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    Train a Dog to Roll Over

    Articledog training guidesWednesday 18 May 2011

    After ‘Sit’ and ‘Stay’, one of the most common tricks that any dog trainer needs to master is the command ‘Roll Over’. Learn how to train a dog to roll over in this helpful guide.


    How to Train a Dog to Roll Over

    •    First of all, it’s worth stating that the dog will have no chance of mastering this skill if he is not accustomed with simpler training skills such as the ones listed in the opening paragraph, as well as ‘Down’ and ‘Lie Down’.

    •    Instruct your dog to ‘Sit’ and ‘Lie Down’ and reward him appropriately, so he realises he is in training mode.

    •    Once the dog is in position, hold aloft a treat at a convenient height above his head that he cannot reach. Ensure the dog stays still and does not try and grab at the treat.

    •    Now it’s time to introduce the ‘Roll Over’ command. Encourage your dog slowly and mimic the gesture by moving your hand slowly up and over his shoulder. Allow him to watch the movement of the treat intently; this should encourage your dog to carry out the Roll Over technique.

    •    If the dog is struggling to comprehend the purpose of the exercise, guide him slowly with your free hand.  Hold his back in the ‘Down’ position and encourage him to roll. It may take a couple of times before your actions bear fruit.

    •    As soon as the dog manages to complete the trick without too much guidance, show him plenty of affection and offer up a favoured treat. However, it’s important not to be overly affectionate should the dog struggle with the trick – this can indicate weakness on your behalf.

    •    Repeat this process everyday for a couple of weeks, gradually phasing out treats as the dog begins to carry out the trick instinctively. Training a dog to roll over can be frustrating in the early stages, but hugely rewarding once the skill has been mastered.

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