School time for our puppies! Here is your first to-do list.
Just a short note first: there are lots of tasks waiting for you in this class as I like to keep it interesting also for those dogs who already know some of the tricks. HOWEVER, make sure you're not focusing on teaching too much as fast as possible, to the degree of trying to help/lure - but instead take the time and focus on the fun part. In order not to make you feel under pressure, I will be underlining the tasks you should focus on in each lesson. The rest you can do if the underlined exercises are going well, but we don't need those for the next lesson, so it doesn't hurt if you address those later.
1. The first task might sound a little silly for those with adult dogs, but in fact, it's never silly to make a recall even better! Call your dog at least 10 times a day to do something fun together: to play, to go out, to get a treat, something to chew on or a new exciting toy
2. put a plate (or another object, but I like to start with a plate as puppies can't chew on those too easily) on a floor and shape a puppy to touch it with a front paw: you can first click for head movement in the right direction, then one/two/three steps towards the plate, then stepping over it or close to it and finally for stepping on it
3. sit on a floor and put a fist full of treats or dog's favourite toy right in front of their nose, wait till they stop sniffing and click for anything they try other than getting directly to the food/toy or staring at it. It's very important the dog understands staring at food/toy doesn't get him anywhere as it will later on allow you to work with food/toys in your hand without distracting the dog's focus from the job at hand.
4. find a box or a drawer that is as long as your dog and not too high and shape a dog to put 1-2-3-4 legs into it. Then try with smaller&smaller objects, final goal is the dog can stand with all 4 feet in a small bowl.
5. observe your puppy and see if he sometimes stretches his legs out when in down position, puppies often do that when relaxed or playing. Name it (I call it "frog":) and reward. It's a nice stretching exercise and very easy to get it on cue if the dog does it naturally (some dogs do it as adults too, but mine didn't and it was much harder to train it as with puppy Le who was doing that naturally). If not, put a dog in a down position and reward from the floor and so far ahead that the dog needs to stretch out to get it - but not so far that he would crawl ahead. Watch the hind legs and click for moving them back OR out, but NOT for crawling step forward. It usually helps if you try to get them stretch over a pillow, like in this video:
Looking forward to see your videos! You can send them in one or more pieces, but keep the total length of the videos sent per lesson under 10min. Don't wait until you master the tricks before sending your videos, just post whatever you're working on for some feedback.