Discussion in 'General Dog Training' started by horsy, Jun 2, 2011.

  1. horsy Well-Known Member

    How do I stop Diesel from taking two steps backwards to go into a sit? I've been doing brickwork to teach him heel position and rear end awareness etc, and I can now get him into heel position, and he can switch from one side to the other by spinning his back end around.

    However this has shown up a problem with his sit, he will stand in heel position, then take two steps back to sit, which puts him behind me. I can call him forward, and then he will back up into sit again. If I bring him up really far forward infront of me, he will come back almost to the right position when he sits, but it takes alot of luring to get him forward enough, and it messes up the flow of the whole move.

    Ultimately trying to get him from sitting at heel on one side, to doing a "switch" round with his back end to be sat at the other side. He can do the chain already, but the sits are too far back.

  2. jackienmutts Honored Member

    Do you clicker train? If so, I'd get that clicker out, and take a few steps back (sorry, no pun intended;)), and work on SIT - click when he sits without taking any steps back, maybe just have him SIT in front of you - YES, GOOD BOY!!! If he takes those couple steps back, uh-oh, nice sit but no treats. Sorry. Reset him and try again. He'll figure it out. Work on that for a session, or two, and maybe throw in a few Sits from heel - but make it a simple, remedial session. Sounds like he's just got a little ritual in his head, just a habit he needs to break. I bet he catches on in no time. Good luck!
  3. fickla Experienced Member

    Is he a large breed? Many big dogs like rocking back into a sit which can be costly if you are wanting to compete. you want him bringing his back feet to his front instead of the front feet backwards.

    One exercise I work on with dogs of any size are scootch sits. Hold a treat right in front of your dog's nose and move it forward slightly, encouraging your dog to bring his feet forward to sit rather than rockign back. I ask for several scootch sits in a row, using that treat as a little lure.

    Another exercise you can do is making a small platform for your dog to sit on. Similiar to perch work, but now you want 4 feet on it. If it's small enough the dog can't rock back on it. I usually work on it for front work rather than sitting at heel but it should be fine there too. It just encourages a nice square sit.
  4. horsy Well-Known Member

    Thanks for the suggestions guys! And Fickla you just made me think of something with the platform idea... he has a large long box that he will get in and out of on cue, I asked him to sit in it once and he couldn't as he tried to go backwards and stepped out of the box. I will practice in that because he will have to bring his back feet forward to sit, or he will fall out of the box.
    And yes, he is a large breed! I don't want to compete so he doesn't have to be perfect, but I'm using it to let people pass on the street, as he tends to lunge at them to sniff them which can be quite intimidating for people. So I'm wanting him to sit in heel position so I am between him and the passer by, but when I tried it he sat too far behind me and then managed to shoot out behind me to sniff the person as they passed!

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