A friend has challenged several of us on Facebook to come up with a trick -- or new obedience skill -- to celebrate January's National Train Your Dog Month. I think it's a great idea and challenge visitors to the Dog Blog to get on board.
Below are some suggestions from my friend. Let me know here if you decide to do it -- bonus points for a link to a video showing your success.
I'm starting out with these goals:
Jillie: I've never had any luck teaching her to speak, so I will redouble my efforts this month.
Eddie: Play dead. I'm going to try to improve on an existing trick. He currently leans to one side when I say "bang', and I tell people I just "winged him." I'd like to get him to the point where he rolls on his side or back and stays there.
Lucy: She's a senior dog and I don't want her doing anything strenuous, so I think I'll just start out trying to teach speak on command. This will probably drive my wife nuts, so I'll have to practice when she's not home. I've found that teaching dogs to speak is a good thing because it reinforces what speak is. Once they know that, it's easier to teach "No speak."
Here's the list of suggestions from my friend.
Basic Manners and safety:
Come when called
Loose Leash Walking
Settle or Place
Watch me (Focus)
Potty on command
Back (walk backward)
Shame (covers nose/face with paw)
Ahhhh-choo! (Bring a tissue when someone sneezes)
Fetch a drink
Turn on/off light
Sit Pretty/Sit Up/Beg
Lift Leg (for male- pretend to mark)
Kick with back leg
Front paws on (like on a chair or an over turned bucket)
Head (or chin) Down (put head on floor when in a down or put chin on handlers knee or on a chair)
Leg weave (figure 8 through your legs as you walk)
Pray (dog bows head)
Spread ‘em! (dog puts paws on wall while handler pretends to frisk them)
Stick tongue out
Cross your paws
Chase your tail
Scratch (pretend to scratch an itch with their back leg)