Dogs have always been a man’s best friend, without a doubt. They are one of the smartest and loving pets in the animal kingdom. When treated right, rest assured that these furry babies will bring love and loyalty to your home.
The great thing about having a dog is being able to teach them amazing tricks. You don’t need to be a dog whisperer like Cesar Millan to do this. One of the easy tricks you can teach is letting the dog learn how to shake. Just follow the guide below:
Teaching A Dog How To Shake
- Find a spot in your home where you can train your dog
Dogs are smart but can be easily distracted. Make sure you find a spot in your home where you can do daily training with zero distractions. The room must be in a good size, big enough for the dog to move around and feel comfortable.
- Train the dog before feeding or when he/she is hungry
The dog’s sense of smell is heightened when they haven’t eaten yet, making it perfect to let them learn a new trick by using that heightened smell. Make sure the dog is not starving when doing this. Otherwise, the dog will only end up with frustration or not learning the new trick.
- Ask your dog in a sitting position
You need to go low like almost level to your dog and have the dog to be in a sitting position. Have his/her favorite treat ready and ignite the gusto to grab their attention only to you by using the treats as a motivation. After letting them smell the treat, hide it on your palm and start working with your dog. The furbaby should be ready to take the lesson now.
- Reach out your palm to your dog
Reach out your palm, keeping it close and not revealing the treat inside and leveling at your dog’s chest area. The dog’s instinct is to grab the treat by his/her paws. When the dog do this, have your hands open and let the dog take the treat.
Repeat the same process at least several times until the dog learns what you’re trying to teach – shake your hand. Make sure you have a lot of treats to stimulate his/her willingness to keep learning.
- Test your dog if he/she knows how to shake
Do all the same steps except eliminating the use of the treats. This is one way to check whether the dog has absorbed and learned the lesson or not.
Reach out your hand and see if the dog shakes it with his/her paw. If he/she does, give him/her a treat on the other hand to reward the perfect response. If the dog seems to be confused without using the treat, do it with a treat once again and transition to not using the treat. Sure enough the dog will get what you’re teaching.
Don’t forget to praise your dog once he/she gets the trick. Vocal appreciation lets the dog know that he/she is doing right. They love it when they get to please their humans when they do the right things.
- Start adding the word shake
Before you reach out your hand, say the word shake and then reach out to your dog. This will help the dog to associate the word to the trick, helping him/her remember the trick the next time you say the word again. Congratulations! Your dog knows how to shake now.
- Do not overtrain your dog
For the dog to learn effectively, furbabies are supposed to learn for no more than 10 minutes per session. This is to create a healthy and interactive relationship with your dog. Never force the dog to learn a trick by using violent means to make them do the trick. It will never be enjoyable to them and will create further stress instead.
Spread out your training sessions with your dog throughout the day so he/she has something to look forward to. Be a responsible dog parent and you’ll surely have a lovable and smart pet dog.
David Nilsen is the former editor of Fourth & Sycamore. He is a member of the National Book Critics Circle. You can find more of his writing on his website at davidnilsenwriter.com and follow him on Twitter as @NilsenDavid.