- Pet forum for dogs cats and humans 


Beg? Play dead? Bow?

December 23rd, 2006, 11:16 PM
I would like to teach Bowser to beg and play dead

Beg: everytime i try to put the treat over his head to get him to sit up on his haunches, he jumps for the treat and does more of a stand

Play dead: i have to manually put him down on his side and the minute i let go he pops right up. He doesn't seem to understand that I'd like him to lie down on his side from standing up.

Bow: The one where he leans forward on his elbows kinda like the play stance. He just lies down. I would love to have him learn this one because of my vietnamese culture, if I could get him to do this when my parents come over they'll fall inlove with him, as kids bow to elders to show respect.

any help at all would be awesome!!

plz and thank you:p

December 23rd, 2006, 11:25 PM
I know the dead one well.. You have to have release word. Usually, you'd get them to do something and they have to keep doing it until you release them. Once you get the release word, then you just have to get them to be dead, and correct them when they try to get up if you haven't said the release word yet.

What I do with Boo is when he moves, I repeat, "I said dead" and put him back in the dead position. When he has stayed a while without moving, I release him. You want to start with short times so he doesn't fail too often and gradually get longer.:shrug:

For sit pretty/beg, with Boo we started with him putting his paws on us, but I'm sure somebody must have a better way of doing it...:o

December 24th, 2006, 09:01 AM
Is he by any chance clicker trained? If so, the easiest way to do it is to use when they do it naturally. Like when he stretches, click and treat, then he will get the idea.

With Willow I did the following:

Put my hand under her belly so that she couldn't lay down, took the treat and held it out so that her front end would go down, as soon as she was in position click/treat or 'yes'/treat. She eventually got the idea. If she layed down I would just start over, remember not to reprimand when training.

For beg ('sit pretty' I call it) I would just hold the treat over her nose. Try holding it a little lower than you are. Have him sit, put the treat about an inch in front of his nose, and slowly move it back. How old is he? If he is under a year he may not have his balance, you could back him up into a corner so that the wall holds him up, or pack pillows around him like with a baby. He may not do it yet for fear of falling over, Willow was over a year old before she got the hang of it.

For play dead, we learned to have them lay down on the floor and take the treat and slowly move it back over their shoulder. They will roll onto their hip and eventually lay down flat. We have not perfected play dead yet, but we learned roll over with the same method.

I took a tricks class where we were taught 25 different tricks, Willow picked up 23 of the 25. We train at a facility that works on 'shaping' rather than training.

December 24th, 2006, 09:13 AM
I found play dead was easier once we had taught Charley to roll over. I went one further and also taught Charley 'on your back', which combined with down makes for a good play dead.

I'd use hand signals only at this piont, and put the word on it once its more reliable.

December 24th, 2006, 10:16 AM
I agree with Byrd about the clicker. It would make things a lot easier and also give you the opportunity to capture the behaviours as well.

I personally wouldn't teach "play dead" from a stand. You need the dog to be comfortable with that position long before you try and get him to flop into it from a stand...You are trying to chain too many behaviours before your dog understands. Like PetFriendly I also taught Dodger "roll over" first but I also taught him "on your side" which meant to lay in the "play dead" position. Only when he was 100% in doing "on your side" from a sit or down, did I try from a stand.

With regards to beg - this is all about balance; Dodger couldn't learn this as a puppy because he couldnt coordinate himself. I found that teaching it with his sitting in front of me with his back to me (so he had to look up and behind at me) helped because he could use my leg's as a stabilizer (you can try with your dog's back to a wall as well).
With regards to him jumping up too far, try not putting the treat as can slowly shape the beg position by just having him stretch for it and only lifting one paw off the ground at the time etc...

For bow, I taught that by capturing. Dodger bow's all the time as a stretch and when I started makring and rewarding it, he started offering it all the time. It only took a fe markers before he was ready to have it put on command.

Good Luck!!!:D

December 24th, 2006, 11:23 AM
LOL I think Lissa and I should start a training facility, we have the same/similar methods. (Plus then I could use her agility equipment ;) )

I started Willow with sitting pretty with her back to my ex, I would have the treat he would be the balance. But, after we broke up I left it for a while until she came into her balance with age.

Willow is still doing rollover from a lie down position, she has not yet perfected doing it from standing.

Good solid tricks (any command really) take a lot of time and patience, they can't be taught in a day... it's a constant learning experience, but when they get it, they really, really get it. Willow has over 30 tricks, some still in progress some perfected, and she loves showing them off. :D

December 25th, 2006, 02:39 AM
wow guys thank for all the advice. No Bowser was not clicker trained so i actually have no idea at all how to do it. he was trained where i manually put him into position and praise trained can anyone maybe recommend a good website that i can go to to learn more about clicker training? and would it confuse him if i changed training styles?

December 25th, 2006, 10:26 PM
No, it won't confuse him. Willow was over a year old when I started clicker training. I was a little embarrassed with it at first, but it is a wonderful method and has worked so well.

First things first, get a clicker. Next you shape him into a Pavlov's Dog type of situation where there is a process of association - click means a treat is coming. All you do for the first bit is click treat, click treat, until he gets the idea that the click means he's getting food. You don't have to give the treat simultaneously or rush the treat, he'll get the idea that when he hears the click food is on its way. If I click the clicker, Willow comes running expecting food... sucks when you do it accidently and there is no food.

I don't know of any sites on clicker training, but when you get the first part down all you have to do is ask.

December 26th, 2006, 03:30 AM or something like that. We never loaded the clicker but I know that is how a lot of people get on the road to training with the clicker, Riley had no previous training (neither did I) so we shaped behaviour and then added treats at the same time, then the cues followed (i.e.) click when he did a behavious we wanted then put that behaviour to a response, the treat is anything that gives the dog pleasure, a belly rub, a scratch on the chin, a food treat, whatever. The important thing is to mark the behaviour as soon as it happens, then follow through with a treat, an example is when riley barks we clicked and treated, the cue for barking is 'woof', however we do not give the cue so he does not do the behaviour. When we change our hand signals to sit, down, stand, here and it takes about 30 seconds to change each one using the clicker. Your timing has to be good so practice helps, you don't want to mark the bahaviour after it happens, but you have time to give the treat. It works well for some and others it doesn't, for those it works well for it is a great aid to shaping behaviour.

December 26th, 2006, 03:52 PM
These are all things we teach on the first day of class without treats as the reward.

Play dead (bang or sleep) - simply get him to down, then use a toy to get his head to turn towards his side (1/4 turn) - hold the toy at his belly - when his head goes to his side his hips will flop over. Now gently bring his head down so he is in the laying on his side and softly tell him 'bang' or 'sleep'. You are essentially holding his head gently in place but then slowly lift away - if his head just starts to pop up then gently put it back into place - he might challenge 3-5 times then he will willingly stay there. After you can slowly pull your hand away and you are back in a normal position - give him the release word with tons of enthusiasm. "Wake up!" or what ever you like. Your change in energy should cause him to spring to life again. Then reward with lots of happy praise, and repeat. Oh, our hand signal is to point at his head.

Sit up - Ask him to sit, then use a toy and lure him up by placing it JUST above his nose. Too high and he will jump up and a little too high and he will stand up. So just high enough to get him to lift his front paws up and keep his butt down. We use a hand signal - finger pointed upwards. Sometimes you have to 'cheerlead' him into the position, when he gives just a small effort reward him with lots of praise. Every effort in the right direction gets rewarded.

Bow - Have him in the stand position and place the toy on the ground in front of him. When he goes to sniff it push it towards him. It should place him into a bow - give it a word and hand signal and PRAISE with tons of enthusiasm.

All are easy to teach in minutes. Try to make YOU the treat - your warmth, happiness, touch and voice - that lasts a lifetime.

December 27th, 2006, 10:33 AM
These are all things we teach on the first day of class without treats as the reward.
the toys is the reward and the motivator, some dogs are not motivated by toys so a food treat works better.

Try to make YOU the treat - your warmth, happiness, touch and voice - that lasts a lifetime.

That is the end goal whether you use a food or a toy to motivate initially, eventually you should be able to wean out the treat once the dog that doing certain things on command makes you very happy with him

A clicker simply eliminates the need for as much vocals, praise such as good boy/girl, the praise revolves around timing just like the clicker does if I caught my dog in an act I wants him do , I instantly give praise goood boy, then put a word to the action and reward with a treat quickly while they are still in position. I prefer trainng by vocals instead , my mouth is attached to me 24/7 the clicker is only effective if it is in your hand at the time

December 27th, 2006, 10:50 AM
I prefer trainng by vocals instead , my mouth is attached to me 24/7 the clicker is only effective if it is in your hand at the timeMe too, but I do "tsk tsk" when Boo is being bad (I'm a negative clicker by accident, I think :D).

Some dogs are very treat motivated (like mine) but it really would be much better if they hadn't depended on treats and really just focused on me/the trainer.:shrug:

December 27th, 2006, 11:02 AM
That is the end goal whether you use a food or a toy to motivate initially, eventually you should be able to wean out the treat once the dog that doing certain things on command makes you very happy with him

That’s why we start there - it seems we get to the end result faster. So many people call us who have seemingly missed the transition to weaning and say 'our dog only performs if we have a treat'.

I prefer training by vocals instead , my mouth is attached to me 24/7 the clicker is only effective if it is in your hand at the time

Great points - I don't like to rely on anything but me, and don't like to carry anything I don't need. Sometimes I even try to see what I can do without my voice - but often that requires more patience than my 'mean'opausal emotions have.

Pet Friendly - I caught your statement before it got removed. I apologize for how I have made you feel.

I think I get frustrated when people say 'we have been working at 'stay' for a month and he's starting to get it' (just an example), or their 6 mo pup only knows 'sit' because they think that’s all he can handle, or their answer to training is to rapid fire treats at the dog. I get frustrated because it seems to take away the recognition of a dog’s ability to learn, understand and think for himself. The cool thing is dogs already know how to do it all - sit, stay in one place, lie on their side, roll over, run towards you etc. They have been doing it since they were tiny pups. It is really all about teaching the people how to communicate more effectively and clearly. I say the things I do to encourage people not demean them. I will work on my presentation and I do appreciate your opinion. Please don't ever hesitate to tell me things. If you want you can PM me with questions and comments. I hope I don't seem unapproachable, and this seems to have been bothering you for some time. Please don't waste an ounce of time being frustrated by me (life is way too short), just contact me and we can clear things up quickly.

December 27th, 2006, 11:42 AM
:thumbs up You guys are all amazing and wonderful!! So many responses to my thread:thumbs up

I will keep everybody updated on his progress, and if i can find my dad's video camera somewhere i may even post a video :fingerscr (once he gets it that is):D