Sunday, January 9, 2011

Trick # 2 - The Pat Down – "Assume the Position" – Spread-em

This trick is really easy to teach, and is usually good for a few laughs.  It’s also a nice stretching trick for agility, after your dog has warmed up a bit first.  I use it as a calming stretch for Seeker, when he’s up on the wall I’ll slide my hands down him slowly.  You could also have the opposite effect by rubbing your dog vigorously while he’s on the wall to get him up.

You’ll need a wall, some food, a clicker and your dog.  We are going to use some luring with this trick.  Luring means we are going to use food to guide the dog where we want them.  I’ll still use placement of reward, which in this trick will be on the wall.   

Huge THANKS to Michele for bring Cougar, and meeting us at the 4RK9’s building!  This gave us a warm place to video, more room, and a young dog with limited trick training to use as a demo!

Cougar had never tried this trick before, but he had a pretty good basic understanding after just one session.  We progressed faster than I normally would, but I wanted video, and he really didn’t seem to mind the food!

You can begin by either sitting on the floor, or standing by the wall.  Place your hand on the wall at about your dog’s normal head height.  As your dog looks at, and, or goes to your hand, c/t.  Remember placement of reward should be on the hand on the wall.  Repeat, slowly raising the hand up as your dog gains confidence. 

At the point the dog needs to lift his front feet off the ground, we’re going to switch to luring with the treat in your wall hand.  As soon as the dog touches the wall with his front feet, treat him.  Wait to work your duration until he’s willing to come up onto the wall reliably. 

When he’s happily jumping onto the wall, add duration by having several treats in your hand, and feeding them out one by one.  When he starts to anticipate jumping on the wall, add verbal command.  I used “spread-em”.  You can then begin combining your duration with multiple treats in your wall hand, with your clicker hand running down his back. (Not responsible for wall damage. G)

Once he’ll hold that position until you release him, then you can start having strangers ‘frisk’ him if you’d like.  

Seeker LOVES this trick!  For this clip we used a couple of our favorite songs, the theme from "Cops" and a song by Montgomery Gentry - Hell Yeah.  It's kind of Seeker's theme song, but Seeker's name is more politically correct = Lytnstrke's Hail Yeah.

Have fun!!  

It’s only a trick after all!


  1. That is so cute! Loved it with the officer. I need a trick for our Foundations class tomorrow - this looks like a great one!

  2. Seeker looked entirely TOO happy to participate in that. And yes, I think Cougar has been or is going to be in trouble with the law soon.

    Very fun.

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