You know your puppy or dog is tired but they just can't seem to lie down on the ground and relax? It's very frustrating but with a few simple steps and an Absurd Settle Mat you can start to see real progress! Soon you'll have a relaxed dog who chooses to go over to their mat and lie down.
First things first, here is the Absurd Settle Mat. It has a super comfy wool mix top so your dog will want to lie down and relax. Now that you have that to hand or it's on it's way to you let's start!
How to train a dog to settle.
1. Start off by introducing your dog to the settle mat. Throw a few treats onto the mat and get your dog to walk onto it. From there, any time your dog's paws touch the mat reward your dog and throw a treat down onto the mat.
2. It's useful to sit on a chair or sofa next to the mat and drop treats at close distance and so your dog feels safe and secure coming over to the mat and you. Don’t say anything to your dog while doing this.
3. Once your dog is showing interest in the mat and walking onto regularly with the idea they'll be rewarded with a treat, introduce the "down" command and then the "settle" command.
Down and Settle - what's the difference?
The difference between these two commands is all in the hips! You probably have taught your dog "down" at the same time as "sit". So once your dog is in the down position lower a treat to their nose and start to move it around their shoulder, this should make your dog move there head around and also they will pop out their hips - and there is the "settle" command! Make sure to mark with the word "settle" and reward once your dog has changed their position!
4. From there, increase distance from your dog while they are settled on the mat and then reward. You can also increase the time that you take to deliver the treat to them.
Something I learnt and wish I had known sooner... if you have an easily excitable puppy (or a food loving dog), make sure that you give the treat to them in a super calm manner and try to place the treat between their front legs. This will help them understand to relax not get too excited again.