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Discussion Starter #1
I almost don't believe this, and I am terrified of jinxing this. But somehow, someway-- Grimm suddenly has stopped excitedly, playfully JUGGLING items when I say "Take it".. and instead looks at me with serious, curious, interested eyes now-- and holds it calmly............. and then I add "Heel." We went about 10 feet first, then i had him sit, focus, release into my hands. He DID it! No more sillyboy juggling the item and dropping it!

After he does this, we play a bit with the item (it's a fake length of firehose type of retrieving bumper toy), I make it fun, but at the end, it comes back to my posesion.

Today-- we calmly walked 40 FEET with Grimm CALMLY carrying the object! Right past a lady walking towards us munching a Danish pastry in a crinkly bakery bag!! Grimm held fast the object! and heeled right on past! No drops, no juggling, no fidgeting! His eyes seem to be concentrating-- for the first time EVER-- on the idea that this is something serious, that I WANT him to do.... it matters to him!!

This is new behavior. The only thing I have done differently with Grimm is changed his diet to raw... he concentrates better and settles better, is more calm. Can diet make a dog fidgety?

I had no access to a dowel, this toy was the best i could do. i didn't have any training guidance on this issue. i am so excited! Grimm got SO MUCH praise today!


Any tips on making the hold-and-carry good? He now seems to "get it" that this "game" is actually something he does for ME.. and that it has a begining (take it) a middle (carrying it at heel) and an end(releasing it and waiting for what is next.. play, kisses, snack, whatever.
 

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Yeah, Grimm. His diet could be part of it. Perhaps he is growing up or it could be your new confidence in training. He knows now when you mean business and is finding it fun to please you.

One thing you might want to change - use some other toy or object as his play reward after he carries the object for you. At some point, you will be asking Grimm to carry or bring things to you that you do not want used for play.

40 feet is a long time! You must be very proud of Mr Grimm today.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks, Bonnie! You're right.. that needs to be the next step. I think I will have him carry the training dummy.. and his play reward can be his squeaky gear toy.
 

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May I just say...I love the way you describe things!
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thank you Brennas Mom, you are so kind.
 

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Patti,

It sounds like Grimm is doing great on the retrieve. I would have to second using a different higher value toy for the reward. A lot of times chewing or reluctance to give the object up can be caused when the handler creates conlflict with the out. Sounds like you are making the training fun for Grimm, are not creating conflict on the out and are reaping the benefits from it.
 
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