Yes, lol, a canter is a normal gait for horses.
I'd go back to the basics. Put them on a long line and teach them to canter. Get the signal down. Make sure they know that a kissing noise means to canter, and of course teach them to come back down out of it. Getting the verbal command on the ground can help them learn quicker undersaddle.
After you get the verbel commands on the ground, try undersaddle. Give the horse its head and ask verbally for the canter, then use your legs if they don't respond. Maybe just make the horse canter a few strides and bring the horse back down to a trot. Then gradually increase how long you canter. After the horse has learned to canter [without rushing and being afraid], then you can work on more things, like collection.