Practicing Stay + “Down” with distractions.
All of the teams should be moving around and intermingling in an unorganized manner with the dogs at “Heel.” At a command from the course instructor, all of the dogs would be given the “Down” command. Be sure to have a distance of about three meters between the dogs. The dog trainers should be standing next to their dogs. Some “extras” should then move throughout the group of dogs with props that call attention. For example one person could have a briefcase while another a shopping basket and a third carrying an umbrella while eating a sandwich. All of the dogs must stay in position throughout this exercise.
Practicing “Down” with an alley.
All of the teams should form a circle looking out. Then the dog trainers give the command “Down” and leaving their dog walk about three meters in front of their dog. The space between the dog trainer and their dog is the “alley.” One by one the dog trainers should approach their dogs and beginning in the Starting position they would then walk as a team through the “alley” before returning to their original spot, to be followed by the next team. All of the dogs should remain in position while this exercise is taking place.
Practicing “Down” in a line.
All of the teams stand in a straight line side by side with the dogs on their leash. At the signal of the course instructor all of the dog trainers begin walking forward with their dogs all at the same time. On command each dog should lie down (the dog trainer always remains with the dog) one after the other. The other teams should continue walking forward in a straight line. It is important that the dogs lie down quickly. The course instructor can give the “Down” command beginning with the first dog on the left or right and moving in a consecutive manner or they could give the command at random. Once all of the dogs are down the process is reversed with the first dog that stopped moving forward until they are at the same point as the second team etc. until all of the teams are once again moving together.