Sue Ailsby Dog Training Levels

Discussion in 'General Dog Training' started by charmedwolf, Jul 23, 2011.

  1. charmedwolf Moderator

    I've been noticing a common theme about some of the threads started here. I came across this site quite awhile ago. I was just rather selfish and didn't feel like handing it out. These are the old levels.

    Sue has created a perfect training regiment for clicker trainings even so much as breaking the behaviors into smaller ones for us. Everything from come to contacts, distance work, basic obedience commands, handling, high and broad jumps, walking on a leash, work away from the home, retrieving, scenting and yep, even more than that. It's perfect for those of us that like to work with a plan but don't know what to do next, myself included.

    She has also written new books that correspond with the new levels which are the old levels updated with more information and new areas of learning.

    Even a yahoo group for support when needed. On here I'm just Ashley H.

    Hope everybody has fun with these. They are incredibly useful if given the chance!

  2. abby_someone Well-Known Member

    Thanks Charmed, this is an amazing resource! Thanks for posting!!!!
    Hayley Thompson likes this.
  3. tx_cowgirl Honored Member

    I have always heard wonderful things about Sue Ailsby, but have never sat down to read through them and figure out what it's all about. When I get off work tonight I'll have to go see. :)
    Thanks for sharing!
  4. running_dog Honored Member

    Wow! That is FANTASTIC!
    But now I know a whole lot more ways I've been confusing my poor dog! Never mind, today is a whole new training day and I saw some sausages in the fridge... :)
  5. charmedwolf Moderator

    Also if you youtube "Sue Ailsby levels" you should be able to see videos of how this stuff is done. I have three videos already posted and hopefully more will be posted today.

    Glad everybody is liking this.
  6. Hayley Thompson Well-Known Member

    I just started doing the levels with Riley last night, in some senses she already knows alot of the basics, but I find Sue goes a little bit deeper into basics making your dog more reliable in different situations, and I'm hoping I'll feel more confident about Riley's behaviour in any situation once we are done!!! What level are you on charmedwolf?!
  7. charmedwolf Moderator

    Kratos is level 3 with some level 4 behaviors and one or two level 5 behaviors but I'm going back over as a refresher. We haven't trained in a while. Jinx and Isis are level 2 with a couple of level 3 and level 4 behaviors thrown in. Some of the behaviors I won't be able to do with Jinx or Isis yet because of their aggression but this has help with our control over them more than we realized in the beginning.
  8. Hayley Thompson Well-Known Member

    Oh wow, thats great to hear! I'm even going to go over the sit and lie down in level one, but do them in unusal places, like the car, to help reinforce that behaviour to Riley. I was surprised last night, when practicing Zen with Riley, we have worked on leave it before, and shes a good dog for not begging at the dinner table or right in front of someones face while sitting on the couch snacking, but I decided to train with cheese before she was fed, and wowza was she ever determined to get that cheese out of my hand!

    I think that is part of the reason I want to go back and through even the basic behaviours again, because I want her to be more reliable in harder situations, not just everyday when only myself and my boyfriend are home! Keep me updated on Kratos, Jinx and Isis' progress!! :)
  9. charmedwolf Moderator

    Kratos tried to eat my hand too! He's never been that forward with trying to get food out of my hand :eek:
    Here's another link with some checklists with "extended behaviors" which just adds to the behavior trained.
    Hayley Thompson likes this.
  10. Hayley Thompson Well-Known Member

    Oh the link didnt work! :(
  11. charmedwolf Moderator

  12. brody_smom Experienced Member

    Okay, so after a really rough couple of days with Brody where he bit my daughter's friend (as she extended her hand to him while he barked at her from the other side of the gate. This is a 20 year old, not a child.), and then got totally freaked out by my other daughter using a manual pump to inflate an air mattress, I decided I need to be a lot more disciplined with him and work on his basic training big time. I can't afford the New Book of Training Levels, but I have been reading the old one, and I printed out the checklists from the website. I am hoping I can just read the sections that teach the How-To's of each behavior in the order of the checklist and sort of have a free version of the new book. Does this sound like it will work? I have been teaching him most of the basic cues, but not a single one is proofed, even inside the house. (Not for lack of trying, he just gets really bored with too much repetition and walks away or lays down and ignores me.) The website charmedwolf linked above has check sheets as well, with 100 boxes for each behavior. Sue Ailsby's check list has only six for each step, total of 27 for each behavior. Has anyone used these lists, and, if so, what criteria do you use for a "check"? I know this will vary for each dog, but my understanding is that a level is designed to be completed in about a month. How many behaviors should I be working on at a time? I would think it would be less boring for him if I was switching from one thing to another within a 5-15 minute session. If a professional trainer were starting this from square one, would she try to cover all the level one behaviors in a session, or only one? Just a warning if you reply to this, I need a lot of hand-holding here, so I am going to be asking more detailed questions. My family has given me an ultimatum, and if I don't get Brody under control soon, he will have to go back to the shelter.

    P.S. I have signed up for the Yahoo! group as well, so watch out if you are a member there, too!
  13. charmedwolf Moderator

    What I tend to do is have two separate sessions within the day only about 5-10 minutes long. I might work on 1 or 2 behaviors that are completely separate from each other til I'm sure the dog knows what I'm cueing(Zen is not trained with target. Sit is not trained with down) I might only train a behavior once or twice before I start proofing and testing the dog for understanding. The 100 boxes are for training, mostly. I want at least 100 tries because there is a study about how it can take up to 100 repetition before a behavior becomes a default when cued. Then afterwards through out the next week or two I'll just through the behaviors out to see if I get it. Did it happen? Yes. Well, that's 1 pass out of 10. I personally like a 90% passing rate before I move up a step. For my two aggressive girls, I test them at least 50 times and I want as close to 100% as possible.

    In my mind, the time line for each level is as follows
    Level 1- 1 Month. 2 weeks for training and 2 weeks for testing
    Level 2- 2 Months, 1 month for training and 1 month for testing
    Level 3- 3 Months, 2 months for training and 1 month for testing
    Level 4- 3 Months, 2 months for training and 1 month for testing
    All together 9 months of work for serious control.

    Obviously, it can go faster if the effort is put into it. You said Brody gets bored easily. There is a game in Control Unleashed called Give me a break. It keeps training short enough to be interesting and keeps the dog wanting to come back for more. Reactive Champion Blog explains it best without the book:

    Preferably, your whole family would be willing to help but I know that might not be possible for you. I messaged you a good trainer out where you live. She is a good and positive trainer, I'm sure she will be able to help in some way.
    brodys_mom likes this.
  14. blacknym Experienced Member

    This is amazing!!! I have the book but have to finish reading it and actually work on it.

    I joined the yahoo group. I can't thank you enough for sharing that because I never knew it existed. The Check list is great as well. THX!
  15. brody_smom Experienced Member

    So how do you suggest using the checklist with the levels. There are six boxes for the first 4 steps and only three for the 5th step. Do the boxes suggest repetitions or sessions? It seems 6 is too few reps, but too many sessions. I know I sound a little neurotic about this, but I think checking the boxes will keep me motivated and accountable to myself. I do the same thing for myself with my distance running training program, even though I am not training for a specific race. It just helps me know what to do next.

    The steps are also color coded. Do you know what the different colors mean? In the old levels there were only red and blue. This one has five different colors.

    Thanks for suggesting the trainer. I will look into it.

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