Have you ever bent over to help your puppy untangle a front leg
from his leash, and then you drop everything you are carrying?
Well, there is a command to “Fix It”!
Command #20 – "Fix It"
“Fix It” means your dog must untangle the leash from their
When to use: When the dog has tangled their leg in the leash.
Create an environment for success by ensuring your puppy is in
a quiet space, with minimal distractions, on a leash, and that
you have plenty of small yummy treats easily accessible.
If possible, have your puppy sitting on a raised object, such
as a training box. If you do not have a training box, you can
sit on the floor.
Tell Flower to “Sit.” Be sure to praise, “Yes! Good Sit.”
Place the leash behind your puppy’s front leg (only one leg!)
down by the paw.
Gently and steadily pull the leash with both hands. Pull with
one hand on each side of her leg, directly towards you (not up)
while you give the command, “Flower, Fix It.”
When the leash slips from under her paw or Flower raises her
leg to release the leash, praise, “Yes! Good Fix It,” and give
her a treat.
Again, command, “Flower Sit,” and repeat Steps 3 through 5
Once Flower has gotten to the point of raising her leg to
release the leash out from behind it, raise the leash behind
her leg slightly (but not all the way to under her armpit), and
repeat Steps 3 through 5 above.
Always remember to praise, “Yes! Good Fix It,” until Flower is
raising her leg consistently to release the leash. At that
point, you can switch to just using a “Yes!”
When your puppy is doing a good “Fix It,” it is time to make
the command a little harder by trying with you standing up and
Flower still sitting.
Position the leash behind her front leg, and using only your
end of the leash, steadily and gently pull on the leash while
commanding “Flower, Fix It.” Be sure you are not pulling up on
the leash--pull outwards instead.
When your puppy raises her leg to release the leash, praise,
“Yes!” and give her a treat.
To make the command even harder once Flower is consistently
releasing the leash, you can have her stand and then try it
After you have taught Flower to become a pro at fixing her
leash with her front leg, teach her to “Fix It” with a back leg
by using the steps above!
Teaching Your Dog to Bow
Before you teach your dog to bow, the animal must be compliant
with the “sit” and “lie down” commands. Once your dog learns to
bow, the trick will get it (and you) a large number of
admirers. This trick wows a lot of people!
Basic commands first
The first step is to make sure the dog remembers how to come
when called, sit down and lie on the ground or on the surface
when you command it. The dog must know its name and respond
when that name is called. If the animal is not adept in doing
these things, you must teach your dog these commands first.
Once you are sure that your dog can follow all the basic
commands, it is now time to teach it how to bow. Order the dog
to stand in such a way that the animal faces you. The distance
between the dog and you must be approximately two feet. Take
its favorite treat and hold it in such a way that your dog can
see it. Do not give the treat right now. If you think it is
necessary, wave the treat to make sure the dog pays attention.
Hand signaling method
Hold the treat in hand and wave it downward. You can even drop
the product on the floor. It is important the dog must lower
its eyes and keep both of them on that treat. Immediately
praise the dog and pet it. Allow the animal to take the treat
and take yet another one to be ready for the next step. If you
use a clicker, click a little before to give the dog its treat.
Repeat the sequence for multiple times so that the cat gets
used to the movement and the subsequent reward. There is no
need to worry if the dog stands up. It will learn to link the
treat (also clicker if using) with this movement post
repetition. It is now time to add verbal cues. First, you add
any appropriate phrase, like "bow." Pronounce the word as the
animal gets into position. Take your hand and do the action of
putting it down on the floor to indicate to the dog to do the
same with his head. Once your dog does this, give it the treat.
If you use a clicker, just click before you give the treat.
Repeat the action multiple times. Continue with your verbal cue
and also move the hand towards the ground. Switch to pretend
treat. When you open your hand while on the floor, the hand
must be empty. Give the dog its treat, but with your other
hand. Repeat this multiple times. Try giving your "bow" command
without you moving your signaling hand. Reinforce this action.
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All training tips in this series are from ECAD (Educated
Canines Assisting with Disabilities), a non-profit organization
dedicated to training service dogs for veterans with
disabilities. Learn more about ECAD.