It is important that the dog knows how to relax. Even better if she can relax on cue. And it’s a very trainable skill. How to teach a dog to relax on a signal on the mat?
This will help consistent work, divided into several steps.
- We teach the dog to go on the mat and lie down. We’ll need a few treats, and we just hover over to encourage the dog to come onto the mat. And as soon as she was there, again by guidance we induce her to lie down. But without a team! The command is entered when the dog several times in a row on guidance went to the mat and lay down. In this case, we can already signal the behavior and give it before we ask the pet to lie down on the mat. The signal can be anything: “Rug”, “Place”, “Relax”, etc.
- We teach the dog to relax. To do this, we stock up on goodies, but not too tasty, so that the four-legged friend is not very excited by their appearance. The dog must be on a leash.
As soon as the dog settles down on the mat, give him a few pieces of treat – put between his front paws. Sit down next to your pet: either on the floor or on a chair. But it is important to sit in such a way that you can quickly put pieces of treat on the floor, and the dog does not jump up. You can take a book to have something to do and pay less attention to the pet.
Give your dog treats. Often at first (say, every 2 seconds). Then less often.
If the dog gets up from the mat, just bring it back (the leash is needed to prevent it from leaving).
Then give pieces when the dog shows signs of relaxation. For example, he will lower his tail to the floor, put his head down, exhale, fall to one side, etc.
It is important that the first sessions are short (no longer than a couple of minutes). Once the time is up, stand up calmly and give the dog the release marker.
Gradually, the duration of the sessions and the interval between the issuance of treats increases.
It is important to start training in the most calm place with a minimum of irritants, after the dog has a good walk. Then you can gradually increase the number of irritants and practice both at home and on the street.