Nitro Learning "Leave It" With A Soccer Ball

Nitro the English Bull Dog is crazy for the soccer ball.

We had the pleasure to board Nitro at our home and he was a blast to have around. I always love dogs with high energy and that love to play. The issue we ran into is that once he got the ball in his mouth he became very possessive over the ball. So his owner dropped him off the night before and I tried to play with him to get some energy out before going inside, and getting this ball was not even an option, so I woke up the next day and tried again with the same result. I thought it would be a great time to grab the camera and just see what we could accomplish in one session of training. Yes I know I look like I just woke up and look like a Red Neck with no shoes doing a training video, but thats because I did just wake up and I am a Red Neck 🙂

Goal of first training session:

Every time I work with a dog weather it is my own dogs or a clients dogs I have a goal and purpose for that session. I don’t ask more or less of the dog during the session. I find small goals compounded over time are much more effective than trying to do everything in one session. So the goal was simple, walk away from the ball and get rewarded. Thats it!!! I wasn’t trying to do more than that in this short session and as you see in the video we more than accomplished that.

Why I used a Clicker for training:

Because I felt like it, and wanted to see how fast he would respond to the clicker… pretty simple decision.

Results from this short training session:

Yes I know some of the clicks were off and a few of the verbal commands “leave it” were not perfect, but to be honest for 99% of the people trying to work their own dogs it’s going to look something like this session. All I wanted was the dog to come away from the ball and reward him. As you can see in the video the more we worked the less he was getting possessive over the ball. This is exactly what using a positive and fun method will do when working with your dog and making it fun for both of you.

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