Shaking Hands with Your Dog Needs Proper Training

Shaking Hands with Your Dog Needs Proper Training

A dog shakes hands looks polite and well-mannered. The good news is, this trick is quite easy and fast for your pup to learn. Surprise your family and friends with a smart dog that shakes every hand he meets.

However, shaking hands with your dog needs proper training.

You may care about the best method to teach the lesson.

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Handshaking with a dog

Here you are: How to teach your dog to shake?

Proper Training for Shaking Hands with Your Dogs

Science has proven the dog’s intelligence. That means they know more than sniffing other dogs’ butts. They can learn to sit, stay, and play dead; shaking hands is one of those classic tricks. Here is how you can start the lesson:

1: You Shake First

This technique is easy as you will make a sample first. Get your dog to sit first, face to face with you, acknowledge him with warm words and petting. If the pup seems to be ready, you can begin.

Follow the guide here:

  • Grab the paws gently
  • Say “Shake” while shaking the paw
  • Put the hands down
  • Praise
  • Give treats
  • Repeat 5 times

There are controversial discussions about this trick means you are completing the work, not your dog. But in fact, many dogs response to the right expectation if you don’t keep raising the paws for them.

Instead, after the 5th time, you will ask for the paws. If your fur fellow doesn’t get it, you can point or touch his leg to let know you want it or he won’t get the food.

Once your pooch does raise his paw, always give your praise like “yes,” “good boy,” or “good girl”; then toss the treat.

From there, he knows if he gives the hands, he gets the rewards. I successfully taught my 5-month pup this trick in one hour. You can do, too.

2: Tap Tap

This way, you don’t need to lift the paws yourself. When your dog sits down, use your index finger to tap under the pup’s dewclaw. This gentle pressure will get your woofy guy to pick up his foot. Once the paw is up, you can tenderly grab it.

Make a few shakes, then release the foot; don’t forget to reward your good pup. It’s ok to add some verbal compliments. Repeat the action a few more time with the cue “shake.” Your pooch will learn soon that giving the paw at “shake” means tasty food.

Dog shakes hands

Smiley face when you shake hands with your pet 

3: For Non-Pawsy Bow-Wow

Non-pawsy dogs don’t use their paws much for prancing about. Thus, teaching them can be an ache as they are likely to sniff your hand and look at you wondering.

So, how do get your shy pup to lift her hand?

The technique suggests luring the dog to look over her shoulder. You will hold a treat passing your dog’s shoulder, to the left, she’ll reflex to eat it. Then, you will lift the right paw to lever it up.

Give her the treat only when her foot is off the ground. Then, place your other hand to make contact with the paw then introduce the cue “Shake.”

Over time, reduce the stretch until your dog gets familiar with the word “Shake” and lift her paw without having to look over the shoulder.

This method takes longer practice and patience, but once it’s done, it’s a life lesson.

 Video of how to teach your dog to shake hands

Duration for a dog to learn to shake hands?

It really depends on how willingly your dog is about learning new tricks.

If you begin teaching at an early age, the learning process should be faster. Some tricks only take a few hours to accomplish.

Many dog parents just start the training when their dogs are older than one year, or in some cases, they adopt a mature dog. It’s ok, only takes time and more consistency.

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The key is also about repetition. You should ensure you and your fur companion will spend at least 10 minutes a day for the tricks. Besides, make sure you don’t leave the dog to forget by practicing every day.

Teach your dog to shakehand

Teach your dog to shake hands

Notes When Teaching Dogs to Shake Hands

It sounds easy in words, but when it comes to the real world, you may meet several problems while training. To keep up with the positive result, you should stick with some principles.

  • Consistency

Nothing becomes successful without patience and repetition. If you and our pup friend don’t keep up with the progress, the effort of the last practice will be gone.

  • Temperament

Many people tend to get angry when their dogs can’t get the message. But it doesn’t make any sense to be upset with an animal when they don’t understand your language.

That’s why you should keep calm and be patient with your little woofy angel. Some dogs are clever; some are not. They are like children with only one wish to keep us happy. That said, you should show them how, in a gentle way.

Say no shouting, loud voice, abusing verbally, and violently. That way, you gain nothing but lose trust.

  • Rewards

Always keep some treats with you. It doesn’t have to be food. Treats can be praises, petting, soft compliments, rubbing, and love.

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Read more: Are treats necessary to train your dog?


It’s important to do all the lessons with calmness and affection. Not only it gives you back a happy dog, but also smile on your face when you see your puppy complete a mission in his life.

After all, the mean of the trick is not about showing off your dog’s intelligence, but it’s about the friendship that lives for eternity. Remember that your dog only wants you to be happy. If your puppy is not able to satisfy in any aspect, it’s not his fault.

Here is a good book about many more tricks-

Dog training books

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