Dog games for kids: teach your dog to high five
Dogs are a great family pet and a well-trained dog who knows its place in the family pack is ideal. Your kids can teach the dog to high five with just 10 minutes training every night.
What you need:
- 1 dog
- A fistful of delicious dog treats (don’t offer boring things like kibble – try pieces of dried liver, barbecue chicken or chopped up frankfurt)
- A willingness to practise often for short periods of time
Number of players:
Henry the dog can do lots of tricks. Watch the video to see him do a high five, then try teaching it to your dog using the tips below.
Every trick should start by making your dog sit. So master “sit” first before attempting the high five trick.
This is a little more advanced and may take a bit more time and patience. Dogs don’t naturally give a high five. They prefer to greet each other with a good ol’ bottom sniff.
First you need to make sure you and your dog have mastered “SIT”. Sit is the starter position for most tricks. It helps get your dog’s attention. Show the dog that you have a treat but keep your fist closed.
Have your palm/fist facing out – like a high five but with the treat hidden in your fist. Hold your hand down close to his paw in that position. He may try to sniff at it or nose at it, but leave the treat in your closed fist and wait.
Eventually he will try to paw at your hand to get the treat. As soon as he lifts his paw even SLIGHTLY off the ground, say “GOOOOOOOD!!”, open your fist and give him the treat.
You will need to teach this trick bit by bit, building it gradually. First he lifts his paw just a little bit, then you raise your had a little bit higher for him to make him lift his paw higher, then he puts his paw on your fist, then eventually you will hold your hand up flat for him to put his paw onto in a high five. It’s important to reward your dog the minute he lifts his paw so that he knows that’s the behaviour you are looking for.
Once he starts raising his paw a little bit and realises this is what you are asking him, add the command “HIGH FIVE” as you hold your hand out in front of him.
Hints and tips:
- Small or soft treats are best. Anything too hard and crunchy takes a while for the dog to munch and by the time he’s finished, he’ forgotten what he did to earn the treat. So go with pieces of cooked meat or small bits of frankfurt.
- Thanks to our sister company Kidspot Australia for creating the instructional video.