Wow your friends with these fun 10 easy dog tricks. Can your dog master all ten of them? Make him the coolest canine on the block with just a little dog training.
Start by having your dog sit. Say, “shake hands” and take their paw with your hand. Hold their paw and say, “Good dog!” Then let go of their paw. Do this a few times every day.
After a while, say “shake hands,” but don’t take their paw. See if they raise their paw by themselves. If not, keep showing them what to do by saying, “shake hands” and then taking their paw into your hand. Your dog is not slow; they are just learning! It may take a couple of days of reinforcing the trick for them to perfect it
Start by having your dog “shake.” If your dog does not shake, just touch the back of their paw and say “shake.” Once your dog starts to offer their paw, turn your hand up so your hand is facing your dog. Start saying “high five” while holding your hand up. When your dog hits your hand with their paw quickly say “good dog” and reward with a treat.
As your dog starts to hit your hand with their 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 they do it. Hold your right hand in the air again and say the command “high five” but do not reach for your dog’s paw. Hopefully they will place their paw against your hand. Allow them the opportunity to do it on their own before you reach for their paw. If they don’t do it on their own, reward them immediately with treats or praise.
Choose a game that your dog loves to play, like catch with a ball, or hide and seek with a toy. Then get them excited by saying, “Let’s play! Want to play?” and show them the ball or toy. Jump and act silly so they bark and then say, “Good dog, speak!” Then play the game as a reward for learning the command “Speak”.
You can’t make a dog bark, but you can get them happy and excited so they want 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 their barking, you might not want to encourage this behavior. If you decide it’s ok to teach it, be sure to teach “quiet'” as well but at another time.
Have your dog lie down on their tummy. As you gently roll them over on their side, say, “Take a nap.” While they are lying on their side, keeping their head on the floor, say, “Take a nap.” Don’t give them a treat. Encourage them to stay there for a couple of seconds. Then say, “ok” or “wake up!”, let them stand up, and then give the reward.
You can use the treat to lure your dog into a lying down position. Don’t give your dog a reward while they are lying down. Give them a treat after the trick is completed.
Beg: “Say Please”
Have your dog sit, facing you. Hold their favorite treat just above their head and tell them, “say please.” Your dog will then probably lift their front feet off the ground to reach for the treat. As soon as the feet are lifted, even a little bit, give them 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 their back. You are helping your dog develop this balance. Be kind and only do this a couple of times.
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 lift their 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 their paw very high. But once they realize that you’re going to give them a treat if they hold it up there, they will quickly catch on. You may have to tease them a little with your hand so they think you are going to shake with them. Waving your hand a little may help to get their paw into a waving motion as well.
Here’s an easy one: Every time your dog licks your face, say, “give me a kiss. Good job! Give me a kiss.” If they aren’t a licker, put a little peanut butter on your cheek and say, “give me a kiss.” When they lick 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 give them a hug, rub their ears and say, “good job!” Dogs love that!
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 them one. Then, throw the ball. In the beginning, run with them and get the ball and then give them a treat. Before you know it you’ll be able to throw the ball and they will retrieve it!
After your dog has figured out what they have to do to get a treat, start throwing the ball two times in a row without giving them the treat. What you are trying to do is give less treats and less often so someday you won’t need a treat for the game of fetch.
Take a Bow
Method 1: When you see your dog taking a big stretch with their head down low, say, “take a bow.” Every time they wake up and stretch say, “take a bow.” Then give them give a treat.
Tip: 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 for some it takes years…yes, years! But one day you will say, “Take a bow,” and maybe, just maybe, your dog will take a bow.
Method 2: With your dog in a standing position, take a treat and hold it near the floor under their nose. As your dog reaches down to get it (they may try to lie down), slip your hand under their belly to hold their rear end up. Hold them in that position and say, “take a bow.” Keep the treat right by their nose, but don’t give it to them. Stay there for just a second longer, release them, and then give the reward.
Tip: If you feed your dog the treat while they are in the bowing position, in the future they won’t bow until they see the treat in your hand. If they learn that the treat comes later they’ll be more willing to perform for you.
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 them a treat, and praise. Repeat many times. Later on, try sending your dog by themselves. At first, make sure that someone is waiting at the bed with a treat. Later, your dog will do it on their own and you will walk over to them while they are lying down to give them one last bed time cookie.