Labs are nothing if not trainable...
Luka knows to sit, stay, wait, speak and shake hands on command. He can also do all those things with just a hand signal. He goes to his crate when we tell him to and will mostly stay there of his own accord. Down, off, leave it and drop it are things we're still working at.
Let's face it though; these tricks are limited in their usefulness. It's nice at dinnertime to be able to send him to his crate so he's at least begging from a few feet away, nice when visitors come so he'll be calm and not underfoot, helpful when I'm vacuuming so he's not able to wrestle the hose out of my hand.
On walks, he knows to sit and wait at intersections before I tell him it's okay to cross with me. He sits and waits to let me go out or come in the door before him. He sits and waits for his dinner. Good manners, I think, are important. Luka and I went to 16+ weeks of obedience school to learn the basics that I've since applied to our daily lives around here so that we can live together fairly nicely.
My husband teaches him parlor tricks.
We remove his collar whenever he goes into his crate for safety reasons. The DH taught him to retrieve the collar from the dining room table when he's let out of the crate for his mid-afternoon walk. He reaches up, mostly without putting his feet on the table, grabs the collar and then carries it to the back door to sit and wait to go out.
Very convenient, right?
Only... he does it all the time now, whenever he wants attention. For example, this morning I was up late for work, had just stepped out of the shower and was sitting on the bed in a towel... and there he was in the bedroom doorway with that damn collar in his mouth, wagging his tail at me!
Pick up the phone and there he is with it, suddenly wanting to go out. Have your hands in a sink full of dishes? Luka's rattling his collar at your feet.
He also likes to prance around with it and not give it up when you're finally dressed enough to take him out. A great game when you're already late for work, don'tcha know?
(Silly DH for teaching him that trick.)
a return Visit
11 months ago