Dogs are very active animals. Naturally, they like to run, play and most of them tend to like licking your feet. Getting your dog to shake hands with you or with any of your friends is a neat trick to teach your pet. The best part is that this trick is not a difficult one to train your dog in, as long as you can do it the 'right way.' Sure, I understand that with many websites offering their unique take on 'how to teach a dog to shake,' you are bound to be a little confused.
So take a moment to go through the pointers listed below, and I am sure that you would be able to shake hands with your dog with ease. As these pointers have been compiled from the secrets of a professional dog trainer, they are bound to be invaluable to you. So do review the lot and you should be able to 'high five' your dog in no time at all.
What You’ll Need.
Reward or Rewarding Device (Treats, Training Clickers, Toys or Dog Whistles)
A treat is something that your dog loves to eat. However, for it to have a significant impact the treat has to be something your dog thinks is special. You might have to try different things to find this out as dogs have individual tastes just like us.
Most dogs love liver treats, cheese or kabana so you could start with these. Your dog might just love food and be willing to accept anything - even stale bread. Whatever you decide to use, be prepared that your dog may find that the treat is becoming boring in time. If this is the case, try something different that will stimulate and reactivate his interest in.
Teach Your Dog To Shake Hands
#1. Sit for the lesson
The best way to train your dog to shake hands is to get him to sit still for the lesson, as it works best that way. A dog in the 'sit' position would pay more attention to you than one that remains standing up and furthermore, a dog standing up is not going to be all that keen to balance itself on three paws with the remaining one being offered to you. So get your dog to sit down first and start the lesson.
#2. Grab the paw
The best way to proceed here is to scoop up the paw, hold it gently and shake it. In the end, offer a treat to your dog as a reward. You can do this or better yet, hide a treat in your hand and with your hand closed to hold it in front of his nose. He will lift his paw and start pawing your hand, at which, grasp his paw and shake it with the treat being offered at the end of the shake.
#3. Repeat the process
There are any numbers of ways through which you can get your dog to shake hands. But whichever method you use, remember to repeat the step again and again, so that your dog can get the trick like when you teach your dog to play dead. Do use positive reinforcement as an additional training tool as it will help your dog to comprehend the session better.
#4. Verbalize the step
Now that you have got your dog to paw/shake hands with you, the only thing left for you to do is to verbalize the step with the command 'shake.' Resume training your dog but with the verbal command 'shake' and repeat the earlier steps. He should be able to shake hands with you or with anybody else at the sound of the command 'shake hand'.
#5. Eliminating the Use of Treats
Once your dog has gotten the hang of giving you a high-five, you can get him to do it even more spectacularly. Get him to do it from a standing position on his hind legs. This has the appearance that your dog is jumping up to give you a high five. To do this all you have to do is move your hand higher and higher until your dog performs the trick flawlessly. Like any other training, once your dog has mastered the training, then you can systematically phase out the use of the dog whistles followed by the treats. In case you are using the dog whistle or shock collar for training, then all you need do is start eliminating the treats.
This trick is a great trick to teach your dog, and the best part is that it is not as time-consuming as the other tricks tend to be. With the help of the list compiled from the secrets of a professional dog trainer, you should be able to 'high five' your dog in little time as possible. Once you have managed to train your dog to shake hands, you can try out a few additional tricks, such as making your dog smile. Either way, this trick should allow you to have tons of fun with your dog!
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I’m Emma, the founder and editor-in-chief at hellocutepup.com. As a pet parent myself, I’ve had the amazing experience of raising three phenomenal dogs that quickly became my entire family. I’ve always believed that dogs are a gift sent to us from above and that every prepared household should have [...]