Friday, February 10, 2017

Cute Dog Trick; Roll Over

Tricks training is a great bonding activity to do with your dog.  It's so much fun! One of the easiest tricks you can teach your dog is to Roll Over.  It mimics one of a dog's most natural behaviors, rolling over!

Begin by putting your dog in a SIT position.  Give her a treat as soon as she sits.


Teach your dog to Roll Over
Start with your dog is the SIT position

Next get your dog to lie DOWN.  Give her a treat as soon as she goes into the Down position.


Teaching your dog to Roll Over is one of the easiest tricks to teach dogs
Put your dog in a Down position before teching the Roll Over sequence

That should be easy enough, right?  Now we begin to teach the roll over movement by luring the dog to roll over.  

> Starting with your dog in the DOWN position, place a treat near her nose so she can smell it.  Slowly begin to lure your dog to roll over by moving the treat to her side, staying very close to the body.
An easy to teach, cute dog trick is the Roll Over trick
With a treat close to your dog's nose and body, begin teaching the Roll Over sequence

> Continue luring your dog with the treat close to her nose and body.  Work towards getting her to roll onto her back.  
Using a treat as a lure, train your dog to Roll Over
Keep the treat close to your dog's nose so she can smell it and "follow" the treat through the Roll Over movement

> Continue the lure, still keeping the treat close to her nose and body, until she rolls all the way over onto the opposite side.  As soon as she completes the movement, "Mark" the behavior and praise her enthusiastically!  You can Mark behavior by either using a training Clicker or with a word you use to mark training behavior.  I use the word "Yes!" in my training sessions.
A fun dog trick is to train your dog to Roll Over on command
Continue luring your dog through the Roll Over trick using a treat close to the dog's nose

> Once you've done this entire sequence several times and your dog is picking up on it, add the verbal cue "Roll Over", putting a name to the trick.

When you put it all together in one motion you have the completed Roll Over trick!  You may need to reinforce the ROLLING OVER movement several times.  If your dog appears confused, go back to luring her through the motion using a treat close to her nose and body. 

Phoebe learned to Roll Over very quickly.  Here's what the Roll Over trick will look like:



Once your dog masters roll over, you can perfect the trick by creating distance.  The ultimate goal is for you to be able to give the "Roll Over" command from 3 to 6 feet away.  
You dog will probably slip up a bit when you first try to give the Roll Over command from a distance, but that is totally normal.  Just move back in closer and try again until you can achieve distance when doing the trick.

Not every trick is right for every dog.  Although my dog Icy loves rolling over on her back in the grass, she did not like doing the Roll Over trick at all.  I think it might be because she has a very long back and it may not be comfortable for her to roll over on command so I just focus on other tricks with her.  Tricks should be fun for both you and your dog!  You don't want it to become an unpleasant chore.

If you discover that your dog isn't comfortable with a trick, no matter how easy it may seem to  you, move on to another trick.


*** REMEMBER ***
> Always use Positive Reinforcement methods when training, never yell at or hit your dog!  If you're getting frustrated that your dog isn't paying attention or isn't getting the trick, take a break.

> Keep training sessions short, about 15 - 20 minutes at a time. If you do much more than that your dog may get bored or frustrated.

> Be Patient, training takes time.  If you feel your dog just isn't getting it after awhile, the trick may not be a good fit for your dog!  Just like people, every dog is an individual, don't push him into something he's not comfortable with or that is too difficult for him - try a different trick!

> And most of all, Have FUN!  Tricks training should feel like play for both you and your dog.  It's also a great way to strengthen the bond you have with your dog.

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If you enjoyed this blog post, you may also like:

Where's My Dog, a show stopping dog trick!
The adorable Play Dead dog trick
Dog Training Doesn't End with Puppyhood, it's a lifelong endeavor.
More Dog Training and Behavior tips

Do you enjoy tricks training with your dog?  What's your favorite dog trick?  Leave us a comment & share, we LOVE hearing from you!

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11 comments:

  1. I love your step by step instructions with photos. I'm still trying to get Tootsie to sit. Somedays she will but most of the time not so much! She would much rather dance 😊

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    1. Aww, thanks Jane! I'm glad you liked the post. Phoebe is a "dancer" too, I always have to stand there and wait for her to finally sit - then I'll pet her or give her a treat. I guess they were just born to dance, dance, dance!

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  2. Phoebe is such a quick learner ♥ Pierre rolls over so fast that it makes me laugh. Bentley rolls over like a log. BOL!

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    1. LOL! I can imagine the difference between Pierre and Bentley. Phoebe is a pretty quick learner, so is Icy but she doesn't like to roll over. I think it's uncomfortable w/ her long back.

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  3. Lee will do the roll over, but even with a treat (he doesn't love them), Phod acts like we are abusing him and freaks out. We wonder if it is because of his past (where he was abused), so we don't push it. He is working on crawl instead.

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    1. Poor Zaphod! Some tricks are just not right for every dog. I'm glad you don't push it, that's the worst thing. Recall commands and others that keep them safe are the only ones you should ever stress over. Otherwise, keep it light & fun. Crawl is a great trick to learn!

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  4. Great job, Phoebe! I did try this trick with Luke but we didn't have success. Like Icy, he rolls over in the grass but just didn't want to do it on command. It's good advice to accept that our dogs won't necessarily want to do every trick we teach them; we moved on to something else with Luke after trying for a bit.
    Jan, Wag 'n Woof Pets

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    1. That's great, I'm so glad you moved on to something else and didn't make it unpleasant for Luck. It just isn't worth it, unless it's a life saving command like a Recall or Leave It command.

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  5. I've ALWAYS wanted to try this with my dogs. I will have to use your tutorial, thanks!

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    1. It's really simple, Alicia, give it a try! Let me know how it goes.

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  6. Awe Phoebe, this is adorable! Ruby is not so great about learning new tricks. She sometimes gets stressed even with treats and positive reinforcement. But maybe we will give this a try!

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