Just Drop It!
One of the first things I teach my dogs is the "drop it!" command. Divot, ever eager to please, caught on easily, but on the other hand, even though he is a highly intelligent dogs, Nigel never seemed to connect the dots with this particular command. Perhaps it was not a question of catching on, but more that he really didn't want to. Maybe he figured that he had worked hard for whatever it was that he picked up, and trading it in was not part of his plan. Several weeks ago, however, the importance of obeying this command became very real when I had to struggle to remove part of a golf tee from Nigel's mouth.
Over the years, I have removed things from his mouth that are gross, such as discarded gum, and once I wrestled him for a decomposing toad (a match I unfortunately lost much to my dismay as the toad went through the digestive process), but the pointed end of a golf tee is truly dangerous.
After the golf tee incident, I decided that the "drop it" command was our priority.