I have good intentions to write regularly about Dice’s progress and then life happens.

Anyway, here’s an unedited clip of Dice working at nine months of age.  If you’re working cue discrimination or drop on recall you’ll get some ideas here to prevent creeping, via reinforcement/cue a behavior BEHIND rather than performing a direct recall.

I started this with the toy on the ground behind Dice, but now we use a cone.

The rough sequence would be:

Teach the cues/position changes.  Teach the cues and place the cookie/toy behind the dog. When the dog can do each position, one at a time, to the reinforcement behind, then switch to a target, platform or cone behind the dog.  Have the dog perform that behavior before coming into the handler for the reward.

This approach allows you to come very close to the competition reality without ending up with massive creeping.

Give it a week or two before judging if you’re happy with the result.  I believe this is Dice’s first day so he needs a little time to smooth out.

Good luck with your own training!