Settle on the Bed
We want to teach our dogs to be calm in many different situations e.g. when visitors to the house, when we visit someone else’s house, on holidays, in kennels and also in training classes.
We also want our dogs to do this when asked.
This exercise is going to take some patience from dog and owner as the dog has to work this one out all by their self.
- Bring your dog’s own bed to the class as this will make them feel more comfortable.
- Stand on the dogs lead near to their collar (not so you’re pinning them to the floor) as this will give them very little room to roam about.
- Ignore your puppy, but as soon as they sit or settle down, start dropping treats, every couple of seconds, onto their bed for them.
- If your puppy gets back up, go back to step 3 (ignoring your puppy)
- If the dog remains in the settle then keep rewarding them with the treats followed by the command settle.
- Continue to give treats intermittently as a reward for staying settled on the bed.
Lure and Reward
The simplest way to get your dog to perform behaviours (e.g. sit, recall) is the ‘Lure and Reward’ technique.
Take your ‘lure’ (something the dog wants, normally a treat/toy) and hold it in front of their nose to tempt them. Move it slowly around so they follow the lure with their head. Whilst they are following it, offer the reward. Build up the amount of time and distance they have to follow the lure before rewarding them with it. Use side-to-side and up-and-down head turns, turning in circles, walking towards etc.
When reliably following the lure to the end of the earth, you can use it to lure them into certain positions and to move in certain directions etc. before giving the reward. Once doing the behaviour reliably, you can add in the word/hand signal you want to associate with that behaviour.
The majority of training behaviours in class will be using this lure and reward technique.