How is her other obedience?
jmann4 wrote:Moderator note: Thanks Michelle (MNP13) for sharing this lesson.
(I typed all this out a while ago for another list I'm on, so here you go with a few updates and revisions...)
If you want him to stay at your heel correctly when walking there is an EASY way to do it with a prong. It takes about 15 minutes and your dog will teach itself. You can NOT do this with a choke chain. They are useless as soon as the dog is on the wrong side of you or at the wrong angle. This will also not work with a flat collar, because all you do is jerk the dog's neck which is uncomfortable but not much by way of 'correction'.
I wrote this for heeling on the left, but you can do everything on the right if you choose.
Anyway, about the heel. Put a prong collar on the dog and hold the leash in your left hand with the dog on your left. Do not hold the leash with two hands, left only. The collar should be right up behind their ears, and the leash should be slightly slack. There should be a 'J' between you and the dog - i.e. no pressure on the collar at all
Now walk straight ahead, do not give the dog a command, do not look at the dog, just walk at a steady pace. Watch the dog out of the corner of your eye. When he gets ahead of you QUICKLY turn around. As you turn, let your left hand/arm trail behind you and then when you are facing the other direction bring your hand forward quickly. Continue to walk at a steady pace. Go at least 30 steps so that the dog is walking in a straight line, then turn again if necessary.
Do not turn and then take three steps and then turn again. You will just frusterate and confuse your dog. You need at least 10 steps to get both of you going in a straight line, then a bunch more to give your dog a chance to think about things.
You dog will yelp and may fight the first time you do this. The second time he may yelp as well. You are not hurting him, you are surprising him. You are teaching him through his own actions that he must walk in a position where he can see you and respond to your movements. After two or three turns he should turn with you with no trouble. He will teach himself that getting ahead of you makes him unable to see you turn, and if he can't see you turn he gets a correction. By not giving him a command he is not obeying or disobeying you - he is responsible for his actions - he also can't decide to disobey you and that is very important as well.
Try this out without him on the leash a few times. The turn must be smooth and controlled for it to work. You need to be confident as well, you are letting your dog know that you are the one in control of the walk and if he doesn't want to pay attention to you then he corrects himself for it. I'm sorry if this is hard to follow, I just do it automatically and it's hard to describe completely. (I did think of making a movie and posting it, but both Ruby and Connor are completley unwilling to misbehave while wearing prong collars!) If you are not getting a short 'pop' on the collar when you turn you need to work on your timing. The correction should be quick and short. If you do a long slow pull you will not 'get the point across'.
This may sound mean, but if your dog doesn't yelp the first couple times you do it you're not doing it right. Because the correction is short and fast and only comes when you turn around it sends a very clear message to the dog 'stay with me or you won't like the consequences'.
By making him responsible for tracking your movements you get a very willing 'heeler'. When he is where he belongs, say 'good dog, heel'. Then start saying the command when he is next to you walking. When you say 'break' allow him to roam to the end of the leash sort of push him away from you to get the point across that it's now ok to be out of his heel position, then say heel (and if necessary, turn) to get him back where he belongs.
With the dogs I train there are no 'stay' commands, there is only a command that the dog is to obey until another command is given. So he should heel until told to break, or if you have a 'go ahead and sniff every tree you see' command use that.
You may need to start off a few walks with this method before they get it down pat.
Let me know if you need further details on what you're doing or why you're doing it, I am aware that you can't read my mind through your computer screen.
Let me know how it goes!!!!
"We [the AKC] have gotten away from what dogs were originally bred for. In some cases we have paid so much attention to form that we have lost the use of the dog."
--Former AKC President Kenneth Marden
mnp13 wrote:Ok, I'll do my best not to be rude... but I'm not always good at that, so please understand before I start that I am just trying to be helpful...
1. Don't hit your dog with anything. Your hand, a newspaper, a magazine, nothing. Dogs don't always understand what they are being hit for and you will quickly make your dog hand shy and afraid of you. That sometimes leads to fear biting, which is a nightmare to fix and often can't be fixed.
2. Using a newspaper for 'disipline' is dominance. 'Training' using dominance only creates power struggles and you will never gain the trust and respect that you want from your dog.
3. I would strongly recommend you get into an obedience class, and as it seems you are a new and somewhat inexperienced owner (we all were at some point!) you should go to a training club, not a Petsmart type place. See if you can find one that has a class in positive training, as you need to establish a good rappor with your dog. Make sure the club is not positive only because you may need to add in compulsion at some point, and positive only is removing an entire type of training and in my opinion, that sells you and the dog short.
4. your dog is running the house. It's boot camp time. cheeky is right, you need to start NILIF. Do it with both dogs and I'd start right this minute. Be absolutely 100% strict with it, and get everyone in the family on board with it.
5. Put the prong collar away. with the amount of control you have with the dog (none) you can not use compulsion training with her. You will just continue the power struggle and things may (and probably will) get much worse. Good training always starts out positive and motivational and then you add in compulsion after a behavior is learned. It doesn't sound like she has any clue what's expected of her, and even if she does, she doesn't care.
6. Until you get in a training class, I would recommend you walk her alone and probably only enough to go potty. Further power struggle with the dog will only keep making things worse.
arlosgirl wrote:thanks for all the help. ive put away the prong collar and started NILIF. shes not liking getting ignored when she jumps on me or gets in my face, but it works for the most part. shell get down for a while, but she will keep trying to get my attention. im gonna be checking everywhere for an obedience course. maybe ill have enough left of my tax return to pay for it.
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