Lie down is a very useful trick to teach your dog. You could ask your dog to lie down while your friends are over. You could also ask your dog to lie down if he is jumping up on people and needs to calm down. But first, you will need to visit Sit. Many tricks build off of sit and that should be one of the first tricks your dog learns.
How To Teach Your Dog “Lie Down”
- Put a short leash on your dog. This will make sure that your dog does not run off while you are training and it helps a lot in learning this cool trick.
- Sit beside your dog and put the leash under your knees (this will keep your dog near you). Hold your dog’s favorite treat in your hand.
- Tell your dog to sit and hold the treat at your dog’s nose. Don’t let him eat it yet.
- Starting at your dog’s nose, take the treat to the ground. If your dog follows and lays down, give him the treat and loads of praise.
Very soon, your dog will be able to perform this trick without having the guidance of your hand. Read Sissy’s Tips and Techniques below for some helpful hints on perfecting this awesome trick.
Sissy’s Tips and Techniques
- Your dog might not want to lie down on a hard surface. Try going outside on the soft grass or on some carpet. A rug or dog bed would work great, too.
- To avoid your dog from snapping at the treat while you are holding it at his nose and bringing it to the ground, curl your fingers around the treat to evade your dog getting his reward too soon.
- When my humans first taught me “lie down,” they gave me belly rubs instead of treats. I enjoyed it very much. And since I am such an energetic dog, whenever I see a treat I get all bouncy. So belly rubs as my reward kept me calm so I could lay down a lot easier. Find out what rewards suit your dog best, and use them. Try treats, toys, belly rubs, or a mixture of all of these.
- If your dog has arthritis, consult your veterinarian before teaching your dog any “bending” tricks. Even if your dog seems fine with his arthritis, it’s better safe than sorry.
Have loads of fun training this awesome trick to your dog! Keep it happy and fun for your dog and he will love training with you.
Make sure to check the Starting to Train Your Dog page to learn how to start off dog training on the right paw!