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Hi everyone,
I'm the proud owner of a gorgeous 5 month old cockapoo called Louis!
Louis is really adorable, cute, fun, very loving and mostly well behaved.
My one problem area is that he insists on putting everything in his mouth :confused:
You name it - empty crisp packets, leaves, stones, other dogs' dried up poo (thankfully he doesn't eat his own - I hear some dogs do) - a particular favourite is tissue paper.
I'm trying to teach him the 'leave it' command on the lead, using a clicker and treats but am getting nowhere fast - I can go through a whole packet of treats on a walk he's that inquisitive.
Off lead is even worse - if he finds some rubbish he's off and thinks it's a game running away from me with said rubbish in mouth. Having said that - if there's no rubbish to be found he's a dream off the lead.
I'd be really interested in hearing if anyone else has had the same issue... And if so did your pup grow out of it? Or do you have any suggestions! Vet suggested a muzzle as he said it could become a habit - but I'm loath to use one unless I really have to.
Thanks for any advice :)
 

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Welcome Vikki...and Louis :)

My puppy is 7 months old and still chews things, if given the chance. Just last night she chewed the strap on my daughter's only pair of black dress shoes that she needed to wear today :(

She also loves chewing tissues, leaves, twigs, dryer sheets, wrappers, etc etc etc. Some things she swallows ( bunny poo is the best thing to her, yuck) and some things she just chews on and then spits out eventually.

We use the leave it command too and it works sometimes, sometimes it doesn't. You are not alone :) Hopefully, your puppy will outgrow it soon. I might just have an extra naughty puppy ;)
 

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Dylan used to be a bit like that but has gradually grown out of it. Any litter, tissues, bunny poo etc he will run over to inspect them but leave on command. It has been replaced by an obsession with balls and sticks, so on our walks he is constantly finding those and bringing them to me to throw. The only thing I would suggest is that you do lots of "leave" training at home where he will be more focused rather than on the walk. Also work on training him to come to heel when off lead so you can call him to you when you spot litter etc. I found that the most valuable of all the training - it stopped Dylan from bothering other people, kept him from dodgy looking dogs and away from bikes, joggers etc. Good luck x
 

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oh my lot love tisues.

can i ask how you are teaching the leave command. they way i taught it was to have them on lead, put them in the sit , tell them 'leave' and placing a treat infrount of them, if they move you use the lead to put them back and lift the treat once the dog stays then you give the dog the treat but not if the lunge for it.


once you have got that, start bring in things he would pick up out side and do the same thing, obviosly he gets a treat as a reward rather than the obgect.

Delta was my worst for picking things up off the streat, but the past couple of months she has been fab, passing by a bread role that was on the ground, dont get me wrong she had a sniff but before she wouldnt have sniffed it she would have just been off with it.

have you concidered a long line for off lead, it meands that he is off but if you need to you can stand on a 5ft line and get him back under controle.
 

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Bella LOVES tissues, wrappers, socks...but those are all the things that she won't leave (she'll leave pretty much anything else)!!! If there's danger (or really gross stuff like poo...) she can sense the urgency in my voice and she'll really leave it. We have our house sprayed for bugs (cockroaches mostly...eeew!) and occasionlly a (I call them 'drunk') dying cockroach will wander out into the kitchen. When I see it I yell (probably scream!) "LEAVE IT" and she turns and comes toward me. I don't want her eating bugs covered in poison!

Anywho...

Let me see if I can explain how we taught her to leave it:
1. First, do all training when she's hungry!
2. Put a piece of food in your hand, mostly closed so she knows it's there, but can't get to it.
3. The second that she turns her nose/backs away/shows ANY signs that she's 'leaving it' you say "Leave It" and then reward her.
4. Once she's good at that (it happened VERY quickly), then place the food in your open hand, closing it if she tries to take it, then say leave it at ANY indication that she's turned away from it.
5. Eventually she'll be good at leaving it in your open palm. Then place the food on the floor...following the same steps above.

The trick is to try not to pull the food away from her, but to make it so she can't get it. So, on the floor, when she would try to get it, I'd place my hand over it like a cage, so she could still see/smell it, but couldn't get to it.

Oh, and one other thing...before we started any of this, we did attention work with her. So, she would eventually stop looking at the food, and look at us...and then we'd reward. Hope that makes sense!
 

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I'm trying to teach him the 'leave it' command on the lead, using a clicker and treats but am getting nowhere fast - I can go through a whole packet of treats on a walk he's that inquisitive.
Try treating the walk as exercise, not playtime. If something scares him, stop and let him stare and praise him for being brave and quiet. But if he only want's to sniff something, keep walking without faltering at all, soon he'll realize it's not an option. Pick three or four main places that he likes, and you (do not let him pull you there!) go to them to let him potty and sniff, but those places are it. It might sound a little harsh, but what he's doing, ruling the walk and picking where and when you stop, isn't good.

Off lead is even worse - if he finds some rubbish he's off and thinks it's a game running away from me with said rubbish in mouth.
Don't let him off leash at all outside. If he does grab something in his mouth while free, spin around and sprint about ten feet away. If he chases you, lean down and excitedly hold out a treat, calling happily. When he comes, say good boy! give him a treat while simultaneousness reaching for his collar to leash him up again. If he doesn't chase you, or does but not close enough, after sprinting away crumple to the ground and stay down. Try hiding your face too if need be. When he runs over to figure out your problem, treat praise and grab his collar. If even that doesn't work, sit down and wail. Nothing disturbs my crew as much as me sobbing, they always come to see what I did lol.

Remember that these will get old after enough times, so give him treats and praise for 2 or 3 minutes after he comes to you, make it a huge thing to come instead of making you chase him. And by 'praise' I don't just mean pets. Would he be happier if you ran a few feet? Throw a ball? ect.

In the house have him drag a leash at all times, if not tethering him to you.

Vet suggested a muzzle as he said it could become a habit - but I'm loath to use one unless I really have to.
Have you thought about a halti? Their not really muzzles, but do give more control over the dogs head.
 

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Hi, we had exactly the same issues with Izzy; our biggest concern was that she was actually swallowing small stones. Our vet said that could be very dangerous and suggested a muzzle - we actually took her to a pet shop to have one fitted, but it looked dreadful on such a tiny pup! We used 'drop it' and 'leave it' training. Very successful in the home but not on our walks. I guess as she grew her head was further from the ground and the environment became more interesting, so she stopped picking up the stones. We fenced off a section of our garden and kept it stone free for her - she also liked feasting on our cat's poo, so we used the fence to separate them. She is 10 months now and never picks up stones, foreign objects etc and now I am working on sheep and bunny poo, which appear to be irresistable!!!!
Good luck, patience and training, consistency is the key - your pup will grow and change and I found the problems keep changing - Izzy now chases pheasants - but it is all very worth it. xx
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thank you so much for all the replies. If nothing else, it makes me feel better to know I'm not alone!
For those that asked - I'm teaching the 'leave it' command while on lead - if he goes for something I restrain with the lead (but not pulling back), keep saying 'leave it' until he comes away and then reward with clicker and treat.
I've heard from friends that nearly all dogs like horse poo and met a 2 year old cockapoo and owners while out on a walk the other day and they said their dog was the same as a pup and grew out of everything but stones. I am going to try some/all of the suggestions above :)
Thanks again for all the replies. I will post a picture of Louis once I figure out how to get this website to accept pictures from i-phones...
Love Vikki and Louis xxx
 

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I've heard from friends that nearly all dogs like horse poo and met a 2 year old cockapoo and owners while out on a walk the other day and they said their dog was the same as a pup and grew out of everything but stones.
Flo used to love eating horse poo and rabbit droppings and also used to pick up stones from the garden and chew them. She stopped doing it over time. She's now 16 months and walks straight past fresh horse muck without so much as a sniff. Persevere and keep up all the training and most things will pass by 12-18 months and you'll then have a perfect dog :D:D:D Well near perfect, they all have their 'funny ways' just like people :D
 

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I will post a picture of Louis once I figure out how to get this website to accept pictures from i-phones...
Love Vikki and Louis xxx
I've got a photo bucket app on my android phone - maybe they do one for iphones? It's so easy to upload onto it. Then I just copy the photobucket IMG link into my post.
 

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I've got a photo bucket app on my android phone - maybe they do one for iphones? It's so easy to upload onto it. Then I just copy the photobucket IMG link into my post.
Hi, I just download from my iPhone to my computer then upload to Photobucket x
 
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