Teaching the Moving Sit at Distance

May 22, 2021

If you play rally, obedience, or TEAM, your dog will need to understand how to do a moving sit, when the dog stops motion and sits facing you.  There are two components to this exercise: a sit out of motion and the ability to sit in place at a distance without creeping in.


Targets Can Help


First, your dog will need to understand how to stop motion and sit without coming into you on cue.  There are several ways that you can teach this.  One way is to use a sit platform or a front foot target.  The first thing I teach my dog is to sit at a distance without any forward movement.  In this video I am using a front foot target, and I am working on multiple positions, but you can teach just the sit position in this way.  



Once your dog is good at this, you can start to send your dog to a platform.  Start with the platform right in front of you and cue the dog to get up and sit.  Reward.  Slowly add distance from the sit platform until your dog is happily going to the sit platform and sitting.  You can fade the platform by using something flat, like a rug, then making that target smaller and smaller.


If your dog has pretty good position changes at a distance, you can start by putting the dog in a stand facing away from you, then backing away and cuing sit.  The dog should turn and sit but should not take steps forward.



Combine Send and Moving Sit


Eventually you will send your dog to the target or cone and cue sit.  I usually start by saying touch, letting the dog go to the cone and touch, then cue sit.  Eventually I’ll start saying sit as the dog is nearing the cone, but before he touches.  In the beginning of teaching this, I don’t mind if the dog touches before he sits, but eventually he’ll learn to sit on my cue without touching the target first.



The last skill to practice for rally is returning to your dog without him or her getting up.  Be sure that you can return to heel in either direction.  You may cue wait or stay as you are walking back, or before you walk back.

Want to learn the fun sport of rally??

Rally is so much fun!  It can serve as a gentle introduction into the ring as well as a super fun and competitive stand-alone sport!  If this sport interests you, start off on the right paw by learning all of the foundation skills needed for any beginner level rally venue.  This class is perfect for any dog who needs to learn or improve their rally skills as well as handlers who would like to learn how to teach better foundations.  A great foundation is key to success in the sport of rally, especially as you progress through the levels!

My online class Get Ready to Rally: Foundations will be starting on April 1, 2022 at Fenzi Dog Sports Academy.  Registration for this popular class opens on March 22, 2022.  In the meantime, click the button to find out more!


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