Maybe your dog is bursting with energy, running frantically from one distraction to the next, never calming down enough even to look at you. You would love to work with her on obedience training, but you can’t get her attention long enough to procure even a 'sit'! Maybe your dog goes crazy whenever guests come over, jumping all over your furniture, you, and your guests. Perhaps you and your dog already have a good foundation of obedience training, and you are trying to take it to the next level by teaching your dog fun tricks. It may even be the case that you would simply like a way to ask your dog to walk on your other side, without yanking her around by the leash.
No matter your reasons, or your dog’s age, breed, or attention span, 'circle me' is a fun trick to learn and teach. Most dogs catch onto this trick quickly and easily, and don’t mind doing it. It is one of the easier behaviors to translate from the initial training location to other areas with increased distractions. It can be done on or off leash, with dogs that are experienced in training or just beginning.
Keep in mind during training that 'circle me' is a fun trick, and dogs perform best when they are enjoying the trick. Unlike calming commands like 'sit' and 'down', dogs perform this trick well when they are feeling energetic, and can even perform it when they are distracted, with a little practice. This makes it a great trick to get your dog’s attention and help her to build self-control for more boring, but important, behaviors.
This command can be very useful when going for walks, either on-leash or off. For dogs who are learning to heel, 'circle me' can remind them of the principle of sticking to a leg in a fun way. Dogs trained to circle left or circle right and stop can be positioned easily on the left or right of your body--very useful for when your dog wraps the leash around you and you would like to be unwrapped, or for when you would like to be between your dog and some upcoming obstacle.