Teach your dog how to spin and twist
To teach this, you’re going to start with just going ONE direction – normally we start with the spin which is teaching your dog to go around in a circle, on the spot, anti-clockwise.
You’re going to be using a treat to lure your dog and guide them in the direction you’d like them to go. Marleybones treats are fabulous and irresistible to your dog, so always good to use them! A lure will need to be level with your dog to avoid them jumping up so make sure you keep it to their height, it will also need to be about an inch away from their nose, not too far away from them as they won’t be interested in it and not too close as they’ll try to eat it! Your dog will also need to be in a standing position for this – if they’re sitting, it’s likely they’ll do a weird spin on their bum which isn’t what we’re looking for. To get them to stand, you can use the treat to lure them – again, make sure it’s always at your dog’s nose height to avoid jumping up. To lure them into the stand, take the treat at their nose height, take a step back, bringing the treat towards you. Their back legs should come up and then you can get started with your spin:
- Have your dog in front of you in a standing position.
- Get your Marleybones treat and pop it in front of your dog’s nose.
- Slowly guide your dog around in an anti-clockwise direction.
- As soon as your dog gets round to face you again, let them know they’re a good dog and give them their tasty treat.
- Repeat, repeat, repeat.
As your dog gets better at following the treat, you can start to fade the food away while still using your hand as if you do have the treat there. One time you lure with the treat, the next time you just use your hand and reward with your other hand when they get round to facing you again. If your dog doesn’t get it at any point, always go back to the most simple step. You should always make sure your dog is successful every, single time they do it. If they’re not, it’s our fault, not theirs and we need to make it simpler for them to follow.
Once they know how to spin around anti-clockwise, follow the steps above to start the twist training. Dogs are much like humans and they will have a preferred way to turn, don’t put pressure on them and remember, if they’re not doing it, ask them for something they know, flawlessly so they can be rewarded a few times before trying again. Make your training sessions short and sweet, little and often. 3 – 5 minutes, 3 - 4 times a day is better than sitting for a full 30 minutes. This will keep frustration levels to a minimum and keep sessions positive for both you and your dog.
Go on, what are you waiting for? Give these fun tricks a try and make sure you tag us in your progress videos! We love to see humans and dogs having fun, training together!