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The lessons on coming to the handler have taught the dog to identify the handler as security. Many dogs feel this way even without collar training. Now you want the dog to learn to shut off stimulation by leaving the handler.
Goal: The dog learns that staying in a dog crate even when the door is open will keep the stimulation "turned off."
The lessons on coming to the handler have taught the dog to identify the handler as security. Many dogs feel this way even without collar training. Now you want the dog to learn to shut off stimulation by leaving the handler. Therefore, you will need to help him learn to identify a location away from you as an alternate place of security.
One place that works well for most dogs is a dog box or crate. A large wire crate works especially well, since you can easily run your rope through the back of it to guide the dog. Whatever you use should be portable so that you can move it to various locations for the sessions.
Put the crate out in your training area, and tie the door open with a bungee cord. Snap your long rope to the dog's collar and run it through the back of the crate to a helper. If you don't have a helper, run it around a post and back to you.
First, get the dog used to the crate and the rope. Have him enter the crate and leave the door open. When he tries to leave the crate, use the rope to guide him right back in. Repeat this a time or two without using the collar.
Then leave him in the crate with the door open. This time, as soon as the dog steps out of the crate, press the stimulation button and give a command that he knows means "get in your crate," such as "KENNEL" or "PLACE." Use the rope to guide him back in if necessary. As he re-enters the crate, release the button. Praise him calmly when he is in the crate.
Repeat this procedure several times until the dog wants to stay in the crate to keep the stimulation turned off. This is your signal that he's ready for the next lesson.
Begin by getting the dog accustomed to the crate without using the Tri-Tronics collar.
Lesson Two - Enter the Crate to "Turn Off" Stimulation Goal: The dog learns that entering the crate on command will cause stimulation to stop.
Stand about six feet from the crate with the dog beside you. Press the stimulation button as you give him the command to get in his crate. Release the button as he steps into the crate. Use the rope to guide him in. Praise him calmly when he is in the crate.
If he seems confused and doesn't want to leave your side, leave him close to the crate, and then back away so that he is now closer to the crate than he is to you when you send him.
To get the dog to leave the crate so you can repeat the exercise, reach down and take hold of the rope near his collar and lead him out. Don't use the Tri-Tronics collar to get him to come out of the crate at this stage of training.
Remove the rope when the dog doesn't need its guidance any more, and repeat the lessons.
To introduce the 2nd Action use a rope to guide the dog away from you into the crate. A second person can hold the rope, or you can run it around something behind the crate and back to you.
Lesson Three - Leave Your Side to "Turn Off" Stimulation Goal: The dog learns that leaving your side on command will cause stimulation to stop.
Now gradually start farther and farther from the crate until you are starting from about 20 feet in front of it. Each repetition starts with the dog at your side. Press the stimulation button as you command the dog to get in the crate. Release the button as soon as the dog leaves your side.
To help the dog get moving, at first take a few steps toward the crate. If he becomes confused and thinks he is supposed to be heeling alongside you, then stop and stand behind the dog when you send him. Do not walk the dog all the way to the crate, as this will only confuse him. The essence of the lesson is that he learn to leave you in order to shut off stimulation.
If the dog stops when he is only part way to the crate, press the button again as you repeat the command. Release it when he moves in the right direction.
Praise the dog when he gets all the way into the crate. Do not praise him while he is still moving away from you or he will probably try to turn around and come back to you.
When you see your dog begin to move quickly to start toward the crate when you give the command, that is your signal to phase out using stimulation with each command. Now give the dog a chance to "beat" the stimulation by responding to the first command. Only use stimulation if you need to give a second command.
The dog is sent to the crate from farther away. You should release the button the moment the dog leaves your side. Remove the rope and practice without it when the dog no longer needs its guidance. The dog now knows that moving away on command is what shuts off stimulation.
Some dogs can progress through all three lessons in the first session. Some dogs need more than one session on a particular lesson before moving on. Evaluate your own dog as you train him, and determine how fast he can progress.
Have about five sessions on the Second Action. As with the First Action, it is very important that you do these sessions in different locations.
Make sure the dog truly understands how to turn off stimulation by moving away on command. By the end of the fifth session, you should have been able to phase out using stimulation the first time you give the command.
Since all time estimates must be modified according to your dog's actual rate of progress, be sure to take longer than five sessions if your dog needs it.
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