Obj 1: Closed Mouth Nose Target to Hand (Puppy) *Free*

Nose Target to Hand

Set up: Have the dog on a non-slick surface. Kneel or bend down to the dog.
Raise puppies and small dogs up on a surface like a bed or couch or even a chest freezer with rubber mat on it to help you reach them if you have mobilty issues.

Count out 10 treats and have them in one hand. The other hand is the nose target. Clicker is optional. I prefer using a verbal marker as it is one less thing to handle. 

Objective 1: Dog does a solid closed-mouth nose touch to the palm of your hand. 

This behaviour is a bit trickier mechanically than what we have done before because you are using your hand as the target, and have to deliver the treat with the same hand.

Using the target hand to get the treats speeds delivery. Other options are to place the treats on a table beside you or hold the treats in your non-target hand. 

If using a treat pouch, it helps to start with placing the treat pouch on the same side as your target hand.  Place the clicker, if you are using one, in the other hand.

Your dog can be in any position to start teaching this behaviour. Please do not cue any specific position to start with. Whatever the dog chooses is correct to start with.

How to Start:
Present your target hand very close to the dog’s nose and mark if he looks at it or moves towards it at all. He can sniff it too! If he actually touches it the first few times, that’s a bonus!
Take your hand away between repetitions and present it again only after the dog has finished eating the food. 

What we are looking for is the dog’s nose lightly or firmly touching our hand.

Here is a 8.5 week old Aussie mix pup showing just how easy it can be!
And yes, this is her first try ever!

In this clip, the trainer on the left uses the treat pouch method. I am not using a treat pouch. I place the treats and clicker in the same hand and reach for the treat with my target hand. That works too as long as the treats are easy to grab. Some treats, like Cheerios, can be hard to get ahold of or hard to hold in your hand without falling out, especially if you have a weak hand grip.  Choose the method that works for you or try them both!

Here are two 12 week old Hovawart puppies trying this for the first time! They figure it out quickly and are giving nice firm nose targets after just a few repetitions in a distracting environment. Puppies are such sponges! We were even able to call them away from their sibling to continue training! 
nose target 12 week old pup Hovawart