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The ultimate dog training tactic
Open the Fridge
(a) Put a smelly treat inside a dish towel and tie the towel to the door handle. Wiggle the towel and reward your dog for touching it.
(b) Wait for him to put his mouth on the towel, say “good!” and give him a treat.
(c) Once your dog is biting the towel, reward him only when he pulls it. In the final stage, use “open” as your cue for him to pull hard and open the door.
Grab the Beer
(a) Empty a beer can.
(b) Play fetch with it. (A cover will make the can easier for the dog to carry.)
(c) Place the can on a low shelf in an open, unclut¬tered fridge and have your dog fetch it, using the command “fetch”. Give him a treat.
Close the Fridge
(a) Open the door a few centimetres and hold a treat against the door at your dog’s nose height. Encourage him to “Close. Get it!” When he shows interest in the treat, raise it higher against the door, just out of his reach. In an attempt to reach it, the dog will raise both front paws and slam the door closed. For best results, reward him when his paws are on the door.
(b) Once your dog has the hang of the first step, try tapping the door to encourage him to push on it. Reward him for closing the door.
(c) Finally, send him from a distance to “close” the door. Once your dog is comfortable with all three steps, start to phase out individual com¬mands and use “Get me a beer” to represent it all.
Source: From Kyra Sundance, author of 101 Dog Tricks (R151 Kalahari.net)