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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello 2021! And hello month FIVE of Trick Club!

I suspect many of us are feeling a little round and sluggish after a month of stay-at-home celebration. So what better trick for January than this fun one from the AKC Novice List:

Puppy Push-Ups! (sit, down, sit, down, sit, down)

For push-ups, if you’ve not already, you’ll need to train a solid sit and a solid down. Here’s how the push-ups should look:


And here’s how to train:

“Have your dog start in a down position. Lure your dog into a sit by putting a treat in front of his nose and moving the treat up diagonally in the air toward his rear end. Your dog should follow the treat with his nose and upper body. His rear end doesn’t move off of the floor. When the dog reaches the sit position, say “yes” and give him the treat. That’s one repetition! You can do a few more reps right in a row if you ask your dog to lie down from the sit.”


As you work on the push-ups, return frequently to rewarding for individual sits and downs. Otherwise, your poodle might start chaining the two together, plopping straight into a down when you ask for a sit. Be sure, too, to practise on a surface that provides excellent traction. This trick is good fun and great exercise.

Happy training!

Robin & Peggy

P.S. Missed a previous month? It's never too late! Check out Trick Club: September, Trick Club: October, Trick Club: November, and Trick Club: December.
 

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Peggy already knows how to “push up” from a down to a sit. I ask for this fairly regularly, so I thought “push-ups” (plural) would be no big deal.

Well, I thought wrong.

Peggy gets creative and/or demanding when I ask for too many reps of anything. How many reps is okay in Peggy’s mind? “Just one, thanks,” she says.

So tonight’s first attempt went like this:

“Sit.”
She sat.
“Lie down.”
She lay down.
“Sit.
She launched up to a sit with a bit of a huff.
“Lay down.”
She did a right spin and a woof, then dropped to the ground and put her chin down hard.

Clearly, this is going to take some work! Even if I treat for each individual sit and down to start, she’s going to get fed up fast. Hmmmmm.

Interested to hear how many reps your poodle tolerates before assuming they’re doing something wrong and offering up something new.
 

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It seems like every morning I need to refresh Basil's memory on down. "I'm sitting, then Dad brings the treat close then down and away... okay that's right, this is what he means when he says down." During our morning session where she's like a lazy teenager who forgot how to wash the dishes and our afternoon is slightly better because she remembers what is expected,

We learned "down" and "sit" as a puppy, but never asked her to do them back to back to back. We've been practicing the up-down-up-down effort since Jan 1st.

For a Zekes training treat (small dime sized treat) AM session it's sit-down-sit-halfdown-touch. She does it kinda slow and takes her time. When she looks like she's starting to fail the exercise like she she's half laying down, then I ask her to touch because it's easy and earns a treat. This is what has normally happened most mornings.

However, I tried with a cow ear (high value treat) one afternoon and she was up and down faster than I could snap my fingers. It was sit-down-sit-down-sit-reward.

We'll keep trying. I have a new training treats (Amazon's Wag training treats) coming this weekend. I'm not sure what the end goal is, but we're both enjoying the variety.
 

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We've been working on this one on and off as part of the no-shifting paws sit-down-stand. He's doing pretty well with the other transitions, but we're stuck on the down-to-sit though. (Though curiously, stand-to-down, sit-to-down, and down-to-stand are all fine.) If I ask him to "sit," he'll push into a "stand," then sit. When I try luring him back into a sit instead, he rolls his hips to the side and moves into "lay" (his down-on-his-side command), so I'm probably not positioning myself correctly for the luring either. Any troubleshooting help is appreciated!
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Have you tried just luring up from a down? No physical or verbal cue. Try moving verrry slowly so your poodle’s nose stays in charge, rather than muscle memory.

Once you’re getting the down-to-sit movement you want with the lure, you could pair it with a brand new command, such as “Push up.”

From what I’ve read, sit from a down is often perceived by the dog as a wholly unique action/behaviour. I assume for your poodle it’s the movement from stand to sit that he interprets as “sit.” Not the sitting position itself.
 

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Have you tried just luring up from a down? No physical or verbal cue. Try moving verrry slowly so your poodle’s nose stays in charge, rather than muscle memory.

Once you’re getting the down-to-sit movement you want with the lure, you could pair it with a brand new command, such as “Push up.”

From what I’ve read, sit from a down is often perceived by the dog as a wholly unique action/behaviour. I assume for your poodle it’s the movement from stand to sit that he interprets as “sit.” Not the sitting position itself.
Yup, but I admittedly might not be doing it correctly/muddying up the gesture with the one that I use for "lay." I've tried moving the treat from his nose (in front of his face) up and into him (towards his tail). He follows it closely, moving his head back, back, back...and falls over without ever getting up.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Yup, but I admittedly might not be doing it correctly/muddying up the gesture with the one that I use for "lay." I've tried moving the treat from his nose (in front of his face) up and into him (towards his tail). He follows it closely, moving his head back, back, back...and falls over without ever getting up.
Hard to know if the angles are right without seeing a video or photos, but it should be a slow upward movement that encourages a reach. This is a nicely detailed breakdown:


It recommends rewarding incremental progress, which in my experience with Peggy can actually go very quickly. I taught her “chin rest” this way and it took just a few minutes total.
 

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Hard to know if the angles are right without seeing a video or photos, but it should be a slow upward movement that encourages a reach. This is a nicely detailed breakdown:


It recommends rewarding incremental progress, which in my experience with Peggy can actually go very quickly. I taught her “chin rest” this way and it took just a few minutes total.
The article is very helpful - thank you! I was just aiming to reward the full behavior rather than the progress towards it, so I'll have to try this out with him later!
 

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The article is very helpful - thank you! I was just aiming to reward the full behavior rather than the progress towards it, so I'll have to try this out with him later!
Yeah, it’s funny how slowing things down can actually speed up the process sometimes. Hope the new approach goes well. Keep us posted!
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Peggy’s early heat threw a wrench into this month’s plans. She has been extremely reluctant to lay down on cue, thanks to the diaper pressing into her belly. So I decided not to push it.

Hope everyone else was able to accomplish their goals!
 

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Oh! Forgot to check-in. =) We had some success!

Turned out that the rug beneath him was too slippery, so he always just rushed into standing since he struggled to push himself up. Moving to a different rug and slowing things down made all the difference.
 

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I haven't reported in because progress has basically stalled due to TKR for my DH a bit over 2 weeks ago.

We've had middling success, which speaks a lot more about my skills than my boys. As with many of the AKC tricks, I've used the Trick Lists for some time to add to their bag of, but need to keep working on all to get them down.

I'm going to see how I do in the Feb trick challenge :)
 
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