from Christina Hunger, Speech Pathologist and the woman who taught Stella to ‘talk’:::
As you introduce new vocabulary to your dog, teach contrasting words together.
It’s easiest to teach a word when you have something to compare it to. This helps differentiate word meanings! Here are some examples of pairs of words to teach together:
Outside & inside
Happy & mad
All done & more
Yes & no
Your name & your dog’s name
On & off
Now & later
Ball & Toy
Come & go or come & stay
Example 1: When you’re playing with your dog, you can model “more” each time you throw a ball or toy for them. When you stop throwing the ball or toy, you can model “all done.” The meanings of “more” and “all done” become clearer with each other’s point of reference.
Example 2: Every time you come over to your dog, you can model “come.” When you leave the room or walk away, you can model “go.” The meanings of the actions are more defined when you have the opposite action to compare it to.