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Anyone have great tips on teaching the drop it command? I've been trying for months and he isn't solid. With the cold weather and snow we're having, we need some indoor activites - as you can imgaine fetch doesn't last long with a dog who won't drop it. I've tried rewarding him with the treat after he drops it - but once he has a treat he's not interested in chasing a ball that does not have a treat.

He is also in a stealing things phase and I'm tired of the battles.

He's been through basic obedience and does really well with most of his commands - I'm just not sure of how to properly teach this one...
 

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I have a problem with drop it also. Buddy knows everything else really well, sit, stay, down, paw etc... Drop it he does not know. He just wants to play more. I usually have to show him a treat to drop the item.

He loves to go outside and chew on branches and leaves. So drop it is an important one for him to learn.
 

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I had in the past used 2 tennis balls when paying fetch for that reason. When they return with the ball make the second one appear and pretend to through the ball lightly then give it a good toss. After the first or second time of running after the second ball and not being able to pick it up without leaving the first one go it will start to sink in.

Use the second ball for a while till he drops the first every time then go to one ball and see if he drops it for the next through.
 

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What I did with Chloe was treats! I took one of her toys (not her favorite one) and sat down with her playing tug. I then said drop is and held the toy in one hand and a high value treat in the other hand. Once she released the toy, I praised her and gave her the treat. Many repetitions...
Then I moved to her favorite toys (balls and cuz) and kept working with her. Less repetitions were needed there !
Finally, I started working with her with food, actually asking her to drop a piece of cheese/frankfurter and it worked! Don't know how, but I didn't really bothered finding out. What I did do, was give her what she dropped after praising her and after she realized she was doing something good. I think that drop it is mainly based on trust and respect to the owner as the pack leader. I know you're good with your dogs, and they respect you - so I think you'll be fine teaching them.

Another thing I did was working with her on leave it (before actually needing the drop it command). I sat with her playing fetch with her favorite toys and when I said leave it, she wasn't allowed to run to get the toys, when I gave the release word (OK) she was allowed to run to the toy and got her treat!
 

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Ditto everything Eleanor just said. That's basically the same thing we did with Jersey, minus the dropping her food bit. Although that would have come in handy at times.
 

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We trained Bodie to Drop It by playing tug with him. He has only one toy (rope) that we use when playing tug. This is so he learns it's unacceptable to play tug with your shoes, purse, towel, etc.

In one hand we'll have the clicker and a treat. We'll play with him for a minute, say Drop it (one time, do not repeat yourself) stop moving and wait for him to drop it. As soon as he does click and reward. Since he'll be holding the toy tight in his mouth you can easily lift his head so he's looking right at you too.

It's a process and not going to happen consistently over night. You might be able to get in 5-6 Drop It's before he get bored and tunes you out.

With Bodie we have better luck telling him to Leave It before he gets it in his mouth. Once he does then Drop It is a lot harder. It's something we need to go back and work on too.
 
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