Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Trick of the Week

Zachary in Green

Dog Blog Post #266: Here's a classic - every kid's favorite trick to teach their dog...


And assuming your dog is reasonably gentle, and their nails aren't rough or sharp, this crowd pleaser can be a good way to break the ice between a child and a dog.

The trick (pardon the pun) to this one is getting your dog to move their paw. If you have a naturally pawing dog, you can probably teach this in just a few minutes. I don't remember Beau having any trouble with this one at all.

That said, I tried this a few months back with Henry, and got nowhere. His paws were firmly fixed on the ground, and there wasn't anything I could do, short of lifting one myself, that was going to improve things.
Fast forward a few months, throw in some other tricks that involved paws (touching the mouse pad, standing on the basket) and I found myself with a totally different dog. For once, I actually started early on a trick (ie: last Tuesday) so I wouldn't be rushed, and wouldn't you know, he was shaking like a pro in about 5 minutes.
What did I do? I put a cookie in my hand, made a fist, and held it down by his feet. When he moved his paw out of the way to see what I was doing, I clicked, and treated. Lather, rinse, repeat. Once he was reliably lifting a paw, I started raising my own hand, and shake was born.

Now, on The Daily Shoot assignment...

Make a photograph today that illustrates the idea of freshness to you.

First thought? Water pouring into a dog bowl, with a dog happily lapping the stream. Second though, water all over my floor as I'm so busy trying to get the shot I miss the bowl.


Ah - a freshly opened bag of dog treats. Wait, have you ever smelled a freshly opened bag of dog treats?


Hmmm... smelling... smelling... ah ha! What can be fresher than a freshly washed dog? One snuggled in a towel, blown fluffy dry...

Of course, I had no time, and certainly no inclination, to wash the dog. That's why I have a groomer!

But that didn't mean I couldn't pretend... with "the set"... and my nice new piece of tie-dye fleece - the first of the three fabrics I bought this past weekend.

It results certainly says "Freshness" to me...

ds484 - Freshness

... note that the picture at the top of this post is a crop of Zachary in pretty much the same pose as Henry is above. What a handsome devil he is in green, and look how clear his eye came out! I'm seriously stoked about that. :)

(No, I'm not trying to endorse the shampoo - it's just what I had laying about, and I'm pretty sure I have yet to try it!)

© 2011 BZ Training - All Rights Reserved


Amber-Mae said...

Henry looks so clean & fluffy!

Anonymous said...

I was lucky enough that Riley uses her paws all the freaking time, so she picked up Shake very easily and quickly! Ever since I got her when she was 7 weeks old, if she's happy to see you she puts a paw on your arm as you're petting her. Strange dog...

Love the pictures you came up with for the Daily Shoot!

Elyse and Riley

Hood said...

Thanks for posting these tips! My sister's dog uses her paws to beg for attention, so I managed to train her to shake on command in about five minutes with nothing but petting/belly rubs a couple years ago. My dog, however, has no problem using her paws for just about everything else, but has never been able to grasp the concept of placing the paw in a human's hand. Perhaps this method will help her finally understand what I'm asking her to do!

Katie, Maizey and Magnus said...

I actually never taught maizey to shake as she has a hard core default "tag" (foot touch) as her favorite offer and almost always has. It was so "bad" (if offerings can be bad.LOL) that after putting it on cue I never trained any foot behaviors.

After a break from rewarding any foot action she is much more balanced and though it is still her default it is controlled so we have trained a 'wave' (one foot wave), 'wave again' (two waves same foot), she can ring a bell and the easy button and is working on holding hands (her foot in my hand as long as *I* want.

The holding hands thing actually started to discourage the incessant tagging of my husband for attention. She doesn't really like it so I told him if she kept tagging say, "oh you want to hold and hands?" Then let her tag his hand and hold her foot for a second. Now it's an offer she uses when she thinks we are worried, it really cracks me up!:))

Gorgeous pics as always, love that you are getting into props. They always make me smile. BTW a walking challenge post is up and I'm sure you have progress to report to if you want to hop over and leave me miles, I'll be updating later this week.

houndstooth said...

The boys both look very fresh to me! I love that green, too! It really compliments them both.

A blogger I follow from New Zealand taught her dog to do "high five" and it is one of the cutest variations of shake that I've seen!

greygirl25 said...

The green is beautiful behind them. Nice choice.