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Diesel is now 4 months old and he is smart as ever! He already knows sit, stay, leave it, come, down, paw, other paw, speak, crate, no kitty and focus. My problem is that I don't want him to get bored and I'm at the point where I'm running out of ideas for mental work.

What should I do with him next? We do not have any training places near me where the dogs are on the same level as him so I'm not going to even bother. He gets tons of socialization and new experiences daily so I'm not concerned about that.

Do I teach him tracking? Do I practice heeling and focus on the leash? I walk him on the leash and he is real good but other than stopping and making him sit I haven't taught him anything else.
 

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I think Melanie on this board is going training challenges.

I'm currently training Nikon to roll over and to crawl. I'm going to train one of my dogs a handstand, maybe not Nikon though b/c I'm not sure if that's OK for young joints.

I'm not really doing a lot of formal obedience or leash work yet, waiting for him to mature and just working on tricks to keep him occupied, and more drive-building stuff like chasing rags, tug, back-tying and ragwork.
 

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Originally Posted By: KohleePiperDiesel is now 4 months old and he is smart as ever! He already knows sit, stay, leave it, come, down, paw, other paw, speak, crate, no kitty and focus.
Does he know how to do those in the middle of the Petco? Or at a train station during rush hour? Or how about at a kids playground or at a dog park??

I would work on proofing the behaviors he 'knows'.

A simple but very useful thing to teach is target. Create a target (I use the lid from a cottage cheese container) and teach the dog to touch it with his nose and/or paw. I would use different command words for each - maybe Pawtouch and Nosetouch.

Once a dog is doing that consistantly you can teach them to turn off a light switch. Put the target right next to/on the switch and give the Pawtouch command. Then you can switch to a command like Lights Off.
 

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How about find it? hide yourself, toys, treats etc. I also drop things and get him to carry them. Put something under a towel, pillow whatever, in another room.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Interesting ideas..... thanks a lot!

I will try these tricks outside with the two yapping chihuahas from next door and see if I can have the same success with him. LMAO!

On the hiding idea.... do I hide the toy (or treat) when he's in the room with me or do I hide it when he's not looking. How do I teach that? I know it sounds simple enough lol but I'm just wondering. I'm just trying to figure out how he would "get it" that I want him to find it. This would work well for my tireless Belgian too.
 

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You could start by placing the treat right in the middle of the floor, then bring in the dog and give the command (I use Where's the Cookie?!?).

Once the dog is running right for the cookie start moving it around the room, but still on the floor. Then have it partially under something (but still visible). Keep increasing the difficulty as the dog gets better at finding things.

My Cocker and I play Drug Dog.
I get three boxes (anything will work as long as one of them can fit a tennis ball inside). I place the ball in one of them, close all three boxes (sometimes I'll even tape the box with the ball to make it harder to open) and then bring in the dog and tell him to Get The Ball!

He checks out each box and then spends a satisfying few minutes shredding the one box to get to the ball!!
 
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