Training is an instrumental way for you to connect with your dog and help it develop better discipline. Training not only keeps them obedient but also helps dogs stay safe. While some tricks are strictly for safety and obedience, there are a few that are simply fun.
Teaching a dog the “Play Dead” trick is easy and satisfying. While it is not overly simple teaching a dog tricks, it is also not too difficult. If you know the steps involved and a few tips on how to teach your dog to play dead, you will find training your dog is a fun experience that allows for better bonding.
Fun Tricks Keep Your Dog Focused
Dog training is highly important both for owners and the pets. An untrained dog is more likely to become a danger to themselves or others.
Imagine you need to take your furry friend to the vet for a shot. Your dog has been to the vet before and knows this place is scary. When your dog is in an unfamiliar space or a place where they have had unpleasant experiences, they are more likely to become nervous.
While you could attempt to be stern with your dog, it is better to ask it to perform a trick. Getting a dog to perform a trick helps to calm its mind so it is less likely to act out with inappropriate behavior.
It is especially beneficial to calm a dog in this way by having a treat available for a reward. You can even use this method of training and reward when training fido to use his dog crate.
What Is the “Play Dead” Trick?
Playing dead is a classic trick that seems more difficult to teach than it is, for most dogs. Many dog owners get their dogs to perform this trick by pointing their fingers like a gun and using the verbal cue: “Bang”. The dog hilariously falls to the floor, making everyone laugh.
Some dog owners are not too fond of the finger gun option, so they prefer a more peaceful approach to the trick. Owners will use the verbal cue: “Sleepy Time” while pretending their palms are a pillow.
No matter which way you approach this trick, it will be fun to learn for both you and your dog. It will take patience and a little time. To ensure the dog learns the trick effectively, owners will need to make sure they allow plenty of time without getting frustrated.
While some dogs pick up this trick right away and can perform it correctly every time, other dogs are slower in developing skills. When training a dog how to play dead, owners should use dog training hand signals to communicate their instructions.
Please make sure each training session is fun for your dog. Do not be overly stern or push too hard for perfection. With consistent practice and rewards, your dog will soon master this trick and perform it for you often.
How to Prepare Your Dog for the Trick
Preparation is key when training your dog to perform any trick, but is especially critical for playing dead. Ideally, you should have treats available, though you can train dogs to play dead by using a clicker.
You will need to make sure your dog already knows how to lie down on command. If it does not know this trick yet, teach it before proceeding with any other trick.
It is also helpful to make sure your dog is relaxed and even a little tired. If the dog is too hyper to play, it likely will not focus on learning the play dead trick . It may not listen to instructions well. Always remember that this trick is likely not going to be learned overnight. Practice a little at a time for the best results.
Steps for Teaching Your Dog to Play Dead
You know the approach; the treats are prepared, and your dog is ready to relax. Now is a perfect time to train. As long as your demeanor is calm and you follow these steps, your dog will soon learn to master this fun and engaging trick.
1. Start in the lie-down position.
If your dog has not learned the lie-down trick , it cannot learn to play dead. When training your dog for the play dead trick, the dog first needs to be in the down position.
2. Offer your dog a special treat.
Most dogs love getting a special treat, and it offers an incentive for them to obey. When your dog is in the lie-down position, bring a treat close to its nose and drag it to the side. Your dog will focus so intently on getting the treat, it will naturally roll over, completing the next step in learning how to play dead.
3. Keep rewarding obedience.
If you train your dog with a clicker, click it the moment your dog rolls over and then offer a treat. Owners who do not use clickers should give a voice command, such as, “Good boy!”. A click or vocal praise should always precede the treat.
4. Add the signal and voice command.
If you plan on using your hand to point a pretend gun and say the verbal cue, “Bang!”, teach your dog to obey the signal or command. As stated before, some people prefer to use a command like, “Sleep!”.
You can give any command you like and one that makes you feel comfortable. Do not begin giving the signal and command until your dog has performed the lie-down and rollover tricks several times.
You should practice giving the signal and voice command a few times a day, but not too often. Always reward your dog for its hard work and obedience.
An Alternative Training Option
If your dog does not seem to respond to the training steps above, there is another option. Every time you find your dog lying down, use the verbal cue: “Play dead!” and offer a treat.
Before long, your dog will associate lying down with playing dead and getting a treat. It will eventually lay down every time you say the command.
FAQ About Teaching Dogs to Play Dead
Learning to play dead is a natural next step after a dog has mastered lie down and roll over. Dog owners often have a lot of questions regarding teaching this trick.
1. Is it hard to teach a dog to play dead?
Because it is such a complex trick, many dog owners worry it is difficult to learn. Once a dog learns how to lie down, learning to play dead is easy. It simply takes time to learn, just like any other dog trick. With time, patience, and plenty of rewards, your dog will soon learn this fun trick.
2. What is the hardest trick to teach your dog?
Dogs have a natural love for pleasing their owners. They love to perform tricks because they know it makes their owners happy. Let’s face it; they also love performing because of treats! Some tricks are more difficult to learn than others. Teaching a dog the speak trick is near the top for the most difficult trick.
3. How do I teach my dog to roll over and play dead?
There are two principal parts to teaching a dog to roll over and play dead. First, your dog needs to know how to lie down. Once it has mastered lie down, you can teach it to roll over by offering a treat in front of its nose and dragging it to the side so it rolls over. Next, add the voice command and signal. Soon, the dog will associate the signal and command with playing dead and will perform the trick flawlessly.
4. What is the easiest trick to teach your dog?
While some dog tricks are easier to teach than others, there is a truly simple one. Teaching a dog to sit does not take a lot of work. Most owners work by giving the “Sit” command and then they gently push down their dog’s backside until the dog is in a seated position. Immediately offer a treat and repeat a few times a day. Soon, your dog will sit on command.
Training a Dog Is Fun
Owners naturally want to teach their dogs as many tricks as possible. Dogs love obeying their owners and performing.
Training a dog for a new trick is exciting, but it is important to start when the dog is in good health. Pay attention to subtle clues to ensure your dog is ready for training. If they are anxious or not feeling well, dogs eat grass—it’s a sign.
While they say it is better to train when a dog is young, it is possible to teach an old dog new tricks. The more tricks a dog learns, the more obedient it will become because it learns to listen to the commands of its owner.
If you have been wanting to train your dog to play dead, start slowly. Allow for plenty of time and remain patient. If your dog just is not responding well, wait to train another day. Eventually, your dog will learn to play dead and bring a big smile to your face.