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Flora & Molly

Trouble teaching stand

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Hello everyone,

I am having trouble teaching my dog ( 3 years old) the "stand" command.
She generally picks things up pretty quickly. I taught her things like "mat" (where she has to sit on the mat while I get my coat and things to go out) and going from down to sit in only a couple of sessions. I'm working on "speak" as well and I can see with these commands she knows what I mean and is happy and confident.
 

Not so much with stand... My BF wanted to teach her to do it, but I think he went about it the wrong way. He had a German Shepherd before and still has to get used to Border collies :). He carefully lifted her up to a stand position holding her belly. Which resulted in the dog being very confused and insecure and standing with a curled back. She didn't understand it was a command at all. So I told him not to do that again because it clearly didn't teach her anything. After that I thought I wouldn't teach her "stand".

But I have since bought her a harness that I'd like to use for certain activities with her and standing while putting it on will be very handy. Plus, she tends to sit down to any command she doesn't know yet or even if you just look at her sometimes. So in training I feel it will help her to stop sitting ALL the time :)  So I have tried to teach her and looked stuff up on how to do it. No luck yet.

1. I have tried to make her go from sit to stand using a treat. She won't stand. She just scooches closer to the treat staying in sit, which is very funny I have to admit, but not what I want.

2. I have tried to say "Stand" while she is standing. Unfortunately she will sit down immediately.

3. I have only tried the methods above very briefly, because I was afraid she would think  "stand"  was just another word for "sit". Did I give up to quickly?

Should I give up? Or does anyone of you know some clever way to get around this? There is no rush at all to teach her this, so I was thinking maybe I should teach something else first? 
Or is there any way of teaching it in tiny tiny baby steps?

 

EDIT: It is not a huge deal if I cannot teach her to stand. Any wisdom/perspective on the topic would be very welcome :) even if it is "give up and teach her something else"

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I have had luck with using the treat to lure from a sit to a stand (your method #1). If she keeps scooting, move the treat so she has to take a step or two before giving it to her. If she still wants to sit when you give her the treat, I would keep her moving while giving her the treat - at first. Once she has the idea she doesn't automatically have to sit when she gets a treat (you have probably rewarded heavily for sit/treat. We all do.), you can start treating her earlier i.e. after 4 steps, then 3, etc. The goal is to keep her on her feet while rewarding.

Also, don't use the command word until she understands what she is supposed to do. (General rule - teach command before naming it.) Which means that the entire sequence described in the paragraph above is practiced without using the stand command. Feel free to praise/click when treating. :-)

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6 minutes ago, gcv-border said:

Also, don't use the command word until she understands what she is supposed to do. (General rule - teach command before naming it.) Which means that the entire sequence described in the paragraph above is practiced without using the stand command. Feel free to praise/click when treating. :-)

Makes sense :) thank you. So far I have been working with stuff that comes natural to her or building on things she already knows. I have never had to think about how to get her to understand. This will help me a lot!

The sitting is my mum's "fault".:P Molly used to be my mum's dog. She taught her dogs to sit for a lot of things. Mostly when standing still, waiting for something. Eventually just giving them "a look" which meant sit. Which is very handy and her other two dogs understand that it depends on context and a  "certain look", but Molly is the only one overdoing it, haha. Molly's mum is one of the dogs and she is just so much calmer than Molly. Molly just wants to please you SO BAD and sit was usually what was asked. 
Great if you don't want to go further than that, a bit of a learning curve for me!

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4 hours ago, Flora & Molly said:

My BF wanted to teach her to do it, but I think he went about it the wrong way. He had a German Shepherd before and still has to get used to Border collies :).

I'm not sure where the thinking comes from that border collies require different breed specific training methods (or trainers), but I'm on a mission to bust that myth. ;)

Border collies are dogs too and the same training methods for basic manners, sports, etc. that are effective for other breeds (working on livestock would be the exception) and types work for them too.* And any dog of any kind may not respond well to, or understand, or not easily learn a particular instruction. I've had to use different approaches for different cues I'm teaching with different border collies, and I use the same variations with other dogs of other types as well. It's more the individual dog that has to be accommodated, not the breed.

The way I've taught the "stand" cue is to have the dog walking slowly at my side, When I'm ready to ask the dog to stand, I place my open right hand in front of their face (similar to the usual hand gesture for "stay" but with fingers horizontal rather than vertical). If the dog tries to sit at that point I'll be ready to quickly position my left hand under the dog's tummy near the rear legs just to prevent the dog from dropping its butt and sitting. Click and treat when the dog either stops in a stand or at the instant s/he runs into the hand positioned to prevent sitting and stops the downward rear movement. I'd expect the first few times to be rather sloppy, hesitant and even confused, but all the dogs I've taught to stand this way picked it up quickly.

Because Molly's default position for just about anything is sit, it may take a few more attempts till she gets it, but she's a bright dog and I'm sure as soon as she figures out you want her to do something other than sit she'll catch on quickly.

Be consistent and practice whatever methods you choose often. Without actually seeing you train, I suspect you may indeed have been giving up too soon.

As an aside, I know the general rule these days is to wait to add the cue until the behavior is learned, but I'm old enough to have been taught to use the cue even as you're training the behavior. I've changed most of my training methods pretty substantially over the years, but that's one thing I haven't been able consistently to stop myself from doing. At least so far I don't see where it's caused any complications for the dogs I've trained. :P

*And I'll add, as most people on the Boards already know, I believe in general that positive reinforcement methods are preferable to aversive ones.

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I taught mine how to sit pretty first and then taught her to stand from there! Then she learned how to walk on her two hind legs and spin around, it is pretty cute :)

 

realized after i posted this you were talking about stand on four legs not two lol, i taught her that by having a front clip harness on and when she was sitting take a step back and apply a little pressure to the leash until she stood up then slowly worked to just the leash pressure then to just the command.

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14 minutes ago, GentleLake said:

I'm not sure where the thinking comes from that border collies require different breed specific training methods (or trainers), but I'm on a mission to bust that myth. ;)

 

No you're right. I didn't mean that all breeds need a specific training method. What I meant was that BF is used to having to be very assertive (his words) with his previous dog, a German Shepherd, who was a confident dog. I guess I have some preconceptions about German Shepherds being dogs that have a sterner/dominant/policeman kind of owner and that they're dogs that can deal with that. Whereas Molly is very sensitive and the first time BF walked her he was all in "police" mode and Molly did not understand at all. He thought she was being defiant :P He's learning though.  Maybe Molly's talents are just lost on him, because he doesn't understand why on earth I taught her to fetch my slippers (because it is darn cute damn it!:wub:)  or why I make her do all kinds of stuff before throwing a ball or... The list goes on. 

I have definitely given up way too soon on the stand command. I didn't want to teach her the wrong thing. I needed a confidence boost and you gave me just that!
So thank you :) 
 

 

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Thank-you for asking this! I've been pondering this as my puppy defaults to a sit and even if I mark a stand he quickly sits down before I manage to reward him. Our stand at the moment looks like taking three very slow steps forward while having a treat stuffed in his mouth and then quickly asking for something else before he sits down again.

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At my obedience school, we taught stand by walking with the dog alongside, making a sign, which is waving your left hand held flat from left to right in front of the dogs face, then turning and running the hand along the dog's left side and placing it just under its belly in front of your dog's hind leg.  As you stop, you use the hand to keep the dog standing.

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I've taught it several ways, for different dogs. My Aussie steps forward into the stand, where as my BC has a beautiful obedience kick-back stand. Not sure why as we don't do obedience, but I digress. 

1. Nose touch - Can you teach her to touch her nose to your palm? Once they can nose touch, put them in a sit and offer your hand at a distance where they will have to get up to touch it, the moment they get up to touch, click and reward. 

2. Luring - Using a treat, put it to your dog's nose, and essentially trace it down their chin towards your chest. This causes them to drop their head to follow the treat, and eventually their back legs will kick out. This can be tricky, and every dog has a sweet spot so you might need to play around. 

3. Capture It - Every dog is standing at some point. When you see it, mark it and reward. This way can take longer than the others, but it is an option! 

 

Let me know if you want to see any of these, I'm sure I have videos somewhere...

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I've always used the obedience kick back for my stands..after they know what back means, from a sit, I ask them to move back, once the rear is up I put a word to it *stand*, then proceed with the back as originally asked. In short order the stand has been incorporated into their knowledge. I don't want forward motion, as on stock I want them to *stand there* and hold pressure but don't add more, so no forward creeping is rewarded. Good luck!

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I have always taught it simply by having the dog in a sit by my side, then taking a little step forward using the foot closest to the dog, and holding a treat in my hand. If the dog doesn't stand, I take another very small step. As soon as the dog stands, click/treat. Repeat many times, but do not add the "stand" cue verbally until the dog is accustomed to standing as soon as you start to take that step forward. I have never had a problem with this interfering with my "wait" or "stay", because I never expect that unless I have given that cue. 

It is not one of the things that dogs tend to learn fast, like sit. So whatever method you sue, be patient. But never pull or push the dog into the stand position, as all you are teaching the dog then is that when you say that word you are going to pull or push them; they won't learn that they have to do it themselves.

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Thank you all so much for your advice!

I have tried some of your suggestions to make her stand. It proves very difficult to get her to stand up, which is what I ultimately would like her to do. She will scooch back and forth and simple won't stand up.
So I am taking things slow and have decided to first teach her to stand still and not sit down as soon as I stop walking. Man she is quick. I managed to keep her standing by placing my hand under her belly while walking and then standing still. At first I tried to do is when I stopped walking, but I am way too slow, haha.

I hope once she knows that I am equally pleased when she is standing, she might not scooch so much when sitting and she might stand up when I either lure her or walk into her.
If that fails I think I will try teaching it through the nose-touch as Shandulah suggested. (Might teach the nose-touch regardless, just for fun :) )

 

23 hours ago, D'Elle said:

But never pull or push the dog into the stand position, as all you are teaching the dog then is that when you say that word you are going to pull or push them; they won't learn that they have to do it themselves.

Yes exactly! I could see that she didn't understand at all when BF lift her up. I thought exactly this: she needs to do it herself to understand what we want. BF suggested I could use a towel to stop her from sitting/lifting her up. Just. NO. I'm not comfortable with training that way. Training should be fun and rewarding.  

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I am very happy to report Molly did her first "stand" from a sitting position today. No stepping forward: a very nice "bum up" stand!
We still have a way to go before it is really reliable, but I couldn't have come so far without your help. Thank you!

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