Teach a dog to lie down with one of the basic commands that will help it develop self-control and will be very helpful in daily life with your pet. Note that this is an exercise that is not easy to teach all dogs, as it puts them in a vulnerable position. Therefore, you must be very patient in training your dog to lie down on an order.
The final level you need to get is for your dog to lie down on an order and keep that position for a second. To achieve this level of training, you must divide the exercise into several simple levels.
In this article, we explain the levels of training you will be working on in this exercise:
your dog lies down when you make the sign, your dog lies down for a second, your dog lies down as you move, your dog lies down for a second while you move, your dog lies down on an order.
Remember to set it up in a quiet, non-distracting, closed location until all the proposed training levels are achieved. Discover the steps to follow to teach your dog to lie down
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Precautions To Be Taken When Training A Dog To Lie Down On An Order
Level 1: Teach your dog to lie down when you make a signal
Approach a piece of food from your dog’s nose and slowly lower your hand to the ground between the front legs of your pet. Following the food, your dog will bow his head, then shoulders and finally lie down.
When your dog goes to bed, click on a clicker and give him the food. You can give him food while he’s still lying down, or have him get up to eat it as in the photos. It doesn’t matter if your dog gets up after you click. Repeat this procedure until your dog lies down easily each time you guide him with food. From this point on, gradually reduce the movement you make with your arm, until all you have to do is stretch the arm down to make it lie down. This may require several sessions.
Only when you have managed to get your dog to lie down when you reach down, do the same without having food in hand. Every time your dog goes to bed, click and take a piece of food from your bag or pocket and give it to your dog. Please, note that some dogs are reluctant to lie down only by following a piece of food, so be very patient with this exercise. This may require several sessions.
Also note that some dogs lie more easily while sitting, while others lie more easily while standing. If you need to sit your dog down to practice this exercise, do it by guiding it as in the training to sit down. Do not use the order to sit your dog down. When you’ve managed to get your dog to lie down with the signal (no food in hand) at 8 of the 10 repetitions over two consecutive sessions, move to the next level of training.
“Lying” to compete
If you want your dog to learn to lie down straight, as some canine sports require, you must include this level as soon as you have managed to get your dog to lie down. To do this, you will only reinforce behaviors that are closer to the desired behavior.
However, note that you cannot require this from a small puppy or dogs whose morphology does not allow them to lie down straight. Nor can you demand it from dogs that have problems with their backs, elbows, knees or hips. Training your dog to lie down while standing involves an extra level, so you will need more time to achieve the desired behavior.
Teach a dog to lie down-Level 1: your dog lies down when you make the signal
Level 2:Teaching Your Dog To Lie Down For A Second
Make your dog lie down with the signal, without having food in hand. When it goes lies down, mentally count ” one.” If your dog keeps the position until you have finished counting, click, take a piece of food from the bag and give it to your dog. If your dog gets up while counting ” one “, move a few steps without clicking or giving him food (ignore it for a few seconds). Then repeat the procedure.
If necessary, use shorter intervals by mentally counting for a few repetitions. Then try to increase the time your dog is lying down until you count ” one ” mentally. You can do 2 or 3 repetitions of the previous level before starting the sessions of this level of training.
Level 3: Teach Your Dog To Lie Down While You Are Moving
Do the same procedure as in the first level, but by trotting or walking on the spot. Also change your position in relation to your dog : sometimes sideways, sometimes facing, sometimes diagonally. At this point, you also need to make sure that your dog lies down in different places in the training area.
You can do a few repetitions without moving before starting each session of this dog training level. You can also have food in your hand and do the full movement, by lowering your hand to the ground during the first 5 repetitions (about) of the first session to help your dog generalize this behavior.
Level 4: Your Dog Stays Down For A Second While You’Re Moving
Do the same procedure as in the second level, but trot or walk on the spot making the signal for your dog to lie down. You can do 2 or 3 repetitions of Level 1 before the beginning of each session, so your pet will know that the session is on the exercise to lie down.
Proceed to the next level when you have achieved an 80% success rate on 2 consecutive sessions.
Level 5: Your Dog Lies Down On An Order
Say “down” and wave with your arm so the dog goes to bed. When your dog goes to bed, click, take a piece of food from the bag and give it to him. Do several repetitions until your dog starts going to bed when you give him the order, before making the signal. From that moment on, gradually reduce the signal you make with the arm to eliminate it completely.
If your dog goes to bed before you give the order, just say ” no ” or ” Ah ” (use any one, but always the same word to tell him he will not receive the food) in a calm tone and take a few steps. Then give the order before your dog goes to bed.
When your dog has Associated The “Lying Down” order with lying down, repeat levels 2, 3 and 4, but using the verbal order instead of the signal you were doing with the arm.
Teach a dog to lie down-Level 5: your dog lies down on an order
Possible problems when you Teach a Dog to Lie Down
Your Dog Is Easily Distracted
If your dog is distracted during Dog Training, look for another place where there are no distractions. You can also make a quick sequence with 5 pieces of food before starting the session.
Your Dog Bites Your Hand
If your dog hurts you by giving him food, give it to him in the palm of your hand or throw it to the ground. But if it hurts you when you guide it with food, you will have to reprimand that behavior. In the next section, you will see how to do it.
Your dog does not lie down when you guide him with food
Many dogs do not lie down with this procedure because they do not want to put themselves in a position in which they are vulnerable. Others just don’t go to bed because they try other behaviors to get the food. If your dog does not go to bed when you guide him with food, try the following :
Try to start training on another surface. If your dog does not lie down on the tiles, try on the carpet. Then you can generalize the behavior.
Make sure the food you guide your dog with is appetizing to him.
Move your hand more slowly.
If you lie your dog down from the sitting position, place your hand slightly forward once you have almost lowered it to the ground. This movement forms an imaginary “L”, first down and then slightly forward.
If you lie your dog from a standing position, direct the food to the middle of your pet’s front legs, and a little back.
Try alternatives to teach your dog to lie down.
Possible Problems When You Teach A Dog To Lie Down
Precautions to be taken when training a dog to lie down on an order
When teaching your dog this exercise, you must make sure that it is not on an uncomfortable surface. Very hot or very cold surfaces can prevent the dog from lying down. So, check that the ground temperature is not very high just touch it with the back of your hand to check the temperature).