Getting Rid of the Lure In Dog Training

Sep 19, 2022

When can I finally move on from luring? You should be aiming to move on as soon as you can. Go check out our other articles on food luring to get started. This article takes it one step further.

Once you start the process of teaching your dog a new behavior, you are relying heavily on using the food lure to get them started. This is part of the teaching phase of training your dog. That is where you teach the exact behavior that you want before adding in other variables like distance, duration, and distractions. If you do this right, your dog would be reliably doing the behavior the same way every time. If you do this wrong your dog will be all over the place. Sometimes doing it right, and sometimes getting close. You want to make sure your dog is doing it 100% correctly every time. Once you reach that point in teaching, you can start to phase out the lure.

Phasing out the lure sounds a lot simpler than it is. You are going to slowly reduce the amount of assistance you give your dog throughout the process of luring. Instead of having your hand full of treats, you might only have one in your hand. Guide them through the process of the behavior and then only reward them at the end.

The next step would be to have them follow the treat and then reward them with a different treat from your other hand. You would continue this process until they are following the hand with no treat in it and then getting rewarded only after doing the before.

You then want to work on how to phase out the hand motions. Some owners and trainers prefer to have hand motions and rely on those a lot more than verbal commands. My preferred cues are always verbal so I will teach you how I would get rid of using hand motions. Reduce the amount of movement that you give your dog incrementally so that they do not realize the difference over a period of time. At this point, you are not adding in a cue verbally. Why? If I start adding too many cues at once my dog will get confused. I always want to have a behavior that I really like, that is being offered to me freely before I add in the cue. We will be doing an article on adding in the cue soon. You’re simply reducing the amount of movement that you give your dog in order for them to start the behavior. Once you are no longer moving but your dog is doing the behavior in hopes of getting rewarded you are ready for the next step.

Good luck, stay training and I'll see you in our next article.

-Michael J. Accetta




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