Puppy School Lesson Three
Teaching your Puppy to Lie Down
It may take a few attempts before you puppy catches on and fully understands what is required of them before earning their reward. Some puppies, particularly the smaller breeds, do not lie down properly using this method. If this is happening, try sitting next to your puppy and use your legs as a 'bridge' to draw the reward under.
Your puppy will follow the reward under the tunnel and will be further encouraged to naturally lie down. Make sure your puppy receives their reward at the exact moment when they lie down.
Practice and good timing will reward you both. As with teaching 'sit', do not be tempted to use the command to early, remember it’s just a noise, wait until you’re sure your puppy fully understands what you want from them before you match the action with the command word.
A dog when lying down is less reactive to what is going on around them and is far more likely to stay in that position should you need to leave them for a few moments. An instant down from a distance can be a life saver if you dog’s heading for trouble.
So how to get started
Get your puppy to pay attention to you in the sit position. Use one of their favourite treats or toys as a reward, hold the reward level with your puppy's nose and slowly lower the reward down in front of them. On reaching the floor, drag the reward towards you, in front of your puppy. The puppy’s head should follow the reward and they will slide naturally into the down position. Praise your puppy and give them their reward at the exact moment they assume the correct position, but remember as with teaching your puppy the sit command, at this stage it’s important that you
DO NOT SAY THE WORD DOWN