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Trick and treats; OUR EXPERT VIVIAN SILVERSTEIN OF THE PET BEHAVIOUR CENTRE ADVISES ON YOUR ANIMAL ISSUES.

Byline: VIVIAN SILVERSTEIN

Trick Training is great way to stimulate your dog and enhance your relationship with him.

It isn't about circus tricks and force, it is more about getting a dog to do something he can do naturally, but when you ask him to. Great entertainment for friends and family, not to mention the dog.

To teach your dog to give paw, hold a tasty treat in your hand.

Make a fist so the dog can see and smell the treat without being able to get it. Put your hand in a position just in front of the dog at about the height of the top of his front leg, near his chest.

He will find the treat and start to lick at it unsuccessfully.

After a short while, he should become a little frustrated with that and start to 'dig' at it. At this point, don't say anything, but just open your hand, offering the treat as a reward when his paw touches you. If you can get this happening consistently, you can start to put a name to it which the dog associates with the behaviour - 'Paw'.

Before you know it, your dog will offer his paw when you hold out your hand and say, 'Paw'.

When your dog is really good, you can change it to a 'High Five' by holding the palm of your hand towards the dog. He should automatically start to lift his paw higher to reach.

You can use a clicker to do this or just use treats at the time of the behaviour.

If you are using a clicker, use it as the dog carries out the behaviour first, then start to add the cue word just before you click, before you treat.

n If you are interested in a course on dog training using the clicker, contact us at the centre www.livewithyourdog.co.uk

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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Sunday Mail (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Jun 4, 2017
Words:315
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