Not all session are going smoothly. We believe that it is more helpful for everybody to see where the struggle could be. Lucy is going into the crate fairly well, and has understood where the reward is. This behavior is done on her own will and is not connected with a verbal signal.
She goes now without being lured. It is time to try to call the behavior a name. Putting a cue to a behavior is most successful if we can manage to give the cue (“kennel”) when the behavior is predictably happening. As the trainer tries to hit the moment where she seems to go in, he has to discover that Lucy is actually somewhat scared of what he is saying!
She interrupts the process of entering the crate.
The trainer now tries to say the word a little more quietly. This seems to make better progress, but yet, the real progress is made once the trainer delays slightly and waits with the cue until she has almost completely entered the crate.
Lucy stays in the crate very well until the FREE signal is given. She was also introduced to the trainer being in slightly different positions. In addition the gate was opened and closed to make her understand that the position of the gate is irrelevant to what is required of her to succeed and obtain reward.