Puppies are always ready to learn. They are like sponges, absorbing everything we teach them. Is important that they understand what we want. A good way to do that is by teaching the newest member of the family how to think properly.
Here are 3 easy tricks you can teach your pup to perform. This is a great way to build better communication with your new baby and teach some extra skills.
1.Bring the bowl
Teach your dog to bring his bowl when its time to eat. Start by showing him the bowl. Show your dog the bowl at his feeding time. If he offers to touch it or mouth it, click and reward. Work on this for a few repetitions.
Click and reward every time your pup mouths the bowl, and continue this for a few days. Then click and reward for duration of the mouthing (we are trying to work up to your dog wanting to carry the bowl). If he is holding the bowl and walking with pride reward him and move to the next step.
Hold your pup to create excitement and toss the bowl on the floor facing up. When your puppy runs to it, click and reward. If he only mouths a little that is ok. We want to reward approximations and in dog training we back up a little bit when there’s new situations presented.
Now, play fetch until your dog is going to get his food bowl. Then send him from further distances. Try to say the command only once. If your puppy doesn’t show interested at all go back to the last step he was successful at and do a few more reps.
Keep practicing. Do short sessions and start “time to eat” or “go get your bowl” at the same time you are throwing the bowl to the floor. Then, try it without throwing the bowl by pointing at it. If he offers it you can start sending him from further distances until you have your trick 🙂
2. Play dead
Roll: Lure your dog into a down. Hold the treat on the side of his nose (either one) and move it towards his shoulder luring him to roll flat on his side, say your praise command or use the clicker to mark the right action and then reward. Then lure him onto his back and give him the treat or toy. Add a word to it once he is doing it easily and repeatedly. Fade away from presenting the treat before the action. Work on luring less and less until you only say the word.
When your dog is consistently offering roll do the same movement with your hand when you do roll over but make a shape of a gun and add some sound effects. Then, make your dog roll on his back. Hold the treat next to his nose for a few seconds. Then, move it slightly left and right and reward him.
Lure your dog into a sit. Hold a treat over your dogs nose with a closed hand, move the treat left to right. Your dog is going to move his feet a little, click and reward. Repeat 10 times, 3-4 sessions. If he is not lifting his paws yet, try holding one of his paws with your other hand. Then say good job, click and reward.
Keep the same hand position but open your hand. If he is offering the behavior, move your hand slowly like you are waving at hip distance and stay here for a few days.
Add distance between you and your dog slowly when your dog is presenting his paw every time you salute him. Add a word to the trick like “wave” or “hello”.