Tricked Out: Teach Your Dog to Open/Close a Door

Hands full and need a little assistance in opening and closing your doors? Why not ask your furry pal to help? Here is a step by step guide on how to teach your dog to open and close doors (full step by step guide can be found at:

Teach your dog “Tug” first. Steps can be found at:

Opening a door:

  1. Tie a cloth or bandana around your door and tell your dog to tug it. When he tugs the door open, click and treat.
  2. Keep doing this – eventually adding the word “open” when he tugs the door open. Click and treat each time.

Closing the door:

  1. Put a touch stick on the door (used to target the location you want your dog to touch)
  2. Each time your dog touches the door and moves it a little. Click and treat.
  3. Keep doing this until he/she has pushed the door close and reward him with a treat.
  4. Repeat until he/she closes the door each time. Reward generously when your dog successfully closes the door.
  5. Start adding the word “close” when your dog closes the door. After doing this multiple times your dog should be able to close the door at your command.


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