7. Don't Pick That Up (Leave It)

Exercise 7.2 - Leave It Progression Exercises

Here are two exercises that you can practice with your dog that will really help improve his impulse control and progress his understanding of the ‘Leave It’ cue.


You may find these a little difficult initially but if you keep practising you and your dog will be able to master these exercises and they will really help you start to progress ‘Leave It’ so that you can ask your dog to not only leave food on the floor but also generalise ‘Leave It’ to real world situations like people and other dogs. 


When training with new distractions always be ready with super high-value rewards and keep your dog on lead to prevent mistakes and your dog getting access to the distraction.


Training Leave It is like Recall - don’t use the cue if you know your dog won’t respond. You don’t want your dog to practice ignoring you!  Instead, go back to training and work that particular distraction into your routine until your dog is successful.


By working through exercises like this your dog will learn to control his impulses.  A strong ‘Leave it’ cue means you decide what’s safe for your dog and expanding the cue’s meaning to anything in the environment will help you control your dog’s behaviour in distracting places.