Sunday, November 13, 2011

Rear end awareness training

Quick post of a few training videos with the dogs. I have started doing some rear end awareness training with them, since I think both of my dogs could use it. Plus, it will be useful for training some fun tricks later on.

Koira and Pallo are both working on learning how to step sideways with their back feet while keeping their front feet on a target. Koira has been doing much better with this than Pallo, who still doesn't seem to get the concept either of the front foot target being important or that he has a hind end that can do anything to be rewarded for.

Pallo and Koira have also learned to back up in front of me while I walk forward. I am now training a rear-foot target using the back up command. The dogs get clicked and treated when their back feet get on the target placed behind them.


  1. Koira is so precious!! She's got the clicker-dog wag. :)

    Will you transfer your cue to rotate to anything other than you using your body nearing her as a cue? Or is that unnecessary for your goals?

    Yay rear-foot targets! I needed to use one to get precision on Elli's very enthusiastic back-up and still need to add stairs into the equation to slow her down - she tends to push off with her front feet, leading to multiple wiggly bounces lol.

  2. My plan is to transfer the behavior to a hand cue/ verbal cue. Right now, one direction is much easier for her than the other (Pallo too, actually, I think it has to do with their flyball turn direction maybe). For one, I have to step into her to get her to step sideways with her back feet. For the other, she will follow a treat or my hand easily enough. Still, not too bad for only the second day of trying it. I just need to continue rewarding the sideways stepping for a while, then reduce my body movement slowly to get the action without my movement.

    I did notice the rear foot target was helping Pallo back up straighter than before I used it. He also has a habit of sitting down and doing a backwards butt scooting motion instead of walking backwards, which makes targeting hard. Again, though, this was his first session on trying it, so I consider it a success so far.

  3. Kol is so back-end UNaware. When we were agility training the weave poles were our worst enemy. We did ladder practices for hours to no avail. I'm glad it's going well for you!

  4. Looking good! I like that the 2nd time Koira sits after you click you make her stand to get her treat, it'll help in the later steps.

    And what a really nice backup! Depending on what your goals are with that, I'd likely start very close to it so I wouldn't have to move it all into him.