Which Trick Should I Teach My Dog?

I got a great deal on liver at the supermarket. Now I have a huge container of liver jerky and I gotta find some way to use it.

I know. I’ll teach Honey a new trick. That will take our supply down really fast.

But what should I teach her?

Honey the Golden Retriever naps on the couch.

I’ve learned to nap on the couch. Isn’t this a good trick?

Luckily, Koby and his person have a few ideas for us.

Lots of great tricks there. Which one should we work on?

By the way, the best trick of all is described in the “About” section of this video:

This video was produced and directed by 13 year old Brandon Mobley. He is trained by Kim Mobley, using positive reinforcement techniques.

Clever family, huh?

Okay, Honey. Find the clicker and let’s get busy. That liver isn’t going to eat itself.

Your Turn: What’s the best trick your dog knows? And what trick should I teach Honey?

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Comments

  1. That is a cool pack of tricks by Koby. Honey is so going to have fun trying some of those. Have a fabulous Friday.
    Best wishes Molly

  2. Neither Jack or Maggie are big on tricks…we’re still working on some of the basics. I’m trying to get Jack to let me rest a treat on his nose, but I don’t think it will ever work…Maggie is still working on her stay. So many tricks Honey could master she is so smart – how about doing the laundry?

  3. Julie Blackwelder says:

    I think some dogs need this kind of thing because they are very active and very intelligent. One of my clients has a Yorkie that is 6 pounds of intellect eager for something to do. His Shih Tzu although very bright is a laid back marathon napper. The Shih Tzu is happy, sweet, content and no trouble. “Pet me, feed, me, take me for walks and I’m happy. Oh, yeah, I almost forgot, don’t forget to turn the TV on every morning.” (He stands and stares from TV to owner and back until it gets turned on, then he plops into his bed to watch the morning shows, waiting for the pet of the day to show up.)

    The Yorkie needs things to do, needs interaction, demands attention, and is very unhappy if ignored. One of his favorite things is, “Alvin, is it raining?” which means go poke your head through the blinds on the sliding glass door so I can see if it is still raining or if we should go out now. His comprehension of questions and commands is huge and he expects to use them often. Lay back in the recliner before he is ready to take a nap and he dots the owners nose with his nose, celebrates the eyes opening with vigorous tail wagging and perked ears, waiting to see what they are going to do before nap really commences. (That would drive me nuts, but the owner thinks it’s cute and is happy to play along.)

    Anyway, tricks can and do serve useful purposes but they need to be tailored to the dog and owner. Do what makes you both happy.

  4. Jimmy spends his time learning advanced agility moves so he’s pretty happy with that. Over the winter, to keep him entertained, he learned to do a figure-8 around my legs (harder to do with a big dog like Honey), jump through a hoop, and roll-over. He could learn lots more, but I don’t seem to have the patience for shaping and clicker training.

    I really did love the Ithaca area! It would be so easy to stay fit there with so much water and hills! We did see the waterfall in Ithaca (on Lake St. I think?) We happened upon it by accident on Monday, July 1st. If you remember, it poured all day that day. It was our first full day in town, and we ended up at a movie :-) On the way back we got turned around, and in our efforts to get back to the hotel, went past the falls. It was BLASTING water down its run. We parked the car and followed the few brave souls who were walking back that trail. It was like a hurricane close to the bottom, so much wind being generated by the power of the water! Unfortunately, I hadn’t brought a camera along since we were just going to a movie (in retrospect, a dumb move! Oh, well!). It was really quite amazing. I wish I had known you could swim there, I would have brought the boys back on another day! They don’t care how deep the water is. They LOVE to swim!

    There are some great restaurants in Ithaca! I especially enjoyed Moosewood!

    • Sorry I meant to reply earlier and got distracted.

      Swimming is common at the Ithaca falls but it’s not exactly legal. One concern–there’s a strong eddy at the foot of the falls that could suck a weak swimmer under so it’s good to be cautious.

      I hope if you come back you’ll drop us a note. Honey and I would love to meet you and the boys. :)

      • I didn’t realize you were in the Ithaca area until we were home. I definitely would have tried to get together. I love to meet people I know through the blogs and it makes for a fun photo-op!

  5. I love, love trick training. Cooper is so smart and crazy energetic that it’s the perfect way to give his active little brain a workout. I like opening and closing cabinets and drawers, though Cooper’s become a fiend about it – while I’m trying to empty the dishwasher, he darts around the kitchen closing all the cabinets! Physical tricks like weaving between the legs are fun and easy to teach if she’s already good at targeting. I would love to see Honey learn something like “are you shy” where she covers her eyes. (Pretty sure I got that idea from a video on Rescued Insanity ages ago??) I think it’s the cutest thing ever! It’s on my wish list with Coop, but we haven’t started it yet!

  6. Oh my goodness. I’m just happy Bailey gives high 5s. She’s only 6 months old though. She’s still has so much to learn.

  7. My very favorite (and surprise, it’s not one of Hurley’s tricks) is when I tell Sadie to go find Daddy. With a huge smile on her face, she races to my husband in the other room. It’s how she says bye to him most mornings.

    I think Honey would do an excellent wave or bow!

  8. Can she “sit pretty”? I can’t get Silas into the right position, so I’m always interested to see other dogs do it.

    Silas’s “best trick” is nothing fancy–it’s just a nose touch to hand. But he will SPRINT toward that hand from anywhere. One day I tried it with him off leash outside, and he literally knocked me over he came so fast.

  9. This gives me ideas for Beamer. He is super smart and needs some way to interact with us without nipping (he’s only 10 weeks old). My husband accidentally trained him to paw at his hand when he has treats in it while he was actually trying to train him not to chew his hand. We all have so much to learn.
    Honey would look cute doing a “hide your eyes” trick.

  10. What fun! I can’t wait to see what you decide . .can she fit under your legs weaving back and forth? I always wanted to teach Cali that! Can’t wait to see Honey’s new tricks!

  11. What a great video. I have to admit to being inspired by Kristine when she taught Shiva to jump through her arms. But then I realized I would have to be 6 and 1/2 feet tall to have arms long enough for Bella to fit through. 😉 I did teach her to walk through my legs but I look like a member of the SS in order to lift them high enough for her to get under. In other words, some of these tricks are best suited for smaller dogs.

  12. Great job, Brandon! I need to start working with Pierson again. We were doing agility but I’ve gotten really lazy because of the heat.

  13. How about “Clean House” ? If Grace can do it so can Honey http://youtu.be/AW_N-dujGXw

  14. What a great video! I’ve always loved “hide your eyes” and I’d also like to train Rocco to put away his toys! Those are two good ones to start!

  15. I don’t know what tricks Honey already does :( I tried to teach Beryl to weave through my legs but her legs are too long … or mine are too short, lol. Can Honey walk backwards? That’s fun and easy to teach and can be quite useful. I taught Frankie with me sitting in a chair and putting a treat under the chair. Click as he backs out and the reward treat is tossed away. While he gets the reward treat place another treat under the chair. Doesn’t take long to get the hang of. Have fun and I’m looking forward to seeing Honey’s new trick :)

  16. The boys all know different tricks- it is so individual! I do love that I can occasionally get a group “bow.” But Wilhelm loves his hind leg spins, Brychwyn enjoys his leg weaves & Huxley is all about his “hug.” We have been working on a “clean up” but it seems that is a trick they think I love to do!

  17. daddy saw a video of a guy who made his fingers into a gun, said bang and his dog sprawled out on the floor playing dead, I think daddy wants to teach me that – he’ll be lucky lol

    • Julie Blackwelder says:

      I saw that once and the dog was so good, but he could not stop wagging the very tip of his tail. As the camera zoomed in on the little wagging tip it was so funny.