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TEACHING YOUR DOG TRICKS

Teaching dogs tricks can be great fun for you and your dog. When you think about it most obedience exercises are only a set of “Tricks”. When you are doing a lot of formal obedience work with your dog sometimes tricks can break up the training session and any type of work with your dog is building a bond between you both.

Keep teaching sessions short and above all have fun!!!

Getting Started . . . Beginning training sessions should be in a safe area with no distractions. After you and your dog have finished this "course" and he has the commands down pat every time, try moving the sessions to a park so he will eventually learn to follow commands despite any distractions.

You should only concentrate on one new command per week. Once you start your dog's training, you will need to practice the new command for at least fifteen minutes every day. After adding a second command, practice both every day. And so on. It won't take long for your dog to forget these new things if you don't keep practicing. Not all dogs learn at the same pace, so don't feel discouraged if you need to practice each command for two weeks instead of one.

Your dog wants to make you happy, and he will quickly do what you want once he knows what it is you want him to do. The way for him to know it is what you want is to praise him every time he does it - even if you had to put his body in the right position or he did the right thing on accident. In the beginning, your praise should sound hapy and excited and include lots of nice petting.

The commands you give should be said in a commanding voice - just slightly louder than normal, very authoritative and stern, and in a slightly deeper tone than normal. "Sit!" means sit down right where you are and do it immediately. Saying "sit?" means please sit - that is, if you feel like it - okay, when you get around to it - maybe?

When you say come in your most authoritative voice and he runs through the front yard of three neighbors before coming to you, do not say no, yell at him, or sound mean. He came, so praise him. The last action is the only one he will relate to your praise or lack of it - the only one that he will think made you happy or mad.

All commands must be enforced. Dog training is not for a lazy person. In the beginning, each command will be given at the same time that you literally put his body into the position that you want. When you think he knows the command, try it with the verbal command alone - once. If you have to give the command a second time, it should be done at the same time that you physically put him into position. Otherwise, he will think that he can either obey or not, or that he can take his own sweet time to obey.

Anything that you have been allowing a dog to do in the past that you want to change now will take longer than if you start with a new puppy that does not yet have any bad habits. A six-week old puppy can learn to sit, come, stay, get off, and heel in a matter of days. Stay takes longer with the really young ones because they are usually only not moving when they are sleeping or chewing on your good slippers. But, a dog of any age can and will learn all of these things if you are persistent, you sound authoritative when you give the commands, and you praise him as soon as he does it right.

HEEL - SIT - DOWN - STAY - STAND - COME - OFF

Beyond Sit and Stay . . . Teaching your dog a few fun tricks will entertain the both of you and perhaps amuse friends as well. Some easy fun tricks include fetching the paper, jumping through a hoop, and speaking. Before trying these tricks do make sure your pooch has down the basics such as sitting, staying, lying down and perhaps shaking ‘hands’ before attempting anything more ambitious. Also decide on what you will try for motivation. You can use good old dog biscuits or simply enthusiastic praise.

COUNT - FOCUS - HIDE - SPIN - SHAKE - GO TO YOUR SPOT - SIT - GIVE YOUR PAW - WAVE - SIT UP - BOW - JUMP ROPE - SPEAK - ROLL OVER - RETRIEVE - CRAWL - LIMP - PLAY DEAD - BANG - HAND SIGNALS - KISS

 

 


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