How To Train A Dog To Pick Up A Stick

This tutorial is part of The Ultimate List Of Dog Trick Ideas which contains 99 other tricks like this!

Any dog that will pick up a walking stick and pass it to his handler is impressive. Added to a dance routine it can be even more remarkable. This trick can be easily achieved by expanding on the previous targeting technique.

  1. When your dog can touch the stick on command place it down in front of him and wait for him to touch it.
  2. He will probably touch the stick a few times on the end and then attempt to work out why it’s not providing him with a reinforcement and reward. He will try other things to get the reward and if you ignore everything else then he will make a slight move to attempt picking up the stick.
  3. Reinforce and reward these attempts until he actually picks up the item then add the command.
  4. This may take some time and patience but eventually your dog will be picking up the stick and with further encouragement you can swap it for a treat with him.

Top tip; if your dog does not like the feel of the stick and is reluctant to pick it up you can help by wrapping some soft tape around it in the area that you would like him to pick it up.

Dog trainers love this trick because teaching a dog to pick up any item is simply a prelude to the dog picking up many more items, this can be a very useful exercise.

About The Author

Jean Cote

Jean Cote is an animal lover, dog trainer, and founder of Success Dogs. He takes pride in his ability to help dog owners improve their relationship with their dogs, and stop the frustrating things that so often make the early years of dog ownership more frustrating than enjoyable.

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