Emily Anderson has trained her cocker spaniel, Leo, how to perform CPR, as incredible footage shows the pooch pounding on a dummy’s chest and checking whether it’s ‘breathing’
A woman has taught her dog how to perform CPR – being taught to jump on a dummy’s chest and even check for its ‘breathing’.
Dog trainer Emily Anderson, 30, taught her cocker spaniel, Leo, the life-saving move for an international dog trick contest, which he has now won six times.
Impressive footage shows Leo carrying a miniature first aid box in his mouth before laying it gently next to a prone mannequin.
Emily then says ‘nose’ prompting the two-year-old to put his own head to the dummy’s lips and check whether it’s ‘breathing’.
Leo then jumps off his front paws and onto the doll’s chest five times before going back to their nose and then repeating the routine a second time.
Emily, from Aberdeen, said: “Leo learned CPR as part of a task called paw tricks for the International Trick Dog Competition. He has won the Champions League six times in a row.
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“He jumps up and down when I say ‘up’ and checks for the breathing when I say ‘nose’. I taught him to check for breath using a target stick on the mouth of the dummy until he learned where he needed to keep his I do not know.
“Leo weighs 17kg which is a bit too heavy to have him jumping on me.
“Every day he totally amazes me. He’s a real dog in a million, I’ll never have another Leo.
I read “constantly surprises” Emily at how quickly he learns tricks, and even some she doesn’t even think are possible, he masters in just 20 minutes.
“I’ve been training him ever since I brought him home at eight weeks,” she said. “I already had his half-sister Phoebe so I actually met him when he was three days old.”
The footage of Leo performing the CPR has been viewed more than 38,000 times on social media and has received thousands of comments from people who were stunned by how clever he is.
One person said: “So clever. My spaniel would be running off with the first aid kit refusing to let go.”
Another wrote: “That would definitely bring me round. Dogs are so much cleverer than us.”
A third commented: “OMG. You training him to do this is nothing short of a miracle.”
Emily teaches Leo a new trick every week and builds them up methodically by making them slightly more difficult.
Emily said: “For stacking the rings I started by teaching him to hold objects in his mouth, then dropping them into a washing basket.
“Gradually his target became smaller and eventually I got him to drop the rings onto the stack while I was holding it. It took about a month in total from start to end.
“Some of them are using similar skills but using them on different objects. Leo is so incredibly happy when he’s training.
“He’ll fall asleep watching TV afterwards but ends up waking himself up by wagging his tail so much.
“Phoebe will do tricks for treats but she isn’t as keen to do the brain games as much, she prefers weaving through targets.”
Emily ramped up Leo’s training after he almost died in March 2020 when he contracted a parasite called giardia.
Emily said: “I thought he was just sleeping under my desk one afternoon at work but when it came for me to leave, he just didn’t stand up.
“Leo had gone into shock so I rushed him into the emergency vet. They thought it was Lyme disease initially but a few days later it came back as giardia.
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“It shouldn’t make dogs that ill but Leo had taken it badly and it sent him into shock. It was a horrible few days.
“Incredibly he recovered physically after only a few days but it really affected him mentally and made him very anxious.
“We started to get back to normal and then we went into lockdown. So from nowhere, we were at home all of the time and he was just really sad.
“He wasn’t like the happy dog he was before and I knew I had to do something to help him out of his slump.
“I knew he’d always enjoyed his training so I decided to focus on doing a bit more of that with him and that’s how the tricks started.”
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George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.