She is really doing well after finally being diagnosed with clostridium (found by a stool swab and treated with metronidazole) and now I am worried again. The only place she is allowed off leash is in the fenced acre behind my house and she still managed to eat something bad. As soon as she picked it up I recognized it was part of a Downey Woodpecker--I think a wing--and she swallowed it as I was prying her mouth open. I am worried about any diseases or parasites birds may carry. I do feed the birds but the feerers are a distance outside the fence. I'll bet a hawk got the woodpecker and the wing fell off. I would love to obedience train Mardi to include dropping something on command but I doubt I will ever be able to get her to drop anything she thinks is food. Even though she is eating regularly now she continues to inhale all food. She must have gone very hungry for a long time.
My Maxx is food obsessed but he will leave anything on command. I have had him since he was almost 9 weeks old and contrary to his belief he had never been hungry. He may not be very happy about the idea but you can give him any food/toy item and take it away at any time. It just took lots of patience and practice. I am assuming Mardi came from a rescue but you can still work with her. Try working with her least valued thing and move up from that point. I would not give up on this command, you never know when it could save her life!
Maxx & Emma Jean
Ozzy - 10/16/02 - 06/28/11 - Always in my heart.
Sometimes the hardest part isn't letting go - but learning to start over.
She is a bird dog. My last two went a step further and gobbled up spilled bird seed. It's so nice not to have to fence the bird feeders off with Oban.
I doubt one bird wing is going to adversely affect Mardi but if she is sensitive to some things just watch her for signs. I would guess the most immediate concern might have been choking as the wing went down the gullet. Downey wings are not big though. Not like Hairies or, heavens, Piliated.
I too have trained LEAVE IT, DROP IT and GIVE. Yuck, sometimes I don't want it given.