Protocol for Teaching a Safe “Trade” With Your Dog

Start together with your canine on a leash and both stand on the tip of the leash or tether him to one thing stable so he can’t depart with the merchandise at any level within the “game.”

1. Say “Take it!” and provides the canine a low-value object – one thing he’ll simply and willingly quit in alternate for a high-value deal with. 

2. Offer him your high-value treats – shut sufficient that he can sniff then, however don’t attempt to push them into his mouth. (Anything that resembles coercion will doubtless improve his resistance.) Have a big sufficient provide of high-value treats that it’s going to take him a short time to eat all of them. Do not use a cue but. 

3. If he drops the low-value merchandise (with a view to discover or take the higher-value treats you supplied), click on your clicker (or use a mouth click on or verbal marker) and, when you maintain him occupied nibbling on the high-value treats in a single hand, choose up the low-value object together with your different hand and conceal it behind your again. You should use two fingers for this! If you let him eat the high-value treats after which race him again to the item, you’re prone to lose the race and you may elicit resource-guarding. 

As quickly as he finishes consuming the treats in your hand, carry out the item from behind your again, say “Take it!” and provides it again to him. This teaches him that he doesn’t lose the item – that he can commerce with you after which get it proper again. This will make him extra keen to commerce with you once more sooner or later. It’s a win/win for him!

If he doesn’t present any curiosity in taking the low-value object after you’ve traded it for high-value treats, it’s possible you’ll want to begin by giving him a barely higher-value object and/or utilizing lower-value trade-treats.

If he doesn’t drop the merchandise, make a brief “Hansel and Gretel” path of treats beneath his nostril after which trailing a foot or so off to the aspect. Engage his mouth with the treats in your hand after he follows the path, when you choose up the merchandise together with your different hand.

If he nonetheless doesn’t drop the merchandise, it is advisable to begin by
giving him a fair lower-value merchandise and/or utilizing far higher-value treats in your hand. (Think meat, not dry cookies.) 

4. When you’ll be able to predict that he’ll all the time drop the merchandise while you provide your treats, you’re prepared for the following step. First, give your cue (“Trade!”), pause for a couple of seconds, after which do what you’ve been doing: provide the treats, click on when he drops the merchandise, and choose up the merchandise together with your free hand when you maintain his mouth busy nibbling treats out of your hand.

5. After a number of repetitions, typically pause a couple of seconds longer earlier than providing your treats. Your purpose is to get him to drop the item while you say “Trade!” – earlier than you provide the treats. When he’ll do that reliably, it means you could have the habits “on cue” – he drops the item as a result of he heard and understood the cue, not simply since you caught high-value treats beneath his nostril.

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