"bow" Wow Blues

Discussion in 'Training Challenges' started by KatieMarie, May 25, 2012.

  1. KatieMarie Active Member

    I am attempting to teach my 2 year old Labradoodle how to bow, but she always slides into the down. If I slip my arm underneath her, she refuses to do the trick. I went back to the beginning and I am only clicking the "half bows". I make her stand to treat, but she always sits instead. Am I doing the right thing? Is there anything else I could do? Thank you.

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  2. Anneke Honored Member

    She might not like the feeling of your arm underneath her.
    Try touching her side, right in front of her hind legs, just before she wants to lie down. Then click and treat.
    It's a bit tricky to find the exact moment, but it should work.
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  3. tigerlily46514 Honored Member

    Lots of ways to teach this,
    do you use a clicker? it can be hard to click at just the right moment, before your dog flops down, and this trick is a challenge for some dogs, too.

    I just lured my dog, beginning with him in a stand, and held treat down, pushing it further back, and CLICK/TREAT.
    Some ppl use target sticks, if your dog has been trained to put his nose onto whatever you touch a target stick to, you could use that to lure dog into the bow shape.

    one other way, is you can "capture" your dog stretching naturally, and CLICK/TREAT whenever he does.
    Probably someone will be by to post a step by step video soon! GOOD LUCK!!
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  4. MissyBC Experienced Member

    This is how I taught "bow".

    I captured it. So, every time Missy (my dog) would stretch... I would CLICK/TREAT and then when she was offering me the behaviour one after another then I added the cue. She still does bow, and loves it!

    Good luck! Hope this helps.
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  5. sara Moderator

    This was tough for us.

    I used a target stick, and taught the trick in very small increments.

    Target stick just under chin,
    by throat
    infront of chest
    just under chest
    between elbows
    between "wrists"
    between feet
    between feet, moving in towards back feet.

    I only clicked for no front paw movement, and I fed only in the stand, so if he did down, he would have to stand up again anyway, which is alot of work. At first I asked for no duration, just a quick down then up, then Iafter his butt stopped plopping down, I asked for more duration, then faded the target stick, then asked for more duration again.

    Oliver has a very good Bow now :)
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  6. KatieMarie Active Member

    Okay, so I just have to take alot of time I guess. She doesn't stretch all that much, will that
    matter? I will try to capture it as much as possible. I am luring her then feeding her in a stand. As for duration, she doesn't have any whatsoever. I try to ask for a tiny bit, but she just flops down.
    Also: I really want to be able to free shape with her, but she doesn't offer ANY behaviours
    except for sit. She will sit there and look at me ALL day long.
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  7. sara Moderator

    Free shaping is touch to get started with. There is a great game for crossover dogs called 101 things to do with a box: It's a great game, and how I finally got Mouse to start thinking for herself.
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  8. jackienmutts Honored Member

    I taught it the same way MissyBC did - by click/treating every time I caught a stretch. I too thought I had a dog who didn't stretch much. I got some good advice from someone else who captured it. She had a clicker/treats ready for first thing in the morning when her dog got up - cuz they stretch upon rising. I started catching her first thing in the morning - and she started looking forward to that - and I didn't worry about it at other times, unless I blatently happened to catch her again stretching again after rising after a nap. After a few mornings of this new routine of getting clicked/treated for something she did anyway (she caught on to the "game" after just a few mornings) I then caught her stretching in the hallway and looking at me (and I was ready!) - we then had a bow in no time. :) I clicked while she was stretching, tossed the treat on the floor right in front of her face - and that was that. She'd look at me like HUH? REALLY?
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  9. KatieMarie Active Member

    You guys are amazing. I was sitting here in my room earlier and she was stretching and I totally missed it. -__- but then I got the treat and clicker ready and she, out of the blue, stretched and I C&T.

    Also, I will begin working on the box game! Yay! Is there anything else you would reccomend for crossover dogs?
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  10. jackienmutts Honored Member

    Yes - pick up the book "The Thinking Dog - From Crossover to Clicker Training" by Gail Fisher, it's excellent. Lots of good ideas, tips, explanations, etc, and it's a fast organized read. I had the pleasure of "meeting" Gail on another forum a few years ago, she was the guest author for two weeks, discussing her book, I read it during the discussion period (as fast as I could - and have referred it to many since). She's full of info, has lots of great tips (for everyone, not just fresh crossover trainers, and gave me personally some really good help with my girl (just training problems I was having).

    I usually don't say "read a book" when people want extra ideas, help, etc - but when you asked what else I'd recommend for a crossover dog - that's the first thing that popped into my mind. Gail's book. I've recommended it to everyone I know who's crossing over and I wish I had known about it years ago, it would have been great. I still love it tho - it's one of my fav books, and very helpful. She wrote it because she knew what her biggest problems were when she was crossing over - and has hoped it helps make it easier for both people ... and most importantly, dogs.
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  11. KatieMarie Active Member

    I was actually just looking at a sample for the book last night and thought I should buy it. I tried the box game but with a wooden square/palette type thing as I don't have a box, and let's just say, it wasn't a success. I clicked for the slightest of movements, even for her just looking at it. She still remained sitting in front of me and I stayed with it for a while, not cueing her or saying anything, and she just sat there, and eventually lay down, away from the palette. I'm not sure what I should do. She really isnt getting this, it seems. :(
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  12. sara Moderator

    I had the same issue with Mouse, but finally, she started to offer behaviours. I ended up using a stuffed toy (her favorite). You can honestly use anything you want, a chair, a couch, a toy, a hat, whatever you want. It does not have to be a box. At first, you can rub the smell of treats on the object to get some interest.

    Mouse is now totally a thinking dog, but for the longest time, I thought she was dumb, because I was primarily a luring style trainer, and Mouse cant learn with food in front of her. Now that I do only shaping with her, she's brilliant!
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  13. KatieMarie Active Member

    Alright. Plan B: So I think I'm going to rub smelly hotdogs and treats on the palette and be very enthusiastic with her. I also don't think I'll push her too much until im positive that it clicks with her.

    A few questions (I'm so so sorry. I really appreciate everyone's patience):
    -Should I pet her and talk to her after I c&t?
    -Can I walk around the object or standstill?
    -Should I ignore her when she sits or should I just look At her and wait for her to offer something else?
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  14. sara Moderator

    Here's a video of a free shaping session with Oliver It starts at 4:36. You'll notice I do talk to him a bit, but mostly I just sit and wait him out. HOWEVER every dog is different, and some, like Tigerlily's Buddy, like praise and encouragement more. Oliver is a quiet thinker, if I do anything, or act excited or anything, he just get's jumpy and climbs all over me giving kisses (which you'll notice is also a default behaviour of his! LOL)

    Technically, if you move around or ask for anything, it's no longer a thinking game, and your dog is following your lead. Try to wait it out, but you can point at it, put smelly treats on it and such, until she figures out that you are giving her permission to offer behaviours, instead of telling her what you want. It's very effective, but does take time and patience with some dogs :)
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  15. Anneke Honored Member

    Something my trainer said, was not to look at your dog, but to look at the object you want the dog to go to. And look at your dog from the corner of your eye.
    That worked for me and my "not used to thinking himself" dog.
    As you are looking at the box, your dog might start to wonder what is so interesting about it and might go and investigate.

    I am a bit impatient, so I "helped" my dog, by having the box between him and me. So if he wanted to come to me, he would have to go past the box, so I was setting him up for a succes.
    You could call it luring, but it isn't really. Just a little cheat.

    Another thing I always do, with Cooper(the not thinking for himself one:D) is, what Sara does in her vid. Not deliver the treat in the mouth, but toss it, so the dog has to get moving to get it. Less chance of a shut down, by just lying there.

    BUT like I said, I am not a freeshaper. I do love to see it, but i'm just too impatient(although I have been training this:ROFLMAO: and I am improving:D)
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  16. Dice Smith Well-Known Member

    Hi! I too had trouble trying to teach the bow trick to my aussie Kodi. The method that I found to work was (hmm.... its a little hard to describe lol :p ) where I sat on one knee and had my other leg bent with my foot resting on the ground (if you watch frisbee dog competitions often times you can see dog owners sitting like this and the dog jumps over their knee to get the frisbee). I used Kodi's favorite, smelliest treat and lured him under my leg. As soon as his front legs went down I clicked and treated him and offered tons of praise and a game of fetch. He very quickly caught on to what I was asking of him and soon started to offer the behavior on his own! I too, like Anneke, think freeshaping is great but I'm also a little too impatient lol :) I'm working on it though! And freeshaping games are so much fun!!! Both Kodi and I love them <3 Hope this helped! And sorry if the method I described is hard to understand lol. I'm not very good at explaining this :D
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  17. tigerlily46514 Honored Member

    //. HOWEVER every dog is different, and some, like Tigerlily's Buddy, like praise and encouragement more//

    oh yeah, so true, my dog zones out if i don't praise him.......... for HIM, that means more than food. My dog wont' jump up and get hyper if praised, he just beams and looks super proud and pleased, it's adorable, imo.
    Almost anything *i* am enthusiastic about, my dog will also be enthusiastic about.

    Buddy sometimes quits on me, if no praise comes forth,:cautious: loses interest altogether.:oops:
    Guess you will have to experiment, and discover, what motivates YOUR dog!:ROFLMAO:

    My dog, if struggling with a difficult cue, sometimes seems to benefit, if i throw in a trick he knows well, praise and reward THAT, (my dog is sooo conceited:rolleyes: ) and then go back to the hard one.
    and sometimes, i find moving him from one location to a new spot, helps him stay interested, too.
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  18. running_dog Honored Member

    For training take a bow with a lazy dog (mine goes into down at the least excuse) a good method is to click and then throw the treat across the room the instant they are in the right position. It becomes less effort for the dog to keep it's hind legs upright ready to run for the treat than to go into a down and then stand up again to run for the treat. Once they are reliably keeping the hind legs standing you can occasionally reward them in the bow position, or when they are standing again, over time you'll only throw the treat when they are slipping into a down.

    I guess this is kind of like Anneke suggests for 101 tricks... convergence of ideas by people with lazy dogs ;). I had to work through a lot of the above suggestions to get Zac to freeshape but we did get there in the end and it is great fun for both of us.
  19. orpheum Well-Known Member

    I haven't read all the comments :oops:
    But like mentioned by running_dog above. Teach the dog not to lay down by "pulling" him back out the position. Try it without the clicker at first.
    Lure the dog into a bow, mark the wanted movement/position and lure the dog back out of that position. So it would be: stand/bow (MARK)/lure back into standing position. Don't treat in the down position. I frequently talk about muscle memory that you need to build up. This could help your dog and is an excellent situation to introduce yourself to building up muscle memory. My experience is that it does take a lot of reps if your dog isn't into bowing.
    Another thing you could do is place his/her back against a wall so it "blocks" the possibility to lie down.
    Or try throwing a treat under a chair and see if she gets closer to a bow to take it.
  20. Pawtential Unleashed Experienced Member

    One of my favorite vids from Kyra Sundance teaching bow with tips about problems you may encounter:

    Great vid from Honey the Great Dane
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