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Old 04-09-2013, 11:50 PM
Saeleofu Saeleofu is offline
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Default Free stacking

How do you go about training a dog to free stack?

Logan does free stack for the most part, but he tends to keep his back legs too far under him. I can hand-stack him and he'll hold it just fine, but I think a free-stack is prettier and would show him off better (I was too busy stacking my dog to realize I got Best of Winners on Saturday ). He gets the general concept that he's supposed to move his front feet, but I'm having a hard time nailing down how to teach him where to move his feet to or that back feet are still feet.

If anyone has any good videos, that would be awesome too!
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Old 04-09-2013, 11:55 PM
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AdrianneIsabel AdrianneIsabel is offline
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Have you done much rear foot targeting? In the conformation class at my last work the taught rear foot targeting and basically muscle memory trained the stance, I think.
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Old 04-10-2013, 04:58 AM
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Mel would be a good person to ask. I remember when she was training Gala she'd ask her to step back, bait her forward, and then mark/reward when Gala was in the correct position. There was probably a lot more to it than that though. I'm not sure if Gala phased the extra steps out on her own, or if that was a step in the training I never saw. They have beautiful free stacks, so whatever it was worked.
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Old 04-10-2013, 11:00 AM
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I agree with Adrienne about doing some rear feet targeting. I worked a LOT with baby Payton to teach him that he has back feet and can move them independently of his front feet, largely for agility but because it does often come up in confo as well. Lots of dogs just plain don't realize what they can do with their back feet.

Here's a book I got for Christmas, I haven't worked through a lot of it yet but there's a whole chapter on stacking and I think an entire chapter devoted to freestacking, but it might be just a section in the stacking chapter. She has a Facebook group too where people ask questions!

http://www.amazon.com/Positive-Train...dp/1929242468/


With Payton I used paw pods... or rather my generic paw pods rather than the expensive FitPaws paw pods... These: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0018EC2IU
I bought four and used one for each foot to teach him to use all his legs independently (one leg targeting each pod.) Also a lot of pivot work with an upside down bowl.
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Old 04-10-2013, 11:21 AM
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For teaching Ivan to free stack. I would stand in front of him, holding the bait down low (otherwise dufus wanted to sit) and walk toward him so that he has to back up. Then I would step off to the side and lure his front forward. If he did not move his back end while moving the front he got the treat.
Hope this helps.
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Old 04-10-2013, 11:22 AM
Saeleofu Saeleofu is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beanie View Post


With Payton I used paw pods... or rather my generic paw pods rather than the expensive FitPaws paw pods... These: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0018EC2IU
I bought four and used one for each foot to teach him to use all his legs independently (one leg targeting each pod.) Also a lot of pivot work with an upside down bowl.
Ahhh, thanks for that! I also found a generic Peanut http://www.amazon.com/Isokinetics-Br...ef=pd_sbs_sg_5

I've wanted to get some of this stuff but it's so freaking expensive. These are way more affordable.


Thanks for all the help so far! I have not done much rear-foot targeting. Some, but not much. So I'll definitely work on that.
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Old 04-10-2013, 12:15 PM
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There are all kinds of different ways to go about freestack training.

With my very first show dog (before clicker) I would sit on the floor with him and have him stand there then I would touch a back toe, if he picked it up and moved it I rewarded. Pretty soon he would move his back feet if I so much as leaned toward them, then I started cueing "back". Then just faded out my body cues and then stood up and changed the picture and practice, practice, practice until he would move his back feet backwards when I said "back".

Front foot movement is easier. I usually just lure that and reward for the dog stepping forward with front feet only.

Collies are pretty much a 'no touch' breed. I showed a few for a breeder when I was still in juniors and the big emphasis in collies was on freestacking.
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