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Discussion Starter #1
well, I've run into some trouble with our new pup a boston terrier( she is 10 month old). She is enrolled in her third obedience class now, each class is 8 weeks, and we have gone back to back. Lately her sits have become sloppy, horribly sloppy. I am not sure if she is just bored now with classes and maybe we should take a break with her. I have my other small dog in rally classes and will be entering her into our first real show in Sept., so I am busy with the other dog alot now. Pixie just doesn't have any spunk in our heeling and sits. I brought a toy to help liven it up in class and bopped her in the eye on accident so now every time I move my hand she jumps backward as well. :rolleyes:

At home she ho-hums through the training. I keep it simple and short but the sits are really bothering me as I don't want to reward a sloppy sit, but then she isn't motivated if I don't treat her now and then.
 

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Have you tried using a 'box' or platform for her to sit on? It should be just barely large enough for her to sit correctly on or she will fall off. Also you can try tuna cans under her front feet. It positions them so that it would be extremely uncomfortable to sit any other way
 

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When you say sloppy do you mean crooked , forged, lagged, wide etc.. or do you mean like puppy sits, where they sit with their legs in awkward positions? heeling fast and stopping fast always gave me the best sits. heeling slow and giving lots of warning a sit was coming gave me horrible sits.

Kelly and Amber
 

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I second the platform as it helps them to learn muscle memory and to sit straight. The boston should be small enough that a thick book to sit on would work. Practice makes perfect :D Don't forget to reward and mark the moment when she is sitting correctly.
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
she sits on her hip and slides her back leg out like she is relaxing...silly girl. I don't understand the platform...I am trying to work on position memory (where her body is in relation to me). She can heel without lead and sit when I stop but will sit on her hip and sometimes turned toward me. My instructor wanted me to work on heeling against a wall to bring her in closer to me for her sit, but I forgot to ask about the lazy sit as it is really getting bad lately. Sometimes I wonder if she is bored, because if she sits funky I look at her and she looks up at me with a "what?!" look. Well if you had kids it would be that four year old look that they give you after you caught them doing something bad. lol


Should I just ignore it for now and reward the sit anyway?
 

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One thing I did to straighten out Cedar's sits (his rear went out away from me) was to treat him to the left and slightly forward of his head so he had to straighten out the rear to get the treat. It did help him a bit.
 

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Try teaching the sits separately instead of with heeling, or even in heel postition. Have her sit in the front position and then when that foot goes out, just gently tap her toes with your foot until she pulls it in and "sits pretty", then reward that sit. Labs are notorious for "puppy sits" and you have to be vigilent to prevent them (I know she's not a lab - just saying labs do it too.) Emilu hates to "sit pretty" in wet grass, or even in grass at all, so I am always correcting that sloppy sit. Most of the time I just have to say "sit pretty" and she straightens up. At 10 months, your dog might just be going through a "phase",. Why don't you lighten up on training and just have some fun with her for a while.
 

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Sometimes sloppy puppy sits are physical (hip/knee/spine/neck). Teaching a nice sit is pretty easy with a clicker and then you can transfer it to heeling.

Kelly and Amber
 

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I was thinking along the same lines as Amber... could this be a physical issue? I think that in combo with the blah attitude might worry me that there was something else going on...
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Hmmm...never thought it might be physical...she is a small breed could hips be a problem? Anyway training is tonight...I might just pull her from class for a while if tonight is no different.
 

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Hmm... does she ever limp or act sore? If so I'd suspect maybe luxating patellas (common with small dudes) or she's at the right age for the onset of leggs perthes, kinda like the little dog version of HD. Linky: http://www.vetsurgerycentral.com/legg_calve.htm

Maybe worth checking out, just to be sure.
 

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I would observe how she sits all the time andd see if she always sits in the same position. If she sits normal or opposite when you aren't working her then I would think its likely a training issue. if she consistantly sits the same way every time you might have her checked.

Kelly
 

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Discussion Starter #13
she did okay at training but now I am a worried mom because I have noticed she slop sits everywhere so off to the vet next week. thanks for the input.
 
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