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I really want to spend some time teaching Aspen some 'fun party tricks' this winter. I'm getting a little bored with obedience because she's PERFECT at home, the yard, the park, etc.... she needs help with some very specific distraction issues but I'm working with a trainer on those.

Anyway, while I will continue to keep her obedience up to snuff, I'd like to work in some tricks. Maybe it's dumb but I have ALWAYS wanted a dog that does tricks! Haha.

Can anyone recommend any good books for this? I know there are YouTube videos and stuff but I'd really like to get a couple of books.
 

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If you're willing to dish out a little bit of money (well more than a little I guess, it's like 150), Emily Larlham (Kikopup) has a membership program where each week for 52 weeks she release a different private video to train body awareness, focus game, proofing, and tricks. They are really cool ranging from "say your prayers" to walking on feet, big circles, back-up etc. She gives a video tutorial, all the steps are written out, and she includes trouble-shooting and ways to make it harder. You can read about it here: Dogmantics Membership

I also have this one and like it just fine, I have to admit, I enjoy YouTube videos quite a bit, so I'm limited on my book suggestions.
 
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@Shandula - do you have that membership? Is it worth it? I consider Aspen very capable of learning anything (and she's built for dexterity and physically challenging tasks) BUT I consider myself very beginner haha.

I thought about that book but I read a few reviews that to get the dog to do something, she bops it in the nose :( I don't want to bop Aspen in the nose...

I should give YouTube another chance haha I just like books.
 

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I guess the other reason I like books is that I feel like it'll set me up to start correctly. Left to my own devices, I'm not sure what the best order is to teach things.
 

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@Aspen726 - I do have the membership, and I LOVE IT. I was a little hesitant because of the price, but when I recognized that it is 150 for a year of training, and most classes are 120 for 6 weeks, it seemed like a no brainer. You also get access to a private Facebook group where you can post videos and ask questions. :) You also can see the first week "Paws Up" trick tutorial for free so you can see if you like the style.

Both dogs seem to pick up the tasks very quickly, and I find the teaching pretty easy, and then it is just repetition.

I will admit, I haven't read that book in a long time, since I've become a YouTube junkie.
 
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Also, I use a marker word, not a clicker... I started using a clicker BUT the kids thought it was great fun and were 'click clicking' all over the house and I didn't want to confuse the poor dog haha
 

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Oh that's fine, I alternate a lot between "yes!" and a clicker. Mainly because I like knowing if I forget my clicker, my dogs still know they did the right thing. Plus, sometimes I have too much going on in my hands to work the clicker.
 

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@Shandula - I started teaching leg weaves yesterday. In one of the FB groups that I'm in, someone mentioned that it's one of the easier things to start with. Aspen 'got it' right away. I wasn't sure how she'd feel about walking under me but she couldn't have cared less haha. She is SO smart (sorry, little brag) :)

I love leg weaves when they are seamless. You can do such cool tricks with them. I can't wait until we're at that point :) I'll be sure to share a video when we're there.

PS- I used YouTube to learn this one haha
 

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Yay! Levi also loves leg weaves. He REALLY likes going behind you and coming between your legs. I've made some quick friends at the dog park because he does it to everyone. Like whoops, say hello to my dog.
 
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When I don't have a clicker on hand I use a high pitched sound with my voice that I can repeat the same each time. Like a quick "yep" noise.

Kikopup is marvelous :) I was considering that when I had the extra cash.

Sit pretty is one that's fun and cute to train. You could teach a leg weave as well, that ones fun!
 

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I like the books by Kyra Sundance--101 Dog Tricks, Puppy Tricks, Dog Tricks for Kids...each book has some of the same and some different tricks. When I am running out of ideas for what to train or build off for Quenya's tricks all I have to do is browse through one of her books for a new idea (I own 101 Dog Tricks and Do More With Your Dog, but they're popular books and many libraries already have them and you can check them out for free--that's how I started).
 
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We started "sit pretty" last night... haha I took a very poor quality video that I would share if I knew how ;)

Obviously just working on building muscle and balance right now.
 

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@Aspen726 - Levi has a fairly embarrassing sit pretty. I'm 99% sure he has no idea he has back legs. Our battle for hind-end awareness is on-going. :p

I always just put my vids on YouTube, I don't think anyone but DF people see them. :p
 

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You probably already taught it to your dog but the wave good-bye and hello is always a classic which gets a grin out of most everyone. I incorporate a lot of hand signals in my training so the wave goodbye/ hello works great this way as I tell the younger kids my dog knows many languages and you can wave at my dog and tell her hello/goodbye in any language you know. Of course, she cues on the hand gesture but it takes the kids and some adults a while to figure it out.

Just the other day when I was out with my dog for our daily bike ride, I stopped at an intersection to wait for traffic. The dog always takes a sit position when I stop walking/biking automatically and this lady saw this and started waving and smiling at my dog from her car and my dog "waved" back at her, she lost it and busted out laughing as did I.
 

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@Shandula - how do I find you on YouTube? Currently, my (ONE) video haha is shared on a FB tricks group. They're so nice and giving me lots of advice. :)
@DriveDog - Aspen knows 'paw' but not how to wave. It sounds like that was a hysterical situation! Haha... how did you teach it?
 

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I think this is it?
 

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@DriveDog - Aspen knows 'paw' but not how to wave. It sounds like that was a hysterical situation! Haha... how did you teach it?
I'm guessing my girl's "wave" is more of a "paw" as it lacks the side to side motion so it's more of a repeated pawing with her front leg staying elevated throughout the motions.

As I recall, I just built on the shake to a high five into the hello/goodbye wave. Each motion had it's own hand signal along with a verbal command in the beginning. The height which the dog brings their paw to, seems to be the defining difference between the three commands with the shake being the lowest as well as the shake and high five making contact with the human's hand. The wave seemed to be a natural progression without having to make contact with my hand. If your dog already knows to "paw" at the air and hold the leg elevated, I suppose all you need is a hand gesture to cue the dog to "paw" or 'wave". Once my dog reacted to the hand gesture, I faded out the verbal cue even though I would throw in an "au revoir", "auf wiedersehen" "goodbye" etc. at times. I could say "zucchini" during the hand signal to wave and get the same result but most others don't know that too quickly.
 

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Leg weaves question!

How do I transition from luring her with my hand through my legs to removing the lure?
 

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Leg weaves question!

How do I transition from luring her with my hand through my legs to removing the lure?
I don't know that the method I used is standard since I just kind of winged it on my own but I used verbal cues with a lure in the beginning. I would lure the dog through my legs while taking an exaggerated slower step forward and say zig while luring the dog through. I stayed on this simple process and then added in the zag after she knew the zig. I tend to use more hand signals and body signals than verbal cues but for this training behavior I thought it best to stick with a verbal cue since I didn't want her weaving every time I walk with her. I somewhat believe that my dog keys on my length of stride because when we weave, I have to take larger than normal steps because she's a larger breed dog. So, between the verbal cue and my longer than normal stride, she has more than enough indication as to what she should do.

Don't know if this helps but it has worked for me.
 
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