Do your dogs enjoy learning tricks?

luna may

New Member
Do your dogs like being taught new stuff? :rolleyes:
I'm not sure if Kesem enjoys her training, or if she accepts it only for the treat... How can I make training interesting for her? I don't want to bore her! :doglaugh:
So how do you know if your dogs like their training or not?


Experienced Member
I think you may need to be a little more patient for replies, than just 19 minutes. :)

Do your dogs like being taught new stuff?
As much as any of us can really be sure our dogs enjoy things, I'm pretty sure mine does. It is one of the benefits of clicker training that because you are not forcing anything from the dog, you can be reasonably confident that the dog is doing it because they want to.

How can I make training interesting for her?
Different dogs are motivated by different things. Some love food, some praise, some both. Some breeds of dog are more naturally motivated to work than others. My own dog, for example, is a Border Collie, which are notorious for their love of learning and working.

That is not to say that will or should work for nothing. She learns new tricks and obedience in return for her daily food. And then, at the end of each session, she gets to play with her favourite toy - her ball. That way, she does her best to perform well, in order to get her ball. The ball is only ever brought out after training, and is always put away by me after about ten minutes, so that it retains some special value to the dog.

You need to find out what motivates your dog and then get creative with that. Really, only you, as the dog's handler, can know that.

Jean Cote

Staff member
Yes, Dogs absolutely love learning new tricks and behaviors, but it has to be taught in a positive manner.

If it's easy for your dog to be successful, then he will learn to love training with you! But if he cannot be successful or you punish him when he does wrong, then he'll shut down, and start to hate training.



Honored Member
Staff member
Well, my mutts are people-pleasers. Mud, my border collie, absolutely loves training. I use praise training with all of my dogs, with the exception of one or two of their tricks. She thrives on it and learns so fast, partially because she just wants to make me happy, and partially just because she's smart. As a border collie, she loves having something to do. Zeke, my BC/Heeler is much the same. He's much more easily distracted, but he likes learning new tricks and picks them up quickly. Now Rusty...he's my Rottie mix. He's a little slower, but he does everything he can to do what I want him to. ^^ My chihuahua hates learning.....Nick just doesn't care, lol.
Really, it's a matter of seeing what motivates your dog. If your dog thrives on praise, praise training may be the way to go. If she seems to like the treats better, then use clicker training or just treat training. Always keep a good attitude throughout your training sessions. Try not to get frustrated with her if she's not picking up on something. Just stay relaxed and positive. If you have a negative attitude during the training, she will pick up on it and may not enjoy her training. Remember to give her time to just be a puppy, rather than a puppy-in-training all the time. :dogsmile:


Well-Known Member
I also use treats for training new tricks. It makes her more willing to learn something new. Once she learns a new trick I reveiw all the tricks she knows with love and affection.


New Member
I think dogs do enjoy learning tricks, as long as the training is done such that they are successful most of the time in getting the rewards from the very first step onward. And as long as the training session ends on a high note when the dog is being successful. A dog who is confused for too long, like if you are taking too big a step and he doesn't understand what you want, will get too frustrated or lose interest. In that case he's not having fun. A dog who is tired or bored, for example if endless repetitions are done, will also lose interest.

it's all about keeping the training sessions fun for the dog, breaking down the goals into doable steps that are challenging enough to stimulate their minds and not be boring, but not SO challenging that they keep failing to win the treat. the dog should always have at least a 50% chance of getting it right and earning the treat. Watch the dog during the session - if his expression and body language indicates alertness and interest, he's having fun. If he starts looking elsewhere or if his movements are getting slow, then it's time to end the session for the day.

Jean Cote

Staff member
I strive for 90% success rate with extremely slow increments of criteria. :) But that's just me, hehehe.