Evie Outright Ignores Me.


Experienced Member
So, Evie obviously knows how to sit, lay down etc. BUT if she can't be bothered (for example) sitting when i ask her to, she just looks at me and ignores me instead. And I am 100% sure she knows the cues to sit. She's been a master of it since she was 8 weeks old. She knows both the verbal cue and the hand signal but if she doesnt feel like sitting, then i have to ask her about 5 times before she reacts.

Trying to get down(drop) out of her is even worse. She has never liked laying down, so she will hear me say down and then just look at me with these sad little puppy dog eyes which say 'reallly? must i lay down? are you sure? can't i just sit here a bit longer.....' and she will only actually lay down if I ask her to another couple of times.

If i just give the cue once, and then wait for her, she simply won't move and will never lay down.

Anyone else have this problem? What have I done wrong that make my puppy ignore me :(


Honored Member
Does she ignore you with or without treats???? If it's without treats, then you can IMMENSLY praise her when she does it for you, with treats, only asking her once.(y) Then you can s....l....o....w....l....y fade out the treats. I think that could work.


Experienced Member
It depends on how badly she wants the treat. If i'm holding a nice juicy bone for her, she'll drop every time on cue without fail. If I just have my usual assortment of treats, or even cold meats on hand, then she'll only drop about 75% of the time on cue. Without treats, she'll drop about 30% of the time on cue. And as i said, it's definitely not a case of her not knowing what I'm asking of her, because she definitely knows, she just doesnt want to do it. Never has. We've always laughed at her because ever since she was a puppy and you asked her to lay down she puts on the biggest sad face ever and will only ever lay down reluctantly.

And now that she's decided that she can ignore the down cue when she wants to she's started to ignore sit when it suits her too.....


Experienced Member
Oh also, because I was aware of just how much she doesnt want to lay down, I've always randomly rewarded her more often for laying down than for her other 'tricks' to try and show her that it's worth while.

Think I've obviously done something very wrong in my training OR Evie is just going through a 'teenaged' stage in her life.


Honored Member
this sort of also happend to my dog, was real bummer!!:(

We had a few weeks, where my guy was def becoming #1 to Buddy, and Buddy was gone a lot with him, went away on a trip with him, and Buddy began to zone me out just a bit, which was shocking to me, so of course, i began to spend even more time with Buddy, focusing on Buddy,
if Buddy indicated he was ready to do something, that became my #1 priority, i'd drop what i was doing, and go play with him.

and i began
teaching Buddy more new tricks,
and taking Buddy places, just him & me. <--- then Buddy remembered, "OH yeah, i am a mommy's boy after all!":ROFLMAO:

^that might not be it at all, but, that is what is was when Buddy sorta/kinda did a similar thing, is i wasn't spending enough time focusing on him, and someone else had Buddy with him all the time. heh heh, i did fix that though!!;)

sorry! that is probably not it with Evie. Hang in there, you will solve this, Eviemom! Yes you will!!


Honored Member
Also, my dog will def get bored with repetition, if i were to ask for same trick, over and over, i'd bet, after a while, Buddy would zone me out/ignore it. Probably that is not what you mean, though.

can you take Evie somewhere really intersting? Make it daily habit for a while?

Does Evie get to go to neat places with you very often? I think that is super bonding for dogs, too.

Are you teaching Evie NEW tricks and cues? I think THAT is very very bonding, brand new tricks.
Maybe, in Evie's excitement to learn new trick,
you can throw in an old trick, (once), reward it, and back to working on new trick?

(don't forget, just silently ignore wrong moves, no scolding of course, but, i bet you already know that)

Are you being enthusiastic and praising her correct moves a lot, and rewarding ones she does well?
Btw, i don't give food if i have to repeat a request, i just give praise. If Buddy does cue right away, then he gets food AND praise.

maybe for now, til Evie is working successfully on some new cues, maybe for now, leave off "down" for a while,
and then, later on, when you feel Evie and you are working together better,
then insert it now and then into tricks Evie DOES enjoy? Hope that helps. Keep us posted, you can solve this!! hang in there!!

Have you tried having training sessions outdoors, or in some new area?


Honored Member
also, you may want to also re-evaluate your rewards, not sure at all, no idea,
if that has anything to do with it at all,
but, i've heard of some clever dogs, who perform a lot better for high value treats.

oh bayyyyybee, if i use anything with peanut butter,
my homemade Liver Cookies, there is nothing my dog wont' do for those treats, just will do most anything for a homemade Liver cookie or a dab of peanut butter.

so maybe, maybe, you might want to evaluate if Evie sees the rewards as real good rewards? but, i have no idea, just a guess.

I have had a trick or two, i had to re-train all over again, clicker and all. can't remember why now, whether he was going sloppy on it, or what,
but, every once in a blue moon, this happens.
Maybe, maybe, after you and Evie are all being successful on some NEW TRICKS that Evie so enjoys so much,
maybe begin to teach "down" alllllllll over again, as if you just met Evie, clicker and all, starting from scratch? Just to help Evie get good feeling about that trick, all over again from scratch?

hope any idea might help, good luck!!


Experienced Member
Maybe when you ask her to do something and she doesn't do it .. give it one more try and if she is in one of those moods just walk away. Two can play that game. If she wants your attention she will catch on that not doing what you ask makes you leave ... although this might be a good thing to her :) so maybe when you go away , go do something fun , go play with a dog toy but dont let her join in. Then if she wants your attention try it all over again.


Experienced Member
Oka can be like this, i just chalk it up to 'being a dog'. I mean, i don't randomly go round asking my kids to lay down for no good reason!! I think that sometimes they do get bored of doing the same trick, since doing NDT Oka is actually better on cues when she is more excited. maybe up the fun before asking for it?

Sometimes Oka can be a stubborn little minx, she was awful between 8m and 20months. I did alot of what Amateur said - walk away, ignoring her. One of our big problems was she suddenly "forgot" what /come/ meant. So i'd need to go out (e.g. school run) and she'd be refusing to come inside... So she'd go out on a long line and i'd just drag her back in... I still do this from time to time if she is in that mood.


Honored Member
I remember you mentioned Evie's lazy "down" in an earlier thread about take a bow. I have sympathy because my dog can be quite annoying about down on cue (of course when I DON'T want him down he slumps down and falls asleep).

Most of the things I'm going to say have already been mentioned but Zac is a case study dog for lazy downs :rolleyes:.

For years every time I gave a cue I made sure Zac obeyed it but it made no difference at all he still would sit or stand and look at me when I gave the down cue. Then I started looking at each cue as an opportunity for Zac to earn a reward. Within one walk I had single cue downs at a distance (not much distance but some :rolleyes:).

Method - One cue no response then no reward and no attention, no follow up at all. After half a minute I'd give the cue again and Zac would try a half hearted response, no reward, no attention, no encouraging, just ignore him for half a minute. By the third time he was right there instant on the down cue. It is a very effective method for some dogs with some cues (obviously it doesn't work for training recall).

Zac is very good at persuading me to repeat commands, I have to be very strict with myself, when training - one verbal, one second wait, one hand signal, one second wait, lure, reward. You shouldn't ever be in a situation where you are repeating yourself because you are teaching the dog it can ignore what you say. Been there done that got ALL the t'shirts :oops:.

Which brings me to the other obvious point. If you know she's rocky on down I probably would only ask her for it if I had something she does want. Mostly now I train "Down" before I throw Zac's ball, no down, no ball, simples! We train it mixed in with other tricks and play.

With Zac it is a simple case of him no longer controlling me and no longer controlling the reward. We still need to work on it but the improvement has been amazing. Hope some of this helps...