Easy Dog Tricks

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Behavior Problems Solved!Jack Russell book cover
The Complete Jack Russell Training Solution Is Here

You can use a clicker to teach these simple dog tricks, but it's not necessary for some - you can get good results with just your dog's favorite treats and a bit of patience. Note also that while these are easy dog tricks, it's best to go through some basic obedience training and teach commands like Sit, Stay and Come before you attempt tricks. Looking for the best easy dog tricks to teach to your pet? Check out this list of simple dog tricks, with step-by-step, easy-to-follow instructions for how to teach them to your dog.

Tips For Teaching Easy Dog Tricks

You will find it easier to teach these tricks to your dog if you remember these guidelines:

  • Always reward your dog immediately after it performs the desired action.
  • Make sure you are using a treat that is of high value to your dog to provide motivation.
  • Teach in short but frequent training sessions (3-5 minutes is best, up to 10 times throughout a day, depending on your dog's attention span).
  • When teaching a new trick, ensure there are no distractions in the environment.
  • Remember to keep training fun for you and your dog. It's not a competition.


This is more like basic training than a trick, but your dog will need to know it to perform some of the other tricks listed here.

Desired Action: Get your dog to lay down on its stomach. This move can start from either a sitting or standing position.

How To Do It:
1. Take one of your dog's favorite treats and hold it in front of her.

2. Lower it down slowly, so that her nose follows it down. Her body will follow her nose, so her front half should naturally lower.

3. Bring the treat right down to the floor between her paws. Her body should naturally come down flat to the floor. When she is flat, let her have the treat.

4. After she can repeat the action consistently, start to introduce the verbal cue "Down" just before she lowers her body.

If she doesn't get the hang of it the first time, bring the treat back up to eye level and try again. Sometimes bringing the treat away from her a little as you lower it will help to bring her into the Down position.

Roll Over

This classic easy dog trick is simple to teach once your dog knows how to get Down on command.

Desired Action: Get your dog to roll over onto its back, right around, and back into the starting position.

How To Do It:
1. Get your dog into the Down position.

2. It's best to sit or kneel in front of your dog to teach this trick.

3. All you are doing here is simply taking a treat and using it to guide your dog's head around in a circle. You will bring the treat around her head in a clockwise motion. For starters, just bring it around to her shoulder so she looks backwards, then reward. Repeat this several times, then go on to step 4.

4. For the next step, bring the treat further back. You must keep the treat close to her back, to avoid having her simply rotate her head around - we want the whole body to move. Draw the treat across her back and she should roll onto her side. Again, repeat this a few times and move on to the next step.

5. The last step is to get her to roll completely over. Simply repeat what you've been doing, but this time lure your dog's head all the way around so that she rolls right over and back to the starting position.

6. Repeat and then add in a verbal cue like "roll over" when she can do the action consistently.

Play Dead

Another one of many simple dog tricks that's well recognized from the movies.

Desired Action: Get your dog to lay down flat, absolutely still.

How To Do It:
1. Start with your dog in the Down position.

2. Use a treat to lure your dog onto her side, exactly as you did with the Roll Over trick.

3. This time, instead of trying to get your dog to roll, give the reward as soon as she is lying on her side with her head on the floor.

4. Repeat until your dog understands and can do the move quickly and consistently.

5. Begin to introduce the "Play Dead" command just before the dog shows the desired action.

6. Experiment with trying to get your dog to "Play Dead" from sitting and standing positions, until she can hit the floor on command.


This is a very easy dog trick, ideal for beginners. There's not a lot to this one.

Desired Action: Get your dog to catch a treat or dog when you throw it to her.

How To Do It:
1. Have your dog sit in front of you. Start out close.

2. Throw a treat up for your dog to catch. Make sure you are close enough at first to grab the treat if she doesn't catch it in mid air. This will let her know that if she wants the reward she can't wait for it to hit the floor. But if it's a highly motivating treat, she will likely being trying to catch it before it even leaves your hand.

3. When she gets good at catching, you can introduce the verbal cue "Catch," although this won't really be necessary. When she sees a treat flying through the air she'll know exactly what to do.

So there you go, a few easy dog tricks to keep you and your dog occupied for a while. Enjoy and be sure to check back here for more simple dog tricks when you've mastered these ones.

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