Sooo Dylan has progressed to intermediate obedience class !
He's doing fine except for his lazy sit !
I keep on adjusting his sit ( and placing his body at 90 degrees )
Any tips ?
I suspect that the answer is perseverence !
Nope, no advice...I have 2 lazy sitters myself!!
I wish I did have tips. If you figure it out, let me know.
Seriously, though, I think you're right, it's just being consistent in what you expect. I am not really so much of a perfectionist...as long as Simon is doing the "stay" part of the sit/stay, I don't worry about perfect form. His sit bugs some of the other trainers at the club who are all about not losing any points.
Simon tends to "melt" on his sit/stay, slooooowly sliding forward on his front legs until he's in a down. What I do to correct this is go back to him and lightly tap his feet back into position with my toes. The same works when he's sloppy sitting with his back legs splayed out...a light tap on each of his back toes moves them back into the right position. I suspect if I did this every time he would begin to get it...but unfortunately, he's a lazy sitter and I'm a lazy corrector.
Another thing I do sometimes that may help: When the boys are having problems on their stays with staying in that exact spot, before I leave them I will do a little resistance training. Are you familiar with this? It is pretty interesting...an instructor once told us that the natural reflex of a dog, when a little pressure is applied to their body, is to push back. The pressure is applied evenly, gently but firmly. So, for example the other night when Simon was doing a stay, before I left him I pressed my hand against first one shoulder and then the other, until I felt him "lock up." When he does, I tell him "goooooood stay" and treat him while he's in the locked position. This seems to help remind them that "stay" means "be perfectly still" (or relatively close, anyway).
Angus tends to lift his butt a few inches several times during a stay. So for him, I press down on his back end while saying, "stay." It seems to work with him to remind him to keep his butt on the floor.
I have also seen trainers that leave a pencil laid across the front paws of their dog on stays. I guess the idea is to keep the pencil on their feet. I have no idea what happens if the pencil falls off...among the ones I've seen doing this, I've never seen the pencil fall.
Last edited by AngusFangus; 11-14-2009 at 08:26 AM.
Sorry no advice either, Gracie is def a lazy sit kind of gal
Colin, do you mean he doesn't sit square or that when you're heeling and he sits, he swings out wide? (or both?)
OK... so you'll probably only fix one problem at a time, otherwise he might get confused/frustrated as to what you're asking for.
To fix the non-square sit (I'm assuming that he's capable of sitting square, just chooses not to? ie no hip issues that won't allow him to sit square), ONLY reward when he sits pretty/nice ie. square and do NOT reward the sloppy sits. Use high-value rewards and praise the dickens out of him when he does sit pretty.
To fix the swinging out wide, you can either heel against a wall (so that he must sit straight or else hit the wall) and then fade the wall to a row of pylons then cans (smaller and smaller) until he retrains his muscles. OR, when you go to halt and he starts to sit, and he see that he's swinging out wide, you can also hold treats at his nose with your right hand, and use your left hand (reach over him) to guide his bum into the right spot. Some dogs don't mind this, some dogs don't like it, so you have to play around and see what works for Dylan.
I could never get Henry to sit square consistently (he *is* king of the splay, after all) and I know it was my fault for not being picky enough when he was younger, so I pick my battles with him and as long as he's sitting in proper heel position, I don't mind the splay. However, I'm not sure if when they sit on their hip whether that is a deduction in the ring or not? I know when we do our long sits, Hen's most comfortable in the splay, than when he sits square, and thus more unlikely to break.
It's so much easier with Ollie because he always had the cutest tightest little tuck sit from day one. He sloppy sits when he's at home but I've yet to see him do it when we're training.