Using Play to Reinforce Behavior 

It is important to know what motivates your dog. 

Loki loves play! When given the choice of a tasty treat, or a fun game of frisbee, he will choose play every time. By pausing the game momentarily to ask for behaviors then using the continuation of the game as reward, Loki is highly motivated to respond quickly to the requests in order to get back to the game. After some repetition the requests become part of the game. In this video Loki is working on a number of things. See how many behaviors are being reinforced in the video. Here is a list (see if you spotted them all):

Sit, stay with light distractions, bring it, stay at a distance, come when called, put it on the table, look at me, go, leave it.

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Heeling Off-Leash

In this video Loki is beginning to check back with me as he walks in heel position. He begins to get ahead of me at one point and I ask him to slow down. In order to teach this command I first taught him to speed up by jogging with him and giving the command “faster.” Then as I slowed down I introduced “slow down.”

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