How much precision required at 4 months old?

  • How much precision required at 4 months old?

     Jandoraa updated 2 weeks ago 3 Members · 5 Posts
  • Jandoraa

    July 16, 2021 at 8:52 AM


    I have a 4 month old Doberman, I’m not sure how much precision to insist on in training her. For example: if we are working on automatic sit while walking, how perfect should that sit be? Sometimes she sits a bit crooked, sometimes she’s too far behind me or too far in front. I use a wall to keep her close when we work on automatic sit. Should I be demanding better form at this age or just allow a bit of leeway as long as she is sitting at the correct time? Thanks!

  • Ed (RoninDog)

    July 16, 2021 at 9:49 AM

    From what I have seen on the AMAs and chats you do not want to put too much pressure on a puppy that young. So if you can do it with shaping and, like you said a wall, and the dog is happy to do it that is cool. But based on previous answers at 4 months we do as much as we can to let the puppy be a puppy.

    It might be worthwhile to ask in the AMA or chat what would be a low pressure way to fix a sit.

    If it is lopsided, the down or the sit, you can use a narrow platform a little bit longer than the dog and a couple of inches wider, 3-4 inches tall. Then do the sits and downs on that. The dog will self correct. In the beginning he/she may have a leg off the platform, but I do not think there is a need to correct as it will fix itself as you soldier on. I made one like that and covered with some carpet as just the wood was too slippery. Good luck!!

  • Ed (RoninDog)

    July 16, 2021 at 9:52 AM

    This is what it looks like

  • Bill

    July 17, 2021 at 8:44 AM

    Hi @jandoraa From my perspective, accepting sloppy in an age appropriate and trained behavior is tantamount to encouraging it and therefore repositioning to a proper sit should be done each time. I am not suggesting corrections at all. Simply reposition yourself so the dog has another try. If you get a sloppy sit, take a couple steps forward and stop again and praise the desired sit. If you note your dog is usually too far forward or sideways, monitor how they enter their proximal position. On a structured obedience walk you can try taking a few slower steps before stopping as a non-verbal queue that you will be stopping – this signals the dog so they can prepare and position. The intent here is to increase muscle memory so they always get it right. If you accept the sloppy sit now-it will likely be really hard to fix it later as they will be doing what you have previously accepted. Happy training😎

  • Jandoraa

    July 18, 2021 at 11:04 AM

    Thanks for the input!!

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