Finding RZ from Crate Games: Text Instruction
Goal: This game will test the value you have created for the position of Reinforcement Zone (RZ) that you have built in previous training sessions.
Equipment: Crate / Treats / A toy for building arousal.
Suggested Training Area Size: Minimum of 12' x 12' (4m x 4m)
Step 1. Testing the Value
Set your dog up in the crate. Lead out from the crate stand still and toss a toy out front of you. Release your dog and see what their choice is - does he stop in RZ or does he ignore your RZ and drive past you and grab the toy? If your dog drives into RZ, reward with a cookie and then you can release the dog to the toy with a “get it” and support with handler motion.
Step 2. Adding Motion
When your dog understands this game with a static lead out position you can add handler motion. Set your dog up in the crate but this time do not lead out. Toss a toy out in front of you and then release your dog while you are in motion but stop before your dog reaches RZ. Reward with a cookie and then release forward to the toy with "get it" and support with handler motion.
Make sure you balance this exercise with driving straight to the toy using handler motion and "get it" cue.
Step 3. Turning away from the Value of the Toy
Set your dog up in the crate and throw your toy directly out in front of the crate. Release your dog but rather than racing towards the toy turn away. Rotate in a full circle and then cue your dog "get it" and support with handler motion towards the toy.
At any point in your crate games your dog lifts and breaks his sit you will need to remember that your priority is to enforce your Crate Games criteria. You will need to close the door and start over. You want to maintain your Crate Games criteria at all times even though you want to try this lesson!