Saturday, February 13, 2010

Tricks and what-not

Shaya at Paws and Reflect recently posted about Kyra Sundance’s Trick certification. Kyra Sundance is the author of 101 Dog Tricks. This is just the sort of motivation I need to pursue tricks with my dogs. (I am so not a trick trainer.)

First step I picked up 101 Dog Tricks from my library. Thank dog gods for libraries! While the trick ideas are cool and the pictures are nice, the instructions in the book are lacking and rely pretty heavily on physical manipulation (IMO). If I were a novice dog person I think I would have a lot of trouble being successful with this book.

Regardless, I am going to use it as a guideline and try to get Ike’s Novice Trick Dog title.

Ike only needs to learn a couple of additional tricks in order to qualify for the Novice Trick Dog “title.” Interestingly a lot of moves from obedience, agility (teeter and weaves are considered advance tricks, which I guess they are!) and rally count as tricks.

For the Novice Trick Dog Title you must have 15 tricks under stimulus control and perform them in front of a witness. Advanced tricks can count as two novice tricks (thank you weaves!).

Ike's “tricks:”

1. Come (basic obedience)
2. Jump over a bar (agility)
3. Kennel Up (basic obedience)
4. Place (circle to my left) (Rally move)
5. Shake hands – Left & Right
6. Side (swing to my left side) (Rally)
7. Stay (basic obedience)
8. Sit (basic obedience)
9. Touch a target (agility)
10. Tunnel (agility)
11. Teeter-totter (agility)
12. Directed Jumping (Advanced trick – counts as two) (agility)
13. see above
14. Weave poles (Expert trick- counts as two) (agility)
15. see above

Okay, so technically Ike doesn’t need to learn anything new for his Novice Trick Dog title. I didn’t know that when we were practicing today. Since he had so much fun we will keep practicing and maybe learn some additional basic tricks so we can save the advanced tricks for a more advanced title (there are 4 titles: Novice, Intermediate, Advanced, Expert).

Today Ike worked on “crawl.” This is actually something he used to know how to do – back in the day when I used to drag him to the nursing home. With a little practice I think we will be able to get this under stimulus control and stop with the luring.

Lest you think Bug has been neglected, Bug worked on his nose touch and building interest in his new toy. Bug’s nose touch, cue “Hit it,” is very soft. I would like to see a little more oomph. So I started by working with a target. I think this will also be a GREAT way to practice Bug’s wait/stay and “go.” Bug thinks the target is so exciting he can barely contain himself when I move it. When I release him he goes barreling to it. Hmmm…

We ended by doing a little stretching on the Ball and playing with the new tug toy which also squeaks. Bug says, “HEAVEN!”


Sara said...

What a fun idea. I have that book. I use it more for ideas, than instruction.

Holly said...

I saw that book just the other day and was looking at it! I watched her on Bravo's one and only season of Dog Show Moms & Dads. Chalcy looked nice at Philadelphia when she had a pro show her. Did you ever go to her website and see what she charges for performances? GASPS

101mutts said...

Yay! Glad you were inspired by it to work on tricks. I agree about the instructions not being the best. I also wish she'd encourage clickers more and the principle of not using a command until you are getting the behavior. Oh well. Some cute ideas. Luckily there are handful of youtube videos that give good instructions on training harder tricks, such as limp.