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DVDs & CDs Forrest Micke Engagement Skills with Forrest Micke
Engagement Skills with Forrest Micke
Based on 16 reviews

Engagement Skills with Forrest Micke

Based on 16 reviews
Engagement Skills with Forrest Micke Cover Art
  • 2 hours, 22 minutes
  • Released December 2014
  • Instructor: Forrest Micke
  • Also available as a self-study online course! CLICK HERE to sign up!
  • Immediate streaming access when purchased with Leerburg account
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Leerburg dog training is available in 3 formats:
  1. DVDs
  2. Video on demand
  3. Online courses

Leerburg video on demand and online courses both have instant access that never expire. Video on demand has a "notes" feature that allows viewers to pause the video at any point and create a personal note. Whenever they come back to the video they can see their list of notes, and then can click on any note and the video will start from the point that note was created. Viewers can create an unlimited number of notes.


What is Engagement? Why is it the first behavior we should teach every new dog, be it an 8 week old puppy or an 8 year old rescue dog? These are questions new that every new dog owner needs to ask and understand.

In its simplest form, engagement means your dog is totally focused on you, it wants to be with you, and it wants what you have. What you have is either his high value food reward or a high value toy reward.

The picture of a dog that is engaged is a happy dog that is focused on his trainer and is inviting his owner to play. Dogs that are fully engaged ignore outside distractions. They ignore other people, places and things.  A fully engaged dog will ignore other dogs or distractions in any environment his owner choses to place him or her in.

If you are a trainer who wants to develop a relationship with your dog where the dog looks forward to your training sessions then you need to become a student of engagement. In this DVD, Forrest Micke will teach anyone how to get engagement with their dog. You will learn how to keep your dog engaged during training sessions and how to put engagement on CUE.

Learning to put engagement on cue should be the foundation to every dog training program. That’s why we here at Leerburg will spend a long time working on engagement exercises in different places under varying levels of distraction before we move on to more advanced behaviors.

For those who are still not sure what engagement is, go to almost any local dog training school or class and look at the dogs as they take the class. The last place on earth these dogs want to be is where they are. Very few of the dogs in these courses are engaged with their owners.

Now take a look at this short 2 minute video of Forrest and his dog Elzer. You can see that Elzer wants to interact with him and wants what he has. Then think of how much fun it would be to have this behavior on cue with your dog.

It’s not rocket science to understand that a dog in this frame of mind is engaged and enjoys what he or she is doing. This will make the training process easier and more fun for both the dog and the handler

What's the difference between this course, the DVD, and the stream?

DVD: 2 hours 22 minutes (physical copy and immediate streaming access)

Stream: 2 hours 22 minutes, lifetime access, stream from anywhere

Online Course: 101 videos (194 minutes), additional text content, discussion board, lifetime access, stream from anywhere


  • Introduction
  • What Makes Your Dog Tick
  • Food Management Techniques
  • Training Session Management
  • Establishing a Dialogue with Your Dog
  • Movement and Contrast
  • Your First Engagement Session
  • Putting Engagement on Cue and Generalizing
  • Triggers and Thresholds
  • Making Your Environment Work for You
  • Striking a Balance Empowerment Sessions and Offerings
  • Adding Simple Behaviors
  • Where do We Go From Here?
Bought this product?
Verified Customer Review

Information found in this video is all you need to start working with your dog. It teaches you the basics and foundation that is essential for quality work later on. I was kinda sad I didn't found a WOW bombastic revelation within it, but I'm still glad I bought it because I enjoyed the little details I will for sure use in my training. For a newbie dog handler or anyone who is beginning his dog work, and doesn't have an experienced trainer with him to show him the way, this is a must have video. Forrest Micke is explaining and showing the material very well and clear. At the end of the video he recommends "the next stage" DVD-s that I am definetly going to try but a little advice from my own mistakes in training - dont go too fast, and learn to read your dog - until the moment you've mastered all the skills shown in this video, dont rush your training.

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I loved this DVD and Forrest Micke’s instruction. I train with my dog not only for obedience but because it’s fun for the both of us. I also just enjoy learning different techniques and theories. In order to get the most out of training it’s beneficial if the dog remains focused. In order for that to happen YOU need to know how to get them focused. I appreciate that he broke every step down to see what he did and then he explained why he did it. I plan on purchasing more of his content.

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Verified Customer Review

I really like this this dvd, (it was first leerberg dvd i've bougt) its well produced and covers every aspect of THE foundation of ALL work, engagement, it's suitable for dogs of all ages and skill sets and offers a good refresh for experienced trainers, we can all get a little complacent in our training at times, and is an ideal skillset for those new to to training or wanting to give their dogs a more formalised education.
Teaching your dog to engage with you when training is really one of the most overlooked lessons out there, and makes the difference between a good dog and a great dog be them a pet or working dog.
For rescued dogs or those that have been spoilt by less than ideal experiences with humans either in day-to-day life or in training and for dogs that lack confidence in themselves or their human this dvd offers a clear guide to start building a positive interaction with their human from the ground up. Its such a shame most puppy classes and beginner dogs classes don't put enough emphasis on engagement before moving onto basic behaviours, a lot of the more common issues would be avoided by putting more value into the teaching a dog to want to interacte with the handler.
The only things I would wish to add is a downloadable work flow/goal list to allow you the handler to have an almost check-list reminder of the goals and progressions to work towards. However it's simple enough to jot down a few notes using chapter headings as a reference.

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Amazing! Mr. Micke is a true professional! Thank You soooooo much.

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This instruction video is an excellent companion to Michael Ellis' Power of Training Dogs with Food. The content is relevant to both novice and pro trainers. The video quality is top notch. Leerburg's videos are getting better and better. I look forward to Forrest Micke's next video.

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Wow! I could watch Forrest all day work is dog. He is effortless. He makes it so easy to understand. Watching his movements you learn so much. This was the video I needed to move forward
Barb, Jace GSD

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Excellent Teacher! Your passion for dogs clearly shows through as well as your knowledge in training for success.

Your Time and Knowledge are appreciated.

Thank You,
Bella (GSD) and Linda

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I have several of the Leerburg Videos and this is one of the best yet. I am working with a new puppy and this video was the perfect starting point. Forrest does a great job of not only explaining the philosophy of engagement, but puts it to work on actual dogs in various environments for you to see. I have already put his ideas to work and have seen a huge change in my puppy's training sessions. I look forward to more of Forrest's videos and online courses.

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Probably the best video I have seen for someone beginning their training journey. Forrest's enthusiasm and deep knowledge is a joy to watch. There is a wealth of really great information through the two and a half hours. I wish there was a small booklet with the DVD that contained a guide to content and timings. Outstanding. Rob

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Loved this material. Especially, the parts about offering behavior and all the info on cueing - dynamite. I took in a seminar with Forrest last year. He's a MUST SEE. Really glad Leerburg is teaming up with him.

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Love this newest video. Forrest is so easy to understand. Definitely for the newbie or seasoned trainer. Lots to learn, re-learn or sharpen up on.

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If this is anything like the online University course that I took earlier this year it is EXCELLENT! 5 stars out of 5 stars is not enough. First Forrest is an excellent instructor, a true GEM. Second the course is structured and flows smoothly for the first time dog owner and the advanced dog owner who is looking to refresh their skills. I wish I had had this access back 6 years ago when I got my first English Setter, but it has proven to be helpful now. I pass along to every new dog owner that I meet the Leerburg web site and have recommended the University courses to many people. Yeah! Way to go Ed, Cindy Jeff and the rest of the Leerburg crew. Thanks from Margie Williams for Ranger and Winston.

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Great stuff, lots of steps and best for starting young, however, as is the problem with most training videos- it is aimed toward food-driven dogs, although Forrest does do a brief mention on how one might incorporate play-rewards rather than food, its something I'd like to see more of since my Rottweiler could care less for food rewards. But, the way Micke uses the food rewards definitely keeps my dog more interested in what I'm up to. I'm working a 7 month old Rottweiler on these concepts and so far so good.

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I had been looking at the Leerburg YouTube videos for some time and had been debating whether I could justify spending what to a retired person who is only working Beginners and Novice obedience with my GSD is a lot of money on a video. However I finally took the plunge as I had a dog who would work but didn't seem to have the want. She is clicker trained to watch ( I almost cried when Forrest described the dog being pulled into the watch yep that's me) so I watched the DVD thought what have I done I have spent all this money to be told how to feed my dog. Wrong!!! I have spent maybe four minutes six or seven times a day working on engagement. I have only had the DVD two days I have a new dog!! Well two new dogs my old jrt thinks it's great in such a short space of time I have a dog that when I appear looks excited and as soon as I say ready she is waiting to go. As she is already working I have linked the ready with her set up which was my most difficult task as she would be up outside the ring but as soon as asked for the set up the enthusiasm would die. In two days I have a dog who throws herself into the set up (unfortunately screaming to go so will have to work on that Lol) just don't know what DVD to buy next. Thank you my pension is in no sweets or treats another video is called for just don't know which one. Shame there isn't a way to preview them.

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I think this video would be a lot better if it would be somehow bundled with the Michael Ellis' "The Power of Training Dogs with Food." It expands some subjects a bit more, like how to pick the right treats or how to properly deliver it and some of the mechanics that are visible in the Michael Ellis DVD but might go unnoticed by the casual observer.

As others might have noticed, Forrest is a student of Michael Ellis and he's teaching virtually the same thing. Forrest appears in at least one Michael Ellis DVD, so it's natural to see that they use a similar philosophy in dog training.

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Great for beginners! Too repetitive for intermediate or advanced trainers. But overall a good video.
Forest seems like an enthusiastic and knowledgeable trainer from the Ellis school of thought!

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