Any ideas on how to teach my 2 month old how to drop/release on command. I tell her drop and once and awhile she will drop, but most of the time she just looks at me like you drop it, then I end up having to almost pry the toy out of her mouth.
The way I did it with Kane is when he has a toy in his mouth, to get him to drop it at first, I wave a treat in front of him. He'll drop the toy to get the treat, I praise and give him the treat. After a bit, I added the Drop It command AS HE was dropping the toy, so that he understood DROPPING the toy is what I wanted.
Then, when he's Dropping the toy reliably, I really reinforced it by immediately giving him whatever he was forced to drop back. So, if we were playing tug and I told him to drop it and he dropped it, his reward was immediately getting the toy back to play some more tug.
Also, when you're teaching your dog commands, you want to make sure they understand what you want them to do before commanding them to do it, lol. That staring thing is what happens when they don't know what you want them to do.
I use " Give" for my word of choice. When thy pup is little like yours I would take the ball or toy from her and tell her " Give" once you have the toy tell her what a good girl she is and praise her really good then give the toy back to her and start all over again. She will think it is a game and want to keep giing you the toy so that the fun can continue.
I taught Vendetta "GIve It" so well tat we can not play tug I forget and will tell her to "give it to me" and she drops the toy and will walk away. lol
I always taught my pups two commands at the same time to "hold" and "release"...start with hold keep the toy/bumper in their mouth and hold it there...of course for a short period of time then once they get that work "hold" and add in "release" shortly after. Ive had some dogs that are easy and some that are tough...some with just a hand movement or sight of a treat would release and then id praise...some were not food motivated and wanted to keep the bumper so I would have to hinge the jaw the first few times to get them to drop it then praise the hell out of them. Once they get the game it becomes easy.
I had one stubburn pup we had to "pinch" so to speak...I trained hold then when I was ready for release my buddy would pinch the soft spot of the armpit...very gently no we weren't hurting them just enough to distract their jaw muscles and at the same time I would say the command then regain attention with the praise. He would associate the discomfort at first to release then learned the command within a week.
One thing I would suggest is to train to release in hand which means dont just let them drop anywhere train them not to release until you have a firm grasp and say the command. From there you can use the command in hand or on ground...if you train on ground first it becomes much harder to train in hand release.
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