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Before & After
Raven the Tibetan Terrier
It's all about the details

During training lessons, Ravenís owner put the dog in a sit/stay and walked to the other side of the yard. Before the owner was five feet away, Raven had shifted onto her hip. Since the owner wasnít watching, the behavior was not corrected. When the owner was approximately 15 feet away, she turned around and smiled at Raven. Raven then rotated 90 degrees to scratch her ear. Her owner still didn't say anything. Finally, Raven got up and started walking away, at which point her owner corrected her for breaking the stay. Clearly the dog — who had shifted her hip, rotated, and scratched — had not been doing a perfect stay, but the owner didn't notice something was wrong until Raven got up to leave.

Raven was receiving feedback from her owner that made her think her actions were acceptable. To correct this, it was recommended that a close eye be kept on the sit/stay command, correcting every movement not in the definition of the command. By the end of the week, Raven's stay problem disappeared. What was the lesson learned? That dogs only know what we tell them — either by our action or our inaction.





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