Teaching a Dog to Stay or Down

Teaching "Down" together with "Stay". Place four posts or barrels etc. in a square just like in the previous exercise. Again the first team begins at the first post and at the second the dog receives the command "Down." Now the dog trainer continues on to the next post by himself or herself. While the dog trainer is still walking around the square the dog should remain in the "Down" position. How far away from the dog the dog trainer is able to go depends on how well trained the dog is. The dog trainer will then take up the leash again and move on to the next post. The other teams should wait a moderate distance away to minimize distractions.

Practicing "Down" with other teams. For this exercise all of the dogs inthe group should be in a straight line with a couple of meters distance between each of them. They should be in the "Down" position with their dog trainer standing directly behind them. The dog trainer of the first team would then give their dog the "Sit" command (starting position) and then together they would begin winding their way through the line of the other teams. When they reach the end of the line the dog trainer would again give the "Down" command at which time the second team would begin their pass of all the teams.

Practicing "Down" while greeting. All of the teams should be moving around and intermingling in an unorganized manner with the dogs at "Heel." At a command of the course instructor, all of the dogs would be given the "Down" command. Be sure to have a distance of about three meters between the dogs. The dog trainers should be standing next to their dogs. One by one the dog trainers should, without their dog, go alone through the group of dogs and greet one of the other dog trainers with a handshake. Then the dog trainer should return to their dog but without making a fuss or even greeting it. All of the dogs must stay in position throughout this exercise.

Important Pointer. To keep the distractions from being overbearing the dogs should be kept a sufficient distance from each other throughout these exercises.

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