2018 Dog Training Goals


New year, new dog training goals. Mr. N’s 2018 dog training goals include a mix of titles, behavioral modification and new tricks. We took a hiatus from titles last year but this year I’m hoping to add at least two new ones to his arsenal. He has the most random assortment right now (lure coursing, therapy dog work, CGC, trick titles) but hey, the AKC is recognizing “versatile” dogs like him with their new Achiever Dog certificate. His next title and he’ll qualify. Dogs that earn placement and/or titles in three different sports are automatically sent the new certificate if at least one of the titles is earned after December 2017.

We’ll continue to work on behavioral modification as well although there’s no new goals there. Just plugging along to aim for the same lofty ones. And as for tricks, I pick the ones that I think will provide a training challenge and/or look cute.

Dog Training Goals
*If you buy from the Amazon links listed on this blog, it won’t cost you extra but we will get a few pennies that go towards running the blog and Mr. N’s treat allowance!

2018 Dog Training Goals

  • Dog reactivity: Maybe this year will be the one where Mr. N can finally walk on leash calmly past another dog on the same sidewalk. He can IF the other dog is facing in the other direction and sleeping and very calm and at the end of a very wide sidewalk but that doesn’t apply to most walking situations. He can keep his calm usually at cafes and restaurants and dog shows and classes and such but dogs on walks really stir him up. I also have a gift certificate for a private training session so hopefully she can give me some additional tips or critique my handling.
  • Separation Anxiety: Another one of those things we’re always working on. He’s been calmer about departures recently and runs into the living room to curl up on a chair. I need to get back to filming him regularly so I can keep better track of his progress. Currently there’s plywood boards blocking where his was stationed so hopefully after the renovations to the house are done, it can once again spy on his movements while we’re gone.
  • Get his first Obedience title: TEAM is a new online video titling option run by the Fenzi Dog Sports Academy.  Mr. N knows about 2/3 of the requirements for the first title and with some platform and pivoting work, he should be able to do the rest. The first level involves things like going around an object, finding a scented object, backing up two feet and finding the front and heel position. I’m signing up for a class and aiming to achieve a title by summer.
  • Trick Titles: This is really more a matter of me filming and paying for the titles than extra training. Currently, he has his novice title. He’s known enough tricks to qualify for the titles for a couple of years(?) now. But the Champion title is super expensive though so I think I’m probably going to get his intermediate, advanced and expert title and apply for the AKC Trick Dog Performer title (they’re grandfathering DMWYD titles). So more trick videos upcoming!

  • Walking Handstand: One of our 2017 goals was to train a handstand. He backs up to the wall and kicks his back paws up and balances on his two front paws. Now I want to add more duration and eventually have him doing it off the wall and be able to walk for a few feet.
  • Fetch Beer/Liquor: I’m working on a modified version of the fetch a beer trick for his size. It’s going to be très adorable.
  • TBD Trick: I haven’t decided what else. Rebound? Stacking rings onto a toy? Jump rope? Will take suggestions.

What are your 2018 dog training goals?




24 Responses

  1. Beth

    February 7, 2018 5:36 am

    I can’t wait to see Mr. N’s new tricks. They sound adorable. Barley and I used to do lots of tricks when I first got her, but we ended up loving other types of training more, so we just kind of stopped. Rye knows the obligatory shake and high five, but we just jumped into agility and noseworks with her, so who knows if she’ll ever do tricks, either! (Although thanks to agility and obedience class, we could do the AKC trick titles and do the first two levels without any problems.)

  2. Jan K

    February 7, 2018 9:16 am

    It sounds like you and Mr. N are going to have a very busy and fun year, and I have no doubt you will accomplish a lot! The handstand sounds really cute and must have been difficult to train. I can’t wait to see what you came up with for the fetching beer!

  3. Chelle

    February 7, 2018 12:01 pm

    Mr. N is adorable. I always love love love to see little dogs staying active and involved. I feel like so many people write off little dogs as not being able to do as much as their larger counterparts, when in truth they are just as capable. Here’s to an awesome year with Mr.N!

  4. Jana Rade

    February 8, 2018 9:22 am

    Cookie does very well, particularly since there aren’t many negative stimuli around here. The main goal for me would be to come up with a way of avoiding zoomies which is the easiest way to get hurt.

  5. Debra Bailey

    February 10, 2018 7:32 am

    These are some great goals! I had never heard of the Achiever Dog Certificate. That sounds perfect for a well-rounded pup like Mr N. Good luck with the reactivity training too. That’s a constant goal for us, to get Ringo more comfortable with new dogs. We’ve been bringing him on hikes with new friends more often, which I want to continue to do in 2018, and see if we can help him warm up a bit quicker. He’s pretty much resolved his stranger fears, so now to keep working on dogs. We also have trick training goals for the Boomer and Roxie, the two that love to learn new things, and lots of hiking goals for the whole pack. 2018 is going to be EPIC!

  6. Dolly the Doxie

    February 11, 2018 5:01 pm

    If you can teach a dog to bring me a drink I’ll pay anything for my dogs to learn that! I’m amazed that you continue to want to teach Mr N new tricks and training. I just figure out my dogs are old and there’s nothing I can teach them, so maybe I’ll try to find a few things to do. Sandra and Dolly

  7. sadieandco

    February 12, 2018 7:22 am

    Go Mr. N! We can’t wait to see your new tricks and wish you the best of luck with your certificate and title. I’m sure you’ll do well with behaviour training too. You’re an inspiration for Henry and Jack. Reese is happy just to cheer all of you boys on.

  8. somethingwagging

    February 12, 2018 12:32 pm

    It’s awesome that you’re going to do a session with a private trainer. I found that so valuable with Honey. I learned so much.

    Can’t wait to see what your little Achiever Dog does this year.

  9. Maggie

    February 13, 2018 11:43 am

    Oh, my gosh! That IS a big list, but I bet you guys can check them all off! As for the tricks… the walking handstand sounds pretty amazing, but I think jumping rope would be a BIG crowd pleaser!!!


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