Teaching "shake" to a goober headed dog

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by pbjmaker, Nov 16, 2011.

  1. pbjmaker

    pbjmaker Overrun With Chickens

    May 9, 2008
    Central Iowa
    So I've been working for three weeks on teaching "Sparky" to "shake". He just doesn't get it. His brother, mom and dad all learned within a day what to do. I have them "model" it, and I work with him separately.

    He is 15 months old and I'm beginning to wonder about his brain powers. He is just a big goober.

    He [​IMG] food so much that he is developing guarding issues over it. Not with humans at all, but the cats and sometimes the other dogs. All dogs are fed in separate bowls in separate parts of the house.

    I've been working on the shake with treats but that is all he can focus on is the treat in my hand. So I have tried it without and making sure he is looking directly at me, giving lots of praise. No go.

    He does know sit and come (because he knows there a treat at the end) and down. But we can't get past that.

    Do some dogs just never learn???

    I worry that he can't learn one simple trick. [​IMG]

    ETA: He went for annual check up at the vet last week and he is healthy, good body shape but the vet thinks his food issues were because he was the runt of the litter. He is now a "beefy" 10 lbs heavier than both parents, but not at all fat.
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2011
  2. greeneggsandham

    greeneggsandham Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 10, 2008
    Don't feel bad. My 11 month old Beagle can fetch like a pro, but shake is totally out of his league LOL. He knows to "jump up" on a tote and stay until I tell him down and can run through a kiddie tunnel, but again shake is just not something he is getting. Instead he will do circles and wag his tail.
  3. pbjmaker

    pbjmaker Overrun With Chickens

    May 9, 2008
    Central Iowa
    Yeah SParky can fetch too and will "give it" but this whole shake thing [​IMG] - maybe it's beneath him...
  4. itsy

    itsy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 14, 2011
    New England
    Because we would keep the treat in our shaking hand (almost in a fist), my dog got the command confused and thinks that not only does he have to shake, but he also needs to touch his nose to the shaking hand at the same time! [​IMG] So - he learned it in seconds, but still to this day will touch his nose as well.

    Although - he learned "high 5" without the nose touching confusion. [​IMG]
  5. Beekissed

    Beekissed Flock Master

    I used to think the "shake" trick was really cute until I noticed my dogs would do it when someone extended their hand but without actually telling them to shake. Since I take my dogs to the local nursing home, all I could picture was this little sweet lady holding out her hand to pet the dog and the dog swinging that large paw up and ripping a strip of flesh from her arm/hand. Old folk's skin tears so easily! [​IMG]

    From now on, that is one trick I most likely won't be teaching any of my dogs. Darn those too eager to please Labs! They seem to anticipate what you want before you say it...it was easy to train all mine to hand signals with only just a few short lessons.
  6. carolinagirl58

    carolinagirl58 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 30, 2011
    Lugoff, SC
    My little 3 pound chihuahua is 7 and I have been trying for her whole life to teach her to "shake". She just looks at me with those big watery eyes and blinks. Poor little thing is a few bricks shy of a load but I love her dearly. she does a few tricks.....all ones she thought up herself and I encouraged. She is house broken (took 8 months to get her there) and knows a few key words ("who wants a treat" is her favorite). sometimes I think she is just really dumb and other times I think she is probably the smartest dog I own because she gets away with not learning stuff. She DOES know how to manipulate people and get herself petted so she must not be too dumb!
  7. redhen

    redhen Kiss My Grits... Premium Member

    May 19, 2008
    Western MA
    Hubby taught our dogs to do that too...
    Daisy is fine..
    But the pup, Ginger.. ugh! Now she thinks that when she wants something..or is just happy. ..or just anytime...its OKAY to smack us around... [​IMG]
    She wants treat... "SMACK" with her paw... She wants to play... SMACK! And if you're sititng down...she aims for your head, SMACK!... [​IMG]

    Told hubby to NOT teach any other dogs to "shake" or "give paw"... [​IMG]
  8. pbjmaker

    pbjmaker Overrun With Chickens

    May 9, 2008
    Central Iowa
    Quote:Sparky only weighs 28 lbs so it's not too big a deal. I got home from class and decided to give it a try again without a treat. He has now decided that when I hold out my hand for him to shake it really means I want to rub his tummy so he nudges my hand and then rolls over. [​IMG]

    Maybe I should take a cue from Carolinagirls chi and just teach him that is the hand signal for roll over [​IMG]

    Red - you saw his picture on FB - doesn't he just look like a goober [​IMG]
  9. redhen

    redhen Kiss My Grits... Premium Member

    May 19, 2008
    Western MA
    Awww! Hes not a goober! Hes Addddddorable!
    And hes smart too! Hes training YOU to give him belly rubs! [​IMG]

    Now my Ginger..SHES a goober..(i.e. big PIA..) *KNEW i should have gotten a Sheepadoodle instead..* [​IMG]
  10. pbjmaker

    pbjmaker Overrun With Chickens

    May 9, 2008
    Central Iowa
    Sparky is now shaking somewhat consistently. He still looks at me and asks why does he have to do it. Time to move on to a new trick with the pack...

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by