What is Luring? And How Can It Help Me Train My Puppy?
• To lure a dog into a behavior we use something the dog wants (food or toy) and encourage him to follow the lure. When the dog moves in the way we desire, the lure is given as a reinforcer. Luring is a quick and easy way to get the dog to move into a physical position.
• It can seem successful quickly, but this is an illusion. The presence of the lure is overwhelming and the dog is not thinking about what he is doing, so very little real training is taking place.
• To be effective, it must be faded quickly. Use the lure for a few repetitions, and then try to get the same behavior using the same hand motion without the lure present. Any attempt to follow your hand should be immediately marked (such as with a clicker) and reinforced (immediately with a treat or other reinforcer).
• Mix it up; do one with the lure, some without, etc, until the dog responds to the hand motion as well as the response to the lure.
My Puppy is Ignoring Me. What Should I Do?
• If your dog is not responding to you, it can be from issues you don’t see or understand. (This is how your dog views the world: Is it safe, neutral or dangerous? Is it working for me?)
• Fear, distractions, boredom can all result in inattention or the inability to respond to you.
• Try to view your dog’s world from him eyes and make adjustments
so he can learn. Keep your dog successful and his motivation
to learn will stay high.
• Examples that might improve your dog’s outlook: fewer distractions; better reward; make the exercise
easier; take a break; make your dog feel safe; adjust the environment; change your attitude.
Here are the weekly
handouts for many of the exercises in Ideal
Puppy Training & Socialization
class, plus training tips to help you be
more successful. You and your dog will get
out of class and training what you put into
it. Practice what you've learned every day
but keep it fun. Turn training into a game.
Ask your dog for something (such as a sit
or down) and then reward with a tasty treat.
Don't be stingy. Reinforce the behaviors
you like and your puppy will do them more. Figure
out your puppy's reinforcement for bad bahaviors
and remove them so that your puppy will not
have a reason to continue.
I am very happy to have you in class! Let's get started.
Mindy Cox, Training Director
down for your training handout links and training
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Spend less time directing and more time enjoying
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an important aspect of class.
We strongly advocate
proper, positive socialization experiences for
your puppy. Take your pup to as many different
places as possible but don't overwhelm your
pup, especially shy ones. Never force your puppy
to interact; we want your puppy to feel safe
in every situation and with every interaction.
How your puppy learns to perceive the world
now influences his adult temperament.
a great video that describes why and how you
should manage your pup's critical stage of
life. Please watch
tips to increase your training success
Remember to keep training fun for you and
your dog and stop before your dog wants to. Keep your dog
happy and confident.
Catch and reward your dog being successful
and stay positive. Ignore the times your dog is unsuccessful.
Rewarding positive behavior will build trust
and improve your relationship. Punishment
erodes the relationship and in some cases may cause aggression.
a list of what your dog values most
(types of food rewards, play, petting,
ride in the car, etc.) so you know how
to reward. Use
moist, tasty treats to teach new behaviors. Once
your puppy becomes good at the behaivor,
use life rewards by giving something
that he or she wants, such as a game
of tug, dinner, a ride in the car, a
chance to go outside, some time on the
sofa with you, etc. Think of more things
your dog likes and values and use them as
Begin training at home in an environment
that is not distracting. As your dog learns the exercise,
slowly increase the level of distractions.
Break training into small steps.
Plan ahead. Have your tools ready before
you begin (such as clicker and treats).
Reinforce highly to maintain a positive
Multiple short sessions are better than
one long session (boring and tiring!). There are moments
of training opportunities all during the day.
Play and training should be indistinguishable
to your dog. They both should be fun!
Don't be afraid to act silly sometimes.
Your dog will enjoy your playful attitude.
Be sure your dog gets lots of exercise and
environmental enrichment. A tired dog is a content dog!
The handouts will help you remember what we did in class and
help you to practice at home. Keep playing games that increase
focus and attentions such as the Name Game, Find It and Watch.
Also be sure to reward your dog when he or she offers you attention
without you having to ask. When you ask your dog for a stay,
be sure to use the release word you have chosen; it's not ok
if your dog makes the decision when to get up. Maintain your
How awesome your dog behaves and responds is totally up to you.
The amount of motivation, ambition, and standards you have will
reflect in your dog's level of training and attention to you.
We will continue to learn a lot over the course of the class.
You will be amazed how much your dog can learn.
Please keep me informed if you have any questions or I am not
covering the things you are most interested in. I am here to
serve you. If you need to reach me before class, please call
561-427-6700. Please let me know by phone or email when you
By now you should not be using a treat to lure into a position.
If you still are, please phase it out quickly. Work on moving
into all six positions (sit from down and stand and down from sit
and stand) without your lure. Don't show the treat before the behavior occurs; give it afterward to reward the correct behavior.
Keep track of your pet's progress so you will know if you are
going too fast or if you can add in more challenges. If your
dog does an exercise correctly 5 out of 5 times you can make
it slightly more difficult. If he or she is right 3 or 4 out
of 5 times, keep doing what you're doing until it's close to
perfect. If your dog is only correct one or two out of five
times, you need to make the exercise easier.
Always strive to
keep your dog successful so training stays fun and motivating.
Here are exercises to work on:
Ready...ready...Go! (holding dog back with hand on his chest)
and release to some treats that are several feet away. When
the treats are consumed, call your dog back to you. This should
be high energy and fun. You can also release to a toy and play
a game of tug (be sure you get to the toy quickly so that your
dog does not play keep away.
Advanced Attention game: Show dog treat in hand, stretch arm
out to side. Do it with offered attention: wait until dog looks
at handler; to begin with click as soon as you get an eye flick
to your face. As he gets the idea of this exercise you can make
it harder by clicking with longer attention to you.
Continue to work on Leave It, Name Game, and
The following video does a great job illustrating 'shaping'.
Continue to work on Leave It! Here's how:
When you get to the point where you place a
treat on the floor and you cover the treat
with your hand or foot when your dog tries
to get it, your dog began to understand that
he got the food by leaving it alone. They will
either sit, look away from the treat,
or take a step back. When they do this we reward
by either picking up the treat and giving it
to them with permission ("take it"), or giving
them a higher value treat from our hand. Then
the treat was placed near your foot and the
dogs got treated when they stayed sitting and
did not try to get it. If they make a move
toward it, you cover it with your foot. Your
dog is always treated from your hand. We then
up the ante by not rewarding until our dog
looks at us. Next step, we kneel down and drop
the treat 6" from the
floor. Continue to click/treat (c/t) any correct
behavior. Gradually build to dropping the
treat from a greater height, then start throwing
it farther away from your foot. Either give
an equal or better treat from your pocket,
or pick up the treat and hand it to your dog.
I play this game not only expecting my dog not to take the treat,
but I also expect my dog to look at me before I will c/t. You
can also teach leave it with toys; they leave it alone until
you give it to them for a great game of tug, or send them to
get it. Once you begin using Leave It for objects, you can also
use it if you don't want your dog to pay attention to other
dogs, cats, squirrels, etc.