This is the second part of the Totally Gundogs Clicker Trained Retrieve.
The objective of this stage is to finish up with a dog that lifts the dummy clear of the ground, and then spits it out again.
There needs to be a least a moment during which no part of the dummy is touching the ground for you to be certain that you have completed this stage, and the dog must have let go of the dummy of his own free will.
What if the dog won’t let go of the dummy?
On no account get involved in a wrestling match with your dog over the dummy! Some dogs seem to have trouble letting go of the dummy once they have it in their mouths. Other dogs are actually ‘possessive’ over the dummy and don’t want to share it with you (or anyone else) This stage in training overcomes both these obstacles.
Stages in Part Two
Here are the stages you will pass through in order to reach your objective.
- Nudging or pushing the dummy
- Grasping the dummy with open mouth
- Lifting any part of the dummy off the ground
- Lifting the whole dummy off the ground
Some dogs will go straight to lifting the whole dummy off the ground, and that is fine. But you must ensure that the dog spits out the dummy to go and collect the treat that you have thrown.[wp_ad_camp_1]Throw the treat well away from the dummy to give the dog an opportunity to deliberately return for another go.
If your dog is reluctant to spit out the dummy try again with juicier, tastier, treats when he is properly hungry.
You won’t be tied to the treats for the rest of your days.
This is just a way to establish the trained response we are looking for.
Here are your steps
- Place the dummy on the floor
- C&T for a nose touch
- C&T for a more sustained and determined interaction with the dummy. E.g. when you get a longer nose touch, or a double nose touch or any movement of the dummy
- C&T for any ‘open mouthed’ contact with the dummy
- C&T for deliberate ‘grasping’ of the dummy by the dog’s mouth
- C&T for any action which results in the dummy being lifted off the ground at either end
- C&T for higher lifts of the dummy at either end
- C&T only when the dummy clears the ground completely
At each step you are becoming more selective in your requirements, but at no point should you keep pushing on with this process if the dog is not earning C&Ts regularly.
If the dog stops earning clicks, back up with your criteria for a while before raising the bar again.
Next time we will be teaching the dog to hold on to that dummy for several seconds!
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