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Tired of the same old tricks? One of the greatest ways to make your bond with your dog stronger is by teaching him new tricks. Training him new wild and wacky tricks is not only entertaining, but rewarding as well. Nevertheless, before you think about introducing him to more advanced directives, he should first succeed in the most basic obedience commands such as sit, stay, and down.
Fun Tricks that Fido Can Learn
1. Play dead. Start by letting your pooch play for five to ten minutes to be enthused. Let him cool down for a while, and then ask your dog to sit on a comfy spot where there is little to no distraction. Warm him up with easy commands such as sit or lie down, and then begin the training by saying “Bang” as you point your hand to him in a gun-like position. Have Fido sit, lie down, and roll over. Give your pooch lots of praises and treats each time he follows your commands successfully. Repeat the process slowly till your dog has finally mastered it. Lastly, try limiting your alternative commands which are sit, lie down, and roll over, until you only have to say “Bang” with your gun-hand signal.
2. Sing a song. Look at Fido and try singing in a kind of high-pitched voice where words are absent. For example, “La la la la” or “ha ha ha ha” in a melodious operatic way. Keep on doing this till your pooch howls along. If this does not work, try singing with words. Try stretching out the notes and sing the words repeatedly till you get a response. If there remains no response, change the tone again and repeat the words. If all of these fail, try howling at Fido. A perfect timing would be if the other dogs in your neighborhood start barking since Fido might just join in with their chorus. Don’t forget to reward your pooch with lots of treats and praises for being able to sing for you.
3. Fetch a newspaper. Teach your dog to fetch and bring your daily newspaper back by throwing it a few feet away from him. Each time he gives it to you, give him plenty of treats and praises. Ensure that the paper you use is in the same form as when it arrives at your home. Use a specific verbal command that will tell Fido to fetch the newspaper. Use this command each time you throw the paper and never use the same special word in retrieving other objects. Slowly, change the rules by not throwing the paper for him, but instead hiding it from him. Teach your pup to go out and look for it by himself. Don’t make it hard for him to discover at the beginning. Gradually work the task up to being a little challenging. With enough practice, you’ll be able to open the door, give the command, and wait for your morning paper! (This technique will also work with other objects like your slippers, the remote control, etc!)
I also don’t like the “bang” command, esp. with all the shootings on the news, just about every day. We taught our cocker to play dead by stomping out foot on the ground and saying ‘dead dog.” Of course, he would wag his little tail, until we said “Dead dogs don’t wag their tails” and he would stop.
My sister’s in-laws taught their dog “dead dog” with this phrase. Would you like to be a Republican or a dead dog? The dog, of course, being a good Democrat, fell down “dead”!!! My dogs are also “good Democrats” and know this trick!!
Sorry- but I have never been fond of pretending to shoot a dog and having him play dead…that’s just ME.
How about placing a biscuit on his nose and then allowing him to snatch it in mid-air?
My mother-in-law (now deceased) had a poodle mix that she taught to bring her newspaper down from the road, and praised him so highly that he started going down the road and collected the neighbors’ papers too, so she would have to go back down the road to return them all~ Was very funny!