Wednesday, September 5, 2012

The value of the collar grab

I find the collar grab to be one of the most under trained behaviours.

It is so easy to train. Grab collar give treat, requires no thinking, no hard work and can be done on a walk or walking around the yard for dinner.

It is so valuable.  Most dogs sooner or later play keep away from their owners, for some it is an every day occurrence   This is such a dangerous behaviour and the more you do it the worse it gets.  I have had a lot of clients say the dog is being dominant or he is playing or he thinks its a game or he doesn't like putting his halti on or his nails clipped etc.  It doesn't matter you are still practicing the dog not coming when you need him to.

Remember it's all about value.  Where is the value for a dog who likes his collar grabbed => the value is with you grabbing the collar.  Where is the value for the dog that plays keep away => the value is with you not grabbing the collar.  If you spend the next week with your dogs dinner doing collar grabs I guarantee you that your dog will start not only allowing you to grab his collar but actually moving towards you to have his collar grabbed.  One or two repetitions will not affect this behaviour it has to be at least 30 times per day.

Give it a try and see what you get, I dare you :).

Note:  with coated dogs I also practice grabbing the scruff, I find the collar is too hard to find often enough that I want them comfortable with me just grabbing the scruff