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Back to Basics: Teaching the Down Command

by Robin MacFarlane

Teaching a dog to lie down should not be terribly challenging, after all they already know how to do it!

Dogs are masters of taking naps and snoozing through the day, so they lie down on a regular basis.

However, putting the behavior on command is often another story. Frequently I witness people struggling with getting their dog to lie down when they want them to. Usually the problem is applying too much force to the dog by trying to "push" him down. Trying to push the dog down only creates resistance and a dog that tries to wiggle away.

Having a dog lie down on command is more easily achieved through luring with a treat or toy. It can also be modeled (assisted through physical manipulation) when we use very gentle, consistent pressure that doesn't cause the dog to get nervous.
-- Robin

Robin MacFarlane is a professional dog trainer and owner of Thatís My Dog in Dubuque, Iowa. Her best-selling dog training DVDs, JUST RIGHT and JUST RIGHT 2 have helped thousands of dog owners teach their dogs basic obedience and fix problem behaviors through a system of training that you can easily work into your daily routine.
  • Robin writes for Gun Dog Supply on our E-collars Dog Training blog
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  • Pull-Quote= Teaching your dog to lie Down is really not that difficult.

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