How can I train my dog to obey the "place" command?

When you need your dog to calm down and get out from under your feet, teaching it to go where it is can be useful. Your dog might be instructed to go to a certain location in the house or a different location in each room. It's not too difficult to teach your dog this command.

Prepare for training.


Before you start teaching your dog how to get to its place, it should already be able to lay down on command. Training periods should be spent practicing "down." You're prepared to move to the spot command when your dog can consistently lie down when asked to. Choose the location that you'd like your dog to go to when you say the place command next. It works nicely to use a place to sleep or a rug. Use a folding bed or mat that you can quickly transport from place to place if you'd like to be able to make use of the control in any room.

How is the command "place" taught?


Make sure your dog already knows how to lay down before you start teaching them to go to that place. Additionally, they require a word that indicates they are at ease to get off the mat, such as "free" or "release." Up until you give them the all-clear, your dog should remain where they are.

This behavior can be trained through enticement or shaping. It's also a fantastic clicker training activity. You can teach your dog how to return to their house by doing the things listed below:

1 - When your dog pays attention to the mat or bed, such as by sniffing it or standing on it, click and praise them. As an alternative, you might use a treat to get your dog onto the mat. When your dog places at least a single foot on the mat, treat and praise them. Regardless of the approach, make sure to set the treat on a mat to create a connection between it and the floor. Continue treating and rewarding your dog as long as they are playing with the mat.

2 - When your dog is putting all four paws on the mat, you can stop training them. Be sure to lure your dog all the way onto the mat if you're luring the behavior. While your dog is lying on the mat, click once more and give him a treat. Then, add the word "release. Say the command, then use a toy or treat to entice the dog onto the mat. Avoid rewarding the release by clicking.

3 - Watch your dog carefully to see if he goes back to the mat. If so, click and medicate. If they don't, try again after several more iterations of step 2. You can go to step four once your dog is aware that the mat is situated where you'd like it to be.

4 - Ahead of you, click and reward your dog once they are on the mat. Draw them down. A word or a hand signal might also be used to request that they lie down. Lastly, if your dog has prior shaping expertise, you can wait until they're ready to accept a down. Release your dog once more after the reward.

5 - By gradually delaying your click and treat actions, you can start to give the behavior some duration. Keep in mind that you should only focus on one of the three—distance, duration, or distraction—at once.

6 - You can start extending the behavior after your dog is content to remain on the mat or until they hear the release cue. Send your dog on a mat from a distance that keeps growing. They lie down on the mat and start to walk away. Include diversion in the behavior. Finally, once your dog has mastered the behavior under all conditions, you can introduce your own cue, such as "Bed," "Mat," or "Place."

Most dogs will go quickly through these stages. However, when your dog is having trouble, you probably went too far too quickly. Retrace your steps and continue practicing. Don't forget to train your dog in various areas of the house to aid in the behavior's generalization. Your dog is going to have a particular area to unwind, and you'll have a practical solution to keep them out of the way in no time.

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