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New Training Frontiers: Mimicry Part II

New Training Fronttiers: Mimicry Part II
 
In the last post we discussed the prerequisites needed for starting Mimicry training. If you’re following along and have worked on isolating six behaviors that your dog can perform fluently on verbal cue alone, and you’ve figured out how you’re going to do your stationing and have practiced that with your dog, you can go ahead and get started!
 
Pick three of the six behaviors to start with.
 
Station your dog.
 
Perform one of the behaviors (for example, spin in a circle.)
 
Pause.
 
Cue “Your turn!” or “Copy!” or “Do it!” (whichever you’d like, just remember to be consistent.) Within one second, add your verbal cue for the behavior (“Spin!”)
 
Mark and reward when the dog completes the spin.
 
Move on to your next behavior, for example, lie down.
 
Station your dog.
 
Demonstrate lying down.
 
Pause.
 
Cue “Your turn!” and within one second, add your verbal cue “Down.” Mark and reward.
 
Keep your sessions short; this work is actually pretty hard for most dogs. Make sure to end your sessions before the dog gets tired or bored, even if this means you only do one or two repetitions of each behavior. Never repeat the same behavior more than twice; for example you could do a Spin, then a Down, then a Jump, then a Down – but don’t do a Spin, then a Down, then a Down, then a Down.
 
Do about five sessions with this exact structure, and you should start to notice something that will seem magical….
 
Then check back for the next post in this series!!

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