What I am about to write is nothing new, it’s been written over and over again since mankind started to write. But it can be summoned up in this sentence:
There is no leash or chains in the world that can make an elephant follow a human...
To teach someone or somebody something new:
Start by thinking about what your final goal is, what shall it look like when the ‘dog’ or whom ever you are to train is grown and ready.
Example: jump into the car. My vision is that the dog on a given signal jumps into the car, in the right cage / on the right surface, turns around and settles down and stays there until I say something else. Maybe I even want it to retract the gate before it lies down. I want it to rest there, not for it to be waiting for work. Think about it for both 1, 2 and 3 times. What sounds and signs you should have for the moments. (Or read the end of the post and don’t do it my way) 🤪
Then I have to practice a number of parts: Jump (I may have to start with the dog learning to jump up on something lower than the car) With a treat or just showing it with my hand, I show the dog what I want it to do. When it's a reaction fixed in the spinal cord, I'll slow down my hand's movements until the dog knows what the signal for the jump up Is.
Landing and laying down, I can practice that the dog jumps on a thick duvet and lay down.
To sit and relax. Help the dog to lie (create a special sign / signal for resting) sit with the dog until it feels calm and dare to rest for a while. When you finish the exercise, do it with calm, slow movements and a soft start. Let the dog wake up softly to say.
Then when all these moments are shaped and well known for the dog, I can transfer these exercises to the car. Practice them separately. Jump in, in and lie, lie and rest. Before you put them together, exercise longer and longer.
Now you have three signals, jump, land and lie. And it's usually here I'm going to find out that the signal for lie down and relax I'm giving my dog in the field or course or at home is not the same as this one, no wonder it does not relax there. Or that the signal is the same and therefore my dog is on the side and snores during obedience or field training.... or that the signal for jump up and jump over has become the same, and it is not so successful. Or that now I have three commands that start with the sound 'ho'... I am messy and un consistent. This is the hardest thing when you train your first dogs (well it continues to be hard because, when you finally think that you know what you want, you will have created a bunch of reflexive movements that are really hard to break.
Keep in mind that whatever you want the dog to do, look at the dog, look at it, look at the dog again, give body signal / sign before giving any command word. It should be absolutely sure what you want. If it is not, show, use the entire body as clarification until it knows. Then reduce the body's movement away from it. Otherwise, you can just wait until the dog spontaneously does the right before adding command word, it's a more efficient way to go.
Imagine your boss calls "dggfjhyujbnm" to you. You do not know what this means, in other words you have two options: either try or you are waiting for an explanation. Which one you choose depends on who you are, when this happens and how the manager usually manages similar situations. Had the manager shown, instructed, practiced and repeated before even mentioning the word 'dggfjhyujbnm'. Then the chances of success in the first try are greater.
It is often enough to show, so that you can reach far. Handle the dog as if it were an elephant, hang it before jumping over, braking, showing and gesturing with great and clear movements. Do not wait until it violates the rules, help it to do right before.
Because you can not just put on an elephant or lift it back. This makes it easier for you physically and more clearly for the dog. numbers 1 and 2 is that you think you know what you want, but change as and despite being unaware of it, you have created sigh of reflexive movements that are really bad to break. Keep in mind that whatever you want the dog to do, look at the dog, look at it, look at the dog again, give body signal / sign before giving any command word. It should be absolutely sure what you want. If it is not, show, use the entire body as clarification until it knows. Then reduce the body's movement away from it. Otherwise, you can just wait until the dog spontaneously does the right before adding command word, it's a more efficient way to go.
And yes I am sorry to tell you that this is how it works with humans too, both children and adults. We do what we are shown or have seen, not what we are told to do... 🙈🙈🙈
Well all of us write here, both humans and dogs ;) At least that was the plan but it seems it´s mostly me Robyn who´s attached to the keyboard...