Ideas on how to teach to "bang" from a "stick em up" position?


New Member
We used to know bang when in lying down position.. but now kind of forgot it and kept getting it confused with roll over.

So now we got a trick where he puts his paws up in the air when a gun is pointed, so I want to get him to go from that to lying on his side "playing dead"..

How should I do that ? Tip him over? He just goes for my hand when I touch him, so I can't tap him... Maybe make him loose balance but using the clicker as a target... and then make it a bit of a routine? sitting up/stick em up/ bang all with different hand gestures.. and hand cues... that would be cute..


New Member
Sorry I confused you! I meant that the regular Bang doesn't bother me, and I want him to not think about it for a bit, and retrain this as a Chain,

He sits up,

I say " Stick em up " and point "gun"(my hand)

he sits up and sticks his paws in the air^

Then say "Bang" Make a bang gun movement that he knows anyway.

At that moment I want him to keel over and play dead.^

I probably said luring, when I meant targeting somewhere in my post!

I was thinking that if I show him the clicker (which I use as the target a lot) to the side of his head after I do the motion of the gun with my hand, he will probably lose balance and keel over, which would be when I click.

And then I'll just increase time on staying in that position.

I just don't want him to play dead when I want him to roll over and those were taught too close together, which caused him to be confused and throw these similar behaviours...

HOpe that is more clear!
Also I prefer not to add a vocal command before the behaviour is offered reliably enough not to confuse the dog, since that is how I confused him in the first place, when I taught him to roll over at 3 months , I didn't know as much about training =P

ANd I'm really broke, and am aspiring to be a trainer myself, so I can't even pay for your manuals =P
I just read the books I can get my hands on and go to for help from some of the trainers on there that I really respect.... But yeah I am DIY so far!=P


Experienced Member
Are you forward chaining or back chaining? It sounds like forward chaining. If so try back chaining from the end result and add small pieces in until you get to the paws up. maybe not a whole fall over but start on side and get a head down and hold it for a duration and preempt on the roll. get your dead down really solid on verbal and hand cue. If he goes for your hand when you touch him how about luring him over with some peanut butter or something hard to get off a long handle wooden spoon. Sort of like following a target over.

I find that my hands have a different significance to my dog than other target items so they can be distracting or negative to introduce as you see with your dog. I also find that if I physically manipulate them it is much less effective than if I free shape and make them think about it really hard. What gets the click is it dead or roll over. Ignore all the roll overs and click or mark/treat all the approximations of dead even if they are only the start of a dead or a small lean toward going down. Be very fast since a dead can turn into a roll click and have that treat there in less than a second. Keep the clicker hand and treat hands still until you move one hand to deliver the treat.

You say your dog knows the dead but maybe he doesn't in this different context. Remember dogs don't nec generalize the same behavior in different situations. Weave poles on the grass were fine for my dog but I had to reteach the entire thing to one dog on a dirt course. A little weird until you understand their brains are wired very different behaviorally than ours are. It was a lite bulb to me. Who knew?

GOOD LUCK! let us know what happens :dogbiggrin: