canine freestyle moves database

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This database attempts to define the basic elements comprising Canine Freestyle and includes various training techniques that can be used to teach a dog to assume positions and perform 'moves' / 'behaviors' on cue.

It is assumed the dog knows basic obedience and the handler knows how to train using positive reinforcement; luring, clicker and/or bridge word and targeting. No attempt is made to describe the training techniques in any exact detail because each exercise needs to be split into small increments of criteria according to the dog’s needs.

the information given here is a guide only

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Diagrams are used throughout this database
Please read the LEGEND first.

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Any time you see the cursor shaped like a hand, clicking will take you down to the next level of information on that subject.

Throughout this database the dog will be referred to as "he" instead of "it".

Throughout the dog’s training you need to develop the dog’s Focus and Attention. Read this before you start training to gradually develop the intensity and duration of the dog’s attention in preparation for performing routines of several minutes duration.

The information is categorized as follows:

Describes which way the dog is facing relative to the handler

Defines “heel” positions (where the term “heel” is an orientation) and how to teach the common positions.

Canine Freestyle Moves

Identifies common moves and how to teach them.

Table of Contents

This is a list of the information contained in this database. It is also a map, enabling you to quickly locate pages as opposed to drilling down through information.

Glossary of Terms

Definitions and explanations of technical or training terms used in this database.


Recognition of the people who assisted with their generous time to produce pictures and videos to illustrate techniques.


Bibliography and URL links to information used on the Canine Freestyle Moves Database.

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The information rendered here is by no means exhaustive.

MDSA takes no responsibility for any injury to handler or dog through the use of the suggested training methods contained here-in.

All training methods described here are suggestions only. All training methods are positive and can be done off lead in a safe place. No one training technique suits all dogs. If the suggested training method does not suit your dog, MDSA takes no responsibility for this.

All written cues are suggestions only. No liability is accepted by MDSA if the suggested cues conflict with cues used in other dog sports.

Note: All "Back to Start" links return to this page.