This video covers the shake hands trick (Intermediate) and Wave Goodbye (Advanced) from the Do More with Your Dog program. But either can also be used at the Novice Trick Dog level and would count as 2 tricks
You will need a flyswatter or something similar (dollar store!).
- At the beginner stage, you may choose to lure the dog to put its paw onto the target or free shape it to put its paw on the target. I chose to lure because it is much quicker for the video. Start with the target on the ground and as the dogs targeting improves start to raise the target a little at a time.
- Here you can see Renzo understands his job is to put his paw to the target and it doesn’t matter where I hold the target he’s going to paw at it.
Now I can put the target on top of my hand and present it and he places his paw on my hand. I’ll start to remove the target from my had slowly and eventually will no longer need it. I’ll be able to just present my hand and my dog will present his paw.
- Adding the cue word. Once I can present my hand and the dog puts his paw in it reliably I will start to say “Shake a paw” and then put my hand out for the dog to put his paw on. Remember the new cue/command goes before the old. The old one was us presenting our hand.
- Finally, for the wave, I start to ask for multiple times touching the target and mark and reward. Then I start taking the paw target further away from the dog so he ends up pawing at the air. I mark and reward this step. Around the same time, I start waving my hand just before I present the target and I keep moving the target further away from the dog so that they are pawing at the air. After some training, you will be able to remove the target completely.
Rush shows off the final look of the behaviour. He’s actually going off the physical cues more than the verbal ones. Because dogs read body language the best. Also in film I am not always able to speak to my dogs so physical cues are very important.
TIP: Each dog is different and will perform the trick differently because of that. Rush has a more difficult time waving because of his muscular physic. Whereas Renzo makes it look so easy because of his longer legs and narrower chest. Please keep this in mind and help your dog to the best of their personal ability and don’t expect them to do everything exactly how you see another dog do it.
And of course, most of all have fun ?