A great way to keep your puppy mentally stimulated and active is to teach them fun tricks! Sometimes these tricks can seem too hard or difficult to spend time training your puppy but we give you easy step-by-step instructions for teaching your pup:
How to Bow
The “Bow” is exactly what it sounds like – the dog puts their elbows and head to the ground, while keeping their hind legs and rear in the air. They then pop back up to the standing position. With easy to follow step-by-step instructions this one of the best tricks for your puppy!
- Start with the dog standing.
- Take a treat and hold it at the tip of your dog’s nose. Slowly move the treat towards the ground while keeping it close to his or her body. This will lure him or her down until the elbows touch the floor/ground and hind legs still up.
- Once they are in the desired position, get them to hold this pose for a few seconds (2-4). After this, use the treat to guide them back into the starting/standing position.
- After this has been completed, give your dog praise (saying “good”, petting, etc.) or use the your clicker if you have trained your dog using clicker training in the past.
- Go through this process 2-3 times a day for 5 minutes or less. Sooner than later, this should work on command!
- If your dog is not keeping their rear end in the air when luring him down to the ground with the treat. Take your free arm and place it beneath their belly while you do the luring motion. After a few repeated attempts, you will not need the second arm anymore.
- Like many tricks that involve more than one movement, sometimes it is best to break the trick down into steps, and teach the steps individually.
How to Wave
Here is a very impressive, but relatively easy trick you can teach your dog – how to wave hello and goodbye! All you need is some TLC Dog Biscuits and a clicker if your dog has been trained with clickers in the past.
- The one prerequisite to learning this trick is your dog should know the “shake a paw” trick.
- Move your hand higher than you usually do for the “shake” command so he or she has to reach to complete the “shake”.
- When he or she moves their paw high enough so that it looks like a “wave”, click the clicker (if you’ve used one before), or give them a treat and some praise. Repeat this step a few times.
- Once he or she has moved his paw high enough 4-5 times in a row, give the “shake” command. When he moves his paw out to shake yours, say “wave” (or whatever you want the command to be), and hold your hand higher than you usually do, enticing him to reach again.
- Repeat step 4 and only say the “wave” command until he is consistently raising his or her paw high enough to look like a wave. It is important to remember to reward your dog with a small treat every time the trick is completed correctly.
- Once your dog is getting very consistent with the “wave” command, you can start to be selective in the waves you reward him for. Eventually just reward him if his paw is straight up in the air, if that’s what you desire!
- This may take a while. Practice this command 3-4 minutes a session, 2-3 times a day and no more, as your dog may get frustrated.
- Impress your friends and family!
How to Speak/Be Quiet
Teaching your dog to speak and quiet down is both fun and useful. Here’s how to do it:
- Pick a word you want for your dog to bark in response to – “Speak” or “Talk” are the most popular choices. One key to making these words stick is to not make them sound like other words they are already familiar with, so try to run through the words they know in your head so they don’t get confused.
- Do the same thing for the “quiet” command. “Quiet” and “Hush” are both good choices.
- The quiet command is what you will start with, and once this is mastered, you can move onto the speak command.
- When your dog barks, check to see what the source is, then walk over to your dog. When they are done barking, acknowledge this by saying the command you want to use for quieting them down, and give them a treat with some praise.
- Repeat step 4 until they thoroughly understand it.
- Next comes the “Speak” command. Do something that you know will make them bark – like having someone ring the doorbell or knock on the door. When they bark, say your “speak” command in a happy, clear voice and give them a treat/praise.
- Next, try the “speak” command without creating a situation – when they understand this, you are good to go! You can now use the “Speak” and “Quiet” command together. Have them bark a couple times, then quiet them down with your calming command.
Some owners prefer to teach the speak command first, which is just done in the reverse order as just described. There is nothing really wrong with this and is all about preference and comfort level. Also, make sure you are patient and consistent when teaching any (old or young) dog a new trick. It is also recommended to wait a while with a new puppy before teaching this trick, due to their lack of ability/willingness to produce a full bark. This can be one of the more impressive and useful tricks for your puppy to learn and it isn’t too difficult with these step-by-step instructions!