Step 3: Test your cue

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Next, test your cue in a low distraction environment. When your dog least expects it, say “Watch out” and point with your finger. Does your dog respond by looking at where you are pointing or by getting up and moving? If so, fantastic! Throw a treat party where you were pointing and tell your dog how brilliant they are. Now you can practice by saying “Watch out, pointing, and THEN grabbing the food to toss, thereby reducing your dog’s dependence on the treats.

However, if you get no response to your “Watch out,” it just means that you need to work more on conditioning the word. Redo Steps 1 and 2 before re-attempting Step 3.