Click here to learn more.
A: One of the first commands dogs should learn is “drop it,” which teaches them to willingly let go of an item in their mouth, whether it be a toy, chew or miscellaneous item they may have picked up. Drop it can be a lifesaver if your dog has something dangerous in his mouth. I’ve used this before when my dogs have picked up something during a walk or around the house, such as a food item I didn’t want them ingesting. It’s also an essential behavior for dogs to know for polite play.
Drop it is also helpful for teaching dogs to let go of valued resources willingly, which is important in preventing resource guarding. If your dog already shows signs of resource guarding, such as acting aggressively or anxiously (growling, snarling, snapping, freezing in place or showing the whites of his eyes) when you approach his toys, food or resting places, contact your veterinarian for further help and a possible referral to a trainer or animal behaviorist, since this is a critical issue that needs to be addressed by a professional.
If your dog is not guarding his toys but is holding on to them as a form of play, drop it can be an excellent solution.
Start with an item your dog doesn’t place a high value on but is likely to put in his mouth, such as a rope toy. Say “take it” and give him the toy. While some dogs may immediately grab the toy, others may need to be coaxed; make this part more exciting by waving the toy excitedly or shaking it right by the ground. You may even need to use a low-value chew, such as a plain rawhide. As soon as your dog takes the toy, praise him.
Like this article? Have a point of view to share? Let us know!
Thank you for subscribing to Petwire. Look for the latest newsletter each Wednesday.
An adorable black and white cat parked
himself right in the way of one of the
holes on a mini-golf course.
Vets performed a two-hour surgery to try to
save the leg of a Maltese struck
by a stolen van during a police chase.
You may be more familiar with the black-and-white variety of panda, but the red panda
had the name first.
Nocturne: Creatures of the Night, by Traer
Scott, showcases night-loving animals like
owls, moths and raccoons.
At this point in your dog's life, he's likely
beginning to show the signs of his age
and is not as active or…
With 40,000 animals poached each year
for the ivory trade, it might not be long
before elephants disappear…
When she's not curled in your lap, the affectionate and elegant Birman will gladly play fetch or chase a ball.
If the video doesn't start playing momentarily,
please install the latest version of Flash.
Thank you for subscribing.