Whip it – Levels 1, 2 & 3

NOTE: The video will be updated – but wanted to post the game as it is a great game to teach so many concepts.

Whip It allows you to put yourself in the picture frame of the chase experience with your dog.  These are the first three levels of the game, the first of which is the most critical so don’t rush to go to Level 2.

Level 1 – Build Desire….always build desire…you can never have too much desire!

Level 2 –  While your dog is chasing the toy, flip it in the air to a new location. We want to get a moment of stillness from your dog before your release them to the toy. Remember though that your dog doesn’t know this game, so they are likely going to keep chasing the toy. Continue to flip the toy until you get that single briefest moment of stillness then reward your dog with a chase or release to the toy. DO NOT OVERDO THIS STAGE….People tend to want to put too much control on this game, don’t do it!

Level 3 – Do not attempt level 3 until your dog is successful at levels 1 & 2 – we do not want to quash their desire.  This level builds on Level 2 in that when they stop when you flip the whip, you ask for a simple, well established behaviour from your dog like a sit or a down.  At this level do not ask for any behaviour that requires them to move and lose sight of the chase object. Do not make them stay in the position for more than a second or two them immediately release to chase/catch the chase object as reward.

This is a great game, and is part of the predation substitute training program if you have prey-driven dog, as it is a way to be able to share these parts of the predatory sequence with your dog together safely, and once you’ve built incredible desire and commitment, you can also introduce elements of impulse control and thinking in arousal to supercharge the skills needed for recall when they encounter real wildlife.