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Dogs/I can't teach my puppy his tricks on command.


Hello, I have recently been given a 10 month old puppy to take care of, I have taught him to sit, shake, lie down, and roller over although he can only do this if I am holding a treat in the guided direction that he has been taught. For example holding the treat over his nose is code for sit, and raising it a bit higher is code for roll over. I think it is great that I have got him to do the trick, however I need him to learn these tricks on command. I'm not sure of his breed, although we think he might be part border terrier, and part irish terrier. He is neutered and is an inside dog, his name is Charlie. He's very smart, so it shouldn't be hard, although I don't know how to do it! Thanks.


Hi Camie,

It sounds like you're well on the way of getting your puppy trained to listen to your commands. You didn't say how long you've been working with your puppy, or how often. It would be best if you had a couple of training sessions everyday.

I can't see what you're doing when you're training your dog, to tell you what you're doing wrong. Training a dog isn't easy if you've never done it before, and reading about what to do isn't always helpful. If you could take a couple of obedience classes with your dog, an experienced trainer could show you how to get the best results in the shortest time. Ask your vet's office, or a local boarding kennel for a referral to an obedience class in your area.

You don't have to give him food as a reward every time. Also give your puppy lavish praise when he follows your commands. Here are some sites with info on training a puppy:

You also might try searching for dog training videos on

Best of luck,



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To date, I've owned 7 dogs, all of which have lived into old age. Having cared for them in all stages of life, I feel I can offer sound advice to other pet owners, and people considering getting a dog. I am knowledgeable about the AKC (American Kennel Club) dog breeds, training and exercise, caring for sick and elderly pets, feeding, as well as many holistic treatments pets can benefit from. My only request is that you write me using standard English and punctuation.


My life experience in this field is more like "on the job training" rather than an actual degree in animal welfare. You may benefit from my experiences over the past 30 years. Aside from the dogs I've owned, I'm also involved in "breed rescue" and have fostered several dogs, all of which have been adopted to wonderful "forever homes". I find helping people who want a dog very rewarding.

Real life experience, based on over 30 years of dog ownership.

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