Training and Care — Tip Of The Week
Excerpt from Our New
Australian Shepherd Lover's Guide To Australian Shepherd Training & Care
"Drop It" Command
This is similar (to Leave It), but it’s to be used to tell your dog to drop something she’s already picked up, rather than leave something alone. Here’s how you do it:
Take an item your dog will latch onto but isn’t allowed to have, like a dirty sock.
Hold the sock firmly and let her take it in her mouth.
Hold up a treat in your other hand and say “Drop it.” If the treat is good enough, she’ll drop the sock on her own and turn her attention to the treat. When she drops the sock, say your marker word and give her the treat.
Now, there’s an important point to make here. You shouldn’t repeat this over and over again. Go through the three steps once, then take the sock away. Don’t do it again for at least half an hour.
You want the dog to understand that when you say “Drop it,” you don’t want her picking up the object again.
Now, sometimes you want the dog to drop an object, but you don’t want to tell her it’s out of bounds. For example, when she’s chewing your shoe you want to make her stop and never do it again. But when you’re playing fetch, you want her to drop the ball and then go get it again. We need to use a different command to distinguish the difference between these.
“Drop It” is the command you would use to let your dog know she should drop the item and never pick it up again. “Give” is the command you would use when playing fetch.
Next time: The "Give" Command
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