Fun Party Tricks

Jump Through Your Arms

The goal of this trick is to have your dog jump through your arms as you make a circle with them. To begin, sit facing a wall and lure your dog with a treat to step over your arm, as it is on the ground. Being by a wall will encourage your dog to go over your arm rather than around it. Alternatively, you can start training this behavior with a hula-hoop and then transition the dog to jumping through your arms after they already understand the behavior with the hula-hoop. Once your dog understands what behavior you are asking for, you can start using the cue “hoop” or “jump.” If you are training the behavior with your arms rather than a hula-hoop, start adding in the upper arm to complete the circle while asking your dog to jump over the bottom arm. For this part you can throw the treat to the side you want them to go to while giving the “hoop” cue or have someone help you lure the dog through your arms with the treat. Eventually start raising your arms above the ground so your dog will jump through them while you are standing and your arms are by your hips (or as high as your dog is willing to go).

Here are some videos on training this behavior:

Part 1

Part 2 

Sit Pretty

The “sit pretty” behavior is when your dog lifts their front paws up, while still sitting on the ground. It is a big crowd pleaser, and is great for taking cute pictures. Start with having your dog sitting in front of you. Hold a treat at your dog’s nose, and slowly move it up above them. Look for any movement up with the front half of the body and reward any progress. To begin, your dog might jump up into a stand, just ignore it and try again. Wait for them to stretch slightly up towards the treat, or lift one or two paws slightly. Build into the behavior slowly. Once your dog understands the behavior you are looking for, pair the verbal cue with the behavior, then when your dog no longer needs the food lure, you can start building in the hand gesture.

Here is a video demonstrating how to train sit pretty.



This behavior is an easy transition after teaching your dog to sit pretty. To train dance, start with your dog sitting. Hold a yummy treat up to your dog’s nose and lure upwards into a sit pretty stance and then keep luring up until your dog is on their hind legs. It may take a few tries for your dog to understand what you are asking, so move the lure slowly and reward any small progress, like if they only slightly come up out of the sit pretty or attempt to stand up. Using a clicker for this behavior will help you capture the behavior easily and help your dog understand what they are being rewarded for. Once your dog understands that you are asking them to stand on their hind legs, you can ask them to hold it longer while raising their paws up, and add in the cue or hand signals.

Here is a video showing how to train this behavior.