How to Train a Pomeranian Puppy to do Tricks

Medium
2-12 Weeks
Fun

Introduction

Your Pomeranian puppy is all poof and playfulness. Poms are fun-loving, outgoing, lovable little dogs with pounds of personality. Pomeranian puppies look almost like little foxes, with their gorgeous thick coats and pricked ears. 

Small and adorable though they may be, the Pomeranian is descended from larger working spitz-type dogs. While they have been companions and lap dogs for many generations, and have steadily decreased in size, Poms still have a working dog's bravery and some of the spitz's independent spirit. Therefore, to train your Pomeranian puppy to do fun tricks that you will both enjoy, find ways to motivate her that will appeal to her own interests.

Defining Tasks

Is your Pomeranian puppy very active, always on her hind legs or jumping around? Use her activity to help you think of fun tricks for her. Perhaps she would enjoy jumping up on command or jumping through a hoop. Does your Pom pup have a more laid-back approach to life? Teach easy fun tricks like 'roll over' in exchange for a belly rub. While Poms are generally sturdy little dogs, use caution when deciding on tricks to teach. Make sure behaviors are ones that your Pom already performs naturally so that you don't put any stress on her body, especially while she is still growing.

Getting Started

If your Pom enjoys activity for the sake of activity, as many Poms do, you may not need much in terms of motivation. A good toy to chase after a successfully performed trick may be all your Pom needs to do it again and again. In fact, you may find that your playful Pom puppy performs tricks on her own to engage you to play with her. If you Pom is not so easily motivated, you can use treats to teach the foundations of behavior, but be careful not to overfeed. Poms are little dogs who can gain weight easily if overfed and under-exercised.

Always have fun with your Ppomeranian puppy. Be reasonable in your expectations, and keep in mind that your pomeranian's ability to think for herself is part of what gives her such a wonderful personality. If your Pom isn't in the mood for a particular trick, just try another one or try another time. 

The Challenge Yourself Method

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Step
1
The self-motivated Pom pup
If your Ppomeranian loves activity, doing new things, and meeting new challenges, then just suggesting a fun thing for her to do may be enough.
Step
2
Break into steps
Break the trick into easy steps. If you want your Pom to jump through a hoop, start by asking her to walk through it.
Step
3
Act like she accomplished something
Praise your Pom as though she accomplished something really challenging when she successfully completes the easiest step.
Step
4
Gradually increase difficulty
Increase difficulty quickly enough to keep interest but slowly enough to meet your Pom pup's abilities. If she fails or resists a behavior, take a step back to build confidence.
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5
Practice and polish
Once your Pom firmly understands the purpose of the activity (jump through the hoop, touch the hand, wherever it is) practice until your Pom performs the trick gracefully and without hesitation.
Recommend training method?

The Mark and Reward Method

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Sound means reward
Make a unique sound, either with your mouth or a sound maker like a beeper or clicker. Every time you make the sound, give your Pom pup a reward that she find desirable, whether it is a treat or toy.
Step
2
Mark behavior
Mark desirable behavior that is building towards the trick by making the sound and giving the treat.
Step
3
Build complexity
Build up the trick before giving the reward. Your Pom should quickly learn the succession of behaviors required to receive a reward.
Step
4
Polish with practice
Polish the behavior by repeating it over and over, until only a treat at the end is required.
Step
5
Remove step marks
Stop marking steps with the sound, and only give the treat at the end.
Recommend training method?

The Do As I Do Method

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Engaged Pom
If you Pom is constantly looking to you for engagement, use her interest to suggest fun tricks to do.
Step
2
Start simple
Start with a simple activity so as to teach your Pomeranian the idea of modeling her behavior after you. A good activity is stepping backwards or lying down.
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3
Watch for and reward mirroring
As soon as your Pom pup takes any step in the direction of doing what you are doing, reward her and encourage her to do more.
Step
4
Build complexity
Increase the complexity of the activity, challenging your pup's ability to do as you are doing. At this point, you can also give a name to the trick and begin saying it as you do the trick with your Pom.
Step
5
Let her do it
Ask your Pom to do the trick alone and reward her well if she does.
Recommend training method?

Success Stories and Training Questions

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