Training Nemo 3

Up – As a matter of fact, it’s “OFF” that I wanted to teach Nemo in the beginning. But I thought since I had to get him to jump onto something in order to teach him to get off, I might as well teach him “up” at the same time. This command is one of the easiest. All I had to do was hold a treat in my hand, tap on the surface I wanted him to jump onto and say “UP”. It’s so easy that I don’t even know if it qualified as training. Now I don’t even need to tap on the surface for him to jump or give treats. I just need to give the command “up”. But if there are more than one surface nearby I would tap on the one I want him to be on. Last time I gave the command without pointing, I could see that Nemo looked around, trying to figure out where I wanted him to jump to. This is part of the reason why we love being with Nemo. He is so incredibly interactive.

Current success rate: 90% with treats, 80% without treats.

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Off – This command required just a little more practice than “up”. First I got him on a surface that’s not too high. I held the treat in front of his nose and pulled it downward toward the floor and said “off”. In the beginning he didn’t quite get the idea that I wanted him to jump. He’d try to grab the treat with his paw. Whenever he did that I’d say “NO” and walked away. After a few times he learned to reach down with his head which naturally lead to jumping off. I gave him the treat as soon as he reached the floor. Since then, it only took him 3 more tries to completely get it down. In total it probably took him less than 10 minutes. Teaching him the command is very easy but getting him to actually follow the order is a different story. Even now if he is at a very comfortable position, or for whatever reason he doesn’t feel like getting off, he would give me the “talk-to-the-butt” look and turn his back to me.

Current success rate: 95% with treats, 70% without treats.

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(……to be continued)

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