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At home training tips

Faith Peterson, Dog Trainer Faith and Sedona


As we are spending more and more time at home with our animals, our instructor Faith Peterson of FAITH’S DOG TRAINING has some tips for you to work on with your dog.

Start with a soft fuzzy toy or ball
Shake and wiggle the toy near your dog
Encourage your dog to take a hold of the toy with it's mouth
Say "take" the moment your dog has the toy in it's mouth
Praise "good"


I practice with different toys. The goal of teaching "take" is for your dog to "bring it". The difference between "take" and "bring it" is "take" is a few seconds of the dog holding the toy while "bring it" is take the toy and also carry back to me.

The goal for "take" should be about 3-5 seconds of your pup holding the toy in it's mouth. I give a treat reward if the pup will hold the toy for a few seconds.

Practice every day for roughly 10 mins or more

Eventually point or touch the toy and say "take"

Replace the command "take" with "bring it" as your dog improves, the amount of time of holding the toy in it's mouth should increase to 5-8-10 seconds.

Point and say "bring it" if your dog is able to go to the toy, take it in it's mouth and then take a step or two towards you, while still holding the toy.

Praise the entire time your dog is attempting this.

If your dog attempts to bring to the toy I give a treat and praise "good".


I am selective about what behavior I'm treat rewarding simply due to not wanting to reward the incorrect behavior such as your dog pulling the toy to initiate a game of tug.

Make sure to make this simple at first. Keep the toy within a foot or two of you and or dog. Try not to toss the toy to far away yet. I get on the floor with my pup when teaching this game. If my dog just stares at the toy I may put a leash on it and retry or try a different toy all together. We are hoping to avoid -chase the toy and try to play keep away or catch me if you can.



Faith Petersen is an ARD instructor and graduate of Animal Behavior College where she earned her certification as an ABC Certified Dog Trainer.