Read on for instructions to teach your dog to give kisses (actually, less slobbery nose taps). This adorable trick is easy to learn and will melt hearts everywhere!
It’s crazy, but some people just don’t like dogs. So as dedicated pet people, it’s our job to raise responsible (and adorable) pups to help win them over. Thanks to trainer and world-class stunt dog performer Kyra Sundance, we’re on our way. Her amazing 101 Dog Tricks book makes it easy to teach your pup crowd-pleasing tricks in no time. With easy-to-follow instructions, it’s such fun practicing with your pups. Try out her irresistible “Kisses Trick” with your dog; it has the power to turn every human on earth into a certified dog-person. Guaranteed!
Teach your sweet pooch to offer a peck on your lips or cheek – it can be a lick or your dog can ‘nose’ you. Just follow these simple steps from Kyra Sundance. Use the verbal cue “Kisses” and for the hand signal, touch your index finger to your lips.
Here’s how you teach it:
- Sit at “doggy-level.” Give the verbal cue and place a treat between your teeth as you lean forward. Allow your dog to take the treat, and praise him with “good kisses.”
- If you do not wish your dog to kiss you on the lips (although we can’t imagine why!), put some peanut butter on (or hold a treat at) your cheek, point to it while saying “kisses” and let him lick it off, (or take the treat from your hand at your cheek).
- With the treat held behind your back, point to your lips or cheek and tell your dog “kisses.” When he licks or noses you, mark the instant with “good” and reward him with the treat.
- Now try it with someone else. Have the helper apply some peanut butter to their cheek. Point to it and cue your dog. When he licks or noses the helper’s cheek tell him “good!” and reward him. Step back and send your dog a farther distance to give kisses. Phase out the peanut butter and have your dog return to you for the treat.What to expect: Dogs will often learn this trick in a week although shy dogs may require more coaxing. The Woof Report’s treat-motivated pup tester got this down in just a few days (yes, we test these tricks before we share them!).
My dog gets scared near my face: Your dog is putting himself in a submissive position by coming close to your mouth (which in dog culture could lead to a bite). This trick requires trust. Try holding the treat several inches from your mouth, and as he reaches for it, bring it closer to your face.
My dog bites my lip: Address this issue separately by telling your dog “easy” as you allow him to take treats. Tap your finger on lightly on the nose if he bites and say “ouch!”
Many thanks to Kyra Sundance for the tip. Learn more about Kyra at the link below.
101 Dog Tricks: Step by Step Activities to Engage, Challenge, and Bond with Your Dog. By Kyra Sundance and Chalcy
Woof Report Larry (pictured above) learned this trick in no time and still knows it well, so much so that he’ll give nose taps when I have a treat he wants and I’m not even asking for a kiss!
Originally published August 2009; reviewed and updated August 2017.