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Thread: Lab only wants to "sit" near me?

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    Default Lab only wants to "sit" near me?

    Hi everyone,
    So my dog is a 1 year old yellow lab who hasn't had any training other than a few basic commands that he follows half of the time. I have decided that I am going to get serious about getting him trained. I taught him to "sit","here", and "heel" when he was a puppy and he follows the "heel" command pretty well. I have started trying to train him to "sit" at a distance but he either stands and looks at me or comes to me and then sits. I am only working him from about 1-2 feet, so it isn't even a long distance!

    My question is how do I teach him to sit at a distance?


    Thanks for the replies in advance!

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    Administrator Chris Atkinson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jomodeere View Post
    Hi everyone,
    So my dog is a 1 year old yellow lab who hasn't had any training other than a few basic commands that he follows half of the time. I have decided that I am going to get serious about getting him trained. I taught him to "sit","here", and "heel" when he was a puppy and he follows the "heel" command pretty well. I have started trying to train him to "sit" at a distance but he either stands and looks at me or comes to me and then sits. I am only working him from about 1-2 feet, so it isn't even a long distance!

    My question is how do I teach him to sit at a distance?


    Thanks for the replies in advance!
    Obedience at a distance is all about getting precision at your side, then gradually extending that distance.

    There is no good shortcut. I'd suggest that every morning, you spend 5 to 10 minutes doing a nice obedience review. Every evening, the same. Dogs learn good, crisp, tight obedience through repetition. If you do this sort of consistent repetition, the transition from sitting at your side, to sitting 6 inches away, to 2 feet away, to 20 feet away to 40 feet away to......comes with ease.

    But it does not happen overnight.

    Good luck and welcome to RTF! Chris
    "Determining and applying the criteria for when and when not to use correction is the essence of the art of dog training. I make a distinction between a mistake and a lack of effort." - Mike Lardy - Volume I "After Collar Conditioning"

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    Senior Member JustinS's Avatar
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    chris made a very good point, you stated your pup listens to a handful of commands half of the time - my suggestion would be take him on a walk twice a day and do heel sit and here mini sessions during your walk very easy and quick good luck and welcome to RTF
    Justin E Schneider

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    You may wish to consider that over the past year when you have commanded sit you have ask the dog to sit next to you. It appears to me the dog is trying to sit as trained. You may wish to us a different command to sit at a distance. After you a successful you can transition back to sit. If your dog is steady you may start with sit next to you. Walk some distance away and repeat sit. While you are at this you may wish to reinforce the dog to face you on remote sits and wait for the next command. Use of a check cord with a bump under the chin to reinforce the remote sit may be helpful. Take your time as it appears your dog is trying to please you as it understands sit means next to you as it has been next to you a couple of thousand times in the first year of it's life. Good time to use attrition.

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    Thanks for the replies guys! I want him to eventually learn to sit on whistle when we are out in the field. By commanding "sit" and then walking a short ways away, then giving a release command does this help to learn sit at a distance?

    Sorry if I am not understanding correctly!

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    Senior Member Howard N's Avatar
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    Truthfully Jomodeere, I'd start following a retriever training program and do the basics part of it.
    Howard Niemi

    You really gotta be careful about how high a pedestal you put your method, your accomplishments, your dog on. There's usually someone who's done more, somewhere. And they may have used a different method than you did! Chris Atkinson 2013

    get your dog out and TRAIN! caryalsobrook 2013

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jomodeere View Post
    Thanks for the replies guys! I want him to eventually learn to sit on whistle when we are out in the field. By commanding "sit" and then walking a short ways away, then giving a release command does this help to learn sit at a distance?

    Sorry if I am not understanding correctly!
    In order to sit at a distance at whistle you have to do what the others have said to to at your side. When you say sit toot the whistle, this will teach him to sit to the sound.
    If the dog isn't staying at sit at a distance and you walk away, he doesn't understand what sit means.
    There are plenty of good training programs to follow out there. Keep in mind though you may have to start over as if he were a new pup you just brought home.

    I trained my first one at 2 years old, so it can be done.
    The foundation to a great retriever is obedience.
    Firestorms Full Throttle Chevy aka Callie-Roo 7/5/2007 - 10/25/2013 I miss you every day
    Proud owner of Kona's Surfer Girl, aka Loki.

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    Quote Originally Posted by inspweaver View Post
    You may wish to consider that over the past year when you have commanded sit you have ask the dog to sit next to you. It appears to me the dog is trying to sit as trained. You may wish to us a different command to sit at a distance. After you a successful you can transition back to sit. If your dog is steady you may start with sit next to you. Walk some distance away and repeat sit. While you are at this you may wish to reinforce the dog to face you on remote sits and wait for the next command. Use of a check cord with a bump under the chin to reinforce the remote sit may be helpful. Take your time as it appears your dog is trying to please you as it understands sit means next to you as it has been next to you a couple of thousand times in the first year of it's life. Good time to use attrition.
    No need to change the command...just use a front sit and back up and sit the dog in route ,increase the distance gradually...the dog needs to learn the command not location related.. The ole rope around a pole will help if necessary...Steve S PS: As Howard mentioned get a basic program to follow and transitions will become simpler when teaching commands...
    "Your dog learns as much by doing his work right,by your praise and encouragement, as he does by your displeasure and correction." DLWalters

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    Thanks again for the replies!

    I have the Tri-Tronics Retriever Training Guide by the Dobbs that a friend lent me and I have been reading over the basics section but I just didn't quite understand if sit at a distance was something to be learned separately.

    Just to make sure I got this down: I will give the "sit" command with the dog beside me and step away and give a release command to let him go. Practice this until he can stay a 25 feet? or so? Then transition to the whistle?

    Thanks again for ALL of the replies!

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    Senior Member metalone67's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jomodeere View Post
    Thanks again for the replies!

    I have the Tri-Tronics Retriever Training Guide by the Dobbs that a friend lent me and I have been reading over the basics section but I just didn't quite understand if sit at a distance was something to be learned separately.

    Just to make sure I got this down: I will give the "sit" command with the dog beside me and step away and give a release command to let him go. Practice this until he can stay a 25 feet? or so? Then transition to the whistle?

    Thanks again for ALL of the replies!
    You must introduced the whistle at the moment right after the command, so he relates the toot with sit.


    "SIT"- "TWEET" "SIT" do this at either heel sit or front sit so you can make correction if needed. After some time change it to "TWEET"- "SIT" and see if he begins to sit before you even say the word, then you'll know if he is understanding the whistle portion.
    The foundation to a great retriever is obedience.
    Firestorms Full Throttle Chevy aka Callie-Roo 7/5/2007 - 10/25/2013 I miss you every day
    Proud owner of Kona's Surfer Girl, aka Loki.

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