Stand Signals, Anyone?!

If you are at all involved in competitive obedience then you've been hearing all the hollering going on right now about the proposed change of position exercise for open in AKC.  Comments range from how impossibly hard it's going to be for the new dogs, to how much dumbing down we're doing to the sport.  Regardless of how you feel, I'm at least going to be training for it!

I guess I'm lucky that all 3 of my dogs have a verbal only stand and can do it at a distance.  I've even had fun doing some proofing of the stand cue while doing it with my back turned, lying on the floor, etc.  (Side note: TEAM level 3 also has a fun version of leave the dog, assume a weird position yourself, and then cue a position change, x2!)

But what I don't have is any type of signal to stand.  Yes my dogs can do a moving stand, or the stop in a stand position, aka signal exercise version.  But in both cases it's more of a moving "freeze" in position rather than move into a stand with a signal.  And regardless, heel position signals don't quite translate to now having to face the dog. 

So I need a new signal!!!  While the proposed regulations allow verbal and/or signals, I want to use every tool in my box to get that distance stand in a trial! 

I personally like all of my signals to start slightly different from each other.  This was drilled to me from others and I like the logic in knowing my dog knows exactly what I want from the second the signal starts versus needing it be completely finished.  But this also makes it harder to come up with new signals and not add confusion for my dogs!

So far I've settled on my left hand for the stand signal since I have slightly more signals on my right hand (down, come, finish right, take the right jump) than my left hand (sit, finish left, take the left jump). 

I'm currently experimenting with my signal starting coming in towards my body first so it looks the most different.  But of course that also makes it harder to see at a distance!

This weird wave of a hand signal is what I got so far. Very open to ideas!

I'm currently giving signal +verbal at the same time to Zumi as she's very twitchy!  If I do new signal, then pause and give the known verbal she will twitch in anticipation of wanting to do something, but then of course she doesn't know what I want so she waits for the verbal.  I don't like the twitch :) so I'm getting her used to seeing the signal at the same time for now.

Kristen  – ( October 7, 2017 at 12:37 PM )  

Since we sometimes do a type of obedience that has position changes on verbals only, I don't have signals for it. You make a good point about as many hints as possible - so I may add that in if I can come up with something distinct.

Your dogs are so responsible while waiting their turns and being so careful of Netta!

Laura and The Corgi, Toller, & Duck  – ( October 7, 2017 at 7:35 PM )  

Thanks Kristen! Other than the lab they really don't want anything to do with Netta but they are pretty good about tolerating her :)

Let me know if you come up a good stand signal!

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