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A Trick For Your Dog's Fun & Safety

There is a fun, simple trick that can entertain, impress, and even protect our favorite four legged buddies!

It's "retrieving." Then expand the retrieve until our doggie will happily bring us almost anything that can fit into its little mouth.

Here are some reasons to teach this invaluable behavior:

*It's fun.
*It's good exercise.
*It can make some chores entertaining when your dog-pal participates by bringing you a group of things.
*It's helpful for our little pooch to dive-bomb under the table to retrieve dropped item.
*It prevents hassels for our little Einstein to brings an item that might have otherwise been
used as a chew-toy.
*Most importantly, it can prevent illness or save a life if a our pal grabs a potentially toxic item and proudly brings it to us.

(By the way, you can see lots more articles like this at http://bichonworld.com/bichon-dog-articles.html.)

Here are some tips to make learning to retrieve fun and easy!

This type of retrieving is a "play for pay" deal. In other words, use food as a reward. Our little ones need an incentive (beyond kisses, hugs, and sweet-talk) to give up something that might have
been fun keep. Others may be very selective about what they want to pick up. So start with a hungry pal and some tasty treats.

If your dog already plays with toys, you're a step ahead because they'll already be enthused to put certain non-food items in their mouths. The next task will be to teach them that picking it up
and bringing it is fun and profitable!

Consider size, texture, and hardness of each item. Begin with smaller, lighter-weight, somewhat softer items that can be easily picked up and comfortably held . These items usually rank high on the "approval list" of most small fur pals: little plush toys, socks, paper wads, crumpled napkins, cottage cheese lids, paper cups, and short pieces of soft, knotted rope .

To add "pick up" incentive, add your scent! Put the items with the dirty laundry.for about fifteen minutes.

Get down on the floor with reward treats in hand. Enthusiastically show an item to your pal and toss it only 1 or 2 feet from you. If he/she picks it up, cheer and treat immediately. Repeat this
procedure 3 or 4 times. When you know that he/she is going to pick it up, attach a verbal cue, such as "Get it!"

If item-pick-up does not happen, reward looking at the item. Quickly advance to rewarding item touches. As confidence builds, the touch will become a little "bite", and the bite with become a "pick up."

Principles for progress:
*Limit each session to 2 or 3 minutes.
*Have 3 or 4 training sessions daily.
*Increase the retrieve distance only 6" to 12" when the previous distance has become easy.
*Slowly introduce new items to the "game."
*With each new item, go back to retrieving only 1' to 2'.
*When your pal grabs a "forbidden" item, treat the event like a happy training session!

Have fun, and persist! Bit by bit, your buddy will be bringing you the most surprising things!

Submitted by:

Sandy Schneider

Sandy Schneider, author, is a devoted dog mom. Agility, grooming, obedience, and just plain having fun with her dogs are her passion. She operates http://www.bichonworld.com and invites you to visit the site for great information and articles.




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