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12/12/12

Dog Trick - Teach Your Dog To Jump Rope

Difficulty: Hard

This is a fun trick to teach your dog, and good exercise for him as well. Since this is a difficult trick, read the steps carefully and be patient with your dog. Soon he will be jumping rope, and loving it! If your dog is still young, you might want to wait before teaching him to jump rope: jumping too much may be hard on his hips. Before any jumping trick, always first check with your vet to see if your dog can handle it.


Step 1: Put your dog on the table. Ask him to jump. Click and treat. Your dog should stay in the same place so he won't fall off the table.

Step 2: Tie the jump rope to another object. Let your dog get used to the jump rope by moving it back and forth.

Step 3: Give the jump rope almost a full turn, stopping before it crosses your dogs legs. At this point, tell him to Jump. When he does, slide the jump rope underneath. Do this several times, clicking and treating.

Step 4: As your dog gets more accustomed to the jump rope, you will be able to have smoother rotations. Work with your dog until he can do it just right.

OUR EXPERIENCE


It took extra patience to teach Caspian jump-rope (and more than a few handfuls of treats), but hard work pays off. At first Caspian was distracted with the jump-rope, and he would get frustrated after long sessions, but as we practiced more and more he stopped thinking about the rope and started focusing on jumping. Once he did this, it became easier for us to work the rope, and soon the trick was working smoothly. Ever since Caspian's accident we haven't worked with this trick since jumping up and down stresses his back hip. If you have a larger dog breed or if your dog has any history of hip dysplasia, consult your veterinarian before attempting this trick.

TEACHING TROUBLE


My dog is scared of the jump rope. How can I get him more used to it? When does he bow? Is it when he gets up from his nap to stretch? Or when he is meeting other dogs? Notice when he gets in that position and use that to shape the behavior.
Tip: "Try putting the jump rope on the table and under the dog before asking him to jump. That way, he will get used to seeing it under him. Don't use any big motions when using the jump rope to start out with. Small motions work best, and you can do fuller turns as your dog becomes more comfortable with the rope."
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