How to teach your dog to hold an object

The possibilities are endless once your dog has learnt this trick, you can even get them to bring you the morning paper.


  1. Present the dumbbell to your dog and ask them to ‘PICK IT UP’.
  2. Say ‘GOOD’ and reward them when they touch it or put it in their mouth.
  3. Repeat this a few times.
  4. Once they master this, increase the time they hold the dumbbell.
  5. When your dog picks it up, say ‘HOLD’.
  6. Don’t reward your dog when they push or chew the dumbbell.
  7. Start supporting less when they hold it correctly.
  8. Your dog will eventually hold the dumbbell on their own. Reward them straight away, when they do this.
  9. Build up the time your dog holds it by waiting a few seconds before rewarding them.
  10. Always use the same object whilst training this.

Superstar Dogs by Julie Tottman, Out now, why not get your own? Published by Seven Dials, RRP £9.99.

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