Teach Your Dog Tricks
Edited by Train Wreck, Eng, VisiHow
A dog is considered to be man's best friend. If you have a dog, you probably love to play with it. But some dog owners also want to teach their dogs to perform various tricks. The reason behind the trainings may be different. Sometimes you may just want to impress your friends by showing them that your dog listens to you. Other times, you may want your dog in to perform for competitions or exhibitions. No matter why you want to teach your dog tricks, you need to remember that the effectiveness of the learning process does not depend only on your dog, but also on the way you plan to teach. In this tutorial we will share some tips that you will find useful when teaching your dog tricks.
Determine Your Dog's Personality
Dogs acquire various tricks to varying degrees. One dog may think that a particular trick is difficult, while another dog will comprehend the same trick in a moment. There is no doubt that the pace of assimilation of tricks depends largely on both the degree of difficulty and on the intellectual ability of the dog, but there is also another factor that is worth remembering when teaching your dog tricks. That factor is your dog's personality. Tricks such as "High Five" or roll over are easy to teach a dog that has a low urge to fight, but are a lot more difficult to teach a dog with a strong impulse to fight. In other words, the dog with a strong urge to fight will not "stoop" to perform "light" tricks, because it is beneath the dog's dignity. Please see the list below for a better explanation of what each personality type of dog is generally best at learning:
- 4These are often the most difficult dogs to train. Once trained they are quite good at learning to sit, to stay, to come, and to fetch, but their natural aggression can undermine training routines. This is because such dogs need to respect their owners as being in charge. Someone sweet talking an aggressive dog isn't demonstrating leadership to the dog, which makes it very hard to teach.Dogs with an urge to fight.
- 5Obviously, this list is an oversimplification. It does not mean that a dog with a strong will to fight will never learn a high five. Rather, it means that a dog is more likely to learn tricks that are consistent with its personality. Professional trainers can overcome most of these personality types, though in some cases bear in mind that teaching your dog new tricks will be easier if your dog has a particular habit. Consider this unique ability as a starting point for learning tricks. When you notice that your dog does something that could be easily converted into a trick, give it a signal using praise and a small treat. Now, all you need to do is associate your dog's behavior with the appropriate verbal command. Soon the dog will learn to perform the trick on demand.All dog types and personalities.
Learn To Teach Your Dog Tricks
- 1If you want to teach your dog some simple tricks, try to spend approximately 10-20 minutes per day practicing. Setting aside practice time is a good way to reduce frustration and increase concentration. Repeat the exercises of your choice a couple of times, praising your dog and giving a treat whenever it behaves properly. For the easiest tricks, you need more or less one week to achieve some success. However, the rate of success depends on both you and your dog. Don't give up if you need extra time!Practice for a short time on a regular or daily basis.
- 2If your dog has no experience performing tricks, do not try to teach it more complex things at the very beginning. The key to teaching tricks is your ability to separate elements that are simple enough from those elements that are more difficult. For example, if you want your dog to give you a "High Five", first teach it how to give you a paw.Teach your dog gradually.
- 3Remember that your dog is your friend and teaching tricks should be fun for both of you. Avoid shouting or beating your dog in case of failure, because the dog will be more likely to become discouraged. You can also cause the dog to lose trust in you, or the process of teaching tricks. If it isn't fun, the dog will associate it with the same feeling he or she has when going to the veterinarian.Avoid aggressive behavior.
- 4You're the one who knows your dog the best. You're also the one who knows what your dog likes the most. Food is considered to be the best reward for teaching tricks. For some dogs, small treats will work perfectly. Other dogs may prefer pieces of meat or cheese. However, avoid treats that consist of a lot of salt, preservatives and fat. It may also happen that your dog does not like treats as a type of reward. In this case, you may have difficulty finding a proper and effective reward. Just try to keep in mind what your dog likes the most, and give it to them immediately after they do the trick. Also, try not to end your exercises with a failure, but rather on a more positive note!Remember to give rewards.
Teach Your Dog to Give a Paw
- 1Put a hand out to him and state the command you want to use; for example, "Give me your paw" or "Paw".Crouch in front of the dog.
Teach Your Dog to Raise a Paw
- 1Crouch in front of the dog.
- 2Put your hand out to the dog while stating the selected command; for example, "Hello".
- 3If the dog does not respond, touch its elbow and again put out your hand. Give your dog a chance to raise its own paw.Wait for a reaction.
- 4Then, give the release command. If the dog does not raise its paw, grab the paw, praise your dog, give the treat, and then give the release command.If the dog raises a paw by itself, grab the paw, praise your dog and give it a treat.
Teach Your Dog to Give a High Five
- 1Crouch in front of the dog.
- 2At this stage, the dog should put its paw in your hand. Praise your dog and give it a treat. Then, give the release command. If the dog does not react, come back to Lesson 2.Put your hand out to your dog while stating the selected command; for example, "High Five" or "Five".
Never forget that teaching your dog tricks should be fun and should also be a way to strengthen your friendship. If you are not patient enough, you can always send your dog to a special school where trained people will teach your dog. For some people, sending a dog to the trainer may not give the same pleasure as achieving goals together. For other people, the frustration of failing, or inability to regularly teach may prove too much. Additionally, schools for dogs may be useful for anyone when you want to teach your dog actions that are more difficult than basic tricks.