Get Your Dog to Ring the Bell to Go Out

How to get your dog to ring a bell to go out

Step 1: Teach your dog the command “touch”.   Here is how:

Click and treat the instant your animal looks at your hand.

  1. Put your hand about ¼” before the canine’s nose.
  2. Click and treat the moment your canine glances at your hand. (On the off chance that your pup contacts it immediately, click that!)  You can likewise say yes rather than clicking.  Note, it is important that the click or the “yes!” happen within one second of your dog doing the right thing.
  3. Rinse and repeat, put your hand ¼” away from your dog’s nose.
  4. When the dog touches your hand, click and treat.
  5. Next, move your hand a little to the left, a little to the right, a little higher, a little lower—clicking and treating every time your dog touches your hand. For now, make it easy for your dog by continuing to move your hand close to your pup’s nose.
  6. Then, move back a step or two and rinse and repeat.
  7. Increase your distance until you are satisfied he is proficient from over 20 feet away.
  8. Work in short sessions, no more than 3-5 minutes at a time.

Step 2: Teach your dog to ring the bell.   Here is how:

  1. Sit on the floor with your pup and the bell you wish to use.
  2. Take a tiny, tiny bit of peanut butter and rub it on the bell.
  3. Let your dog inspect the bell and sniff around.
  4. Now, ring the bell a couple of times so the dog understands where the sound is coming from.
  5. Every time your dog looks at the bell(s), click (and/or say yes!) and treat.  Do this for a few times until she knows the deal.
  6. Next, wait for your dog to actually touch the bell with her nose.  Click and treat, rinse and repeat several times.
  7. Then, wait for your dog to actually make a sound by touching the bell with any part of her body. Click and treat.  Rinse and repeat several times.
  8. Work in short sessions, no more than 3-5 minutes at a time.


Step 3:  Teach your dog that ringing the bell means “outside!”.   Here is how:

  1. Hang the bell(s) on the door handle or put the bell (if desk bell) near the door.
  2. Wait for your dog to touch the bell and make a sound. Click but don’t treat – the treat is opening the door and letting her outside.  If you have a fenced in yard, let her run.  If you don’t, have her on leash and go outside with her for a minute.
  3. Come back in and wait for her to ring the bell again. Rinse and repeat for 3 to 5 minutes and then wait a half hour before starting another session.
  4. Have Fun!

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