Training the finish position

Training the finish position

What is the finish position?

In dog obedience training, the finish position is a command where the dog moves from a sit position on the handler's left side to a heel position on the handler's left side, facing the same direction as the handler.

Using a position box can be a helpful tool to teach a dog the finish position in obedience training  as can teach the dog where they need to be in relation to the handler.

Here are the steps to follow:

  1. Place the position box on the ground, and encourage your dog to explore it. You can use treats to lure your dog onto the box and praise them for standing on it.

  2. Stand facing the position box with your dog on your left side. Give the command "heel," and walk a few steps forward with your dog beside you.

  3. Stop and give the command "sit." As your dog sits, move around behind them to the other side of the position box.

  4. Stand facing your dog from the other side of the box, and give the command "finish" or "heel."

  5. Use a treat to lure your dog onto the box and into the correct finish position, which is sitting next to you on your left side, facing the same direction as you.

  6. Once your dog is in the correct position, praise them and reward them with a treat.

  7. Repeat this process, gradually increasing the distance and duration of the finish position.

  8. Practice the finish position without the position box, and in different locations and situations.

The finish position requires precise timing and good communication between the handler and the dog. Remember to keep training sessions short and fun, and always reward your dog for their efforts. With patience and consistency, your dog will learn the finish position and become a skilled obedience companion.


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About the author: Hi 👋 I’m Emma, accredited as a professional dog trainer by the Institute of Modern Dog Trainers (IMDT). I help owners of energetic dogs achieve the dog-owning life they envisioned by providing robust obedience & agility training for dogs across my two venues in Balsham and Barton, near Cambridge.

Disclaimer: The content of this article does not include personalised advice and is for information purposes only. If you need individual advice or other enquiries please click here to get in contact or if you're not local to Anglian Dog Works, you can find a trainer in your area by going to the IMDT website: