Teaching your Dog to "Lie Down"

Teaching your dog to "lie down" every time he is ordered to is a valuable lesson, especially outside the house where there are dangers, for example, on the road. Your dog should also learn that it is you who is in control of the situation. There are basically two "lying down" ositions: "the sphinx" in which the rear paws are tucked in under the dog's body and "the plane" in which the hindquarters lie flat on the floor, with the paws on the sides.

1. With the dog on the leash and on your left side, order him to "sit". Kneel down next to the dog and hold the leash under your knees. Grab the collar with your left hand and hold the prize with your right hand.

2. Let your dog smell the food which is hidden inside your fist. This will make your dog become more alert; meanwhile your hand under his collar keeps him from putting his head forward.

3. Move your right hand in a straight line downwards and then frontwards, in between the dog's front paws. When your dog falls down in order to follow the food, give him the order to "lie down".

4. As soon as your dog lies down give him his food reward. In this moment the position the dog adopts is not important, as long as he is comfortable.

Problems and Solutions
If your dog tries to raise his shoulder from the "lying down" position before you give him the appropriate order, hurry up and slide your hand firmly through the leash until you grab him by his collar. This will counteract the upward movement of the dog with your downwards pressure. Accompany that movement with firm and decisive expressions.

When your dog lies down again, repeat the order to "lie down". Your dog should not get out of this position until you order him to do so by saying "good" or "ok".

If your dog doesn't respond to the food stimulation, try changing the reward. Use a chewing toy which might fascinates your dog even more. Never physically force your dog to "lie down" if he doesn't want to be touched. If the dog is dominant, use nothing but rewards. If these methods fail, ask for professional help. This is always better than creating bad habits in your dog.

Avoid hurting your dog. Don't put pressure on the most delicate zones of your dog such as his kidneys, thoracic box, bladder and liver area.

seeFIDOAdvanced Dog TrainingHead CollarsTraining a Dog to "Sit" and "Stay"Training your Dog to "Come" & "Sit"Teaching your Dog to "Lie Down"Training your Dog to "Lie Down" and be "Quiet"Keeping the OrderDog BarkingUseful Dog Training VariationsTeaching your Dog to Walk Alongside YouTraining your Dog to Hold Objects in his MouthTeaching your Dog to Bring ObjectsDogs and ChildrenHow to Play with a DogTeaching your Dog to Play with Other DogsAnswering to OrdersGetting Rid of your Dog's Bad Habits