Ideas For Basic Obedience Training To Make A Walk More Stimulating

Discussion in 'Obedience Training' started by running_dog, Jun 8, 2011.

  1. running_dog Honored Member

    I sometimes walk dogs for a friend. They are not to learn "tricks" but they can learn to behave in a way that makes walking them easier/safer. Tennis balls and sticks are off the menu.

    So far we have done:
    Velcro dog - sit, come, down, wait.
    Attention Deficit Hyperactive dog - sit, come, down, wait, heel.
    Ambling Along dog - sit, come (and I accidentally taught "go plodgy-plodgy" meaning paddle in the river :ROFLMAO::ROFLMAO:).

    They probably knew these commands anyway but weren't used to me giving them. ADHD gave a very good impression of never having heard "down" in its life before and VD displayed the most marvelous slither-crawl instead, every time I told ADHD to down, VD oooooooooooozed in front.

    Anyway to get to the point, I wondered if anyone had ideas on how to vary what we might do in the future without straying into "tricks". There must be lots of possibilities but I can't think beyond "stay" :(. Anything confidence building for VD would be a real plus.

  2. reveuse Well-Known Member

    Touch is great confidence booster, I used it for my shy girl...also maybe "say hi" for people/dogs u run into.... I guess "bed" or "place" tho that wont help on a walk. You could teach go around, leave it! Drop it (if they pick up something they arent allowed) hurry up/slow/ &stop if u didnt do those with heel - same with turn, left/right. And even " go potty"
    running_dog likes this.
  3. reveuse Well-Known Member

    I noticed Stay isnt on there either good for an emergency and perhaps paw if they tend to get tangled in the leash
    running_dog likes this.
  4. running_dog Honored Member

    VD and ADHD will love touch. I hadn't thought of doing noisy training either, AAD barks and ADHD whinges irritatingly so there are really good reasons for working on these. They do get tangled sometimes so given time I could maybe do front paws AND back paws :). I've just realised that stay would also help a lot with training - eg/ VD in stay while I work with ADHD. That would be good to work on getting separate responses rather than a group "come" "sit" etc. Maybe it'd give VD confidence that I always come back as well.

    Heel is basic but practical, the dogs generally just walk behind when on the lead, ADHD has a tendency to tug so that's why heelwork is on it's list. I need to work on this very gradually and mostly off lead because VD gets traumatised if one of the others is on the lead without it :(.

    I think they know "leave" for dogs and "Drop it" as far as tennis balls are concerned but beyond that it'd have to be aspirational - they don't often pick something up but when they do it goes straight down the hatch (stick your hand down a dogs throat to extract a long dead fish, anyone? :mad:). Definitely a long term project. Maybe gradually working towards using food as the item to drop? That would be very useful and a great challenge for us (y).

    Thanks! I can't wait for next time I walk them :D
  5. mewzard Experienced Member

    "find it".... best weapon in my arsenal!! would help VD have more confidence away from you, also helps attention as the dog will look back to you to see where the next treat will go :D
    running_dog likes this.
  6. reveuse Well-Known Member

    Ohhh find it is good! You can extend touch to be with paw instead of nose and also target , I got shy one to touch a door and wall with her pmaw this week and she recently touched her nose to a shopping cart whicgh she couldnt look at from 20 ft without trying to run from 2 months ago. My very VERY ADD dog loves touch too lol.

    if they are noisy teach them "shhhh or quiet"
    running_dog likes this.
  7. running_dog Honored Member

    The only time the velcro parts is when there is a ducks nest to find, goodbye duck eggs. I'd much prefer them to find treats and it'd keep their noses busy. There isn't any problem with attention, I can't move an inch without at least 2 pairs of eyes boring holes in me. Any more attention and I'll burn away! So the plus point would be that for a few seconds they WOULDN'T be looking at me :ROFLMAO::ROFLMAO::ROFLMAO::ROFLMAO:. How different from Zac!
  8. JoAnne Well-Known Member

  9. JoAnne Well-Known Member

    When working with a new dog to stay on one side, (I know tradional side but either, doesn't matter) I make sure the more interesting things are on THAT side.
  10. running_dog Honored Member

    Just an update on the 3 musketeers. I've had them for 3 walks since you all started giving me ideas. Sorry if the level of detail bores you but here goes and in no particular order...

    Mostly very solid now. But VD sometimes just won't and slinks round and round me looking ingratiating instead.

    VD is not too bad at this now. Still working on increasing speed of response and fading out the lure (mainly doing sit/down/sit/down etc. ADHD still needs a LOT of patience to go down. I found something I read on another thread very useful - about waiting until their elbows hit the ground before praise and reward - and we seem to be making progress. Just starting with AAD, cue for lots of slobber and not much down!

    It took VD about 30 seconds to catch on, ADHD copied within a minute and AAD couldn't bear to be left out. They all adore doing touch but ADHD is best at this, he loves to jump and touch my hand, AAD has a bad leg so can't go high, VD won't go high yet and just slinks round my legs looking ingratiating so I'm working on tiny height increments. There are drawbacks - one of them ate something really yucky and then raced up for touch...

    "Find it"
    This is a bit more challenging with 3 dogs especially when one is intellectually challenged. By throwing some of the treats right under AAD's nose (and then pointing to them) I think I managed to make it fair. This was definitely another favourite game!

    I haven't done any more formal training on this but ADHD seems to be dropping back while VD and AAD are moving forward into better heel positions for most of the on lead time. Possibly a side effect of the other training.

    They are all getting better with this. VD is increasing in confidence in the wait and doesn't need the other dogs for company (though they often join in just in case they can con some extra treats out of me). Need lots of work on time and distance.

    I've started going through the gates and shutting the dogs on the other side, telling them or waiting for a sit then calling them through one by one. I'm guessing this will help them figure out that when I call one I don't necessarily want all three! It's also a good reinforcement of sit. I suppose it would stop a dog barging through at the same time as me but they don't do that anyway. They're getting the idea (VD is fastest) but I still have some very long pauses while they grin at me from the other side of the gate without sitting.

    "Stay" ("Break")
    This was really funny to start with. They were not used to anyone moving out of the straight ahead position. I had to take super mini steps to either side of VD to begin with. Then I thought if I held a treat over ADHD's nose I could walk round. ADHD's nose never left the treat but everytime I went a quarter turn it somehow moved 90 degrees without coming out of a sit! After I did some quarter turns and returns ADHD got the idea. Need lots of work to increase time and distance.

    They get really excited when I go to collect them. I won't leash a dog until it is silent and in a sit, but we still have a way to go with this one!

    I had a lot more fun with the dogs than I have had in the past. They seemed extra keen to go with me. I won't have them again for a few months but then I should be seeing a lot of them for several weeks so hopefully we'll get lots done then :)
    Thanks for all the suggestions!
    tigerlily46514, mewzard and JoAnne like this.
  11. running_dog Honored Member

    This is a quick update on the dogs progress.

    Down - Velcro Dog (VD) will now down on voice cue only - as long as I am standing close enough to drop a treat directly between its paws :ROFLMAO: ! Not much progress with the others yet though they are faster to follow the lure. I worked with VD in 2 intensive sessions while the other two looked for treats I'd thrown in the bushes.

    Recall - We practice using "Dogs wait," and "Come dogs!" "Come dogs!" precipitates an avalanche of dogs in most circumstances. Attention Deficit Hyperactive Dog (ADHD) is still not 100% if there is another dog distraction. I was impressed by Ambling Along Dog's (AAD) successful recall while ADHD hurtled off to greet some other dogs. However VD stole the show. There was an injured pigeon on the ground and I only noticed it as VD rushed and was about to grab it - I saw the jaws begin to close, knew the pigeon was going to die and said reproachfully, "Oh VD" I barely got the first syllable out and VD turned mid leap and ran back to me leaving the pigeon untouched.

    They are also beginning to respond individually to named recalls and in general they are becoming more individual and allowing me to deal with them one at a time.

    Heel - (nothing sophisticated just walking parallel with me ) - I've been experimenting with different leash configurations using a double and a single leash. After some trial and error we now walk ADHD, Me, VD, AAD. So far they've been almost perfect with this. AAD needed to get just 3 treats to explain what I wanted and has never lagged behind since, I've been misunderstanding that dog for months, scary.

    Touch - Still a favourite and VD will now bounce up with front paws off the ground to touch.

    Not lunging at other dogs - We met a few other dogs on leash and we obviously need to work on ADHD not lunging at them. I've started with AAD and that seems to be going well (dogs that sit nicely get loooooooots of treats). VD doesn't lunge anyway.

    The nicest thing isn't really a training objective it's just that AAD is starting to want to spend time with me not just the treats. The others have always loved being stroked but AAD shrugged off any petting. Now AAD will sometimes wander up to check in when there are no treats on offer or will wait to be stroked before ambling off again, Awwwwwwwwwww :).
    Anneke likes this.

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