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Paw Tricks

By: Sandy Bolan - Updated: 18 Dec 2012 | comments*Discuss
Paw Tricks

Paw tricks are always fun to show off to your friends and family, as well as a great way to bond with your dog.


Every paw trick builds upon the trick 'shake-a-paw'. There are two ways to teach this trick. Some dogs love to paw at their owners to get their attention. If you have one of these dogs, teaching 'paw' will be relatively simple. Each time the dog gives you his paw, say 'paw'. Your dog will soon learn to associate the word 'paw' with him giving you his paw.

If your dog doesn't paw at you, teaching him to shake a paw is still relatively simple. Start with your dog in the sit position. With your hand extended toward the dog, palm up, say 'paw' or 'shake a paw' (use the same command consistently). If the dog does nothing, lift its paw into your hand and say 'paw', then release and treat. You may need to repeat this part a few times before the dog understands what is expected of him. In the early stages of training this trick, hold up the same paw each time.

Once your dog is competent at giving you his paw, start coaxing him to give you the other paw by saying 'other paw'. In the beginning, you may have to point to the other paw while saying 'other paw' in order for your dog to comprehend.


Once your dog has mastered 'shake-a-paw', you can teach him to wave.

When your dog gives you his paw, don't grab it, instead, pull your hand back and say 'wave.' It also helps if when you pull your hand back you move it a bit higher and wave it back and forth. Your dog will try to put his paw in your hand, thereby creating the 'wave' motion.

High Five

Do the paw exercise, however, when your dog gives you his paw, pull it up, but not too high as the dog can only lift a front paw so far. When you lift your hand, turn your hand so it is palm to paw pads. Touch palm to paw pads and say 'high five'. Praise and reward.

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