the dog to lie down
dog needs to reliably sit before
you teach the "down" Instruction.
dog to "sit," and praise the
"sit." Next, put the treat at
the dog's nose and move it
straight down between the dog's
legs, SLOWLY. If the dog does
not plop down, begin to slide
the treat along the floor SLOWLY
back between the dog's two front
legs towards the dog's belly.
The dog should curl as he or she
keeps focused on the food treat.
Soon it is more comfortable for
the dog to lie down, at which
time he or she is given the food
treat and praised in a calm
most common mistake
made during this process is to
move the food too quickly
resulting in the dog giving up.
You may need to give the dog
small pieces of treats for
moving closer and closer into a
"down" position. The food must
be held directly at and in
contact with the dog's nose and
lips. A second common
is to try to get the dog
to lie down from standing up. It
is easier to teach "down" from a
A dog that is resistant to
learning the "down" Instruction
may need daily reminders of
positive human leadership.
Tricks of the trade
If you find it
difficult to lure the dog into a
down position, work on
leadership exercises. Your dog
may be resisting your
leadership. If your dog is
simply confused the following
techniques will be helpful.
Sit on the ground
feet straight out in front of
you. Bend your knees upward
making a bridge. Lure the dog to
crawl under your knees to get
the treat. When the dog crawls,
the belly will hit the ground.
Give the treat and say,
against the wall
Ask the dog to
sit with his or her back in a
corner or against a wall. Then
try the luring technique. For
some dogs, this barrier makes it
more in their interest to lie
Dog's are more tuned into body
language than to verbal language. Your dog will
often learn a hand signal before learning a verbal
cue. To combine the verbal cue with a visual cue for
down, turn an open palm facing down at waist height.
Move the palm down toward your knee. This downward
movement gives the dog a visual CLUE.