Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Shaping a dog to play the piano

Dogs love to learn new things, and I took advantage of my Borzoi's tall height to "shape" her to play the piano. This was quick to do and it's now one of her favorite tricks. It's an example of "target training" (the target in this case is the piano). She got a click-treat for interacting in any way with the piano, and I soon changed the criteria for nose contact, then nose contact on the keys, then enough pressure to make a noise.


  1. Fabulous, I wonder if I could teach my Jack Russell to do this!

  2. Note that in this video, this behavior is not new to Bella so I am sometimes withholding the click a bit, which causes her to escalate/change the behavior (exaggerating it, usually), and THEN I click and treat. This is a way of shaping for a slightly different version of the behavior (I'm looking for more keys being pressed, and for a slide down the keys). When I first started training this, I clicked and treated for any contact with the piano whatsoever. Make sense?