Multiple-time International Freestyle Champion Michele Pouliot is often asked how she makes her dazzling freestyle routines seem so effortless. Ready to find out? In this video, Michele and her dog Keiko demonstrate some of the individual behaviors that she often uses in their routines. Then they show us how to put these behaviors together to create a dazzling sequence!
The bow is not only an impressive trick, but is also one of the critical skills in canine freestyle routines. In this video, multiple International Freestyle Champion Michele Pouliot demonstrates how to teach the bow when starting in the down position.
Multiple International Freestyle Champion Michele Pouliot frequently dazzles crowds with her Head-Tuck Bow routine. In this video, Michele shows you how you can teach this behavior easily at home using raised platforms. The platforms help to keep the dog’s front and rear legs stationary while Michele uses strategic reward placement to encourage a head tuck. Once the head tuck is established, she begins to separate the platforms to increase the distance between the dog’s front and back paws. As the dog becomes comfortable with this new position, Michele extends the treat behind the dog’s front paws, slowly building duration until the dog achieves a full head tuck bow!
Canine freestyle champion Michele Pouliot is known for using innovative trick behaviors in her entertaining routines. One of the foundation trick behaviors that she uses often is targeting an object with duration. In this video, Michele is teaching her canine freestyle partner Sake to nose target a microphone with duration so that it appears that he is singing.
Canine freestyle, also known as musical freestyle, is a modern sport where dogs and handlers perform dazzling choreographed routines set to music. Each behavior is taught individually and cued throughout the performance. Canine freestyle champion Michele Pouliot’s award-winning routines often feature the trick behavior “head in a prop.”
Teaching your dog to weave through your legs is great for building confidence, and the leg weave is a fundamental skill for dog sports like Canine Freestyle. The goal of leg weave is for your dog to weave through your legs in a figure eight pattern, as demonstrated in this video.
During the winter you may be searching for activities that you can do with your dog to keep you both entertained and active. Why not try dancing with your dog? Canine Freestyle, also known as musical freestyle, is a modern sport where dogs and handlers perform dazzling choreographed routines set to music. The sport combines heelwork with other moves such as leg weaving, leg kicks, and more dramatic tricks. What skills do you need to get started in Canine Freestyle? In this video, international freestyle champion Michele Pouliot and six-month-old Keiko demonstrate the key building blocks for stunning Canine Freestyle routines!
A fundamental skill for canine freestyle is the dog backing around the handler. It’s also a fun trick that will impress your friends! Before you begin teaching this behavior, make sure your dog knows how to back up in a straight line (see Teach Your Dog to Back Up to a Target). Once your dog is backing up reliably at least 4 feet on cue, you can begin teaching your dog to back around you.
Imagine moving across a dance floor, with every move in synch with the music. Now imagine your dog dancing with you, weaving between your legs, spinning and prancing in unison with you, helping you tell a magical story. That’s the beauty of canine freestyle, or musical freestyle–a choreographed musical program performed by handlers and their dogs that showcases the connection and chemistry between a dog and handler. One of the core components of canine freestyle is heelwork where the dog stays in variations of heel position. The dog can be on the left, right, behind, diagonal, and even in front of you! In this video, international canine freestyle champion Michele Pouliot and her canine partner Déjà demonstrate “prance ahead of handler”—just one of Michele’s inspiring, show-stopping routines that showcase true teamwork… and how beautiful it is when you put your dog’s best paw forward!