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Discussion Starter #1
I want to start working on my 11 week old Bullmastiff with "place" training. I do have some questions though. I can use the "stay" command with pretty good results. When teaching "place", how do you keep them in place until you recall/release? I figured I should not use the stay command but I thought I should ask.

Thanks!
 

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In the beginning rapid fire them multiple treats before they have a chance to leave the mat (or bed or whatever you're using for the 'place')

Once they get the idea that being on the mat gets them rewards, gradually increase the amount of time between rewarding.
 

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In the beginning rapid fire them multiple treats before they have a chance to leave the mat (or bed or whatever you're using for the 'place')

Once they get the idea that being on the mat gets them rewards, gradually increase the amount of time between rewarding.
Yes, this.

Place training is basically identical to "stay", except that most people don't care if the dog changes position on the mat (vs a stay where you expect them to hold either a sit or a down). First you build up positive association with the mat so that the dog is driving to the mat. Then you space out rewards so the dog is remaining on the mat.
 

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Start with treats and lure the dog to the mat. Then have the dog on leash. Continue to use treats and train as if you're training a stay. Do the distance, duration, distractions thing. Anytime the dog moves without being released, simply guide the dog back onto it with a leash. Keep doing this until the dog can be placed at a distance without treats or a leash. It is important to read your dog and stop them at the slightest signs of wanting to break whether you use a negative verbal marker and or body pressure.
 

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Personally I prefer to let the dog choose to be on the mat, instead of making them stay there with a leash or body pressure.

They can leave the mat if they want to, the treats just stop. Choose to come back on the mat; treats and party time.

Our mat now basically has a gravitational pull. As soon as I put it down she wants to be on it, and doesn't want me to pick it up again.
 

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Personally I prefer to let the dog choose to be on the mat, instead of making them stay there with a leash or body pressure.
I do both. It starts out as a choice and a shaping exercise. I don't tell them to go to the mat or show them the mat, I just shape going to it again and again. But eventually I need them to stay there if placed and then I will enforce a stay cue by putting them back on the mat.
 

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I do both. It starts out as a choice and a shaping exercise. I don't tell them to go to the mat or show them the mat, I just shape going to it again and again. But eventually I need them to stay there if placed and then I will enforce a stay cue by putting them back on the mat.
Yea, once they know what you want that's different. I wouldn't use that to teach that staying on the mat is what they should be doing in the beginning.
 

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Yea, once they know what you want that's different. I wouldn't use that to teach that staying on the mat is what they should be doing in the beginning.
Yeah, exactly. I don't even like to point out the mat or help them, I like to shape it completely. It's an easy thing to shape and I think it makes the behavior stronger.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
that seemed rather easy - getting him to learn "place" with the treats. i need to work on duration though. actually i have a lot to work on. so one thing i didn't get was i want him to lay down on the mat. should i worry about that now or just staying on the mat period? i am able to get him to lay by helping him. he seems more inclined to stay on the matt when he is laying down.
 

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As I said, for duration just gradually increase the amount of time he needs to stay on the mat before you reward.

A down can be done the same way. Withhold the treats until he offers a down trying to figure out what you want.
 

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Personally I prefer to let the dog choose to be on the mat, instead of making them stay there with a leash or body pressure.

They can leave the mat if they want to, the treats just stop. Choose to come back on the mat; treats and party time.

Our mat now basically has a gravitational pull. As soon as I put it down she wants to be on it, and doesn't want me to pick it up again.
That's great the dog can perform without any pressure or guidance, but realistically the dog is going to break place at some time and it would be at a time where treats are already phased out and/or treats won't matter so some sort of body/spatial pressure, verbal, physical collar grab, etc whatever is going to be used.
 

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That's great the dog can perform without any pressure or guidance, but realistically the dog is going to break place at some time and it would be at a time where treats are already phased out and/or treats won't matter so some sort of body/spatial pressure, verbal, physical collar grab, etc whatever is going to be used.
As I said above, once the dog already knows the cue, those things can be applied to enforce it. I wouldn't use those to initially teach the cue.
 

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that seemed rather easy - getting him to learn "place" with the treats. i need to work on duration though. actually i have a lot to work on. so one thing i didn't get was i want him to lay down on the mat. should i worry about that now or just staying on the mat period? i am able to get him to lay by helping him. he seems more inclined to stay on the matt when he is laying down.
Your dog is only 11 weeks. Don't expect too much. Start very easy and build upon it everyday. Here is a video that might help or maybe it's too advanced. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KIkJP1b_MFA
 

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that seemed rather easy - getting him to learn "place" with the treats. i need to work on duration though. actually i have a lot to work on. so one thing i didn't get was i want him to lay down on the mat. should i worry about that now or just staying on the mat period? i am able to get him to lay by helping him. he seems more inclined to stay on the matt when he is laying down.
I would see if he offers the down, and then heavily reward that. So don't ask for the dog, just shape it so that it becomes the more desirable option. That way it will become part of the mat behavior itself, rather than go to mat, then lie down.

You can also feed for a down position even if you clicked or said "yes" just for getting on the mat. The dog doesn't have to down fully, but you can use your treat delivery to encourage the down.
 

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As I said above, once the dog already knows the cue, those things can be applied to enforce it. I wouldn't use those to initially teach the cue.
I still don't see the problem. My initial response was start and lure with treats and then progress to having the dog on a leash as the training advances.
 

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I still don't see the problem. My initial response was start and lure with treats and then progress to having the dog on a leash as the training advances.
Okay. I didn't get that from your post. It seemed like the leash and body pressure were intended to be how you teach the dog not to leave the mat.
 
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