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Dog Training/Trick Training



I have a year old female standard poodle, and I love teaching her new tricks. She loves it too!

We've been working on putting a treat on her nose, and having her flip it up and catch it. For all my hunting online, I cannot find out how to fix our problem! She's good at balancing it and waiting, but we run in to trouble with the flip up part. I've used "catch it" in the past to have her catch toys in the air, so I'm not sure if that command will work, or if this should be something different, like "flip." Can you weigh in on this?

My pup is perhaps too logical for her own good... I've read that most dogs will just flip the treat off their nose naturally. Moira just dips her nose down and lets it fall off. What can I do to teach her to flip it up?

Thanks for any help!


Great trick! I recommend teaching the flip as a separate skill first. Picture what it looks like - dog's head raising in a sharp, quick, upward movement. If you are already using a clicker to train, this will be easy to shape. Capture any upward movement of her head, click/treat. Gradually raise the criteria until she's giving you a nice big movement and put it on whatever verbal cue you want to use.

If you don't already use a clicker, you could try "catch it" since she already knows it. Balance the treat on her nose, and go through the motions of tossing a treat. As she lifts her head up to catch the treat she thinks is coming, she should bounce the treat off her nose.

Let me know if you have any questions. Good luck!!

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Barb Gadola, CPDT-KA, KPA CTP


I can answer questions related to problem dog behaviors, teaching polite manners, puppy raising, and any type of training-related issues. My website page, offers a wealth of information on training and behavior issues as well.


I've been training dogs since 1989 and own and operate Distinctive Dog Training LLC in Keller TX. I specialize in providing practical and positive solutions for families through personalized training in their home.

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