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Tuesday Training Byte: Frozen to the floor

When I training the "Stay" command, I also put my dog in a down position. I start by walking a semi-circle around my dog, facing it. Once my dog is solid on that I walk in a complete circle around my dog both clockwise and counter-clockwise. I take care to be sure to not step on its tail or paw. The next stage is stepping over my dog while it is down. Many dogs get uneasy and will pop tall when you go to step over, so take it slow so the dog remains calm. I may even run past my dog, but make sure not to call it or encourage with a hand signal to follow. I will very lightly nudge the dog with my toe, just to help it understands that itmust stay put. Last, I sit on the floor next to the dog calmly praising and petting him. This skill comes in handy when I am walking through the room carrying something large that partly obscures my view of the dog. I can tell the dog to stay and then confidently step over my dog without a worry. I also teach the "Move" command. If I am carrying a tray of hot drinks, I do not want to risk tripping on the dog or spilling some on him. I start this exercise holding something like a small backpack in my left hand as I approach the dog laying down. I give a command to move amd use a food lure in my right hand to get the dog to move out of my path. I want my dog to be frozen to the floor when I go to step over unless I say move.

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