Updated: Mar 5, 2019
Have you recently got a new puppy and now she is picking up everything off the floor and running away with it? Or does your dog pick up things while out on a walk and won't drop them when your ask?
In the video below I go through a step by step guide on how to teach a solid drop on cue no matter how intising the object that your dog has.
If your dog picks up something that is not puppy proof like socks, the kids toys or worse a pebble, avoid running over to them and forcing their mouth open. This can lead to either a game of chase or your puppy can start to fear people touching their mouth or taking their toys away which may lead to resource guarding.
Imagine if you were sitting on the couch eating a chocolate bar and someone came over and snatched the chocolate bar out of your hand. The first time this happens you will probably not react as you would just be in shock but by the third time that person stole your chocolate bar you would either run away from them or fight them off. This would be the same reaction that your puppy would have. They don't know that the sock on the floor is not a fun tuggy toy or that one of the kids soft toys is not for them or that if they swallowed that tiny pebble is could get stuck in their throat. Puppies love to explore and they do that by putting things in their mouth.
Instead of taking the stolen items away from your dog, exchange it for something your dog can have. I have found the most reliable method is to grab a handful of food treats and starts dropping them on the floor one by one at a short distance away from your dog. Your dog will then let go for the stolen item and come over to investigate what you are dropping on the floor. As your dog starts to eat the food on the floor go over and remove the stole item from the floor and it store it out of your dog's reach.
Teach your dog a reliable drop cue.
Manage the environment by not leaving things in reach around the house.
If you have a stone drive away or have pebbles in the back garden keep your puppy on lead until they are not interested in them anymore.
Teach a leave it cue to prevent your puppy from picking things up on a walk
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