One of the great joys of owning a dog is teaching them a new trick – whether it’s sit, shake paws, or stay. It might only take your dog a few minutes to master simple tricks for the first time but the key is to keep practicing so they don’t forget how to do it, weeks and months down the line.
Before you begin, you’ll need to go somewhere quiet where you won’t be interrupted and have a pocket full of your dog’s favourite treats. These could be chopped up sausage, small chunks of cheese, pieces of carrot or Simpsons Premium Treats.
Teaching your dog to sit
This is one of the easiest commands to teach your dog. You just need your dog to be in the stand position, take some treats from your pocket and move your hand from the top of your dog’s head, to towards their back, whilst saying “sit”. This will naturally make them sit down. Make sure you give them a treat and praise them for doing well before repeating the exercise.
When teaching your dog this trick, it’s important that you don’t grab their paw as he/she mightn’t like it. Instead, put a closed fist full of treats by your dog’s nose. They will try and get to the treats by using their mouth but when this doesn’t work they will move one of their paws to try and get to the treats that way instead. Have your other hand ready for them to touch. When they do this, reward them with a treat. Keep practising and eventually your dog will realise that giving you a paw will result in a treat.
Once your dog is an expert at sitting you can try and get them to stay. This trick takes time and you have to slowly build up to it. You need to tell your dog to “sit” and then take one step away from them. If they try to get up and come to you, tell them “no” and if needed, put them back in the sit position. Get them to wait for five seconds and then go to them and give them a treat. Keep practising, gradually moving further away and leaving them for longer.
We hope you have great fun teaching your dog these three tricks. Why not post up on photo of your dog shaking paws or trying another trick on our Facebook page?