Touch is a foundational skill that means to use the muzzle and/or paw to touch a person or a designated object. Foundational skills are directives that we use to lay the foundation for teaching other skills and directives.
You can use touch as just a fun new trick to work your dogs brain and skill build together for fun, or you can take it to the next level and use it to teach other skills such as high fives or high tens, opening and closing doors, and even touching different toys that you teach them by name such as their favorite stuffed animal or their kong.
As a service dog trainer with Operation Sidekick, I use this directive to help me teach dogs to alert. Alerts are notifications that the dog gives to a person to let them know that a concern is arising. A concern could be a pattern of behaviors indicating heightened anxiety such as rocking, heavy breathing, shaking, wringing the hands, and so on, or, something like a drop in blood sugar for someone who has diabetes.
I hope you enjoy working on building this skill with your dog!
Don’t forget to try the homework! Put in the reps to get it right.
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