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Dog Training/Further Training Ideas

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Question
I have a 2 year old miniature schnauzer named Oscar. He is the most well behaved and obedient dog that I have ever came in contact with. He knows how to sit, stay, lay, come and go with little to no problem. I would like to teach him more, but I am not sure what things would benefit us both. I would also like to learn some games or things that can challenge his mind and possibly increase his intelligence. I live in Alabama and have plenty of space inside and out. I know that there is always room for improvement and would love some new ideas. Thanks very much.

Answer
Hi Brandon,
Some of my favorites are placement cues and treat or Kong finds.

Train him to go to a location by putting him on leash and walking him to a dog bed, towel or floor rug.
Wait for him to do something such as "sit".
When he does, toss a treat off of the area so he has to go get it.
Bring him back and wait for him to do something else, or ask him to lie down if he needs a bit of help.
After he lies down reliably, move him away and say the cue, such as, "Go to your bed" and point to the bed.
Wait for moment and then walk him over, ask him to lie down and reward.

Eventually you can ask him and he will go on his own.

Then, ask him to stay and hide a treat around your back (you will be kneeling on the floor)
Ask him to "find your treat"
Guide him to the treat if he needs help
Ask him to Go to Bed again.
Hide the treat farther away.
Repeat.

Eventually he can find treats around the house.

http://www.dogwise.com is a great resource for dog books including tricks and more practical training topics.  

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Jeff Millman

Expertise

I studied with Jean Donaldson in San Francisco in 2002. She is one of the foremost dog trainers anywhere and I sought her out and traveled from Chicago to work with her. I am expert in all phases of dog development in regards to training. I can offer advice from young puppies through adult including aggression, separation anxiety and barking. While aggression is often handled best in person by a skilled positive reinforcement trainer, a lot of advice can be spread in this forum. I have written EBooks on separation anxiety and barking and am currently writing a book about dog aggression.

Experience

I have been working as a full-time professional dog trainer since 2002. I only use positive reinforcement techniques and am well-versed in using the clicker. My clients do not have to use a clicker to have success using my techniques. I started teaching 14 classes a week for the first two years while I was building up my private practice, Chicago Paws. Since 2004 I have worked exclusively as a private trainer in the Chicago area. On January 1, 2007 I launched an online version of my business that can be viewed at Watch and Train. At WatchandTrain.com you will find streaming videos for purchase that play directly on your computer and cover a variety of specific topics including house training, jumping, come when called, counter surfing and leash walking.

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Association of Pet Dog Trainers

Education/Credentials
Dog training: I graduated with honors from Jean Donaldson's Academy for Dog Trainers in San Francisco, CA. I attended Karen Pryor;s Clicker Expo in Chicago, IL. I attended week-long APDT conferences in Portland Oregon, Orlando, Florida and Oakland, California. I attended a Pat Miller seminar in Chicago, IL. Previous education: Journalism and Fine Arts degree from Indiana University.

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