The Heel position is about the dog staying close to the handler and paying close attention. We will start with the Basic Heel position, the Stationary Heel.
To do this, we will food lure the dog into the Heel position at our left side. Use your left hand to food lure the dog into the position. If you need, take a step back with your left leg to encourage the dog to move. Once the dog is in the Heel position, practice a Sit and Look.
- Food lure the dog several times while backing up.
- Food lure the dog, now turn your body so the dog is now on the left side in Heel position (use the treat in your left hand).
—Always begin and end every Heel exercise with a Sit in the Heel position.
—When you stop moving forward, move your baited hand UP slightly to initiate the Sit position.
—As you are moving forward, the treat should be held up slightly from the dog so she is looking for it. Gradually progress to moving your hand all the way up to the Look position.
Wait with Recall:
This is similar to the Stay command, but different. Stay means to a dog, wait here until I come back to you to release you. Stay always means you are coming back to the dog to release him. Wait means to a dog, stay here until I give you something else to do. Wait is usually followed by a Come command.
We will start similar to the Stay Cue. Start in front of the dog, give your command, “Wait” (while giving the Stay hand signal), slowly back up a few steps while putting your hand down. Turn to face the dog. If the dog has stayed in place, say your Good, and call the dog to Come. Reward and praise lavishly when the dog reaches you.
Wait with a Long Line Leash:
For this we will walk with our dog on the long line leash. Allow the dog to wonder around ahead of you a little ways. Once the dog is about 10 feet in front of you, give your “Wait” command while stepping on the leash at the same time. This will force the dog to stop moving forward. Walk up the leash until you reach the dog. Give the dog their “Good” then “Let’s Go” and continue walking.
Come When Called:
Practice Come When Called with various distances and distractions.
You may also do this by playing Puppy Ping Pong game.
- Say the dog’s name and Come, one time only.
- Have a party.
- Lure (or gently lead) the dog back to you.
Drop It/ Give:
Practice Drop It and/or Give with your dog.
Once the dog has the toy and is engaged with it, present a treat or reward of equal or higher value than the toy, as the dog drops the toy, say “Drop.” It is very important to give the reward to the dog AT THE SAME TIME as you pick up the dropped toy.
Some dogs are not prone to putting their mouths on items and must be encouraged to do so using the Take It command. To practice, start with food the dog likes, present the food and say “Take It.” Move up to using items to practice.
Fetch is very helpful game that every owner should teach their dog. It is an excellent way to exercise your dog without wearing yourself out.
Rules of Fetch:
- Dog must Sit.
- Dog must Look.
- Dog returns toy.
- Dog drops toy.
To start, we must have a toy that the dog likes. Get the dog interested in the toy, then throw it a 2-4 feet away. Say “Fetch” as you throw the toy in a very energetic, excited voice. When the dog reaches the toy, praise if he touches it with his mouth. Encourage the dog to pick up the toy. When he does, say your “Good!” Use Come when Called to encourage the dog to return to you with the toy. If the dog drops the toy along the way, give your “Uh-oh,” return to the toy and encourage the dog to pick it up again. When the dog returns with the toy, DO NOT REACH OUT TO GRAB IT. The dog must learn to bring it to you. Once the dog is within one foot of you, grab the toy and encourage the dog to drop using your “Drop It” command. When he does, give your “Good!” Have the dog Sit. Good! Wait a few second; use the toy to practice “Look.” Once the dog looks in your eyes, throw the toy and say “Fetch.”