Proofing the 'stay'
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Thread: Proofing the 'stay'

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
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    DefaultProofing the 'stay'

    Hi!
    I've been a member for awhile, just don't get on very much. I have a 3 1/2 yr old yellow male who seems to know the difference between training, correction clinics, fun matches, and actual obedience trials.
    He breaks at the trials either on the recall or sits. We seldom make it to the downs. He does beautiful at training, correction clinics, and fun matches. He does everything else great. We have one Q for our Novice title, and we've been trying for over a year. Maybe 8- 10 trials. He just broke at a trial on the recall last Sunday. We had a great judge, and she had us do it again (just to see if he would), and he did it beautiful.
    I also do Rally with him. We are 2 Q's into our RE title.
    I have worked with a couple different trainers on the stay issue. We've tried corrections, positive reinforcement, treats, toys, etc. He does have a tendency to get really excited with treats (just focusing on the treat), and also with toys.
    Should we forget entering Novice for a while and go back to square one with the stay command? Any help or advice with this would be greatly appreciated.
    The only good ? thing happening, is that I'm able to show in Rally A.

    I don't know what to do any more. :'(
    Oh, we are presently training in Open, as he was really getting bored with Novice. He holds the 3 minute sits and 5 minutes downs in class (I don't leave). We haven't tried OPen in correct clinics or fun matches yet.

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
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    DefaultRe: Proofing the 'stay'

    I would go back to square one on the stays. Here are some suggestions, not knowing what you have already done. Keep in mind these things are to be done with you right in front of him for quite a while. Start out with stays that are just a few seconds long and gradually work up to longer times.

    Have you tried placing a treat behind him on the stays? Release him to the treat. That way, he will be thinking of the treat behind him rather than coming to you.

    Correct the dog (to whatever degree that is appropriate) for even looking other than straight ahead during the stays, or even moving a foot. You can try using a place board which is just barely big enough fo rthe dog to sit on to remind him that moving is not acceptable.

    What sort of temptations have you used in your proofing? In my proofing classes we use laser lights, flashlights, moving toys and remote control trucks, bouncing balls, and people crawling/flopping in front of them and offering food to them. We open and close doors, knock on the doors and shake ring gates.

    Boring stays are also important. My dogs are so used to all sorts of proofing temptations to keep their attention, that they sometimes get figity (sp?) when there is nothing going on.

    Periodically walk away just a few feet and then return, rewarding a good stay.

    I am sure others will have better ideas, and let us know what sort of things you have already done!


  4. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
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    2,653

    DefaultRe: Proofing the 'stay'

    Quote Originally Posted by Belles mom
    I would go back to square one on the stays. Here are some suggestions, not knowing what you have already done. Keep in mind these things are to be done with you right in front of him for quite a while. Start out with stays that are just a few seconds long and gradually work up to longer times.

    Have you tried placing a treat behind him on the stays? Release him to the treat. That way, he will be thinking of the treat behind him rather than coming to you.

    Correct the dog (to whatever degree that is appropriate) for even looking other than straight ahead during the stays, or even moving a foot. You can try using a place board which is just barely big enough fo rthe dog to sit on to remind him that moving is not acceptable.

    What sort of temptations have you used in your proofing? In my proofing classes we use laser lights, flashlights, moving toys and remote control trucks, bouncing balls, and people crawling/flopping in front of them and offering food to them. We open and close doors, knock on the doors and shake ring gates.

    Boring stays are also important. My dogs are so used to all sorts of proofing temptations to keep their attention, that they sometimes get figity (sp?) when there is nothing going on.

    Periodically walk away just a few feet and then return, rewarding a good stay.

    I am sure others will have better ideas, and let us know what sort of things you have already done!

    I think these are right on target. Most of the people that I know with stay issues went back to short stays on a platform/inside a PVC box and built up time.

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  6. #4
    patm's Avatar
    patm is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Proofing the 'stay'

    How is he breaking during shows? Does he wait until almost the end? Lay down or stand up? I would probably try to really make him break during practice and get a correction in Is he trained to stay during lots of noise and distraction and finding that relative "quiet" of a show sit/stay distracting in itself?

  7. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
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    DefaultRe: Proofing the 'stay'

    thanks to both of you for the ideas. I'm thinking I will have to go back to square one, and try some of ideas you gave. He's had all kinds of distractions. At Rally class on Tuesday, we got there early and a Rally/Novice class was finishing. They were starting sits and downs. One of his best friends was there. I added Fischer to the line, and about 10 seconds later, his friend comes running over to him wanting to play. This happened a couple of times. His butt was glued to the floor! He didn't move at all, and he loves to play with his 'girlfriend'!!
    Thanks again for the help. We'll keep at it. We have a correction clinic tonight, and I'll see what happens, but he usually does great.

    Patm:
    He usually breaks right away. I don't even get across the ring. He gets up and starts following me, sometimes running a little. We don't always train at the same place, and there are different noise levels. I thought maybe it was me, so I had people watch me to make sure I wasn't "cueing" him, but no one has really noticed anything. I'm not outwardly nervous at shows, in fact I love doing them. My husband asks how I can be so calm.

  8. #6
    windycanyon's Avatar
    windycanyon is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Proofing the 'stay'

    At the correction clinic, and as many other places (parks, etc) as possible, ask whoever is playing judge and ring steward to correct him if he breaks. This tricks many dogs into thinking that they aren't off scott free in the ring on out of sight stays.........

    That said, my rotten chocolate girl has been laying down on Sits (open) lately too. Put her in Open B at the last trial thinking those dogs won't break... yea right! I've managed to get in some pretty good corrections this week. They also have had to do group sit/stays (for over 4 min) before dinner time.

    Good luck. Anne

    WindyCanyon Girls, August 2014

  9. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
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    DefaultRe: Proofing the 'stay'

    Quote Originally Posted by birdbrainz
    At the correction clinic, and as many other places (parks, etc) as possible, ask whoever is playing judge and ring steward to correct him if he breaks. This tricks many dogs into thinking that they aren't off scott free in the ring on out of sight stays.........

    That said, my rotten chocolate girl has been laying down on Sits (open) lately too. Put her in Open B at the last trial thinking those dogs won't break... yea right! I've managed to get in some pretty good corrections this week. They also have had to do group sit/stays (for over 4 min) before dinner time.

    Good luck. Anne
    thanks, Anne!
    We aren't doing out of sights yet. Maybe I should try it! I think I may try the group (duo) sit and down before dinner, too.

    Jill

  10. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
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    DefaultRe: Proofing the 'stay'

    Just an update. Our club held a correction clinic last night. I worked, but did a Novice run thru with Fischer. We didn't do the sits or downs, but he held on the recall and did fine (except for running into me).

    We'll keep working on the stays. Thanks again for the info everyone!!

  11. #9
    3TailsWaggin's Avatar
    3TailsWaggin is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Proofing the 'stay'

    One thing that I did for Open was proof my dog in all kinds of places where he normally would not do a sit, such as, in the Lazy-boy chair that rocked slightly, on my bed, on the seat of my truck, etc. All places he would never have to do a 3 minute sit. It really helped as he learned quickly that no matter WHERE I asked him to sit/stay he better do it.

    I used physical correction (i.e., a quick pop on his collar/leash and physically pulling him back into a sit or repositioning him).

    Of course he got rewards as well

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