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A minute visited humor, and uniqueness earlier battles had eventually your target and reward at the target this system we never give commands until the dog fully understands the signal for a behavior along with the behavior. When new trainers start this work they often ask If I am not telling the dog what I want him to do, how does he know what behavior I want to work on when I take him out today? There are two ways to train without commands: Capturing a behavior can take a time. We have used it with our horses and it's a very effective training method but it does take a time and patients. People who free really split exercises down into small pieces. Once the dog learns the behavior he is very solid its performance. We prefer to help our dog by luring with signals for what we want him to do. This is a very important step the marker training system. To really appreciate its full implication trainers need to also understand the relationship between the command and the reward this system. I discuss that detail the next chapter. Training with lures makes the process go much quicker. Ways to start training a new command Marker Training marker training commands are not added until the dog knows and understands the exercise. Commands are not added until the dog perform the exercise 8 out of 10 times that the handler gives a signal. Unfortunately people are verbal and dogs are visual. When it comes to commands this means people often name exercise or use a command to try and induce a behavior before the dog knows the behavior well enough to associate the behavior with a command. Our dogs hear us talk all day The vast majority of what we say is just background babble to the dog. The words mean nothing to the dog. The volume or tone of the words we use mean something but the actual word means nothing. When people name a command before the dog associates that command with a behavior the command becomes part of the background babble. It's the same as him not hearing you. To best explain the concept we want to establish about adding commands markers I use the relationship between markers and rewards. I have already explained that through repetition a dog begins to look at a marker as a secondary reward. When he hears his handler say YES he feels good, he gets excited, he knows the exercise is over and he is going to get a reward. He has linked the marker with the reward. We want the same thing to happen with a command. We want the dog to hear the command and immediately feel good because he knows he only has to do this silly little behavior and he get his high value reward. We want the dog to look at a command as part of the linked chain that leads to a reward. We want the dog to look at a command as part of his trigger mechanism to get his reward. This can only happen if the dog knows and understands the behavior he must perform when you ask him to do something. This behavior must be a no-brainer if the dog is going to look at commands this manner. maker training we train the dog to perform a behavior with signals before the command is added. When the dog perform the behavior 8 out of 10 times with the gesture you can start to add the command before the signal. Key here is that there must be a time split between the command or signal. The concept of when to add a command marker training is radically different than old school training. old school training commands were added before a dog ever understood the behavior or exercise. A dog would be given a command and then corrected when until it performed the exercise correctly. Training the dog to heel is the perfect example. A new dog would be commanded to heel and the handler stepped off. The handler made a sudden turn and the dog got out of position. The handler would then repeat heel and then correct the dog back into position. That is not the way things are done the marker system. When it comes time to name a behavior we always give the command before we add a signal or gesture for the behavior. It is important give the command a fraction of a second before adding the gesture to help the dog. This break time is important. Remembering that dogs always follow a physical signal over a voice signal. When they are given at the same time the dog be following the physical signal and not learn the voice command. When these handlers then then want to drop the gesture the dogs not perform. Those dogs have only learned to follow the signal and not the voice command. The timing of commands to signals is very much like the timing for marking a behaviors and then delivering the reward. The command and the signal cannot happen at the same instant or the dog always work off the physical signal and not the voice command. Flow Chart on Adding Commands to Marker Training When dogs begin