The concluding part to yesterday’s post.
Open a door
Your dog can cue to you open the door by ringing a bell, but how about taking it to the next level and teaching your dog to open the door by himself? In fact, there’s a handy trick built into this that we will introduce later on! This video walks you through all the steps to opening doors and drawers:
Hold an object
If your dog likes to play fetch or tug, it may be a great idea to teach him how to hold and carry an object. It’s a new way for a dog to think about holding a toy, since once the dog has a grip on it, he needs to wait for you to give the cue to release it. This trick is also included in a more complicated trick, which is next on our list. But first, here’s a video that shows you how to master this trick:
Fetch something from the fridge or cupboard
When you have the training down for touch, opening the door, knowing the names of objects, and holding an object, it’s just a matter of putting the steps together to teach your dog to fetch an item from somewhere in the house. A popular version of this trick is of course to fetch a beer from the fridge! But maybe start out with a less fizzy drink option, just in case.
An interesting trick to teach your senior dog is how to walk backwards. It’s a great one to help with getting him to think about using his body a little differently. Most dogs aren’t really aware of where their hind end is — it’s just the part that follows their front end. By teaching your dog to walk backward, you’re teaching him to be aware of where his back legs are going. It’s great for both mental and physical agility.
Keep life interesting for your dog by creating a game around using his nose to find a reward. This is a great trick especially for dogs whose hearing or sight has diminished with age. The trick teaches them to use their noses even more purposefully, using scent work to find the hidden treat or toy. Once you teach your dog how to find it, you can have the “it” be something different every time you play to keep your dog at the top of his game. This video shows an older Labrador learning the steps to the “find it” game and having fun playing:
Tuck himself in bed
It’s surprising how much fun you can have with a trick that only requires your dog to grab a blanket and roll over. This adorable trick is great for dogs of any age, and is an easy (and cozy) trick for your senior dog to learn. You simply teach your dog to lie down on a blanket, grab and hold the corner of it, and roll over so he tucks himself into bed. For senior dogs who like to snooze in extra warm blankets, this is a dream trick. Here’s how it works:
So there you are. Plenty to keep you and your senior dogs engaged for a long time. Once again, if you missed part one then that was published yesterday.