Teaching Your Dog to Drop Items

Teaching Your Dog to Drop Items

Does your dog continuously hunt for items to carry or eat while taking them for a walk? If you need a solution to this problem, you’ve come to the right place. Teaching your dog to drop items can be a life-saving experience if they pick up something poisonous or dangerous. Having a reliable “drop” cue can be critical to your dog’s health. 

Where to Begin Teaching Your Dog to Drop Items?

The first step is simply making sure that your dog doesn’t have anything in its mouth. This makes it easier to teach your dog how to drop before they know the command. The goal is to create a strong association with the word and the action we expect them to do. 

This exercise will require food that your dog likes. If your dog doesn’t care for their treats, try using cheese or shredded chicken.

First Steps:

  • With your dog standing or sitting in front of you, calmly say “drop!”.
  • After saying the word, spill multiple pieces of food on the ground and point at them. 
  • Repeat this process until your dog reacts to the sound of the word “drop”.
  • Typically, you will want to repeat this for a week. Try it in both indoor and outdoor environments. 

This is actually the bulk of the training. The purpose of this training is to create a positive reaction to the word “drop”.

Introducing Items

Once your dog understands the command “drop”, it’s time to teach your dog to drop items that aren’t valuable to them.

  • Have food rewards ready but out of sight. If your dog knows you have treats, it will be more difficult for them to focus.
  • Wait until your dog picks up a toy and says “drop!” in a pleasant tone. Make sure to only say it once. 
  • Once you say the word, back away to remove your physical pressure.
  • Practice with a variety of items and toys. Try it indoors and outdoors.

Teaching Your Dog to Drop Harder Items

Worry about more challenging items only once your dog has mastered the steps mentioned above. 

When they are ready, move on to items that are more tempting for them to hold or chew on. Items such as bones, dish towels, or even food are a great way to challenge them. 

Need Help Teaching Your Dog to Drop Items?

Teaching your dog to drop items can be challenging depending on the dog. Some will need specialized training to truly understand new commands. Giving a Dog a Bone is here to help train your dog and make them become the best pup it can be. Contact us today to schedule a training session. 

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