We completed Cooper's basic manners training by working on an "automatic" Leave It. This is more of an advanced skill, but Cooper only takes things off the desk when someone leaves the room so a regular Leave It doesn't work as well. We tempted him with remote controls, socks, flip flops, even cat food, and he did pretty well. It will still take some work because he has been reinforced by taking them in the past, but this was a great start.
Bugsy already sits pretty well, so we just taught him how to do it with a hand signal. Down,
however, he didn't know and we had to teach him from scratch. He picked it up very quickly and we had him doing it on several different surfaces.
At only 17-weeks old, Neikah is getting into the trash and is beginning to learn she can put her paws up on the counter, as puppies tend to do. By practicing the Leave It that we taught her she will learn that certain things are not to be touched.
Jet is afraid of strangers, including me, so we began his Desensitization and Counter-conditioning outside. He progressed quickly and he was able to take food from my hand within 15 minutes. We then went inside where he continued to excel. Now that he trusts me we can start working with his resource guarding and generalized fears.
Dogs are not born with impulse control. We have to teach it. Leave it is an especially important skill for a dog to learn. Check out Charlie's "before" and "after", in just 30 minutes!
Henry breezed through his training so quickly that it allowed us to teach him a more advanced skill: Out of the Kitchen, which means you settle down and relax away from the hustle and bustle of the kitchen. He has been inadvertently reinforced for being underfoot in the kitchen in
the past, so this one will take some time to master, but he is off to a great start.
Today we taught Lucy how to Leave It. She picked it up very quickly, which gave us time
to practice with things she likes to take, like paper towels, pencils, and the kids' toys. She did magnificently!
We began Theo's impulse control training by teaching him Wait, which he breezed through,
and Leave It. We taught him Leave It using food, but practiced with things he likes to take, like dish towels. By the end of our session we were able to walk out of the kitchen while food was on the floor just 3 feet from Theo. Great job!
Jeff Dentler, CPDT-KA, FFCP, CTDI