NEVER USE A REMEDY / SELF-TREATMENT ON YOUR DOG WITHOUT BEING ADVISED BY VETERINARY PHYSICIAN
NEVER USE A REMEDY / SELF-TREATMENT ON YOUR DOG WITHOUT BEING ADVISED BY VETERINARY PHYSICIAN
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All images on DOGICA® pages used only as illustrations and respectfully belong to its legal rights owners !!! Find the author of any image with TINEYE tool If you are a legal rights owner and would like to add, update or remove your material. By using this site you are agree on: The information contained in or provided through DOGICA® site is intended for general consumer understanding and education only and is not intended to be and is not a substitute for professional advice.Use of this site and any information contained on or provided through this site is at your own risk and any information contained on or provided through this site is provided on an "as is" basis without any representations or warranties or pay.   DOGICA® Cookies Policy and Regulations
Here is DOGICA - intelligent, cute, talented and loyal pooch! (o: She can walk, play, sit, lie down and roll over. Try to pet her and watch how she responds. Entertain her by playing ball or giving her a bone. Reward a canine with a treat! To get her to sit, double-click your mouse on the ground close to her. Double-click again to get her to lie down, then hold mouse button down,make a circular motion to roll the dog over
The History & Myths of Dog Tricks 300+ Best, Unique & Uncommon New Dogs Tricks: Spin, Play Dead, Bring the Beer, Roll-Over, Jump Yawn, Fetch, Shake, Give a Paw, Sit, Go, Bring Unique, Cute & Funny Dog Tricks Teach Your Dog Interesting Tricks Dog Trick Training Videos & Techniques Dog Obedience and Training Tips Clicker Dog Training Deaf Dog Training Easy Dog Tricks List Dog Tricks Books Top Puppy Tricks Dog Trick Calendar Dog Parkour Dog Show
VIRTUAL DOG TRICKS This material proudly presented by WWW.EHOW.COM
Dog tricks are a fun way to provide your friend with mental and physical stimulation, helping to prevent dog behavior problems. Dog tricks help you maintain your alpha leadership status using positive reinforcement. You interact with your dog in appropriate ways, no rolling around on the floor while the dog mouths you with his teeth!
Tricks Every Trick Dog Should Know With the exception of basic training tricks, if you want your dog to be a trick dog, it will need to know these tricks to make the rest of the tricks simpler:
Target/Touch - This trick teaches the dog to touch his nose to any selected object.
Fetch - To a dog it's fun to fetch, you can teach your dog to fetch things like the remote, slippers, etc.
Drop it - Makes your dog drop anything it was holding, good when teaching it other tricks.
Through - Teaching the dog to run through different objects.
Again - Makes the dog repeat a behavior.
Wait - Don't move; used in Agility, as well as to interrupt and holding any actions.
Traditional Tricks Here are some simple tricks that are fairly easy to train your dog to perform.
Shake Hands/Give Me Paw
Give Me Five
Bang (Steps by Chandler)
Balance a Treat On Nose
The Mathematician ( + , - , divide , x)
Balance Treat on Nose
Fast, Slow Down, Stop (Have your dog change speed while running)
Seeing Color (Identifying colors: red, yellow, green)
Stop, Drop, and Roll/Roll Over
Spin Left/Spin Right (Added by Anonymous Person)
Performer Tricks Your dog can be one of those talented dogs on TV by learning these tricks.
Say your prayers
Smile/Bare teeth/Be a wolf
Wash your Face/Where's your Nose?
Treat on muzzle - HOLD IT
Lifting Certain Legs
Drink out of straw (Added by Baylee Peterson)
Good Morning (Added by Emma Felton) (Have your dog wait at your bed when you wake up.)
Head On Lap
Tie Me Up
Big Bang/Overkill (Beg position with both paws in the air, then "shoot"(bang) the dog and have the dog limp, then "shoot" again and have the dog crawl, then once more to have the dog "die")
Traffic Safety (Sits before crossing the road, looks both ways)
Go to sleep (Puts head down and closes eyes)
Did you wash your hands? (Sits up in beg position but shows pads)
Useful Dog Tricks Useful and intelligent dog tricks that can help you around the house. Perfect for service dogs.
Lights on - Lights off (Turning the lights on and off)
Retrieve [Name of Object] (Retrieving certain household objects like keys, remotes, books, etc.)
Answer the Phone(Answering the phone on command or whenever it rings)
Fetch be a Soda/Beer/Water(Opening the refrigerator and bringing you a drink)
Get the mail(Fetching a newspaper or any mail)
Setting The Table(Setting up the table by bringing napkins, dishes, etc.)
Fetch your [Name of Toy] (Added by Emma Felton)(Getting your dog to learn the names of its toys. So when you say the name of a toy, your dog will fetch it)
Bring my slippers(Fetches slippers and places it in front of you)
Ah Choo!(Brings Tissue)
Close the door/Open the door(Can be used to close the front door or cabinets)
Put your toys away
Pick up the trash(Picks up the trash on the floor and throws it away)
Open up the curtains
Make your bed(Pulls on blankets to make the bed)
Do the dishes(Places a dish inside the dishwasher and closes the dishwasher)
Clean the Counter Top(Drags a cloth over the counter top "cleaning it")
Clean the Windows(Has your dog place its paws on the window, moving them up and down as if scrubbing it)
Take Off My Sweater/Jacket(The dog pulls on the zipper, then tugs on the sleeves to take off your sweater)
Take Off My Shoe(The dog pulls on the shoe lace then pulls your shoe off your foot)
Take Off My Socks(Your dog will pull off your socks)
Do the Laundry(Your dog will put any clothing inside the washing machine, then close it)
Put Away [Name of Item](Puts away any item in any selected area)
Push Shopping Cart
Close CD Player Lid
Ring Hotel Service Bell
Carry the Basket
Pull Chair Out
Open Mail Box Lid
Ring the Bell (Added by Figgy Mc)(Your dog holds a hand bell in its mouth and nods there head up and down to Ding! the bell.)
Dry Yourself (Added by Tamara Walton-Gray)(Lay on a towel and roll around till dry)
Take food, toy, etc... gently from hand (Added by Anonymous)(Without snapping or yanking)
Take out the garbage (Added by Anonymous)(Dog cleans up garbage and takes bag out to curb and sets in garbage can)
Cute Dog Tricks Who doesn't like a trick that makes your dog look cuter?
Spread Them(Makes your dog put it's paws against the wall)
Stick 'em up!(Beg position with both paws in the air)
What do boy dogs do?(Your dog hikes its hind leg in response)
Give Me a Kiss
Naughty/Time Out(Your dog goes to the corner of the room and stares at the wall)
Shame/Bad Dog/Shy/Peek-a-boo(Dog covers nose/eyes with paw)
Cross Your Paws
Roll Self Up In Blanket/Towel
Say your prayers(Dog places front paws on something and lays head down)
Pray harder(Dog dips nose between front legs, looks like they are bowing their head)
Who do you love? (Points at you with paw)
Say "I Love You"
Blessings(Lies down, bows head, waits for 'Amen' before eating)
Toss a toy in the air
Confusion(Cocks head to one side)
Say Please (Added by Lindsey Bartel)(Similar to beg/sit pretty)
Ring a hand bell (Added by Figgy Mc)(Your dog holds a hand bell in their mouth and nods there head up and down to Ding! Ding! the bell.)
Puppy Prance (Added by Anonymous)
Jump (Added by Jessica Harris)(Dog jumps and looks cute)
100 DOG TRICKS by DIFFICULTY LEVEL This material proudly presented by WWW.DOGICA.COM
Level 1 Difficulty Tricks 1. Bare teeth (be a wolf, or what do sharks look like?) 2. Bark 3. Bark silently (whisper) 4. Beg 5. Toss a toy in the air 6. Bow 7. Circle around me 8. Cock your head to one side 9. Crawl 10. Did you wash your hands? (dog sits up in beg position but shows pads) 11. Dig 12. Fan the flames (two paws) 13. Cover your eyes 14. Gimme four 15. Growl 16. Kiss 17. Let go of rope 18. Nod your head 19. Nose touch to hand 20. Nose touch to other objects (naming objects or just pointing) 21. Play dead 22. Prewash dishes for dishwasher (just wanted to see if you were paying attention) 23. Push things with paw (like doors, drawers) 24. Put paws on a person's shoulders 25. Ring bell by pulling string 26. Ring bell with nose 27. Ring bell with paw 28. Roll over 29. Rub muzzle on floor 30. Shake hands 31. Shake your head 32. Shake yourself 33. Sit on couch with front feet on ground 34. Stand up on rear legs (sooooo big!) 35. Speak 36. Speak LOUDLY! 37. Speak SOFTLY! 38. Spin 39. Wag tail 40. Walk backward 41. Wave 42. Sneeze 43. Where's your tail? 44. Whimper 45. Yawn
Level 2 Difficulty Tricks 46. Balance treat on nose, then toss it up in the air and catch it 47. Carry purse or other bag 48. Fetch newspaper 49. Fetch slippers 50. Find/bring keys 51. Find/bring dog dishes 52. Find/bring leash 53. Find/bring TV remote 54. Get a toy by name 55. Wiggle ears 56. Heel backward 57. Hide your eyes/paw over nose (shame on you/do you like tuna?) 58. Hide your head (nose touch under cushion or blanket) 59. Howl (heard the Spice Girls' latest CD?) 60. Keep barking until some subtle cue 61. Lead another dog by the leash 62. Limp 63. Moonwalk (scoot backward in a bow) 64. Open doors 65. Permit the wearing of sunglasses or hat 66. Pick a card (from a deck) 67. Pick the hammer (paw to indicate correct tool) 68. Pull a cart 69. Pull on harness: pulling kids on sled, pulling laundry basket or cart, pulling firewood 70. Pull on rope - close doors, open doors, open cupboards, pull wheelchairs 71. Pull your wallet out of your pocket 72. Lower/raise head while lying down 73. Push something with the nose (e.g., ball) 74. Put a toy IN something 75. Ride a cart 76. Ride a skateboard 77. Roll in cued direction 78. Rub back on floor 79. Rub muzzle with paws 80. Smile 81. Shame on you (hide head under chair) 82. Sit in a chair, paws on table 83. Teabag search: Dog searches 3 people sitting on floor or chair for teabag held in their hand 84. Roll yourself up in a blanket or towel 85. Take a bow, twirl, and take a bow 86. Take money from someone else and bring it to you! 87. Walk sideways 88. Jump up into handler's arms 89. Weave between your legs 90. Climb a ladder 91. Dance 92. Fetch a hot dog 93. Kick balls with paws (soccer) 94. Lead people (take wrist gently in mouth and take them somewhere) 95. Learn names of family members and carry messages back and forth 96. Nose touch to designated colors or shapes 97. Ride a horse/llama/other dog 98. Roll over with ball between front paws 99. Stop dead on cue 100. Walk up stairs backward 101. Fetch beer from fridge.
Skateboarding is an advanced trick that will truly get heads to turn. Make sure to get a big enough skateboard for your dog to be comfortable with all 4 legs on at a time, or else this trick will not work! Only try this trick if your dog is safe around a skateboard.
HOW TO TEACH YOUR DOG SCATEBOARDING: Introduce the skateboard to your dog. Bring a skateboard inside, where your dog feels safe and secure, and encourage them to sniff and examine the board. Move the skateboard wheels, knock on the board, make noises so your dog can start to become comfortable with how the board operates.
Roll the skateboard back and forth. Watch your dog's reaction for any signs of fear and uncomfortableness. If you see any, stop and move back a step in the process. Praise your dog for any curious behavior. If he/she tries to get on the skateboard, safely secure it and praise your pup! You're pup is getting comfortable with the board!
Continue praising your pup for any curious behavior he/she shows the skateboard. Now you need to reward more directed behaviors from your dog. Offer more praise when your dog's paws are on top of the board. Reward and treat each time to associate the behavior with great things: treats!
In this step, you need to up the ante and begin rewarding every time your dog puts more than one paw on the skateboard. However, be sure to still reward when he/she puts one paw on the board, but now only every other time. Continue rewarding less over time. It's time to start rewarding your dog when he/she has more than one paw on the board.
Once your dog is comfortable with more than one paw on the skateboard, begin moving the board forward and backward a few inches to get your dog used to the idea of the board moving. Reward your dog as the skateboard is moving and their paws are on the board. Grab a stinky, tasty treat and hold it in your hand tightly. Allow your dog to lick and try to get the treat from your hand as you move the skateboard with your other hand. Remember, your pup's paws must be on the board. This action will help associate the greatness of the treat with the moving of the board. Work on moving the board up to 3-5 ft in distance while your dog's paws are on the skateboard.
Get your dog to stand on the skateboard. It's time direct your dog's behavior to the next step in the training. This time, reward when your dog is standing on the board with all 4 paws and intermittently reward when your dog puts 2 paws on the board. Be sure to stabilize the board so it doesn't move much. Your dog should work on getting all 4 paws comfortably on the skateboard.
Once your dog is comfortable on a stable board, begin using a command to have your pup hop on the skateboard. Using your chosen command, ask your dog to mount the board by themselves, without any assistance from you. Reward him/her when they successfully hop on the board by themselves.
Continue the previous step, but begin rewarding your pup from further away. Instead of tossing your dog a treat, make him come to you while on the board to receive the treat. Start close and as your dog masters pushing the skateboard, move further away. You have a skateboarding dog!
Dog Parkour (pronounced par-coor) is a military (human) based training discipline which combines running, jogging, jumping, climbing, swinging, vaulting, and rolling to quickly, efficiently, and most of all safely, finish an urban obstacle course. The objective is to maintain as much momentum as possible without failing the obstacle or injuring one's self.
Parkour is a holistic training discipline using movement that developed from military obstacle course training. Practitioners aim to get from A to B in the most efficient way possible. This is done using only the human body and the surroundings for propulsion, with a focus on maintaining as much momentum as possible while still remaining safe. Parkour can include obstacle courses, running, climbing, swinging, vaulting, jumping, rolling, quadrupedal movement, and the like, depending on what movement is deemed most suitable for the given situation.
Parkour is an activity that can be practiced alone or with others. Although it can be practiced in any location, it is usually practiced in urban spaces. Parkour involves seeing one's environment in a new way, and imagining the potentialities for navigating it by movement around, across, through, over and under its features.
Developed in France, primarily by Raymond Belle, David Belle, and Sebastien Foucan during the late 1980s, Parkour became popular in the late 1990s and 2000s through films, documentaries, and advertisements featuring these practitioners and others.
Parkour is becoming a recognised sport with events, competitions, and official teams around the world, although this is controversial as many practitioners are philosophically opposed to competition.
Parkour has been adapted to dogs, and is rapidly growing in popularity; therefore, we decided to innovate and offer dog owners a chance to learn, teach, and practice this awesome activity.
Canine Urban Parkour is by far the best physical and mental stimulation one can offer their pet!
Canine Urban Agility Urban Agility is a method of exercising your dog using public structural components and park furniture. Training with your dog to sit, trot along or jump over obstacles found in the urban environment helps with improving the dog's agility and providing positive mental stimulation for the dog. When trained positively, the dog should gain greater confidence with navigating these obstacles. Conversely, a bad experience such as suffering a fall can possibly take away a dog's confidence and engender fear.
Historically, Dog surfing has been documented as occurring in the 1920s in California and Hawaii.
Dog surfing involves dogs that are trained to surf on surfboards or bodyboards, either alone or with a human on the board.
Some dogs have been trained to ride a skimboard on the shore (after the board is initially skimmed by a human) and to windsurf with a human, and bodysurfing dogs have also been documented in surfing media. Additionally, some dogs have been trained to ride on paddleboards with people.
In the 1930s, a silent film titled On The Waves in Waikiki depicts Phillip K. Auna and Night Hawk, his terrier, surfing together on a wooden surfboard in Hawaii. The terrier was able to perform the hang ten surfing maneuver on the surfboard.
In 1944, a full page image of a surfing dog named "Rusty" was published in National Geographic magazine.
In the 1950s, UPI published a photograph of Joseph "Scooter Boy" Kaopuiki and his dog Sandy surfing in Hawaii, which was published in newspapers throughout the United States. During this time, they were also reported about on the television show You Asked For It!.
Dave Chalmers and his surfing terrier mix named Max, both from San Diego, California, were featured in several forms of media in the late 1970s through the 1980s, including surf movies and a television appearance on the show Amazing Animals.
Don't be fooled! Surfing with your dog - "IS NOT AN EXTREME SPORT! IT'S JUST EXTREMELY FUN!!!"
Many of us have a dog that is deaf or may go deaf in their lifetime as they get older. A common belief is that you can't train a deaf dog…after all, he can' t hear you right? But I knew a trainer whose main demo dog was a deaf white boxer.
Training a Hearing-impaired Dog Choose hand signals. Before you begin, make sure you know which hand signals you want to use for each behavior. Switching it up or not having a solid, consistent signal will confuse your dog.
Talk to you dog. Yup, you heard me. Even though your dog can't talk, Wendy Clarence, contributing write for the Furever Network, says she always talks to her deaf dog.
Always face your dog while training so he can see your movements and facial expressions.
Be sure to use petting, treats, and toys as praise, since your dog can't hear words.
The easiest way to teach advanced tricks is to clicker train your dog. The idea is that the clicker tells your dog that he is on the right track in learning a skill. It means you can be a distance away from your dog and reward exactly the behaviour you want in a very precise way. You can click a slight eye movement in your dog for example. There is no ambiguity in what your dog is being rewarded for. Clickers allow you to shape behaviour, which essentially means encouraging and rewarding closer and closer approximations to the behaviour you want. The clicker should always be paired with a treat, your dog needs to know that whenever you "click" he will get a treat.
You can buy special dog training clickers, or use anything that makes a consistent noise. To pair the clicker and the reward simply click, wait 1 second, then give your dog a treat. Repeat this around 10 times until your dog understands that a click means he gets a treat. Now you are ready to use clicker training for some advanced skills.
Rewards A reward is usually a treat, but can also be play or praise. Treats are often used to really motivate dogs and are quick and easy to administer. You can use any treat you like, but try to stay away from those with lots of salt, fat and preservatives. That said, some dogs are not that food motivated, so it can be difficult to find what they like. Sometimes very small cubes of cheese will work, though in large quantities they can give a dog an upset stomach due to lactose intolerance. Small pieces of BBQ chicken also work for those fussy toy breeds. It also helps to train when your dog is hungry, so do a short 10 minute session before breakfast or dinner.
General Training Tips Remember to always keep training sessions short to reduce frustration and enhance concentration, 10 minutes is perfect. Remember to always reward after clicking your dog and reward within 3 seconds. The more you train with your dog, the more he will experiment with behaviours during training sessions to work out what you want him to do. When teaching a difficult command, you can give your dog a "jackpot" of lots of treats and a big cuddle and praise when he finally gets it right. Training should be fun for you and your dog, so whenever you complete a training session, always end on a positive note. If you are both getting frustrated, ask your dog to do something he knows how to do and reward him for that. Never end on a failure. The following video has some great training advice and features the clicker and how to shape behaviours.
Teaching Attention The fundamental of training your dog is to teach him to pay attention. Say his name then click and reward him when he looks at you. Repeat this several times until it is reliable. You may initially just be rewarding a slight movement of his head towards you, but shape the behaviour so that you eventually get actual eye contact and longer periods of attention.
Trick training is a whole lot of fun for both you and your dog and you never know, with enough training, your dog could become the next big canine star!
1. Nothing in life is free You have to work for a living, so why should your dog get an easy ride? Aim to get a behaviour from your dog for anything they want in life. Want dinner? 'Sit' Want to go outside? 'Stay' Want dinner? 'down'. Obviously you will need to train these behaviours first, but following this is the easiest way to keep practicing with your dog and the best way to get them to associate doing things that you want them to do with getting things that they want.
2. Your dog is a simple being There is a lot of info out there on canine behaviour and cognitive processing, but unless you have a deep academic interest, everything you need to know can be boiled down to this: your dog will do things that feel good to it more and things that don't feel so good less, so...
3. Praise all good behaviours and ignore ones that you want to see less of. Do this all the time, even if you're not actively training.
4. Take responsibility for your dog's learning Everything your dog knows about how to behave, it learned from you. If your dog does something 'bad' take a newspaper, roll it up, and hit yourself with it - bad parent. Then think of a way to train for the behaviour you would have wanted to see from your dog in that particular situation and start working on it for next time.
5. If your dog is not doing what you are asking them, they're telling you its too hard It is very unlikely that your dog is trying to spite you. Take it one step back to make it easier, then try it again before moving forwards. Pushing your dog harder won't make what you're asking any easier to understand.
6. Have fun! This is too important to be saved for last. If you're having fun - your dog will have fun. Never work your dog without a clear head and if you get frustrated for any reason, stop and take a break.
7. Avoid negative corrections I say 'no' to Luna as little as possible and never when we're learning tricks. There will always be exceptions, but when your dog does something wrong, rather than scolding them - try to redirect them to a positive behaviour and praise them for doing it right. Imagine someone trying to teach you to use a new computer system and the only instruction you are given is being told off when you do something wrong. How much easier would it be if someone could just tell you what you should do.
8. Always leave your dog wanting more Train in short, regular sessions, every day if possible. Finish before your dog gets bored, while they are still excited about training with you. If you have a puppy, this is going to mean really short sessions
9. Train within your dog's comfort zone and set them up for success Don't expect too much too quickly from your dog. Just because they can do a trick in the living room, doesn't mean they can do it in the park. Start every behaviour at home, then start adding distractions and trying new locations.
10. End every training session with a win. If you've been working on something that's hard for your dog, make sure you end with a few things they know before you pack up and give them a great big fuss for being so darned clever!
11. Train your dog in a quiet, distraction-free environment This makes it easier for your dog to focus on just you. Once your dog has learnt the trick, you can move on to practising it in more distracting locations to ensure it's really sunk in.
12. Don't go out there empty-handed Take some dog currency! Just like people don't usually work for free, we shouldn't expect our dogs to either. Get the most out of your dog by training them using rewards like food treats or a favourite toy. The higher value the reward, the more impact it will have when you're rewarding your dog for their efforts. As your dog learns the trick, you can gradually reduce the amount of treats you give them but don't stop giving them completely.
13. Take it easy and work your way up Start off with simple commands before tackling more difficult tricks. Once your dog has learnt a few simple commands, you can think about "chaining" these together to create a sequence of tricks.
14. Keep training sessions short and sweet Teaching your dog tricks doesn't have to be difficult or time consuming. Short (yet regular) training sessions can actually achieve more than long tiring ones. Five minutes a few times a day is great, and always remember to end on a positive note.
15. The quicker the reward, the better. Reward the desired behaviour within two seconds of it happening. The quicker your dog realises they have done the right thing, the faster they'll learn.
15. Don't expect your dog to be a mind reader Show your dog what to do by using food to lure them into the position or place you would like them to be. If your dog isn't catching on, break the command up into parts. For example, to teach your dog to "wave" you might first hold a treat in your closed palm near your dog's forearm. Your dog will surely try to nibble the treat but hold it in your fist so that they can't get at it. Wait until your dog paws at it, as this is the behaviour you are looking for. Reward this by saying "good", followed immediately by the treat. Shape this paw movement into a wave by holding the treat higher and further away. Once your dog is performing the command consistently with your hand movements, it's time to introduce the command "wave" before you give the hand signal.
5 METHODS TO TEACH YOUR DOG TRICKS This material proudly presented by WWW.WIKIHOW.COM
Dogs are highly intelligent creatures and they love to please their people. They say you can't teach an old dog new tricks, but in fact a dog of any age can learn to do tricks; it's just a matter of how you go about teaching them. Dogs are similar to children in that they all have different personalities and even different learning styles. Some dogs love to perform and eagerly soak up any new tricks the first few times you teach them, while some may take a little more time and effort. On the other hand, there are also dogs like my Bear, she knows exactly what is expected but seems to think she can make the humans do a few tricks of their own before she will deign to lift a paw!
Start with Dog Training Basics and use positive dog training in your attitude, consistency, and rewards. Teach in short lessons several times each week. Tricks that are new to a dog can be forgotten in just a few weeks, and you don't want to retrain!
Choose basic dog training commands that are quick and fun, but don't offend Grandma! Stick with the word so you don't confuse your dog.
Since your dog doesn't speak English, you'll need to show your dog by luring him with treats and toys. You can also help him by gently placing his paw or body into the correct position.
Repetition is the key to teaching your dog tricks, the same as with training your dog. Essentially sitting, heeling and even walking on a leash are all tricks your dog has learned. When you want to teach them to shake, beg, dance or roll over, it's just a matter of letting them know what you want them to do, offering them a CANIDAE TidNips treat when they do it successfully, and repeating the action over and over until your dog associates a certain word or gesture with the trick.
Keep in mind that while your dog may have certain qualities of a child it is not a person and it takes time and dedication to both train and teach your dog to do tricks. Yelling or becoming upset with your dog will not help him learn a trick. First you must teach the dog the action of the trick. Yes, this means you may have to get down and roll on the floor! Then you have to work on the word or gesture to make him do the trick on command. Make sure you have plenty of treats on hand and are generous with praise.
Your dog can learn any trick you wish to teach them, but it takes time, effort and consistency. To learn more about teaching your dog, whether it is basic commands or fun tricks, be sure to read some of the training articles we've featured here on the RPO blog over the years. You'll pick up some great ideas and learn a bit more about the ways you can train your dog for safety and for fun.
Teaching and performing dog tricks helps to build happy, confident dogs and is a great outlet for all of their energy.
In the process of learning new tricks you open up a genuine form of two way communication between you and your dog - as a result you'll find you are more in-tune with each other.
Trick training helps to build confident dogs who are not afraid to experiment in the training process - which is important.
Dog trick training is great for calming overly energetic dogs. Your dog's energy must come out in one way or another so why not channel it into something constructive and fun like trick training?
Dog tricks can be called on as an "alternate behavior" when your dog is doing something undesirable. For example, if your dog is barking at the door or jumping up on guests you could call on your "play dead" trick to redirect his/her behavior.
People who are nervous around dogs are often put at ease by a dog performing a cool trick like a "take-a-bow" or "roll-over" - your dog suddenly appears less threatening to them.
When teaching new tricks we make it a very simple step by step process for our dogs to follow. Training sessions are fun, short and focussed on one easy skill at a time for your dog to master. Then we gradually raise our goal or expectations and take it to a slightly higher level, until we have the complete and polished trick. Then we start all over again with a new trick!
We rely on consistency, timely feedback, positive reinforcement and repetition to shape new tricks. There is no place for excessive force or intimidation in any dog training - especially when it comes to teaching fun dog tricks!
General Rules For Teaching Your Dog Tricks Below are a few general rules to keep in mind whenever you are doing some dog trick training:
All dogs are different. There is no set way to teach tricks that will work for every dog on the block. It's up to you to discover what works best for your individual dog in regard to the motivation you use, length of training sessions and how quickly you progress through each new skill.
When you start out training a new trick always keep it simple for your dog. Start out with an easy skill, in a familiar place to your dog and with no other distractions present. Then build the trick up piece by piece and add some distractions when you feel your dog is ready.
Always provide clear, consistent and timely feedback to your dog. It's amazing how much your dog will look to you for cues and guidance. Ensure that you are relaying the right message to your dog in a timely and consistent fashion.
Generally speaking you are better off not training tricks immediately after feeding your dog or when he/she is bursting with energy. It's ideal if your dog is in a somewhat calm state and ready to focus on the task at hand - I know, this is not easy!
Always get the behavior (trick) you want your dog to perform first - then attach your cue or command to it. Not the other way around.
No dog is too young or old for some fun trick training sessions. As long as your dog is not restricted by any health problems you can get started right now!
Dogs don't generalize well. What this means in the context of trick training is that if you want your dog to perform his jaw dropping "roll-over" trick wherever you go, you must teach him how to do it everywhere you go.
Some basic obedience training is helpful before you begin to teach your dog tricks. Apart from helping the trick training process, obedience training is vital for your dog's safety and well-being.
Basic obedience should come first, but once you've mastered the essentials, teaching your dog a few tricks can be fun for you both, and gives you another way of interacting with him. Some tricks can also have a practical purpose, whether it's helping to put someone who is afraid of dogs at ease, or tackling obstacles when out on walks.
Keep lessons short and sweet: lots of mini training sessions are better than one long one. When teaching something new or asking for a more polished effort make sure the treat you offer is sufficiently motivational, and if using lots of titbits reduce meal sizes accordingly so your pet doesn't become overweight. Some dogs will find certain tricks easier than others; choose those which your dog is mentally and physically best suited to.
1 Sit This is usually one of the first things people teach their dogs, and forms part of basic obedience training. It can also be one of the most useful things to teach your pet. A sitting dog will be less frightening for those nervous of dogs. It's an alternative action to jumping up when meeting people (and one he can be rewarded for!) and always asking him to "Sit" before crossing a road will ensure he pauses rather than stepping straight out into passing traffic and even if he doesn't have a great stay or recall, a well-established and ingrained sit can drop him on the spot in an emergency.
The sit is very easy to teach. Hold a tasty treat in your hand just in front of your dog's nose and allow him to smell it but not eat it. Very slowly bring the treat up and back over his head; as his nose comes up following the treat, his back end will lower until he's sitting. Once he's sitting, praise and reward him. Practise at every opportunity, not just during training sessions, but asking him to "Sit" before having his collar and lead put on, or before getting his dinner (which then also becomes the reward). As he gets the idea, phase out holding a treat in your hand, but not the praise and reward, and gradually begin to make your hand signal more subtle. Attach a verbal command, and practise both so he'll respond promptly to either a gesture or your voice.
2 Commando Crawl Ask your dog to lie down, and then holding a treat just in front of his nose, use it to lure him forwards in a commando crawl. Move the treat slowly and keep it close to the ground, praise and reward every small movement at first, gradually increasing the distance you ask him to go until he can wriggle along on his tummy. This can be a handy trick if you come across a stile or barrier you can't lift him over while out on a walk, he can crawl under it instead.
3 Leg weave This looks really impressive but is actually very simple to teach. Hold a small treat in each hand and stand with your feet spaced far enough apart so that your dog can comfortably pass through them. Start with your dog in front of you, and lure him through your legs by holding the treat in your right hand behind your right leg. Move it forward and around your right leg as he follows it. As he comes level with your knee, praise and reward, and then use the treat in your left hand to encourage him to move through your legs again, but this time luring him round to your left hand side.
Once he's managing a single figure of eight with confidence, begin asking him to do one and a half, and then two continuous weaves, gradually increasing the number before rewarding. This is a great exercise for increasing coordination and agility, but does require a lot of concentration, so build it up in easy stages. As he starts finding it easier you'll find he becomes faster, but don't rush him while he's still learning. As he grasps what you want him to do, you'll find you'll also be able to start straightening up and giving more subtle hand signals.
4 Take a bow While your dog is standing facing you, take a small treat in one hand and place it right in front of his nose. Very slowly lower the treat towards the ground just between his front paws, as his nose follows it his front end will go downwards while his back end stays in the air, making it look as though he's taking a bow. Praise and reward him. Gradually increase the time he stays in the bow, and also begin moving your hand less, but continue to bend forwards, this becomes your cue, but to anyone watching it will look as though you're politely bowing to each other.
5 Roll over Ask your dog to lie down, and then use a treat to lure him into lying on his side by placing it just in front of his nose and bringing it slowly round towards his shoulder. When he's comfortable about doing this, bring your hand round a bit further towards his spine, and as his nose follows the treat take it a bit further still until he rolls right over.
Once he's confident with rolling over you can attach a cue word just before he goes over so he begins to associate it with the action.
6 Round the twist Take a small treat in one hand between thumb and second finger, with your index finger pointing out. Hold the treat just in front of your dog's nose and slowly use it to lure him round in a half circle, at which point praise and reward him. As he becomes adept at managing half a circle, increase it to asking him to complete a full circle before praising and rewarding. Once he's grasped the idea of following your index finger you can begin to straighten up, cueing him with a circular movement from a standing position, and gradually making it a more subtle signal.
He'll probably find it easier to circle in one direction than the other: start by going in the direction he finds most comfortable. Once he's grasped that, you can teach him to circle in the opposite direction in exactly the same way. Attach a different verbal command as well as moving your finger in the opposite direction to differentiate between anticlockwise and clockwise circles.
7 Catch Learning to catch a treat isn't always as easy for your dog as you might think, and it can take time for him to perfect the necessary coordination, so be patient with him if he fluffs it at first. Make your throws easy to start with, throwing upwards and towards his mouth, it helps if you use slightly larger treats rather than tiny ones.
If he doesn't make much of an effort, but just lets the treat bounce off his nose and on to the floor, be ready to beat him to it and pick it up before he can eat it so he doesn't end up getting a reward for doing nothing. As he starts to get better at catching the treat, you can begin to use smaller ones and to throw them a little to the side to make it more challenging.
8 Balance the treat This requires a huge amount of self-control from your dog as well as the ability to stay motionless until you release him. Ask him to sit and gently support his chin with one hand so his nose is parallel to the ground while you place a biscuit on top of it. Use a treat which is a bit boring rather than super-tempting. To start with, gently hold the biscuit in place for a second, then remove it, and praise and reward him.
Gradually increase the time you hold the treat there, then progress to letting go of it and increasing the time you can do that, and then to briefly removing your hand from beneath his chin. Build up the time he can manage to keep it balanced on his nose, and either finis's good at catching, say "Catch" to encourage him to flip the treat in the air and catch it.
9 Wipe your face Make it look as though your dog is cleaning his face by gently sticking a Post-it note to the top of his muzzle. Most dogs will bring a paw up to wipe the annoying piece of paper off. When he does, praise and reward him and repeat, using another Post-it if he's dislodged the first one. Once he's consistently bringing his paw up to wipe his face, attach a cue word, and keep practising until he's made the association and you can do away with the Post-its. Don't use anything stickier than a Post-it note as it will stick too firmly to his fur and will hurt him when he tries to remove it.
10 Shake Hands Start by having your dog sit. Say, "Shake hands," and take his paw with your hand. Hold his paw and say, "Good dog!" Let go of his paw. Do this a few times every day.
After a while, say, "Shake hands," but don't take his paw. See if he raises his paw by himself. If not, keep showing him what to do by saying, "Shake hands," and taking his paw with your hand. Your dog is not slow, he is just learning!
11 High Five Start by having your dog shake. If your dog does not shake, just touch the back of her paw and say shake. Once your dog starts to offer her paw, turn your hand up so your hand is facing your dog. Start saying "high five" while holding your hand up. When yoour dog hits your hand with her paw, quickly say good dog and reward with a treat. When your dog starts to hit your hand with her paw, start to slightly raise your hand higher and higher.
Keep raising your hand until you can stand and your dog jumps up to high five your hand. Reward your dog as soon as she does. Hold your right hand in the air again and say the command "high five" but do not reach for your dog's paw. Hopefully he will place his paw against your hand. Allow him the opportunity to do it on his own before you reach for his paw. If he does it on his own, reward him immediately with treats or praise. They should first know how to shake before teaching this
12 Speak/Bark/Vocalize Choose a game that your dog loves to play, like catch with a ball, or hide and seek with a toy. Then get him excited by saying, "Let's play! Want to play?" and show him the ball or toy. Jump and act silly so he barks and then say, "Good dog, speak!" Then play the game as his reward for learning "Speak".
You can't make a dog bark, but you can get him happy and excited so he wants to bark. After a while, your dog will bark when you say, "Speak." Caution! If you have a dog that already causes trouble because of his barking, you might not want to encourage this behavior. If you decide it's ok to teach it, be sure to teach "quiet", too, but do it at some other time. Positive reinforcement will take you far with this type of trick. "Give him a treat and a command whenever he barks or makes a noise you want him to repeat," Dr. Halligan says. "Even when he sneezes, you give him a cookie and say, 'Sneeze.' Then repeat that until he can do a real sneeze when you say the command. It's really easy.
13 Play Dead Have your dog lie down on his tummy. As you gently roll him over on his side, say, "Take a nap." While he is lying on his side, keeping his head on the floor, say, "Take a nap." Don't give him a treat. Encourage him to stay there for a couple of seconds. Then say, "Ok" or "Wake up!", let him stand up, and give him his reward.
You can use the treat to lure your dog into a lying down position. Don't give your a dog a reward while he is lying down. Give him a treat after he has completed the trick.
14 Beg Have your dog sit, facing you. Hold his favorite treat just above his head and tell him, "Say please." Your dog will probably lift his front feet off the ground to reach the treat. As soon as the feet are lifted, even a little bit, give him the treat.
This is a hard trick for most dogs. Wait a little longer each time before giving the treat, but be careful not to let your dog fall over on his back. You are helping your dog develop his balance. Be kind and only do this a couple of times.
15 Kiss Here's an easy one: Every time your dog licks your face, say, "Give me a kiss. Good boy! Give me a kiss." If he isn't a licker, put a little peanut butter on your cheek and say, "Give me a kiss." When he licks it off say, "Give me a kiss," again.
Tricks like this work because you put words with something your dog does. Pretty soon your dog hears "Give me a kiss," and thinks about licking your face. Then you give him a hug, rub his ears and say, "Good boy!" Dogs love that.
16 Fetch If your dog doesn't fetch naturally, have an adult cut a slit in a tennis ball (a smaller, rubber ball if that is too big). Put some treats inside the tennis ball. Show your dog that there are treats in there, and give her one. Then, throw the ball. In the beginning, run with her and get the ball, then give her the treat. Soon you will be able to throw the ball and she will go get it, because she wants the treat!.
After your dog has figured out what he has to do to get a treat, start throwing the ball two times in a row without giving him the treat. What you are trying to do is give him the treats less and less often so someday he won't need the treats in the ball to fetch it.
17 Wave Your dog should know how to shake hands before learning this trick. Face your dog and hold out your hand as if you are going to shake. When your dog lifts her paw to shake, don't grab it, just pull back your hand, and say "Wave". Then give your dog a treat.
At first your dog may not lift her paw very high.
But once she realizes that you're going to give her a treat if she holds it up there, she'll get it. You may have to tease her a little with your hand so she thinks you are going to shake with her. Waving your hand a little may help to get her paw into a waving motion as well.
18 Take a Bow (Method 1) When you see your dog take a big stretch, with his head down low, say, "Take a bow." Every time he wakes up and stretches, say, "Take a bow." Someday you will say, "Take a bow." and your dog will take a big stretch, but it will look like he is bowing. As soon as he is finished, give him the treat.
Tip(method 1) Tricks like this work because you put words with something your dog does. It may take some dogs longer than others to figure this one out. Some dogs learn it in a week and some take years - yes, years! But one day you will say, "Take a bow," and maybe, just maybe, your dog will take a bow.
TIP (Method 2) With your dog in a stand position, take a treat and hold it near the floor, under his nose. As your dog reaches down to get it (he may try to lie down), slip your hand under his belly to hold his rear end up. Hold him in that position and say, "Take a bow." Keep the treat right by his nose, but don't feed him. Stay there for just a second, release him, and then feed the treat.
TIP (method 2) If you feed your dog the treat while he is in the bowing position, in the future he won't bow until he sees the treat in your hand. If he learns that the treat comes later, he'll be willing to perform for you without it right there all the time.
19 Rollover Have your pup sit and lie down, and then, keeping the food lure extremely close to the pup's body, instruct the pup to "Rollover," and move the lure backwards along one side of its muzzle to the top of its neck and over its shoulders. It may help if you tickle the doggie's 'doodads' with the other hand. (Physical contact in the inguinal region causes most dogs to raise a hind leg.) As your pup rolls over onto its side and back, keep moving the food lure so that it rolls completely over into the down position once more. Once your puppy has mastered roll-over, a variation is to have the pup roll in the opposite direction with the obvious request, "Now, roll the other way."
20 Bang Another variation of rollover is to have the pup stay on its side or back and play possum. Firstly, try this from the down position. Say "Bang," point your finger like a pistol, move the lure as above, but as soon as the pup is on its side or back, say "Stay" and keep the treat stationary. Secondly, try this from the sitting position. After saying "Bang," give a down signal followed by the rollover signal. Thirdly, try "Bang" from a stand-stay using the combined down- and rollover-signals as before. Finally, try it when the pup is walking. Kids just love this one. So do many adults. "Bang" is the essence of the Omega Rollover.
21 Back-up With your puppy in heel position, sandwiched between yourself and a wall, instruct it to "Back-up," and then move the food lure under the pup's chin and into its brisket. Alternatively, this exercise may be taught in a narrow passageway, such as between a bed and a wall. It is good to alternate "Back-up" with both "Forwards" and "Stand-stay." The concept of forwards and backwards is a good one to learn in other body positions, such as the sit-stay. "Sit Forwards" and "Sit Back" are fine-adjustments to ensure that the dog is ideally placed to set off heeling for example. "Sit Back" is also good when the dog is too eager to get out of the front door.
22 Grovel Start with the pup in a down-stay, and inch the food lure along the ground a little way in front of its nose. If the pup stands up, just try again. Alternatively, move the food lure under some low-slung barrier, such as a bed, coffee table or even under your leg. "Grovel" is helpful for dogs with creeping down-stays. By alternating "Grovel and "Down-Stay," the dog at long-last grasps the essential difference. Now of course, "Grovel," previously the problem that distracted from obedient stays, has become the reward for good down-stays.
23 Give us a hug Start with your dog in a sit-stay. Say "Give us a hug," energize the dog by waggling a food lure in front of its nose, and then, slap your chest like a gorilla. It is wise to alternate "Give us a hug" with both sit-stays and down-stays. Thus, the dog learns the difference between enthusiastic and controlled greetings. This wonderful trick is a simple solution for puppies which like to jump-up. First, we train the puppy to sit when greeting people, and then, we may teach the adult dog to jump-up, but only on our terms, i.e., only on cue, when the time is convenient, and we are prepared to enjoy the dog's advances. For example, probably only certain doggy-people will invite the dog to jump up, when they are wearing dog-proof clothing. (The dog-disinterested may be instructed to say "Steady," "Off," "Back-up," "Go to your mat" and "Sit.") On returning home, instruct your dog to down-stay. Formally greet the dog, and then change into dog greeting clothes, and once prepared, ask the dog to jump-up and hug. Now, jumping-up (something the dog likes to do) becomes a reward for a good stay-greeting. Training a dog to shake hands on request is a similar ploy to combat an annoying pawing habit.
24. Bow Instruct your pup to stand, and move the food lure down to the ground to come to rest a few inches in front of the pup's front paws. The puppy will lower its forequarters until elbows and sternum touch the ground. With some pups it is necessary to place the other hand underneath, but without touching, the pup's belly to prevent the hindquarters from collapsing into a down. The playbow posture is a solicitation to play - an 'atmosphere cue' which communicates that subsequent behaviors are playful. This is a wonderful trick for children. If a child can successfully entice the dog to bow, the dog is saying it likes the kid and would like to play, and as such, it is unlikely the dog would be frightened or irritated by the child's antics. Also, "Playbow" is a wonderful instruction to give to your dog when it meets other dogs.
25. Turn around Have your puppy stand-stay facing you and move the lure in a horizontal circle over the pup's head, so the dog turns in a full circle to come and face you once more. Once your pup learns to turn around, you can teach it to "Turn - The Other Way."
26. Dance Instruct your pup to sit and beg, and then raise the lure a couple of head-lengths, so the puppy stands on its hind legs. Once the pup can balance for several seconds, it may be enticed to walk forwards or to circle as above. While your pooch probably won't be able to do the merengue like this dog, you can train him to boogie down with you. "Getting him to stand on his hind legs is pretty easy; just place a treat by his nose and raise it and say, 'Up, up!' until he stands," says Summers. Once he's done that, hold it up for increasing amounts of time to build up how long he can hold the stance. "Once he's mastered that, then you can walk backward and get him to follow you, and walk forward so he'll back up." However, Summers notes that if you've taught him not to jump up on people, this trick might send him mixed messages.
27. Fetch a ball Retrieval is an excellent way to teach vocabulary. Your dog may be instructed to retrieve many different articles, for example, tennis balls and golf balls, newspapers, neighbor's newspapers, slippers, etc. In so doing, the dog learns the name of each item. Discriminated retrieves have many useful applications in the home. For example, stand by your dog's toy box, and have the dog tidy up the house by retrieving every dog-toy in sight and depositing them in its toy box. Also, dogs are great at finding lost keys, lost baseballs and lost dogs.
Firstly, teach your dog to retrieve exciting objects, such as a tennis ball, chewtoy, bone, or slipper using the "Off" - "Take it" - Thank you" triad. Then, work with less exciting articles. Once the dog reliably retrieves each article by itself, instruct your dog to retrieve one of two articles, then one of three and so on. Give the dog the sun, moon and stars each time it successfully brings back the requested item first try. If it touches, picks up, or brings back the wrong item, just keep repeating the original request until it gets it right, whereupon reward the dog, but this time only moderately. The dog soon learns that incredible rewards are available for retrieving the correct object first try, lesser rewards for eventually getting it right and zip for getting it wrong. Use life rewards. For example, if the dog correctly chooses to bring its leash, it gets to go on a walk, or if it correctly retrieves its tennis ball, you will throw it.
NEVER punish the dog for making the wrong choice. Not only will punishment deter the dog from making further wrong choices, but also it will deter the dog from making any choice at all, i.e., the dog will stop retrieving. If you become frustrated with your dog's poor performance (i.e., your poor teaching), retrieve the articles yourself, sit down, calm down and try again tomorrow.
28. Go to bed "Go to bed" means go to the bed AND lie down. You should only need to say "Go to bed". Put a bed, blanket, or towel 6-10 feet away from you. With your dog beside you say "Go to bed!" and then together go to the bed. Have your dog lie down on the bed, give her a treat, and praise. Repeat many times. Later on, try sending your dog by herself. At first, make sure that someone is waiting at the bed with a treat.
Later, your dog will do it herself, and you will walk over to her while she is lying down and reward her.
The "Go to..." commands are another wonderful vocabulary learning tool. The puppy may be trained to go to places, for example, its mat, bed, basket, or crate, to go outside, inside, upstairs or downstairs, to get in the back seat of the car or front seat, to get off the couch and on the couch, etc., or to go to different people. In teaching these exercises, the puppy learns the names of different locations in the home and the names of different family members and friends.
29. Go to places... Request your pup to "Go to your mat," show the puppy a food lure, run and put it on the pup's mat. As soon as the pup reaches its mat, it may pick up the food lure as a reward. At a later stage in training, put the reward on the pup's mat before telling it to go there. The puppy learns it is highly beneficial to follow the owner's advice and check out its mat when told, even if the owner has nothing of value on their person. When the pup reaches its mat, ask it to settle down. Periodically, give the pup treats whilst it remains on its mat. Dogs may be trained to go to a variety of locations using this method.
A quicker way to train inside/outside, upstairs/downstairs, on/off the couch and back seat/front seat locations is to take a bunch of dry kibble from the puppy's dinner bowl, and for example, stand on the threshold of the back door and to randomly alternate the requests "Outside" and "Inside." After saying "Outside," throw a piece of kibble outside, and after saying "Inside," throw a piece of kibble indoors. The pup soon learns to predict the direction of jettisoned kibble from the owner's instruction and quickly scampers in the appropriate direction.
Place commands are wonderful, particularly in times of stress or confusion, e.g., when a gaggle of infant and adult monsters crowd the front door at Halloween, whenever the dog is in the way or just acting like a plain jerk. With a single command - "Go to your mat," "Downstairs," or "Outside," the dog is under control once more.
30. Go to people... When two people are training the pup at the same time, it is possible to do yo-yo recalls back and forth. Dad asks the pup to sit and then instructs it (once only) "Rover, Go to Mother." Mother waits one second and then calls Rover. After doing a little obedience and/or trick routine with the pup, Mother tells it, "Rover, Go to Dad." Dad waits one second and then, calls the pup and so forth. The puppy quickly learns when one person says "Go to..." the other person calls and gives me a treat. Since the pup is eager to help the owner's training, it rushes to the other person as soon as the "Go to...," request is given, i.e., the pup has anticipated the recall and learned the meaning of the "Go to..." request. This time it receives several treats and a hug.
Working with just two people, the puppy may anticipate recalls at inappropriate times and run back and forth between the two owners without any instruction being given. A profitable way around this problem is to practice round-robin recalls with three or more people. As before, one person instructs the pup "Go to Jamie," and Jamie calls the pup after one second. The puppy cannot just dart off to the other person to get a reward, since there are two or more people to choose from. Instead, the pup has to wait for the full instruction to identify the name of the person. If it goes to the right person, it gets wonderfully rewarded, but if it goes to the wrong person, it is ignored.
"Go to people" commands may be practiced with different people spread out in different rooms of the house or on walks outdoors. It is one of the quickest ways to exercise a dog to exhaustion with minimal expenditure of energy on behalf of the owners. On walks, owners may instruct their German Wirehair, for example, to run back and forth and cover nearly 20 miles while the owners walk barely a mile.
"Go to people" commands have many uses with the family, which now has its very own Search and Rescue dog. If little Johnny is lost on a camping trip, Dad can instruct Rover to "Go to Jamie," and good old Rove can use his vastly superior olfactory powers to track down the little worm. Alternatively, tie a note to Rover's collar, and our faithful friend may be used to deliver messages to another person, such as "Time to come inside for dinner," "Pleeeease bring some coffee upstairs" or "Come up to the television room and change the channel."
31. Swimming Training a dog to swim is not very difficult and is a very healthy activity for all dogs. The benefit for a dog that enjoys swimming includes better cardiovascular health, relieving arthritic aches and pains in the joints as they age, and helping to lose weight. You may own a dog who takes to water like a duck to a pond, but other dog breeds need a little help to get started.
To begin training a dog to swim you should have a friend along to help in case of an emergency. Choose a nice warm day and a body of water without distractions of boaters, jet skis and sunbathers. It should be noted that young dogs and puppies have yet to learn a fear of water and will be much easier to train for this activity. For this article we will assume we are dealing with an adult dog.
The initial lesson will have you carry the dog into the water to a depth of your knees. Gently lower the dog into the water while you have his or her head pointed towards your friend on the shore. The dog will naturally begin to make a paddling movement with the legs so keep one hand under the chest and the other hand holding the tail and hind end up. Allow the dog to begin to get a feel for the swimming action and release your hold on the dog.
At this point in the lesson your friend on shore needs to be calling the dog by his name and encouraging him to swim to shore. Once the dog has swum to shore give him a special treat, and plenty of praise.
You can use this same basic swimming lesson in a pool as well. NEVER take a dog that has not learned to swim and toss him into any body of water. This is an inhumane thing to do and may well either drown the dog, or frighten him so bad he will never go near water again.
If you are not having any luck, enlist the help of a dog trainer. You can also begin the lessons by taking along another dog that is already a good swimmer. Your dog will want to do as the other dog is doing, and may begin to swim without any help. Training a dog to swim is not hard and will provide many hours of enjoyment for the dog and your family.
32. Jumping over the rope The first step for begins with a pole or cane. Once you have your dog's attention, hold the cane/pole a couple of inches off the ground in one hand, and with your other hand hold a favorite treat on the other side of the cane/pole, and give the command "jump". The dog will step over to get his treat. Gradually increase the height of the cane until the dog is jumping over to receive his treat. Have your dog sit before giving the jump command so the rope training will be under better control as you progress to the rope trick training.
Once you have your dog jumping a height appropriate to his or her size and athletic abilities try using a hoop and your arm as you extend it. OK, now on to the rope.
You will need to secure one end of the rope to a tall pole and hold the other end in your hand. Use a tall pole so you can gradually move the rope up from a low level to as high as your dog can safely clear. With the rope only a few inches off the ground give your dog the jump command word you have used for the previous training. As the dog masters jumping over the rope slowly begin to swing the rope while he continues to learn jumping the moving rope. Once he has this down you can gradually increase the swinging until you are making a complete circle and he is jumping the rope when you give the command. Use treats at first but slowly stop the rewards because the dog will not need further incentive. He will be having too much fun to stop for a treat.
33. And more... Teaching your dog something new is a great way of keeping him mentally stimulated. Be prepared to get a little creative and imaginative yourself if a method isn't working and there's more than one way of teaching a trick, and you might find a different one more successful with your dog if he's struggling to understand what you want him to do.
34. Sword Fighting This is a trick for ADULTS to teach to dogs. In fact children should never teach dogs tricks alone, and should be supervised at all times around dogs. Remember! ALWAYS use a TOY or soft object for this trick! The idea is to have fun with your dog in a SAFE environment. NEVER swing an object at a dog without training the dog to feel relaxed and comfortable with the "game"! NEVER actually TOUCH the dog with the object in this video- if the dog doesnt want to jump, be patient and go back a step. This trick is about teaching the dog to jump for the fun of it, like in agility, not to jump out of avoidance.
35. Respond to the Clicker Step 1: Click and give your dog a treat.
Step 2: Repeat about 30 times. This teaches your dog to associate the click with the treat.
Step 3: To maintain this connection, it is important to follow the rule: Never click without treating and never treat without clicking. We have one exception to this important rule in the Come command
36. Calling Dog Name Step 1: Ignore your dog until he looks directly at you. Click and treat.
Step 2: Do this several times, eventually adding your dog's name right before you click and treat.
Step 3: Continue doing this until your dog will look at you when you say his name.
37. Dog Touch
38. Learn Names Step 1: Have your dog touch your hand and click treat.
Step 2: Hold the object in your hand and say touch. Click treat when he touches the object not when he touches your hand.
Step 3: Call the object by its name (tug, squeaky, bunny, etc.) just as he touches it. Click and treat.
Step 4: Repeat 5 times.
Step 5: Hold the object and say its name and click and treat when he touches it.
Step 6: For teaching the names of people (Bob, Joe, Dad, Mom, etc.) and places like Bed, corner, kennel, etc.) use the training stick to introduce the person or place.
39. Ring a bell!
Step 1: Use a training stick to target the bell.
Step 2: When he touches the bell, click and treat.
Step 3: When he touches the bell on his own, click and jackpot.
Step 4: Whenever you take him outside, have him touch the bell first. The reward is to open the door.
Step 5: our canine will, in a few days, learn that the door opens when he rings the bell.
40. Leap Step 1: Have your dog sit and stay while you lay a stick on the ground. Cross over to the other side of the stick and call your dog. As soon as the dog crosses the stick, click and treat.
Step 2: Do this a few more times before adding height to the stick by placing a couple of thick books underneath it. Click and treat while he is crossing the stick.
Step 3: As your dog becomes accustomed to crossing the stick, add height with more books. Once it gets high enough that your dog has to jump over it, start saying "Leap" before clicking and treating. Keep doing this until your dog will leap when commanded!
41. Jump Through Hoops Step 1: Let your dog get used to the hoop. Set it on the ground; click and treat when he approaches it.
Step 2: Have a helper hold the hoop (do not elevate the hoop) on the floor in front of him.
Step 3: Call your dog or lure him through the hoop. Click and treat as he walks through the hoop. Repeat this a few times so he will get used to walking through it.
Step 4: Hold the hoop a bit higher and tell him to "Leap!" Click and treat if he jumps through the hoop.
Step 5: Keep on giving the hoop more height, clicking and treating each time.
42. Jump Over People Step 1: f your dog can comfortably jump over a stick elevated about 25 inches from the ground then you can begin to teach him to jump over people who are on their hands and knees in the crawl position.
Step 2: Have your dog jump over the stick. Click & treat. (repeat a few times).
Step 3: Have a helper kneel on their hands and knees.
Step 4: Hold the stick just over him. Have your dog jump over the stick. Click and Jackpot. (If your dog won't jump over the stick with the person under it, try having the person lie down on the ground).
Step 5: After a few repetitions have your dog jump without using the stick. Click and treat.
Step 6: Try adding people spaced about 10 feet apart for a nice show at your next barbecue.
43. Dog Spin Step 1: Using your touch stick, guide your dog around in a circular motion. As he makes a full turn, click and treat.
Step 2: Keep doing this several times, eventually adding a hand signal (circular motion with index finger).
Step 3: Use the touch stick less.
When your dog can spin without the touch stick, add your command.
Step 4: Practice until your dog can spin at your command!
44. Shake Step 1: Catch this trick with the clicker. Click and treat after you give him a bath or after you go outside in the rain when he shakes the water off.
Step 2: If he offers the behavior again click and jackpot.
Step 3: Click and treat and give the command "shake" whenever he shakes.
Step 4: Give the command when he shakes, jackpot.
45. Roll Over Step 1: Have your dog lay down.
Step 2: Lure him with the training stick or with your treat to have him move over to one hip and on his side. Click and treat.
Step 3: Use the lure to get him to go over on his back. (This may take time for some dogs). Click and treat.
Step 4: Continue using the lure to get him to roll all the way over. Jackpot when he does this. (Some people have used gently sloping ground to make it easier for the dog to roll all the way over).
Step 5: When your dog is rolling over more readily, stop using the lure. Expect more before you click and treat, but praise and jackpot when he performs well.
Step 6: After he is rolling over smoothly, start giving him the verbal command "Roll over." A circular hand signal is also helpful. Always praise and intermittently click and treat when he performs well.
45. Voice, Speak! Step 1: Get your dog to bark. For example, if you know that your dog barks when the doorbell is rung, then ring the bell, and when he barks say "Speak" and click and treat.
Step 2: After repeating this several times, try giving him the command (Speak). If he obeys and barks, give him a jackpot.
46. Hush Step 1: Focus your attention on your dog while he is barking. If he looks at you and stops barking, even for a second, click and treat.
Step 2: Repeat this several times, eventually adding the word "Hush" as you click and treat.
Step 3: After several training sessions while your dog is barking, give your dog the command and click and treat when he hushes. Repeat this until he has mastered the trick. Each time you repeat, try and go for longer durations of silence.
Step 4: You can now add a hand signal to help with this trick. Use it whenever you give the command, and he'll associate it with the trick.
47. TUG Teaching Your Dog To Tug: Step 1: Take a rope toy and offer it to the dog and say "take it." (Reward your dog with praise when he moves toward the rope toy.)
Step 2: When your dog takes it, gently shake and tug the rope toy to get the dog to hold and pull against the tugs.
Step 3: Click and Treat when your dog tugs back on the rope toy. Use "Tug" as your command. Keep repeating this until your dog will tug at it eagerly.
Teaching Your Dog To Give: Step 1: With your dog pulling firmly on the rope, say "give" at the same time offering a treat. When he drops the rope toy, click and treat.
Step 2: Reinforce this trick by repeating four or five times per session. Pay special attention to the "give" command. This is important for your safety. Make sure that your dog will stop the game with the "give" command.
Step 3: Play tug several times a day. Each time you play the game make sure you use the commands saying "take it" when you your dog takes the rope and "give" when you want him to release the rope.
48. Open & Close the Door
Teaching Your Dog to Open a Door Step 1: Tie a bandana or cloth around your door. Tell him to tug it. Wait until he tugs the door open, then click and treat.
Step 2: Keep doing this, eventually saying, "open" whenever he tugs the door open. Click and treat every time.
Step 3: After your training session, he should be able to open the door at your command.
Teaching Your Dog to Close the Door: Step 1: Put your touch stick on the door.
Step 2: Each time he touches it and moves the door a little, click and treat.
Step 3: Start waiting until he has pushed the door closed. Click and treat.
Step 4: Do this until he will close the door each time. Click and treat generously when he does this!
Step 5: Start saying "close" when he closes the door. After repeating the action several times, he should close the door at your command.
49. Fetch a Rope Step 1: Start by playing tug. Say the "take it" command when you want your dog to pick up the rope toy, and then the "give" when you want him to release the rope.
Step 2: Have your dog "give" the rope, but then toss it a few feet away. Say, "take it." Click treat when he picks up the rope.
Step 3: Generally, your dog should be excited about playing the tug game, and will usually come back to play some more.
If he doesn't, repeat step two, this time getting him to bring it to you with the "come" command. Say "Give" and click and treat.
50. Walk Backwards Step 1: With your dog standing facing you, walk forward toward him. When he takes a step backwards, click and treat.
Step 2: Continue stepping forward. When he takes multiple steps backwards, click and treat.
Step 3: Practice this until he understands that if he backs up, he deserves a treat. Start walking toward him less. You can use a signal instead (Try waving the back of your hand toward him, or taking a single step forwards).
Step 4: Once he has learned this, say "Back" as he backs up and as you give the hand signal. Do this several times until well learned. Remember to click and treat when he cooperates.
Step 5: Give him the command and see if he'll back up! Click and treat well each time he obeys. Reinforce with extra training sessions.
51. Yawn Step 1: Most dogs will yawn when they are anxious. You can use that to help you catch the yawn. Look for your dog to yawn when he wants to go outside or wants a ball or toy that you are holding. When he yawns, click and treat. Because this trick has to be "caught" with the clicker, it can be fairly difficult, and you have to time your clicks just right.
Step 2: When he starts to offer a yawn because he has been treated for it, go ahead and give the command you want to associate with his action. It could be yawn, tired, or sleepy, but in any case, be consistent with your command. Repeat three to four times per session.
Step 3: After several sessions of training your dog to yawn, give him the command and see if he will respond with a yawn.
52. Bring the Slippers Step 1: Using the "Learn Names" trick, teach your dog the name of whichever object you want him to bring you (Slippers, for example).
Step 2: Now that he knows what the name of the object is, tell him to "Take my Slippers." Click and treat.
Step 3: Tell your dog to Take it and Bring it. If he does so, click and treat.
Step 4: Now, try combining all three tricks. First, say, "Get my Slippers!" Then, "Take it, Bring it, and Drop it." If he does what you ask, click and give him a generous treat. Repeat this until you have a polished trick.
53. Bring the Leash! Step 1: Set the leash on the floor. Tell him to take it. Click and treat when he does.
Step 2: Go to the door. Tell him to take the leash, bring it, and drop it in your hands. Click and treat.
Step 3: Repeat the take it, bring it, drop it action several times, saying, "Leash!" when he drops it in your hands.
Step 4: Eliminate the "take it, bring it, drop it" commands and start only using "Leash." You can also use a hand signal to give him a hint.
Step 5: Command him to get his leash. Click and Jackpot if he obeys you, and take him outside for a long walk!
54. Bring the Dish! Step 1: Use the "Learn the Names of Everything" (Trick #13) to teach him to touch his dish on command.
Step 2: Teach him to hold the dish in his mouth using the "take it" command. Your dog may not like holding a metal dish in his mouth, but this trick is worth the extra effort. Take extra time with this step.
Step 3: With the dish on the floor say the name "dish." When he starts to touch the dish say "take it." If he takes the dish in his mouth at all click and treat.
Step 4: Repeat steps 2 and 3 several times in multiple training sessions.
Step 5: With your dog holding the dish in his mouth say "bring it." Click and treat when he takes a few steps toward you with the dish.
Step 6: As you repeat step 3 introduce the command "get your dish." When he takes it, click and treat.
Step 7: Repeat step 6 in several sessions.
Step 8: Give the command "get your dish." Click and treat when he brings it to you. Gradually extend the distance from the bowl as you perfect this trick.
55. Find Items Step 1: Have your dog sit.
Step 2: Hold up an object that he is familiar with (he knows its name) and let him smell it.
Step 3: Place the object under something obvious (like a towel), and say "find it." You might add the name of the object if it doesn't do it quickly ("find it" bunny). Click and treat when he touches the object.
Step 4: Repeat several times, but each time you repeat move the object to a different location, getting progressively more difficult. Click and treat each time.
Step 5: Let him smell and then hide other objects that he is not familiar with and give the "find it" command.
56. Catch! Step 1: Start out with a short distance and a good treat. Throw the treat to your dog. If he doesn't catch it, take the treat away and try again. If he does catch it, praise him and give him another treat!
Step 2: Keep doing this until he is catching well. Start saying "Catch" while he is catching them.
Step 3: Give him the command - "Catch!" and throw the treat. Give him lots of praise if he catches it at your command!
Step 4: Use other objects like footballs, tennis balls, or toys to give him more experience with catching. The more he practices, the better he will get!
57. Ashamed Step 1: Put some scotch tape or a sticky note on your dog's nose so that she paws at it. Click and treat.
Step 2: Repeat this a few times, but add in your command. Think of a short phrase such as "I'm Ashamed of you!" Use this command each time she paws at her nose.
Step 3: Take the tape off and give your command. Give her a jackpot if she paws at her nose!
Step 4: you wish, you can accompany this trick with her laying down. While teaching her, have her lay down before she paws at her nose.
58. Left or Right Side Step 1: With your touch stick, have your dog go around your right side and stand by your left side. Click and treat.
Step 2: Keep doing this, eventually saying, "Left" as soon as he stands by your left side.
Step 3: Repeat this action until he no longer needs the touch stick and can go to your left side at your command.
Step 4: Do the same thing, this time teaching him to go from your left side to your right side.
59. Weave Step 1: Set up obstacles, such as orange cones (bought at Wal-mart), buckets, or even red plastic cups in a straight line. Start with three or four, and space them 24-30 inches apart. With your touch stick, guide your dog in and out of the obstacles, starting from the left side. When he goes in and out of one or two, click and treat. Continue to do this until he goes in and out of all of them.
Step 2: After getting your dog used to these motions, start saying "Weave" when he is finishing up his trick. Click and treat.
Step 3: Do this several times until your dog will weave at your command. This is a hard trick to teach, and it may take many training sessions. Fully expect your dog to go after the obstacles and try and play with them. Gently guide his attention back to your treats, and get him focused again on the touch stick.
60. Count Step 1: Have your dog sit facing you.
Step 2: Hold a treat in your left hand and hold your right hand up. (Here we are getting the dog to associate the speak command with the visual command of holding your right hand up). Also look your dog in the eye (I look directly into his right eye).
Step 3: Have the dog speak, and treat when he barks.
Step 4: Repeat. But this time only drop your hand (also avert your eyes) and treat when he barks twice. (This may take some patience).
Step 5: Work on this several times a day until your little Einstein realizes he must continue to bark until you drop your hand.
Step 6: Gradually fade from holding your right hand up so that your dog will use your eyes as the cue to stop speaking.
Step 7: Keep refining this trick until he has a smooth flow of barks and stops as soon as you avert your eyes.
61. Jump Rope
Step 1: Put your dog on the table. Ask him to jump. Click and treat. Your dog should stay in the same place so he won't fall off the table.
Step 2: Tie the jump rope to another object. Let your dog get used to the jump rope by moving it back and forth.
Step 3: Give the jump rope almost a full turn, stopping before it crosses your dogs legs. At this point, tell him to Jump. When he does, slide the jump rope underneath. Do this several times, clicking and treating.
Step 4: As your dog gets more accustomed to the jump rope, you will be able to have smoother rotations. Work with your dog until he can do it just right.
62. Fetch a Drink Step 1: Get a bottle of soda appropriate for your dog's size and put it on the ground. Tell your dog to "Take It." Click and treat when he does. Do this several times.
Step 2: Now, tell your dog to "Take It" and "Bring it." When he brings it to you, tell him "Drop it" Do this repeatedly and remember to click/treat.
Step 3: Put the bottle a bit further away from you each time. Only click and treat if he takes it, brings it, and drops it into your hands. Soon, you can eliminate the three commands and instead use the phrase, "Bring me a drink!"
Step 4: Try asking him to perform the trick from different spots in the room, and then move to different rooms. It makes a terrific trick for house guests!
Turn On A Light Step 1: Using either a laser pointer or touch stick, get your dog in the habit of jumping up to touch the light switch. It is best to have him jump up with his pads on the wall (instead of his claws) touching the switch with his nose. I used a laser pointer here, because I would play with it as a game, knowing that he would really go after it even if it's on a wall.
Step 2: Using the clicker, begin clicking only when his nose pushes the light into the 'on' position. He will begin to realize the effect of his action, and expect a treat after Begin to only click when your dog begins and ends the trick by successfully turning the light on. He needs to understand that the trick is not two parts (jumping up on the wall, and hitting the switch) but one.
Turn It Off Step 1: The first step is very similar to step one of teaching him to turn 'on' the light. Get your dog used to jumping up on the wall, but instead of his pads touching the wall, click when his paw hits the light switch.
Step 2: Begin clicking only when he successfully turns 'off' the light switch. Dogs will notice the change in light in the room, and will usually look expectantly when he successfully turns out the lights.
Step 3: Begin clicking only when your dog successfully completes the trick from beginning to end. He needs to learn that in order to be treated, he has to perform the trick in one sitting.
65. Limp Step 1: Hook up your dog's leash to his collar and use it to pull his front dominant paw up, be very careful as you walk with him, click and treat when he walks one or two steps.
Step 2: Keep doing this until he is successfully 'Limping' with the help of the leash.
Step 3: Try to encourage your dog to put less weight on his lifted paw. Over time use less and less force on the leash, and he will be able to limp on his own.
66. Crawl Step 1: Tell your dog to lay down.
Step 2: With treat in hand, coax your dog to move forward with the touch stick. Make sure he does so while in the down position.
Step 3: Repeat several times. Once your dog is crawling naturally, begin saying 'Crawl' before you click and treat.
Step 4: Try stepping back from your dog and giving him the command, 'Crawl.' Click and jackpot if he responds to 'Crawl.' If not, revert to previous steps.
67. Jump Over People Step 1: If your dog can comfortably jump over a stick elevated about 25 inches from the ground then you can begin to teach him to jump over people who are on their hands and knees in the crawl position.
Step 2: Have your dog jump over the stick. Click & treat. (repeat a few times).
Step 3: Have a helper kneel on their hands and knees.
Step 4: Hold the stick just over him. Have your dog jump over the stick. Click and Jackpot. (If your dog won't jump over the stick with the person under it, try having the person lie down on the ground).
Step 5: After a few repetitions have your dog jump without using the stick. Click and treat.
Step 6: Try adding people spaced about 10 feet apart for a nice show at your next barbecue.
68. Twist & Twirl Teach your dog to spin around on command in either direction. Once he can do this you can try variations, such as spinning together as you walk! Begin with your dog in front of you and bend forwards slightly, holding a treat next to his nose. Slowly lure his head round towards his tail. You can click and treat if he moves his front feet just a single step. Keep practising until you can lure him in a full, tight circle. Click and reward when he is back in the starting position. Eventually he will do this in one movement. Add the word "Twist" for one direction and "Spin" for the other. Soon you will be able to do this standing up and without hand signals.
69. Dressage Trot If your dog can walk nicely to heel, try to get him to lift his head and do a fancy high trot to really show off his paces. Teach this by holding a toy or a tasty treat next to the dog's nose then walk with him in the heelwork position. Walk quite quickly so that he picks up the pace and gradually hold the treat or toy higher so that his head comes up. Click and reward for even the slightest high step and then gradually build up the distance. Eventually you should be able to dispense with the treat and your dog will lift his head to follow your hand.
70. Pole Dancing Try sticking a pole in a cone or an umbrella in a stand and teaching your dog to circle round it. Begin by keeping your dog on your right and hold a toy or treat out to lure him around the pole. Click just before he completes the circle and then reward. Practise in both directions, adding in a different command for each way, such as "Pole" or "Circle". Eventually you will be able to reduce your hand movements so that they are hardly visible. Ultimately you can impress your friends by asking your dog to circle around them on command.
71. In The Doghouse! A dog that will go to his mat or crate on command is a joy to be around. Begin by throwing some treats on the mat or in the crate and encourage your dog to find them. Give the word "Mat" or "Crate" as you do so. Eventually you can say the word and your dog will go to the mat or crate and wait for you to throw him his reward. You can gradually build up distance and your dog should happily run to his mat in anticipation of a reward.
72. Collect garbage If your dog enjoys chasing tissues, sweet wrappers and any other type of garbage that crosses his path when out for a walk, take the opportunity to teach him an unusual and very helpful trick. Teaching your dog to collect garbage is similar to teaching him how to play fetch. Next time you take your dog for a walk, take some tissues or pieces of paper with you. Take him to a wide open space, and then throw one tissue into the air. Command your dog to fetch the tissue and bring it back to you. If your dog does not yet know how to fetch, start by pointing to the item you want him to bring, and repeat the command. If he does not respond, walk over to the item with a treat in your hand so that your dog will follow you. Guide him towards the item or pick it up and offer it to him until he grasps it in his mouth.
After your dog masters holding the item in his mouth, start moving away from your dog slowly while commanding him to stay. After you have moved back at least 10 feet, call your dog towards you. Give him a treat only if he returns with the item in his mouth. Only command your dog to fetch your own garbage to avoid sharp items and harmful chemicals.
73. Salute Command your dog to sit in front of you, and administer a treat. Take a yellow post-it note or small piece of tape, and stick it just above your dog's eye. As your dog raises his paw to remove it, give him plenty of praise, and reward your dog with a treat. If your dog has extremely long fur or is afraid of the tape, there is another method to teach this trick. Ask your dog to give his paw, and then gently raise it over his head. As soon as it reaches over his eye, say the command, and administer a treat. With a little patience, you will eventually get your dog to salute you just by hearing the command.
74. Scateboarding Smaller breeds such as bulldogs and pugs are perfect for this trick as they have a lower centre of gravity. Start by introducing your dog to the skateboard gradually. Some dogs can be terrified of a noisy, moving object that has the ability to chase them, so it is important to break them in slowly. Place the skateboard upside down on a carpeted surface to allow your dog to inspect it at his own pace. Praise and reward him for any interest he shows in the skateboard. Spend a few sessions simply doing this and gently spinning the wheels to let him get comfortable before proceeding to the next step. Turn the skateboard the right way up, and start slowly rolling it away from your dog on the carpeted surface. Never roll it directly towards your dog as this may spook him. Take the skateboard outside, and continue rewarding your dog every time he shows interest or touches the skateboard. Slowly begin to entice your dog to mount the skateboard. You may have to give your dog some gentle encouragement at first by lifting him onto it. Once he stands still, reward him generously. Begin to build up your dog's confidence before graduating to pushing him on the skateboard. Once he feels safe and secure, gently roll him forwards and backwards whilst praising and administering treats.
75. Kiss Hold a treat in front of your face, and say the command. Offer your cheek towards your dog, and wait until he touches it with his nose. As soon as he makes contact, pull away, and give him the treat before he has a chance to lick you. If you are fast, your dog will eventually learn that all he has to do to get a reward is to lightly press his nose to your cheek. If your dog likes to nip when overexcited, do not allow children to perform this trick with him. It is also wise to take care with extra-large breeds as a small kiss can easily turn into a painful head-butt. If your dog knows how to be gentle, you can take the trick to the next level. Once he understands the command, teach him to give kisses to other family members and other dogs. Start by pointing at the other person and saying the command. You might have to give the person a treat to reward your dog with the first few times until he fully understands.
76. Handstand Toy dogs such as Chihuahuas sometimes perform this trick on their own as their large heads and small bodies make finding their balance a much easier task. It is possible to teach larger dogs this trick, but you must proceed very slowly in order to prevent your dog from hurting himself. Your dog will first need to build up the muscles used to perform this trick before he can perform it without assistance. Start by having your dog stand in front of a wall with his back legs raised on a book or small block. Repeat this step for several sessions until he gets used to it. Over time, add more books or blocks to increase the height of your dog's back legs. Once your dog is comfortable standing on as many books as possible, gently take his feet and place them on the wall. You will know when your dog is ready to proceed to each step by how well he raises himself off the ground to get into position. Once he is able to place his back feet on the wall without any trouble, hold a treat in front of his nose, and encourage him to move away from the wall. You may need to place a hand on his belly to help him get his balance at first.
78. Play Piano If your dog will do almost anything to earn treats, then teaching him to play the piano is extremely easy. Larger dog breeds should be able to perform this trick with a standard size piano. Start by placing a toy piano or keyboard in the centre of a quiet room without any distractions. As soon as your dog shows any interest in the piano, praise and reward him with treats. Keep the first few sessions short to ensure that your dog does not lose interest or become frustrated. Try tossing treats away from the piano whenever your dog shows an interest in it or nudges it with his nose and paw. As soon as he returns back to the piano, praise him enthusiastically, and toss another treat.
Once your dog begins to understand that good things happen whenever he approaches the piano, start limiting the amount of treats you give unless he concentrates his attention on the keyboard. Large and enthusiastic dogs may begin pressing keys without any prompting. If your dog needs a little encouragement, try placing the treats on the keys so that he has to press them with his nose in order to win the treat. As soon as he presses a key, say the command "play" and reward generously.
79. Peek-a-boo There are two different methods to teaching your dog this trick. If your dog can already give his paw on command, start by having him sit in front of you, and ask for his paw. Grasp his paw in your hand, and then raise it over his eyes. Repeat the command gently, and treat him immediately. Continue repeating the process until your dog makes the connection. Another way to teach this trick is by using a small piece of scotch tape. Have your dog sit in front of you, and then stick a small piece of tape or a yellow post-it note to the end of his nose. Ensure the tape is not too strong or he will have trouble removing it. Wait for your dog to raise his paw to remove the tape.
As soon as your dog lifts his paw to his nose, praise him, and administer a treat. Continue with the tape until he begins to understand the command. Next, try simply tapping your dog's nose gently to get him to raise his paw. If you repeat these steps whilst saying the command, your dog will eventually perform the trick automatically.
80. Toilet for Dog This can be one of the harder tricks to teach, but it is well worth the time spent getting it right. It is also ideal for those with limited mobility who cannot take their dog outside several times a day and for those that work long hours. Start by teaching your dog a command every time he goes outside to relieve himself. You can use the command "go to the toilet" or anything else that you find appropriate. Say this command every time your dog uses the toilet outside until he learns to associate it with relieving himself. Once your dog learns to use the toilet on command, introduce a plastic litter box into the toilet routine. Take it outside, and place your dog's front paws into the box while repeating the command. After a while your dog will learn to only use the toilet in the box. Next, bring the box into your home gradually. Start by placing it close to the door, and then slowly move it towards the bathroom. If your dog makes it this far, you can then place the box into the toilet, and encourage your dog to jump up on the toilet to relieve himself. Eventually, you will be able to remove the box altogether.
81. Play Soccer Choose a ball that is slightly larger than your dog's mouth so that he cannot pick it up and carry it. Take your dog to an open space such as the back garden or an empty park. Make sure you have a supply of treats to reward him whenever he performs well. Start by getting your dog acquainted with the ball by leaving it in front of him and allowing him to smell it. If he starts moving the ball by himself, immediately praise him, but do not give him a treat at this stage. If your dog is not interested in the ball at all, start gently rolling it towards him while encouraging him to play with it. Every time your dog touches the ball with his nose or paw, praise him immediately. It may take several sessions before your dog gets the hang of dribbling the ball, but it will happen eventually. Start kicking the ball longer distances away from you and encouraging him to dribble it all the way back. Reward him with a treat as soon as he returns with the ball.
82. Sing to Music Some dogs love the sound of their own voice and will start singing every time someone picks up an instrument or when their favourite song comes on the radio. Others need a little more encouragement to show off their vocal talents. Some dogs will conduct their own practice sessions whilst you are out of the house which could drive your neighbours crazy. Start by experimenting with different songs, tones and instruments to see if any of them inspire your dog to start singing. As you are the leader of the pack, lead by example, and start howling to encourage your dog to join in. Some dogs become more vocal when asking for something such as their food or a walk. As soon as your dog starts to make noise, say the command, and give him a reward. One of the most famous examples of musical dogs is the New Guinea Singing Dog that is a close relative of the Dingo. This wild dog emits a long melodious howl that is characterised by several high notes. No matter what breed you have, all dogs are descended from wolves, and most will eventually rediscover their howling abilities.
83. Slalom When first attempting this trick, it is advisable to use specially designed dog training slalom poles that will bend if your dog accidently runs into them. Once your dog improves his skills, you can graduate to using trees, bollards and even people for him to weave in and out of. Start with just four poles, and hold a treat immediately in front of your dog's nose. Entice him to follow the treat and slowly guide him in between the poles. Reward him with plenty of praise and the treat once he reaches the end.
Gradually add more poles to the slalom course one at a time until you have around 10 or 15 poles for your dog to weave in and out of. It is essential to place the poles at equal distances apart to allow your dog to judge his movements correctly. Always use a tape measure when setting up your course. Once your dog has the hang of the trick, gradually increase the speed with which you guide him in between the poles. You can also move the poles closer together to encourage him to turn sharply and improve his footwork. If you perform this trick outside with solid poles or trees, never encourage your dog to move fast to avoid him running into something and injuring himself.
84. Pick Up Toys Sit on the floor with your dog's toy basket in front of you. Choose one toy, and throw it to the other side of the room. Once your dog chases after it, hold a treat over his toy basket, and call him back to you. If he drops the toy before returning, remove the treat from his sight, and command him to fetch the toy. It may take a while for your dog to get the hang of this, and it is much easier if he already knows how to fetch.
Once he returns to you with the toy in his mouth, hold the treat directly over the toy box, and command your dog to release the toy. When he drops it into the box, give him the treat and lots of praise. Repeat these steps, and slowly begin to move the toy box away from you. Hold the treat over the box by extending your arm, and work up to simply pointing towards the box.
85. Under the Bridge Using his favorite treat or toy, just sit on the floor with your feet flat on the floor and your knees bent, leaving a gap under them. With your dog sitting on one side, take a treat or the toy with opposite hand, at floor level and close to you, and allow him to smell it or see it. As he lowers his head to smell it, move your hand under your legs slowly and allow your dog to move through.Once he goes under your knees completely, praise him and give him the treat or toy. After doing this a few times, add the command when he is going through. You can say "through", "bridge" or "under." After more practice, give him the treat or toy at small intervals of time, allowing him to get used to the feeling of being there and encouraging him to stay there. If you have a big dog who is hesitant to get low enough to fit under your knees, look for any space that is big enough for him to go under, such as a chair that is high off the ground, and start with that. Once he is comfortable with this, it will be easier to teach him to crawl under your knees.
85. Focus Foreword: In order to teach your Rover tricks and have Rover perform them, Rover must have his attention on you! Imaging, a perfectly attentive Rover, both eyes on you, alert and ready for the slightest trick signal from you! It is possible, yes, even for the super hyper Rover. Okay, let's focus! Directions: There are a variety of focusing tricks out there, here are just two basic ones. Look at me: Here you get your Rover to focus on you for a limited time, and then reward him with a treat. Make sure your hands are hidden, so he won't be inclined to look at them instead. Start with sitting on your knees (easier for a little Rover to look at your face, but you can also stand for more authority), calling the Rover over to you, making him sit and saying "Rover, focus." Now when you have Rovers attention, make him hold it for a couple of seconds and reward. You can then slowly lengthen the time to 5 seconds and beyond. If Rovers concentration breaks and Rover stops looking at you, call him again "Rover, focus" and shorten the time you have Rover focus. Ball catch: This is a fun activity for regular playtime, yet it also improves Rover's coordination and focusing skills. This 'game' evolves out of the regular ball throw and retrieve. Start by having the ball in your hand, and Rover sitting in front of you. Hold the ball and let Rover take it out of your hand. Play around with this, giving Rover the ball, and taking it back again. After a while start rolling the ball into Rovers mouth, and then throwing it from a really short distance. The purpose here is to not simply throw the ball and have poor Rover get hit on the head, consequently dodging all balls being thrown at him for all eternity. So, start slow, and throw the ball really slowly, in a nice upward curve. Once Rover gets the basic catch down, you can make it more challenging. The ball catch can even be the basis for fancier Frisbee throws.
86. Hide Water Directions: Simply acquire a spray bottle with water in it. Call Rover over to you and have Rover sit. Say "Rover, HIDE!" and give a GENTEL MIST in the direction of Rovers face. Aim for the general face area. Now Rover can have multiple reactions to this. At points some of my Rovers have tried to 'drink' the water, run away, shake their heads, and also hidden their eyes. Adjust where you spray, aiming for the ears for the shaking of the head, and eyes for HIDE YOUR EYES. Once Rover starts to HIDE on spray, simply repeat, saying HIDE before you spray, giving Rover a chance to do it. Reward him every time he hides his eyes and stop after a couple shake and sprays! After a while, you will not have to spray anymore, just have the bottle in your hand and say HIDE.
This will then progress to you only making a spraying motion with you hand and saying HIDE.Air Directions: I prefer using this method. Not only is it more convenient, but it also prevents water from irritating Rover's eyes. Follow the water directions, but instead of using a spray bottle, just gently blow in the directions of Rover ear.Tape Directions: Another alternative is to use a piece of tape and place it below Rover's eye. Make sure it is a very weak brand, and stick and un-stick it on your hand or pant leg a couple of times first. This way it will still stick on Rover but will come off without some of Roveros fur! Follow the water directions, but instead of using a spray bottle, use the tape.
87. Release Step 1: Give the command to sit. After waiting six to seven seconds, go ahead and use the command with any hand motion to tell your dog to be released from his sitting position. If you act excited while doing this, your dog should naturally release. When your dog does so, click and treat him. You should repeat this step until your dog is consistently releasing. Step 2: Again give the command to sit. After your dog holds for 6-7 seconds, use just the vocal command, but still be just as energetic as before. You should tone down your enthusiasm, each time you repeat this step, and make your command more subtle. Step 3: In subsequent sessions extend the wait time (about 4 or 5 seconds) before releasing. This will gradually build up endurance so that your dog can wait several minutes before being released.
88. Put The Collar On! It's like teaching your kids to put on their own clothes! This is a variation off of "touch," teaching your pups to put their heads through their collars or through a slip leash. I use this one all the time for my American Eskimo, because having a collar on all the time when she's running around the house tends to mat her fur. This way, she knows how to put on her own collar when we're ready to head out. Do this by holding the collar in one hand, and putting your other hand behind the collar. Use the "touch" command. Your dog will aim to touch your hand and put their head through the collar in the process. Very handy for dogs who squirm around when putting collars and leashes on!
89. Beg This is one of the more advanced tricks, your dog stands up on their hind legs to beg. Start by having your dog sit and hold a treat at his nose and bring it above your dog's head at a height where they have to stand on their hind legs to reach the treat. While doing this say "Beg" and give him the treat when he is standing on his hind legs. You can help your dog stand up by holding his paws for support. Each successive time you perform this trick, wait a little longer before giving him the treat.
90. Paws On Lure your dog to put his front feet up onto a wall, tree or stool. Make sure the surface his front feet are to rest is not slippery. Some walls and trees can be super slippery! Click and then feed a treat in rapid succession while your dog has his feet up. Then say your release cue and encourage your dog to take his paws off. Click and treat your dog for taking his paws off the wall. Take care if you use the walls in your house, they might get scratched! Lure the dog onto the tree and click as you remove the hand that you lured him with. Pretend to have a treat in your hand, lure your dog onto the tree with the same gesture, then click and give your dog a treat while he still has his paws up. Add a cue. Say the verbal cue "Paws Up", pause, then lure your dog to put his paws up. We like to teach our dogs that when we are at a distance, the object we point towards is the one to put their paws up on. You can start proofing the behavior by adding distance, distraction, and duration. Move a little, click AS you move, and then feed a treat. Then see if you can move and click and treat your dog after you move. If your dog is successful you can try doing more movements before clicking and treating. Don't always make it harder and harder for your dog. For example, if you take 5 steps away from the dog and it's the first time you have done that, go back and only take 2 steps away from your dog the next time. Start to increase the time your dog has his paws up before you click and give him a treat and make the time between treats greater and greater for continuing to have his paws up.
There are plenty of cool and easy tricks to teach your dog littered throughout the internet. But, if you're looking for a little more unique, rare, or dare I say uncommon tricks, you've come to the right place.
We here at Tricks to Teach Dogs have scoured the internet and combined this training list of 30 Uncommon Tricks to Teach Your Dog. Some impress more than others, but if you don't say "WOW, I didn't know a dog could do that!" at one or two of these we'll feel like we didn't do our job. So, with that in mind, we've uncovered some of the greatest uncommon dog tricks you've ever seen and the instructions for you to get started teaching your dog today.
1. Potty Training On Command Trick When taking your dog outside to go potty, repeat the "potty" command the moment your pup begins relieving themselves. Say the command in a slow, soft tone to associate "potty" with the your dog's current action. Promptly stop saying the command when the dog is no longer going potty. Continue using the "potty" command every time your dog both pees and poops and each time they outside to notice the quickest results. Next, to test your dog's response to the "potty" command, calmly use the "potty" command before your dog relieves themselves. Notice if your dog responds immediately or not. If not, wait until they choose to go potty and continue repeating the trick command in the first step. With some patience, your dog will associate the word with going potty and begin to be potty trained on command. To note, this trick is best to begin at an early age, preferably when the dog is still learning to be house trained.
2. Carry Groceries Trick Begin with an empty grocery bag, a canvas bag works best in the beginning since plastic bags will rip and tear. Place a few tasty treats in the bag, preferably in a closed pocket so your dog cannot simply reach in and reward themselves. Ask your dog to take it, and your pup should gently hold onto the bag in its mouth. Now, slowly begin moving away from your dog. Use the command "carry" and gesture your dog to come. Possible gestures to get your dog to follow you could be whistling, patting your leg, using the command "come" in conjunction with "carry" so the new trick command is "come carry". There are many options, use whichever works best to get your dog to respond. After a few steps, with your dog following, praise your pup for carrying the bag the short distance. Reach inside the bag and reward him/her from the bag. This is crucial for the dog to quickly learn the trick. You want to associate carrying the bag with both treats and praise. You'll soon finding your dog bringing you an empty bag begging in exchange for treats! Continue to lengthen the distance your dog carries the bag with the "carry" trick command. Move on to placing a few items into the bag. Once your dog gets used to the additional weight, begin handing them full grocery bags when you get back from the store. Make sure to hide a treat in the bag! In a tag team effort, use another person to call your pup inside the house. Reward your dog for completing a job well done.
3. Pickpocket Dog Trick While standing with your back to your dog, hold a tasty dog treat to your tailbone and encourage your dog to come up and take it using the command "pickpocket." Once your dog becomes consistent with taking the treat from your tailbone, place a handkerchief or other light object in your back pocket. Move your handing holding the treat to the handkerchief pocket and use the command "pickpocket." Encourage your dog to take the handkerchief, and once they do so, reward them promptly with the treat and praise. Once the general behaviors have been mastered, begin moving away from your dog and using the "pickpocket" command to associate movement into the trick. Continue to practice with and without treats and praise equally each time your dog successfully grabs the object from your back pocket. To get the best reaction from a crowd, work on "selling it." You as a trainer should act flabbergasted "How could your perfect pup do that!?"
4. Dog Push-ups Trick Place your dog into a sit and stand in front of them. Command the dog into the down position either by voice "down" or by hand signal pointing down. Once your dog goes into the down position, immediately use the sit hand signal (pointing up) and the command "up up up" to get your dog to go back up into a sit and reward. Repeat. ONE and TWO and THREE, are they feeling the burn? Continue repeating with longer and longer intervals before rewarding. Offer various types of treats to keep your dog engaged in trick training. Try some store bought treats, small noodles, shredded (boiled) chicken, goldfish crackers, carrots, or even diced cooked hot dogs. Keep it fresh and exciting for your dog.
5. Go Hide Trick Begin with using a large object, like a couch in your living room. Make sure there is ample room for your dog to go behind this object and hide. Show your dog a treat, get their attention and toss the treat behind your large object, or in this case, a couch. Use the command "Go Hide" when you toss the treat. Immediately reward your dog for getting the treat and "hiding." Continue to practice by tossing the treat behind the object and repeating "go hide." Now begin to use the "go hide" command without tossing the treat behind the couch first. Continue to reiterate the command if your dog makes it halfway to the couch but turns around. Once they reach the backside of the couch using the "go hide" command and no treat, toss a treat to them when they're in the correct position. Repeat this process of using "go hide" before presenting the reward. Begin weaning your dog off the treats. Once they've mastered the previous steps, you can begin to reward in intervals, slowly removing treats from the trick altogether.
6. Take a Card From a Deck Trick Offer a single playing card to your dog and tell him to "take it." Wait for your dog to take the card from your hand and reward with a treat and praise. Most playing card edges are sharp, be careful not to move the card and accidentally cut your dog. Up the ante now hold three cards in front of your dog in a fanned position. Reward your dog for any card they grab from your hand. Double down add a fourth card to your fanned out deck and present them to your dog. This time, make sure the card you want your dog to take is further extended than the rest. Once your dog grabs the card you desire, reward with treats and praise. If your dog doesn't grab the correct one, tell him "whoops" and restart the trick from the beginning. All-In! Now add the entire deck of cards to your hand and fan the deck. Instead of just offering one card for your dog to grab, present several options by having more than one extended from the rest of the deck. This will make it easier for your dog to pick a card.
7. Refuse Food Trick Present a treat to your dog. When your dog is all excited for the treat, use the command "yuck" in a low tone of disappointment and pull the treat away. Repeat the doggy fake-out until your dog turns their head away from your hand. Be sure to watch closely, you want to mark the moment your dog's head turns by saying "good!" and rewarding the treat with praise. Simply look for your dog's eyes to dart away from the treat you are presenting in the beginning. Then, work your way up to their head fully turning, and then finally to their head turning for an extended period of time. All the while, use the command "yuck" to initiate the trick. You must be consistent in your rewarding. Dogs will squirm and try to find any way to get a treat, even cheat! If they get lazy and only partially turn their heads, don't reward. Only reward the behavior you desire or the steps to reach the end behavior.
8. Shell Game Trick Begin with one cup. Place a really smelly treat inside the cup and make sure your dog watches you. Use the command "find it" to encourage your dog to get at the treat. When he noses or paws at the cup, reward him by lifting the cup and giving the treat. Depending on the cup, you may need to rub the treat on the inside of the cup to give it lots of treat scent.
At this point there is a choice: are you comfortable with your dog nosing the cup or do you want the dog to paw at the cup in order to indicate he wants a reward? You need to reward the behavior you desire and practice. Add the extra cups! Place the treat under the already scented cup. Encourage your dog to nose or paw at the correct cup by using the command "find it." Be careful to not let your dog forcefully turn over any of the cups. They should be indicating the correct cup for you to turn over. If your dog noses or paws an incorrect cup, calmly say "whoops" and do not reward. Only reward the correct cup and use your vocal tone to indicate the correct or incorrect cups. Once your dog has mastered selecting the correct cup from a non-shuffled line-up, begin the shuffle! Place a treat under the scented cup and start to mix up the cups slowly. Ask your dog to "find it" and watch as they sort out the correct cup! Reward the correct choice and practice for mastery!
9. Dogs Walk Themselves Trick Coil or fold up your dog's walking leash. Present the leash to your dog and ask them to hold it using the "take it" command. After they hold the leash in their mouth for a short period of time, take it back and reward your pup. Walk with your dog holding the coiled up leash in their mouth. Using the "heel" command, you should walk side-by-side with your dog calmly holding the leash in their mouth. Once your dog feels comfortable holding the leash in their mouth, uncoil the leash, clip one end to their collar, and present the looped end to their mouth. Ask them to "take it" as they've done previously. Continue walking side-by-side in the "heel" command. Make sure to stop immediately if your dog drops the leash from their mouth and re-command him/her to "take it" again. After all, we want them to be able to go on walks by themselves!
10. Crawl Trick Tell your dog to lie down, facing you. Kneel on the ground and present a treat in your hand to your dog. Slowly move the treat away from your dog and in a drawn-out voice, use the command "crawl." After your dog makes a few short crawl steps on their belly, reward them with the treat and praise! Continue working with your dog while you are kneeling. Gradually work your way up to using the "crawl" command from a few feet away. Ideally, you'll be standing and your dog will be crawling to you. If your dog immediately stands up to get the treat, try moving the treat away from your dog even slower. Your pup may think the only way to get the treat is to stand and walk over. We want to promote the crawl instead.
11. Kisses Trick Kneel down to doggy level. Place some peanut butter on your cheek. Point to it and say "kisses" while your dog licks the peanut butter from your face. Practice the previous step. Move forward without peanut butter, keep a treat in your hand and point to your face asking for "kisses." When your dog licks your treat, reward and praise with "good kisses!".
12. Ride a Horse Trick Do not attempt to get any ole dog to ride any random horse! The two animals need to be trained, calm tempered, and comfortable around each other before this trick is even attempted. Tie your horse off next to a platform about height of the horse's elbow or barrel (picnic table height). Using the platform, encourage your dog to place their front paws on the horses back. Reward your pup with treats and praise for first attempting to get "up" on the horse. Continue coaxing your dog to get "up" on the horse's back. Practice until both your dog and your horse are comfortable with these steps. At this stage, pick up your dog and slowly place them on your horse's back. Be mindful to watch for any fear in either your horse or your dog and act accordingly. Do not put a fearful dog on a horse, and do not let a dog get on a fearful horse. Once your dog is standing on your horse's back, reinforce this behavior with lots of treats and praise. A super smelly, tasty treat is perfect. Hold the treat tightly in your hand and let your dog lick and attempt to grab it. This will associate the great tasting treat with the moment of standing on a horse's back. We want to associate these two great things! Finally, once you've practiced enough so that your dog and horse are completely comfortable with the dog being on the horse's back, remove your dog from the horse and place them on the platform. Hold a treat on your horse's saddle, outside your dog's reach and use the command "up" to encourage your dog to jump up onto the horse's back. This is the most jarring part of the trick for the horse and should be taught last. Once your dog is on your horse's back. Praise and congratulate your two animals on a trick well done! Remember, practice, patience and safety first!
13. Moonwalk Trick Place your dog in a lie down position. Face your dog, and while bending over, place your knee directly in front of them. Move your knee towards them slowly. You don't want to knee your dog in the face! However, this will force your dog to back up a few steps. Use the command "scoot" while your dog attempts to back up. Make sure to place your hand over their shoulders to prevent them from immediately standing up instead of moonwalking or scooting backwards. Be sure to reward even the smallest scoot backward. Make sure your dog knows what it takes to get a treat! The bow and a backwards scoot. As your dog masters moonwalking backwards, stop pushing your knee toward your dog. Continue to make sure your dog's shoulders do not rise from the bow position. Finally, step further back from your dog and give the "scoot" or "moonwalk" command. Practice from distance and watch your dog pay tribute to the greatest pop star of all-time!
14. Handstand Trick Place a few books against a wall. Put your dog into a sit with their backside to the books and the wall. Command you dog to "back up" and place their hind legs on the books. Reward and praise your dog for completing step 1! As your dog gets comfortable with placing their hind legs on the books, begin increasing the height by adding more books! Once your dog has mastered doing a handstand on books, remove the books and work on your dog putting their paws on the wall to support themselves. Be sure to reward with a tasty treat the moment their legs touch the wall. Lots of praise too! Start introducing the "handstand" command. Moving back to using the books as a stand, bring a small chair and place it on top of the books. Using the "handstand" command, get your pup to place their legs on the top of the chair. A small, soft children's chair works best. Keep increasing the books below the chair to challenge your dogs skill. After they've mastered backing up onto a few books, the wall, and the books and chair, remove all these objects and use only your hand as support for their hind legs. This is closely mimicking the final handstand technique. After much practice, patience and hard work, begin removing your hand as a support when commanding "handstand." Your dog should be able to do a short handstand without any support. The key here it to reward at the height of their handstand so he/she associates a tall handstand as the correct action. Work on lengthening the time your dog is able to stay in a handstand through practice. It will take your dog some time to get comfortable with these actions.
15. Climb a Ladder Trick First, start with getting your dog to put their front paws on the ladder. Lure them with a tasty treat up the ladder and once their paws touch the ladder, reward and praise! Work on luring your dog's front paws up to a higher ladder step. Reward and praise when they move up to the next step. Once your dog has reached the highest ladder step they can reach with their front paws only, begin using your other hand to encourage them to lift one of their back legs onto the bottom step. **WARNING, be sure to watch your dog carefully. They will be off balance and need to be stabilized so they do not fall.** Continue raising the treat higher, and work slowly and steadily with your dog to place both their front paws and back paws on the ladder. Practice for short periods. This is a lot of work and stress for your dog. Once your dog has mastered this trick, they'll be moving effortlessly and quickly up the ladder for their tasty reward!
16. Hockey Goalie Trick First step is to associate a command with your dog catching something in their mouth. Play with their favorite toy and then toss it into the air, when your pup goes to catch it, say "catch" as the command phrase. Praise your dog for the great catch! Secondly, have your dog sit a distance from you and start tossing toys and balls and soft toy hockey pucks at your dog. Use the command "catch" each time to encourage your dog to catch the items as they fly at him/her. Finally, set up a net behind your dog. Make sure they are in the sit position in front of the net and shoot your soft, stuffed puck at them. Using the command "catch," watch your pup play goalie! At this time, bring out the treats. Work with your dog to go sit in front of the goal and reward them for doing so. In the end, you want your dog to be able to get back into position after the resulting victory lap they'll do when they stop a puck like a true NHL goalie.
17. Find Your Keys Trick Take a small pouch, could be a anything that can hold treats securely, and attach it to your key chain. Toss the key chain with treat pouch attached across your room. Ask your dog to fetch your keys using the command "keys, fetch." When he brings the keys and pouch back to you, take a treat from the pouch and reward your pup. It is important to take a treat from the pouch they just brought you. Associate bringing you the pouch equaling tasty treats for them! This is the basics of having your dog find your keys! To expand on the basics, toss the key chain with pouch further and further from you. Then, work on hiding the key chain and pouch around the house and asking your dog to find it. Continue to test and up the ante with your pup. Soon, after they've mastered the previous steps, you can remove the pouch from the key chain and ask your dog to fetch the keys without the pouch.
18. Jump Through Arms Hold the hoop at a right angle to the wall of the corridor. The bottom of the hoop should be touching the floor. We use the wall as a barrier so your dog has no choice but to go in the direction you are asking. Ask your dog to SIT and STAY on one side of the hoop. Get her attention as you put her favourite toy or a treat on the other side of the hoop. Encourage her to go through the hoop to get the toy or treat. She probably won't even notice the hoop until you slowly start lifting it off the ground, making her jump a little. As she lifts her feet to jump say the command "THROUGH" and then "YES" when she makes it through to retrieve her toy or treat. Repeat the above steps, always commencing with your dog in the SIT position. Only raise the hoop a centimetre at a time and only when you are confident your dog is competent at each height. Once the hoop is a certain height, your dog may choose to go under rather than through it. If she does, ignore her and return to the starting point. Practise in the corridor, so she is always confined by the wall, before attempting the trick in an open space. When you do venture somewhere else, start at a low level again and use lots of praise and rewards. Now you can teach your dog to jump through your arms. Basically you just follow the above steps, replacing the hoop with your arms held out to form a circle.
19. Dog Rope Walk
20. Gather The Post
21. Recycle Like picking up laundry, recycling is a "retrieve" trick; however, your dog also has to learn how to separate the items, which comes particularly in handy when you're busy cooking and need help disposing of empty containers. "The hard part about recycling is getting dogs to pick up aluminum cans they don't like the way they feel, so it's a good idea to start with plastic bottles, which they like more. First, follow the laundry steps above using plastic bottles until your pooch has learned to drop them in the recycling bin. Once he's mastered that, switch to cans. Dedicate different bins to aluminum and plastic, and train him separately for each bin. "Then you can mix up the types of bottles and teach the dog he doesn't get a reward if he puts the wrong object in the wrong bin
22. Making A Bed
22. Clean The House
23. Take Off The Socks
24. Rub The Back
25. Do The Laundry When teaching a complex trick, such as picking up laundry, begin with the last step, says Jaime Van Wye, owner of the dog agility training center Zoom Room in Hollywood, California. "First, teach him to drop an object in a container. Give him an object he likes, such as a toy, then put a container under his mouth and give him the drop command," she says. Once he's dropped the toy in the bucket, immediately give him a treat. "Then the dog will understand. 'When I drop it in the bucket I get a reward,'" she says. Next, toss whatever training tool you're using onto the floor and give a command such as, "Go pick up your toy." The exact verbiage doesn't matter what matters is that it's always said the same way. Once he's mastered one toy, have him do two in a row, and then give him a reward. When that's understood, switch out the toys for clothes. Van Wye says smaller items, like underwear, are a good place to start; by the end of training, your pooch should be able to clear anything off the floor that comfortably fits in his mouth.
26. Getting The Groceries
27. Basketball & Volleyball You may not be able to challenge Fido to a game of pick-up, but he can learn how to make a basket. First, get him used to the ball. Start with something light, like a small beach ball, and put it on the ground. Every time your pooch touches it or pushes it with his nose, give him a treat. Once he's familiar with that, start throwing the ball up in the air so it lands near him. "When the dog goes to get it, treat him. Next, bounce it off his nose you have to throw it off his nose and get him used to that," says Karen Halligan, DVM, director of veterinary services at the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals in Los Angeles. Once he's mastered bumping the beach ball off of his nose, you can upgrade to either a volleyball or basketball. Bump (or toss) a volleyball back and forth with him, like this pooch. Or get him used to bumping the basketball, eventually doing it near the hoop until he makes a basket. Afterwards, praise him and give him a treat. Sooner or later he'll figure out that making baskets means treats!
28. Water Skii or Surfing Dogs To teach water skiing, it's probably best to put your pooch on a board instead of two skis because of balance issues. "First, try and get him used to the board on dry land," Dr. Halligan says. "But stop if he gets scared or if he's not enjoying it." The key, she says, is plenty of positive reinforcement when he does the right thing. If he doesn't do it correctly, avoid negative reinforcement, otherwise, you run the risk of turning him off of the trick. Once your dog is used to the board, move him to a pool or a shallow body of water. "Get him comfortable balancing before you start pulling him around," she says. When he's used to being pulled around by you, then you can try with a boat, going very slow at first and gradually building up speed over time.
29. Transportation If you own a large, strong dog breed, such as a Saint Bernard, Alaskan malamute or dog of comparable size, this trick is for you. In a gated, safely enclosed area, you can hitch your dog to a wagon and teach him to pull it. Dr. Halligan recommends getting him used to the harness first. "Then you just hook up the harness to the cart and positively reinforce him to come with you. Go just a short distance at first. With practice he will be able to go longer distances".
We all know you can train a dog but training a cat to do anything must seem very unlikely to most of us. After spending so much time with cats I sometimes think that it is them that teach us. In fact, clicker training can be very effective with cats as this video shows so remarkably. Who wins, the cat or the dog?
Need to train your dog? Have fun using this great app that works! Dog Tricks & Bark Machine is your ultimate portable Dog Trick training app. Photos and instructional text in Bark Machine were sourced from the popular dog training books: Maran Illustrated Dog Training & Maran Illustrated Puppies. These books were supervised by certified dog trainers that were members of the highly respected American Association of Pet Dog Trainers. Bark Machine includes a variety of amazing sounds designed to captivate your dog. Bark Machine is fully integrated with the Dog Tricks so that you can play any of these sounds while teaching your dog tips or tricks. Choose from Woof, Meow, Doorbell, Fire Truck, Clicker, Squeaky Toy, Door Knock or a high frequency Dog Whistle. Hours of fun ! Dog Tricks includes Basic commands, Games, Tricks, Tips on behavior issues, and a separate category just for Puppies! Also included is a section on popular dog breeds and a great "Photos" section. Impress your guests, friends and family and show off your smart dog today!!
Most people have heard the saying, "You can't teach an old dog new tricks." And like all cliches, this one may have a small nugget of truth. But for the most part, if it's done correctly, an older dog can be taught not only new tricks, but new behaviors in general. They're not so different than humans that way. In the same way people continue learning all their lives, so can and do dogs. In fact, you may be surprised to know that training an older dog can actually be easier than training a puppy in many ways. Reasons for this include the facts that:
- Nearly any dog who is over five years old has at least learned the meaning of "No."
- An older dog is far calmer, less energetic and excitable than a puppy, which translates into a longer attention span and easier time retaining lessons.
- An older dog understands dominance and 'pecking order' and will very likely be happy to accept your leadership.
There are several situations in which a pet owner may be faced with the task of training an older dog, and the approach should be tailored to suit the situation. For instance, you may have adopted an older dog from a shelter or rescue, and simply don't know much about his background or previous training, if any. Or you may have an older dog that you would like to introduce to some new "tricks" - for example agility, hunting, or obedience trials. Maybe your long time companion may just be getting old and has developed some bad habits, or is getting peevish and snarly. Be assured you can handle all these situations with patience, proper knowledge, and approach.
House Training an Older Dog If you've just brought home a newly adopted shelter or rescue dog, your first task will be to be sure he's housetrained. If not, then you'll want to have him become housetrained ASAP. One big advantage of housetraining an older dog is that he has more bladder and bowel control than a puppy - is able to "hold it" for longer periods of time. However, in the beginning your new dog won't know where to go, and his system may be upset from a change in location and/or food, which can cause diarrhea. So at first, introduce him to his bathroom area and let him eliminate before bringing him in the house for the first time. Be patient and wait if necessary, praising him when he does.
After you bring him inside, don't expect him to know right away to tell you if he has to go out. Just expect it, and take him out, very frequently at first, praising him each time he goes. Once you are sure he is eliminating normally with no diarrhea or other upsets, then put him on a regular elimination schedule as you would a puppy: in the morning, after meals, after play, and at night before bed. Accompany him, and praise him each time he goes. Make it a point to prevent accidents before they happen, rather than deal with or discipline him if they happen. Never punish him for an accident. Rather, just quietly clean up any mess, and continue with your schedule.
Crate Training an Older Dog In addition to or instead of traditional housetraining methods, you might want to consider crate training for your older dog. Some people think this is so hard it's impossible to accomplish, but if you approach it matter of factly, and take it slow, there's no reason your older dog can't be crate trained as easily and well as a puppy.
Even if you must crate your dog right away - if you need to leave him alone and aren't sure he can be trusted, he should adapt quite well and quickly, as long as you don't leave him alone too long at first. If necessary, you can crate him at night or while you're away, but remember to also crate him randomly for shorter periods of time as well, so he doesn't begin to associate the crate with being left alone. Periodically crate him at odd times for just a moment or two, giving him a treat. Also try leading your dog to the crate, giving him a treat, and then walking away.
However, if you do have time to take it a little slower, that would probably the best approach. Purchase the crate and set it up where you plan to use it most often, choosing either a quiet, private area, or in the middle of the living room. Partially cover it with a towel or crate cover, put a soft blanket or rug and some toys inside, secure the door open at first, and just leave it for your dog to discover. If your dog discovers it on his own, and starts using it as a cozy place to nap, he will virtually crate train himself without your having to do much at all.
Of course, in time, you will want him to go to his crate on your command, and be willing to remain in it with the door latched, but just work up to that slowly. And always remember to vary the times he must stay in it with shorter times with the door both closed and open. The idea is for him to think of it not as a doggie jail, but as his own comfy retreat - his den.
Obedience Training an Older Dog All dogs need some basic obedience training. You simply can't live with a dog that doesn't understand and obey a few simple commands, and both you and he will be very unhappy if you try. Learning basic obedience doesn't hurt your dog or suppress his natural instincts. Rather, it allows both of you to enjoy better communication, and a harmonious relationship. If your older dog has not learned these basics - don't worry, you can teach him. At a minimum, he should know sit, down, come, stay, and heel.
Enroll in obedience classes at a local pet store or ask your veterinarian for a recommendation. Just because your dog is older doesn't mean he and you cannot benefit from such classes, and many people find them easier then trying to learn how to do the training themselves. Also, obedience classes can offer valuable social contact for both you and your dog, and expose you to situations you may not encounter on your own.
On the other hand, if you are the do-it-yourself type, you may enjoy the challenge of undertaking obedience training yourself, or you may wish to expand on lessons learned in class. Either way, if you do plan to train your dog yourself, there are several approaches to consider.
- Older methods employ devices like choke collars and leashes to control the dog's behavior and provide an uncomfortable stimulus when the dog doesn't comply. Training techniques following these principles are still used by some trainers, but are largely falling out of favor compared to more humane, modern methods.
- Newer training techniques employ some type of reward system to encourage your dog to engage in the desired behavior, and are based on the principle of rewarding right behavior, while ignoring bad. Basically, you get your dog to do what you want him to do, and then give him a reward for doing so again and again, until the behavior is reinforced and habitual. You keep the behavior by continuing to use rewards on an occasional and unpredictable, basis. But here too, there are several different approaches:
One approach favors the use of toys, praise, petting, and other non-food rewards
" The most common of the newer approaches uses a food-based reward system, which most dogs seem to respond well to.
"Clicker" training employs food or treats in combination with a clicker, or sound-maker, and then transitions to voice commands once the desired behavior is established.
All of these newer techniques should work fine with your older dog. Just be sure you always treat, especially in the beginning, whenever your dog performs as you ask, and be very slow to reprimand. Keep it fun and positive and you'll be pleasantly surprised at how quickly your older dog picks up good obedience behaviors!
As with all training, there are several rules to keep in mind that will help matters to go along better. These include:
- Keep training sessions short. You can accomplish far more in three five-minute sessions than in a long fifteen-minute session.
- Reward good behavior; ignore bad.
- Stay positive, and make the sessions fun. You want your dog to look forward to working together, and be happy to do as you ask. A happy dog will be a far better trained one than an unhappy, fearful dog.
- Don't repeat commands unnecessarily. Saying, "Sit, sit, sit" over and over only teaches your dog to ignore the first time you say something. Once your dog knows the command, give it once, and then reward obedience.
- Be consistent. Choose a method, and then stick with it. Don't try using a choke collar one day, petting and toys the next, then food, and then treats, then a clicker. Your dog will be confused and won't learn, and you'll be frustrated. Also be consistent with commands and treats. If your dog gets rewarded one day for doing something, and then does it again with no reward, he won't understand what he is to do. Be consistent.
- Always end a training session on a positive note!
Training for New Activities As with people, mental and physical exercise will help your dog stay alert and healthy into old age. But your dog doesn't know this, and it will be up to you to ensure he gets what he needs. Make an effort to keep his mind engaged and his body exercised, and both of you will reap the rewards. There are a lot of different ways you might go about this, and different activities you might try out for size, including:
- Agility training. This is a sort of exercise/obstacle course for dogs, in which a dog negotiates a series of standard obstacles while being coached through the course by his handler/owner. Those who engage in this relatively new sport are very enthusiastic. It can be done as fun and exercise, or competitively at various levels.
- Hunting. Maybe you've never considered this, but even an older dog can be taught to point and retrieve. Even if your idea of hunting is to arm yourself with a trusty camera and field guide, your dog can be trained to flush out those birds for your lens to have a crack at. And if you want to hunt in earnest, consider that your older dog, steady and calm, may be perfect for your hunting companion.
- Therapy. Increasingly it's becoming known and accepted that dogs have a positive and healing effect on both the sick and the aged. An older dog, with its calm steadiness and worldly experience is especially well suited as a therapy dog for work within a hospital, nursing home patients, or the homebound. If this appeals to you, you might consider checking your telephone directory, or asking at your veterinarian's office or local pet store for therapy training in your area.
- Herding. There is a sport for dogs who have that "herding" instinct: such as Australian Cattle Dog, Australian Shepherd, Collies, Bearded and Border Collie's, Sheepdogs, German Shepherd, Puli's, and Welsh Corgi's. The name says it all.
- Search and Rescue. This is another area in which an older dog might be a distinct asset with his greater ability to remain calm and steady in a stressful situation. Of course, this can be strenuous so you will have to evaluate your dog's physical ability to do the work, but if he isn't elderly, and is in good health, it could be a rewarding activity for you both.
- Scent Hurdling. This is a sport in which teams of handlers race their dogs over a series of hurdles, with the object being to return a scented dumbbell and return over the hurdles. All involved seem to have a great time!
- Tracking. Some dogs seem to always have their nose to the ground, and if yours is one of them, this may be something to try. It involves tracking a human scent and finding lost articles as well as people. Classes aren't easy to find, but if you ask around and keep your eyes open, you might find a posting of a seminar in your area. You might also enjoy buying a book on it, and trying to train your dog yourself.
As you can see, there are many, many different activities in which you and your older dog might become involved. Try one or more just to see. The important thing to realize is that your older dog is capable of learning new activities.
Now you know the truth: you can teach an older dog new tricks! Know that training an older dog is a rewarding and possible. Success is likely to be no more difficult than it would be with a puppy.
You can have confidence in either choosing to adopt an older dog, or training, retraining, or finding new activities to do with the older dog you already own. Be confident, positive, persistent, and consistent. Above all, have fun. Your dog will appreciate it, and so will you.