How to Train a Puppy to Dance

Medium
3-14 Days
Fun

Introduction

Cooper is currently a gorgeous ball of fluff. Your puppy’s days are spent shuffling along the floor, eager to play and roll around with anyone in the vicinity. In fact, he's as friendly as they come. One thing that has surprised you though, is his endless amount of energy. How will you ever get him to sleep in the evenings? Fortunately, you’ve come up with a couple of ideas. One of those is training the pup to dance. If you can teach your puppy to dance, you’ll have a great way to bond with your canine pal while exercising him at the same time.

Also, who doesn’t love a dancing dog? You’ll have guests laughing every time. You’ll also feature on the Snapchat, Facebook and Instagram stories of anyone who comes to see them. Let’s just hope Cooper is ready to live life in the limelight.

Defining Tasks

The good news is, training your puppy to dance isn’t nearly as difficult as many people think. Once you have conveyed to them what it is you want them to do, you just need to reinforce the training with a range of tasty treats and other motivators. The trick is to turn training into one big game. This is how dogs learn best.

Because your puppy is young, they should be keen to please and not short of energy. This means you could see results in just a few days. But if your pup has a particularly short attention span and is more interested in lazing around, then you may need a couple of weeks. Stick with training and you’ll have the perfect dance partner. In fact, you’ll never have to be alone on the dance floor again!

Getting Started

Before you and Cooper get to work, you need to make sure you have a few bits. While you don’t need a whole dance floor, some space to practice where you won’t risk anything valuable being broken is advisable.

You will then need a decent supply of treats or his favorite food broken into small chunks. A clicker and a toy will also be required for one of the methods below.

Once you have all that, just bring patience and an optimistic attitude, then work can begin!

The Leg Up Method

Effective
0 Votes
Step
1
Stepping up
Head for a quiet room with your puppy and some treats in tow. Kneel on the floor in front of them and then hold up a treat to capture their attention. Because they are a puppy, you first need to get them comfortable jumping up on you.
Step
2
Pat your chest
To get them to jump up so you can hold a paw, hold the treat out around your chest. You can then pat your knees and chest to encourage them to jump up. Talk in a playful, animated tone to get them to follow your instruction.
Step
3
Take hold
As soon as they do jump up, take hold of one of their paws gently. Be careful not to squeeze too hard, you don’t want to scare your pup. Now you are in the dancing position, so be careful not drop them.
Step
4
Take it slow
To start with, only move around and dance a little bit. Any longer and you may startle them. The trick is to build up your puppy’s confidence gradually.
Step
5
Reward
Each time you stop, put the dog down gently and then give them a treat and lots of praise. The more elated they feel after, the more eager they will be to play again. Now simply practice each day and gradually increase the time you dance for.
Recommend training method?

The Verbal Cue Method

Effective
0 Votes
Step
1
Lure
The first thing to do is get the pup to jump up on you so you can take their paws. So spend a few minutes playing around with a particular toy each day and getting them worked up. Then when you hold the toy up by your chest, they will leap up on you to try and get it.
Step
2
Hold on
As soon as your dog does jump up, take hold of one or both paws. Be careful not to push the dog back and be sure keep them steady. Scare them once now and you may set back the end result. So put your puppy down if they look too scared.
Step
3
‘Dance’
Now give a ‘dance’ command in an upbeat, animated voice. You can use any word or phrase you like. Dogs can actually learn hundreds of different commands. Just make sure it isn’t being used in conjunction with any other trick.
Step
4
Reward
Move around slowly and gently to start with. Also, don’t dance for longer than a few seconds to begin with. The trick is to build up their confidence gradually. Whenever you stop, let them play with the toy for a minute or so. You can also throw in some verbal praise too.
Step
5
Practice makes perfect
Now you simply need to motivate your pup to dance regularly. Keep using the toy and gradually dance for longer each time. Make sure to put your puppy down as soon as they look scared or startled though.
Recommend training method?

The Clicker Method

Effective
0 Votes
Step
1
Clicker friendly
A clicker is a brilliant way to communicate with your puppy. Simply click and give a treat whenever they behave or perform a trick correctly. It will signal to them they are on the right track and speed up the learning process.
Step
2
‘Jump’
Now take your dog to a spacious room or yard and issue a ‘jump’ command. You can pat at your chest or knees as you do this to encourage them to jump up on you. This should allow you to grab hold of one or both of their paws.
Step
3
Slow dance
Now you can start to slowly move around with your pup for a few seconds. Be sure to put them down as soon as they look scared, however. It may take them a little while to find their dancing feet.
Step
4
Click & reward
As soon as you put your puppy down, click and hand over a delicious treat or a toy to play with. This will signal to them that they have done something right and will motivate them to want to play again.
Step
5
Lose the treats
Now practice every other day or so. You can make Cooper dance for slightly longer each time before you give a treat. Then once they are fully into the swing of it, you can lose the treats and just rely on the clicker to let your puppy know they have done a good job.
Recommend training method?

Success Stories and Training Questions

Book me a walkiee?
Pweeeze!
Sketch of smiling australian shepherd