How to teach your dog new tricks right away

Dogs need to be kept busy. Small tricks come in handy. If tricks like “Give me five” and “Shame on you” are to work, it takes a lot of practice. And the right reward. Find out how your dog can learn tricks even more easily. And what new, more unusual tricks you can use to make your furry friend happy.

Hund gibt Pfötchen

That's how dog tricks work even better.

In addition to patience and constant practice sessions (i.e. repetitions) one thing must be right above all: the reward. How you reward depends entirely on your dog. Of course, the best way is with treats. Vitakraft has many dog snacks (link to shop) for both large and small dogs. If your dog is trained to clicker sounds, this also works. In any case, your four-legged friend should be motivated and attentive to the task. In everything that you teach your dog, the common fun is in the foreground.

Practice makes perfect

If you want to teach your dog a trick, you have to introduce it step by step. After all, your pet won’t know what you want from it straight away. Put it in an attentive position, and practise the first steps. Once the movement is in the right direction, give a reward right away. And then repeat, repeat, repeat. You will see: Little by little, the tricks will become more fluid. Each trick should be accompanied by a command or a hand movement, which are different from each other. Otherwise, your four-legged friend will get confused. If simple tricks and commands work, you can then attempt more complex tricks. We’ll give you three tricks that are sure to be fun for both of you:


Wouldn’t it be great if your dog could clean up his toys itself? The trick is actually quite simple: bring the toy lying around – or even other items – specifically to a crate, and then drop it. Nevertheless, this is more for advanced than for beginners. In any case, your dog should already have learned how to retrieve and know the fetch and bring signal. Instead of bringing the object to you, the dog now only has to bring it to the crate. To do this, it is best to first place the box directly in front of you. Throw the toy, and call the “bring” signal. When it has brought it to you and the crate, you say “Drop”. The toy falls to the floor – or preferably directly into the crate. If this happens by accident, praise it lavishly, and give a treat right away. If your dog understands that it’s about the crate, you can move onto the next stage and place the crate next to you or a few centimetres away from you. Now you reward only the hits. And connect them with a command. For example: “crate”. If this works well, you can increase the whole thing by leaving the objects lying around the room and sending your dog to fetch them. By the way, this trick is also ideal for older dogs who can no longer jump around as wildly. And if you have kids, they might learn to clean up this way as well. ;-)


Because we were already on the subject of tidying up and thus cleanliness with Trick 1, you can increase this with this next trick. After a long walk, your dog wipes its own paws so that it doesn’t track dirt into your home. And do it on command! The only thing you need is a soft and, most importantly, absorbent doormat so you can actually save yourself the towel. Here’s how: Sit across from your dog, and put the doormat in between. Now hide a treat under the mat. It is important that your dog watches you do this. Then give your four-legged friend a sign that it can look for the treat. It will usually sniff and scratch the mat with its front paw. As soon as it does this, reward with a treat, and give praise. Of course, your dog may not get the treat under the mat. Therefore, you send it back to sit and repeat the exercise combining it with a light tap of your hand on the mat. The scratching is repeated a few times. If necessary, wait until your four-legged friend scratches intensively with both front paws over the mat. As soon as your dog does this, you reward it again. If this works to some extent, add a command. For example, “wipe” and then tap the floor mat with your hand.