Is It Time to Teach Your Pet Tricks?

A pet gives a woman a high five.

The animals we share our lives with bring so much to the proverbial table. They inspire us to exercise and socialize more, and their very nearness and companionship adds to our well-being. The fact that they can be trained to do certain things for us is like icing on the cake. We’re not just talking about training them to understand and demonstrate basic commands. Teaching your pet tricks is undoubtedly fun and entertaining, and can be useful to boot!

Thrilled To Please

Dogs are hardwired to please their owners, but they aren’t the only ones. Cats enjoy learning cool pet tricks too, but your approach may differ between the species. The important thing to remember is that teaching pet tricks is supposed to be fun and lighthearted. They shouldn’t feel stressed or pressured to deliver a specific outcome. Simply let loose and encourage them to explore their abilities!

Starting Out Slow

Some of the best pet tricks are the simplest. Start out with the following tricks and grow their skills from this excellent foundation:

  1. Sit
  2. Stay
  3. Shake
  4. Freeze
  5. High five or both paws up
  6. Roll over
  7. Kiss
  8. Open/close a door 
  9. Hide and seek
  10. Play soccer
  11. Fetch
  12. Sing or speak

Get Them To Do What?

Their success at learning various pet tricks depends on how much your cat or dog enjoys them. Positive reinforcement training comes in handy, as you reward all the good things they do and ignore unwanted behaviors. Nutritious treats, loads of praise, and lots of physical affection are great incentives for learning new things.

Agility and More

Training your pet to run an agility course is demanding but incredibly satisfying. Your pet is not only capable of completing impressive tasks, but can bring their own flair to the course. Try some of the these pet tricks to get them started:

  • Jump hurdles
  • Weave through poles
  • Jump through hoops or into your outstretched arms
  • Leapfrog
  • Army crawl

Kick It up a Notch

There’s nothing better than a pet that can dance on command, but don’t stop there. Train your pet to perform certain duties around the house, such as:

  • Open and shut doors
  • Retrieve certain items
  • Pick up items that have fallen to the floor
  • Put toys away
  • Act as an alarm clock (they may do this already!)

You can also train your pet to wipe their own paws on the mat after being outside, shake their coat off when wet, and even place your discarded items like shoes or socks in the right locations. 

Pet Tricks for Days

There’s no question that your pet is super smart. When they are given ample opportunities to use their dog or cat brain, the happier they are

If you have additional questions about pet tricks, or concerns about your pet’s behavior, our veterinarians and staff members are always here for you at Beverly Hills Veterinary Associates