This trick is really cute and serves as a great way for your dog to get some extra attention when it is pulled off well. Not only that it requires a lot of concentration on their part to keep their balance.
If you dog knows how to shake hands you already have a leg up on this one.
Step 1: Preparation
Get yourself a pile of dog treats (the yummy kind, not the dry kind) a quiet place with no distractions, and a dog that knows how to shake hands.
Step 2: Begin
Start off with your dog standing up, position yourself to the side of the dog and don’t have any treats in your hands. Lift your dogs leg in a shake hands position, this should feel familiar to them. Next step is to ask them to make one hopping action forward. To do this place your hand under their tummy at the base of their rib cage. Then usher them forward. Once they make their first hop, reward and praise. It will take a few attempts to get them to understand what you are wanting them to do, but once they see that each hop brings rewards they will be all too accomodating moving forward.
Step 3: Reinforcement
Repeat the exercise for as long as it takes for the dog to get it’s balance on 3 legs. And remember to praise, praise, praise.
You don’t have to use dog treats exclusively as a reward. If your dog responds better to a ball or toy use that as the reward method. You don’t want your dog to be in the habit of only performing for a reward. And as always, you should start to phase out the treat rewards as your dog starts to get the desired behaviour.
Remember to be calm, and patient with your dog when training. Never get frustrated or lose your temper when you dog doesn’t get it. Dogs respect calm humans, not frustrated humans! If you start to feel frustrated, STOP and try again later. Sometimes your dog may not be in the mood to learn, don’t rush them.
And most of all have fun, like all dog training it is a great bonding experience and it brings you and your pooch closer together.