Ok how can we not spoil this sweet babies but i think i created a monster a cute monster but still a monster. About 2 months ago he would bark and dig on my leg WHENEVER or wherever i sat down. Cute at first not so cute now !
He is VERY attached to me and i dont mind i enjoy his company i am a stay at home mom so i am always home ,he also slleps with me and hubby and when we try to get cozy he is ther and hubby says he is putting his foot down that he has to learn to sleep in his crate 2 times a week (wink wink) ok i agree. I have ignorned him when he barks at me when i sit and it has been working but he is a presistant little bugger. I guess what i am asking is how you pose limits on this lovable pups ?~ Denise
I do something called boot camp or nothing in life is free. If you have a dog who is the boss of the house, instituting a program like this brings fairly quick positive results. The basic idea is that they do something before you interact, play, feed them, pet them, pick them up, etc. In addition, we add daily crate time and short training sessions. There is also the daily long down stay for 3-5 minutes at first, then longer. Basically, this helps to reinforce that you are the head honcho.
For the behavior at the couch, if he does it, ask him to do something else (sit, shake). Only when he does that do you pick him up. If he is too wild, say "uh oh" in a happy voice and put him in his crate to calm down for a few minutes. Then put him back in the situation and ask him to do something for you. His reward will be coming up on the couch.
Additional things that will help is putting him on a daily schedule and instituting more exercise (walks, games of fetch or tug that you initiate and end).
I really nice book is by Susan Garrett and it is called Ruff Love.
You suggested this in my "Bark" thread too. Even though we went to puppy school, Bella never would go in to a down position. Any tips? I don't think it is a submissive thing but I could be wrong. she will let me flip her on her back and stuff like that. I think it is just the way we were supposed to train them to do the down position was not working b/c she was too small for the training tips.
On occasion when she is already "down" I will say "down" b/c I think she will know what it means???
The good news is she is a sitting pro b/c of this
I would "capture" the behavior with the clicker, which is similar to what you are doing but a bit more structured. I would wait for her to down, click and treat. Once she offers the behavior, I would add a verbal cue.
You can try simply luring her down with a treat in one hand and give it to her when everything hits the ground. I would click or use a marking word (I use "yes") when she is all the way down then treat. Once she is doing it consistently, add the verbal cue.
Dogs learn the behavior and then you can attach the verbal or hand cue. If you are luring a behavior, the luring action can become the cue.
What have you tried? We can work specifics if I have some idea of what you are already doing.
What I have been doing is putting her in a sit and then bringing the treat (or my empty hand) behind her front paw. This is the way it was taught in our puppy class and every other dog went into down but Bella just twists until she reaches my hand. I used the clicker with her other training (but I have phased it out so she didn't expect a treat for every command) so I will reintroduce it and try to mark down when I catch her in it. I think that will be the easiest way. But I will take any other suggestions as well.
The click is a marker to tell the dog they did the right behavior. A treat must follow to reinforce the behavior. Once you click, you have to "pay up" with the reward. Once the behavior is on cue, the clicker is not needed, just a reward. At this point, you should go to a variable reinforcement schedule as this actually increases the likelihood of the behavior occuring.
If you want to try luring, let her stand up and put a treat on your hand and put your hand on the floor in front of her. You can click if she puts her front end down at first and build the behavior you want, waiting until she puts more and more of her body down. Some people call this a folding down. Otherwise I could go with capturing the behavior as you planned.
When I'm looking to catch a behavior, I get the clicker out for just a minute or two 2-3 times a day. I'll sit on the floor or stand and see what the dog offers me. This works well for a clicker savvy dog that knows the game of trying new behaviors. If she's not into this inventive game, stick with the previous plan or try luring in front of her.
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