May I Please Have That?

Must always start with both hands behind the back.

How to teach May I Please Have That.

  • Step 1: Toy in one hand, treats in the other behind back- Hold your dog's favourite toy in one hand and in a closed fist in the other hand, some treats. Place both hands behind your hand. 

  • Step 2: Present toy from behind back - Facing your dog, bring the toy out from behind you back in line with your hip bone (the side the toy is being held on). Hold it directly out for your dog to get with their mouth but do not let it go when your dog bites onto the toy. Continue to hold onto the toy and tug with them. Each repetition play with them with the toy for different amounts of time.

  • Step 3: Present treats from behind back - As your dog is tugging the toy, bring your closed fist with the treats out from behind your back in line with your other hip bone (the side the treats are being held on). Hold your arm steady there and pause tugging the toy with your other arm but do not let the toy go. Wait for your dog to get a whiff of the treats. The moment your dog releases the toy from their mouth to move towards the treats, bridge and when they get to your closed fist with the treats, open it up for them to eat. As they are eating remove the toy and hide behind your back again. After they have eaten a couple of the treats, remove the rest in your hand and put behind your back to reset and start again (refer to note below about swapping which hand holds what). 

    *Note: Always swap up which hand holds the toy and which hand holds the treats. Don't consistently alternate from left to right but make it random. 

  • Step 4: Nose boop fist - Repeat step 3 but when your dog releases the toy to go to your fist with the treats, wait for them to boop your closed fist with their nose before your bridge your dog. Bridge the boop and open your fist for your dog to eat. 

  • Step 5: Pair verbal command - When your dog is in the action of automatically releasing the toy from their mouth to go to your fist with the treats, pair the cue "give/ta/drop" (you can use whatever verbal cue you would like as long as you are consistent with it). Bridge when your dog releases the toy from their mouth which should be right after you say your release verbal cue but wait for them to go to your closed fist inline with your other hip bone and boop before they get the treats. Do not bring the treat to them. 

  • Step 6: No treats in closed fist - Repeat the process of presenting toy from behind back, tugging, presenting closed fist behind back but for this step DO NOT have any treats in your closed fist when you bring it out from behind your back. Say your cue "give/ta/drop as you are in the action from bringing out your empty fist and bridge the moment your dog drops their toy and nose boops your fist. Retrieve lots of yummy treats from your pocket and feed to your dog.

    *Note: When you are up to this step, swap up the items your dog is given first to hold onto before before you ask them to "give/ta/drop". Use things like chews, socks, clothes, bones, etc to help your dog generalise that it is not only off their toys. 

  • Step 7: Give your dog something to have and approach - When your dog is really good at releasing the item from their mouth the moment they see your fist appear and the cue said, start to actually give them a chew, item or toy to have (rather then you holding onto it). Approach your dog with an arm hiding behind your back, when you get to just in front of them, bring out your closed fist and say your cue. Bridge when they release the item to come to your fist. Go and get lots of really yummy, scrumptious treats for your dog to eat. Generalise it to outside the home.