I think that's the one the training that they used for the poodle that saves the stuffy on the bridge?


There's a Yahoo group which is very involved w/B&T... Kayce Cover, who wrote the manual, is a member there - want me to find the link for you?
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Postby amazincc » October 21st, 2009, 11:39 pm

Oh... :oops: - and YAY! for Inara and Liz!!! :confetti: :clap: :bounce:
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Postby TheRedQueen » October 22nd, 2009, 12:49 am

Whoohooo!

I click for relaxation at the vet's office...great stuff. Jenn/Fenella has been doing this for a long time with Murphy (Inara's houndy twin)...he's so much more relaxed in class now.

Great stuff! 8)
"I don't have any idea if my dogs respect me or not, but they're greedy and I have their stuff." -- Patty Ruzzo

"Dogs don't want to control people. They want to control their own lives." --John Bradshaw
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Postby furever_pit » October 23rd, 2009, 9:09 pm

Very cool!

I have fun doing the shaping thing with Dylan too. It's so fun to watch his mind work and he gets all excited when he figures something out.
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Postby Leslie H » October 24th, 2009, 8:36 pm

Michelle, Kayce Cover has done at least 1 seminar up your way, I think two.
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Postby fenella » October 26th, 2009, 11:55 pm

Didn't see this before. HOORAY!!!! :confetti:
I click for relaxed Murphy with his legs kicked out to the side. It has helped TREMENDOUSLY. He used to be in his ready-to-run=sphinx pose all the time. Now he shifts from side to side if he doesn't think I noticed. So cute!!! I haven't worked a lot on having him completely on his side.
Shaping is AWESOME. :dogWink:
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Postby TheRedQueen » October 26th, 2009, 11:58 pm

fenella wrote: I haven't worked a lot on having him completely on his side.
Shaping is AWESOME. :dogWink:


Most of the time I see you clicking for relaxation, he's surrounded by dogs...literally surrounded by dogs (puppy class, flyball). So I'm not sure I'd go for completely on his side...he'd probably feel a little too vulnerable...and ruin what you'd worked on! ;)
"I don't have any idea if my dogs respect me or not, but they're greedy and I have their stuff." -- Patty Ruzzo

"Dogs don't want to control people. They want to control their own lives." --John Bradshaw
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Postby pitbullmamaliz » October 27th, 2009, 7:55 am

I need to get video of Inara doing this - when she first goes into her "relax" position (which she is beginning to do in other locations now, as well!), she's on her side, but all four legs are straight out and her tail is sticking straight out. She looks like a corpse. But if I wait to click she truly relaxes into the ground after a few seconds. It's kind of funny. :giggle:
"Remember - every time your dog gets somewhere on a tight leash *a fairy dies and it's all your fault.* Think of the fairies." http://www.positivepetzine.com"

http://www.pitbullzen.com
http://inaradog.wordpress.com
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Postby mnp13 » May 24th, 2010, 2:03 pm

amazincc wrote:
mnp13 wrote:

I want to take a bridge and target class sometime. I think that's the one the training that they used for the poodle that saves the stuffy on the bridge?


There's a Yahoo group which is very involved w/B&T... Kayce Cover, who wrote the manual, is a member there - want me to find the link for you?


Does anyone have a link to this video?? I need it for class tomorrow.

Thanks!
Michelle

Inside me is a thin woman trying to get out. I usually shut the bitch up with a martini.
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