Leave it is a lot of fun to ‘play’ with your puppy AND you’re teaching an important behavior that will no doubt come in handy. Start off by just using a few pieces of your puppy’s kibble or favorite treat. Get their attention, let them know you have something they want, and place it on the floor with your hand over it. When your puppy goes to try and sniff, lick, push, or dig their way to the treat use the ‘leave it’ command until they turn their attention to you.
‘Reward with a treat from the other hand! Once your puppy is doing well with this, stop dropping treats from a standing position. If you’ve ever scrambled to find a pill you’ve dropped in the floor before your dog can find it, you’ll understand why this comes in handy!
Build your puppy’s impulse control by placing the treats in a circle around him. Put them on her paws. Lay them in a path and walk through. Use other items they have a liking to: socks, shoes, kids toys, rocks, sticks….There’s a lot of fun variations to the leave it command. And once your puppy ‘gets it’, you will have a greater peace of mind.