Go to Your Mat – Layer 5

Objective: Now that your dog understands the behaviour, we want your dog to learn to stay on the mat until they hear the release word

Video Overview:  none

Step by Step Instructions Comments
Warm up with the 4th layer  
When your dog is away from the mat, give your cue ‘Mat’.  Once she is on the mat, wait for the DOWN. If she doesn’t:

  • Go to the mat
  • Offer a DOWN

Go back to the 4th Layer and practice that layer for a few more days.

Count to 5-bananas (you don’t have to say it out loud!) and give your release cue.  

The Tag Point is: count to 5-banana

When your dog gets up, mark with (‘Yes’ or click) and toss a treat to reset. If your dog doesn’t respond to the release cue by getting up and leaving the mat, then tap the floor, clap your hands while backing up or make kissy sounds.
Repeat the above steps 4 more times  
If your dog is successfully staying on the mat for a 5-banana count, increase the count to 6-bananas.  If she isn’t successful, then stay at a 5-banana count until she is successful. Success is when your dog can hold her position for 4 out of 5 repetitions (80%)
Continue to increase the duration beyond 6 seconds but start ping-ponging the time so that the duration isn’t always getting harder.  Ex.  6 seconds, 3 seconds, 5 seconds, 1 second, 3 seconds
After no more than 5 minutes of training:

  • If you plan to continue your training session, take a break and play with your dog or practice the ‘relax on the mat’ behaviour.
  • Otherwise ‘all done’ to end the session
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