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Thread: Getting dog to ignore distractions

  1. #11
    Senior Member Mary Lynn Metras's Avatar
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    Jul 2010
    Watford, ONT


    Quote Originally Posted by Hunt'EmUp View Post
    I've been known to get distracted and lost, thus my parents tied on a rope and let me drag it around as a child. These days it's everybody else who are lost, only they won't let me tie a rope to them (something to do with political correctness I'm sure)
    Funny!!!!My parents tied my brother to a cement brick! Won't happen in today's world!!!

    Yes use a rope until you gain control and work in an area where less distractions at first and teach obedience. IMO
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  3. #12
    Senior Member Don Lietzau's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Chugiak, Alaska


    Quote Originally Posted by Majja13 View Post
    Hey all it has been a while since I have been on the boards. I have encountered something new to me with my 6 mo pup. Long story short due to life rearing it's ugly head I missed about 6 weeks or so of any real training with him. Now when we go over to the elementary school I go to, to work with him and through bumpers he gets distracted. If he sees another dog behind a fence he will sometimes run over to the fence. Also he will get distracted by other people on walks and want to go over and say hi.

    When we are throwing bumpers if I give a strong command to come here he will usually stop and come close and then starts a game of keep away. Any suggestions?

    Let's see. 6 months old. Little or no OB. Missed 6 weeks of training. Sounds pretty normal for your pup.
    Get a training program and use it.
    If you were on a program, you would be using a check cord and your pup would be returning one way or the other.
    Have fun

  4. #13
    Senior Member DarrinGreene's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Souf Joisy


    The reward here is play. The behavior being rewarded is the dog's continued attention/engagement. The other behaviors he does are completely secondary. Notice... no distractions in the room.

    Darrin Greene

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  6. #14
    Member Majja13's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    West Valley City, Utah


    Thanks for all the great info. I usually have a 6 ft lead on him when he is retrieving bumpers. My spot was distraction free until it warmed up.

  7. #15
    Senior Member Irishwhistler's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2013


    Quote Originally Posted by IdahoLabs View Post
    Check cord or leash. Unless doing retrieves, there's no reason for a 6 month old pup to need to be off leash for obedience.

    Distance, duration, distraction, difficulty - change only one area at a time in training.

    My standard for my dogs is that they are never allowed to greet other dogs unless I know the training, temperament,

    and health status of said dogs (and often not even then), and very, very rarely allowed to greet other people. Don't let your pup develop a habit of feeling entitled to meet every person and dog he sees. (And don't let other people bring their dogs over to meet yours!) Insisting on this will go a long way toward fixing your distraction problems.

    Training puppies is an art where you balance attention, praise and discipline while rewarding effort and obedience. Your end goal is a confident, relaxed working dog who knows his job. Get 10 minutes of good effort and attention, add your corrections and rewards as needed, and quit while you're ahead. (Note here- correct for lack of effort and lack of attention, and realize that "disobedience" is usually confusion or not understanding/knowing the command, esp at this stage.)

    Developing an attention span takes time. I've got a dog who can give me his complete attention for over an hour of steady training doing advanced work - but it took me about 1 1/2 years to get there. If I can get ten quality seconds of attention from a pup I'll reward, release, and then start again. (And no, stays do not require attention.)

    Make sure you have a plan going into each training session. What do you want to accomplish? Make sure you know what you want.

    Set your pup up to succeed. Better than 9 times out of 10, he should be successful at whatever you're asking him to do.
    Watch for situations where he's going to fail (eg asking for a stay while a pack of 10 year old kids come running over) and avoid them. You want failure to be something you've planned.

    Remember that you can't expect your dog to focus on you if you don't focus on him. Attention is a two-way street. If you're not going to give him your undivided attention, make sure he has a release word so he knows he's not working, and/or put him up.

    KwickLabs has some excellent advice.

    Great post.


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