Money can buy you a fine dog, but only love can make him wag his tail – Kinky Friedman
Looking for a fun game with your dog?
How about “Find it”? Let’s get started.
What you’ll need:
1. Your dog in a calm state (take them for a walk before if there’s any concern)
2. A toy that your dog likes
Yup, that’s it.
Put your dog in a sit. While your dog is sitting show him the toy and let him sniff it a little.
Keep your dog in the sit and put the toy about 3 to 5 feet away in plain view.
Walk back to your dog and give them their release command (Porter’s is “okay”) and then repeat the phrase “Find it” over and over until your dog makes contact with the toy you had just placed 3-5 feet in front of him. When contact is made give them tons of praise. Lots of “good dog” and pets to go with it.
Practice this a few more times with the same distance. Each time your dog should see you put the toy down. As your dog becomes consistent in finding the toy, go ahead and make the distance longer.
Let your dog watch where you’re putting the toy, but make the distance more substantial. Again, praise each time your dog finds the toy.
Once you feel like your dog has a handle over what you’ve been doing so far, make it a little harder. Hide the toy behind something. Let your dog see where you’re walking, but then hide the toy behind the couch or a chair, somewhere they can’t see it from where they’re sitting. Repeat the “Find it” phrase until your dog reaches the toy and then praise again.
So now, you get to make it even more challenging! Don’t let your dog see where you hide it. Go in a different room or around a corner. When you release them repeat the phrase “Find it” until they come across the toy and then praise, praise, praise!
You can always help your dog find the toy by leading them over to the area if you find that they’re having trouble. But give them some time to figure it out! They can do it!
This is a great game to play when the weather is not so great outside or if you think your dog needs some more mental work than you’ve been able to give them recently. Make sure to have fun with it! It will be hard not to. Trust me!
Darwin Dogs, LLC
Dog Training in Cleveland, OH