As you did so good with your first homework, you're getting some more this time 🙂 No worries if you don't manage to do everything in 2 weeks, you can always come back to those tricks. Post wherever you end up, we learn the most through problems, so you want to post those too! 🙂
1. experiment with different toys and ways to play with your dog. Tape his favourite game to give some new ideas to other participants (and me!!!)
2. instead of a plate, find something a little higher this time to give them a better feeling of where to keep their front legs, click first for front feet on an object (should be easy, you want the same thing as on a plate) and then observe hind legs and click for ANY movement (even just a weight shift) and then shape from there to more&more steps around the object. I first click both directions and once I get a quarter of a circle, start clicking one direction only and reward with a head away from me in order to get a full circle. The final goal is full circle in both directions, with you static (don't help the dog to circle with your movement!) - I think those that have my heeling video can already do that exercise, though 🙂
3. take the plate and hold it in different positions to see if the dog understands it's the same thing even when you hold it higher, under angle, to his left/right etc. Try when he is standing, sitting and lying down. If you didn't name touching an object with a paw, it's time to do it now! Also, try to change objects for this exercise, sometimes also use a hand as a paw target. Once he can do all that, you're ready for next two tricks we will get out of the paw touch:
- crossing paws: tell the puppy to down (or shape it if he doesn't know it yet), then hold the plate (or, you can use another, smaller and more convenient object, like a plastic lid or a piece of paper) close to left paw and only reward touching it with left paw. Then hold it closer and closer to right paw, still only reward left paw touches, then hold it on right paw and eventually on the other side, jackpoting the touches of left paw on a right paw now in order to eventually get rid of a target.
- sit up: tell the puppy to sit (or shape it if he doesn't know it yet), then put the plate (or just use the hand if he will recognize that as a target) low enough first that he can reach it with a paw, but then every next time, hold it a little higher - not that high that he would stand up, but high enough that the other leg leaves the ground a little bit too. Jackpot.
4. observe your puppy and try to find situations when he would back up - it usually happens when they're moving out of your way - or sometimes when you're working on ignoring the food in the hand. You can try to sit down on the floor with treats in your hand and click first step back with hind foot. Don't wait for more than one as they usually sit down then. Click&reward the first one and reward by throwing a treat towards the dog. Rewarding at distance will help you add more&more steps and more&more distance from you. At one point, switch to rewarding with a toy, it's easier to throw.
5. 2on2off - find an object big enough for the dog to go on with all 4 feet easily - maybe just put your first 4in object upside down? - Click for 2-3 legs on and then don't click the fourth one, you don't want any duration standing there! Only click again when the dog is leaving the object, try to catch him with 2 front feet on the ground and deliver the treat while he is still in this position. You want them go on an object and off immediately, stopping with front feet on the ground. Click&reward several times for a position, then say "go"/"o.k."/"free"/whatever your release word will be and throw a treat away so that he needs to leave the position to get it. Do this enough times that the dog starts to expect the thrown treat after "go", so that then you don't need to throw it in advance, but only after he leaves the position on "go". Do not help with body language that you want him to leave after "go" - if he doesn't know it yet, go back to throwing a treat and progress more slowly.
Another note: I'll be able to answer your questions this coming week with no problem, but then the week after I have seminars here, so I'm not sure if I'll be able to keep up. If not, we'll just add another week to this class.