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Nose Touch Training Tips

Nose Touch Training Tips.

One of the most commonly taught tricks for focus, confidence and humor is the nose touch. You will teach the dog to touch his nose to the palm of your hand (or to your fist). Any time you teach a dog to touch a portion of his body to a specific target (a stick or a part of your body), it’s called targeting. Even shake is considered targeting! Here are a few simple tips that can be utilized when teaching your dog to nose touch. Here at Ruffger’s, we offer training classes that can teach your dog to nose touch along with many other things.

Start with a treat between your pointer and middle fingers and then hold that hand next to your body. Your hand should be at the height of your dog’s nose when your dog is standing. If your hand is too high, your dog won’t be able to reach the treat. Keep your hand still! Resist the temptation to move your hand to your dog’s nose – that’s cheating!

Your dog will show interest in your treat hand. Keep your hand still. The moment that your dog touches his nose, mouth or tongue to your hand to reach the treat, release the treat as you say “yes” or click.

Repeat the drill again. On the third repetition, add the verbal command “touch” (or “bump”) before you put your hand down with the treat. Repeat. On the fifth repetition, say the command and put your hand down by your side without the treat between your fingers. When your dog touches his nose to your hand, say “yes” (or click). Then get a treat out of your pocket and give it to the dog!

Continue to work this command. Over time, change the position of your hand by just one inch at a time. You may eventually be able to have your dog jump up onto his hind legs to touch your hand with his nose.

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This command can be used to get your dog to focus on you and to interact with you during walks. This command can also be used to allow a dog to choose to interact with a new person – have the new person give the command, put their hand at their side, receive the “touch,” and then treat your dog. If you have any questions or need additional assistance training your dog, feel free to contact us. 

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