Shaping. From Reactive to Proactive

Shaping - From Reactive to Proactive

The puppy in the video is reactive, meaning that he responds to a behavior instead of initiating one. He waits for guidance. We want him to learn to offer behaviors and not be afraid of making mistakes.

We always want for our dogs to be proactive and demand to work

Some puppies become "stuck" when not provided any direction. It is very difficult to get them going and free them up. A shaping session can quickly turn into a staring contest. Once they understand the rules of shaping games - they become proactive. 

What you will see is a lure-assisted shaping/capturing session. 

In this video, you will see Tobias using 3 tips to help the puppy begin being proactive. We will post the result of this approach later on. The puppy eventually opened up and began offering multiple behaviors.


  • When reinforcing the dog, deliver the food while luring in a behavior. Twisting, spinning, going between your legs, backing up, etc.
  • You can lure him into a passive position, such as a down. It is guaranteed that once the dog is done eating, he will pop up. You will click for getting up – 02:08 sec.
  • To break the monotony, you can introduce a basic object. Tobias puts a dog bowl on the ground. Puppy picks it up – 03:00 sec. Tobias touches the chair, and the puppy jumps on it – 03:54 sec.

Free Training TIPs for YOU

Sign up for our free training tips  to come directly into your inbox

return to main blog page


go to academy home page


Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *