Paws And The Self Stylin’ Dog In Your Life
Don’t you hate it when it rains after you cleaned your car? It seems inevitable at times. What could be
worse? Ask any dog owner. Somehow, the dog will appear with wet, muddy feet the moment after the
floors been cleaned.
If you can relate, then it is time to teach your dog to take care of his paws. This is helpful if you have a
dog that acts like the world is ending when his paws are touched. You can teach your dog to not only
wipe his paws but to keep his nails trimmed too.
To have a self stylin’ dog you will need to start with a lot of treats, or a beloved toy, a towel, a rug, and
a clicker. Make sure your dog is watching when you place an irresistible treat under the towel. Let your
dog know to get the treat verbally or by tapping the towel where the treat is.
Your dog should at least sniff for the treat or toy. When your dog sniffs or bites the towel, click and
reward him with a treat or praise. You want to repeat the process until your dog's interest in the towel
is rather high. This should not take more than a few clicks and treats. If your dog does not show much
interest in the towel, place a higher value item under the towel.
When you notice an increased frequency of the pawing behavior, add the cue you want to use. Some
people like to use commands that are one to two words, like wipe. Others may prefer to use the cue,
wipe your feet. You want to use the cue every time he paws at the towel.
At this point try to anticipate when your dog is about to paw at the towel. Use the cue a moment before
he paws at the towel. Continue to click and treat each success. Give the wipe your paws cue every
time the dog goes inside. Gradually remove the towel until your dog is wiping its paws on the rug.
Eventually, your dog will wipe its paws every time he comes in without the need to be commanded.
Just make sure you offer a reward to maintain the behavior. Remember that rewards include praise
and play, not just treats.
To give your dog its self of stylin’, take coarse sandpaper and glue it onto a piece of plywood. Place
the towel over the plywood and give the cue to trim your feet. Remove the towel when your dog paws
the board when commanded to.
Find a place to set the board down and give the cue to trim its feet. In a short amount of time, your
dog will scratch at the sandpaper and slowly grind down his own nails. Now you can tell everyone you
have a self stylin’ dog. Do not be surprised when your friends want to know your secret.
With winter arriving in the Pacific Northwest, your dog gets more than wet feet. Dogs often get bored
because they have to spend more time indoors. Why not come down to Lead Me On for a class? You
and your dog will get to play together, learn, make new friends, and burn off some energy. You can
contact us online or call (360) 878-8407 to find out more.