Friday, September 24, 2010

How to Teach a Dog to Fetch a Ball

Fetch is a simple command which you can easily teach your puppy in order to play with them and strengthen the bond between pet owner and pet. A simple way of teaching your dog to fetch a ball is by using two balls in a bait and switch routine. Make sure that you select balls that are identical and which your dog enjoys playing with. Begin by leashing your dog then hiding one of the balls on you, and throwing the other one a short distance away after showing it to the dog. Thereafter, unleash the dog and say “fetch” in order to have them chase the ball and pick it up. When they begin to chase after the ball, reveal the hidden one and show it to them.

Ideally, your dog will drop the ball it was chasing and come after the one you had hidden. When they come to you, leash them again then throw away the second ball and say “fetch”. Then release them to chase after the second ball. While they are chasing, run and pick up the first ball and repeat this process a couple of times, always remembering to use the fetch command. If your dog is not particularly motivated by balls, you could use an incentive such as a display of meat or another treat when they properly obey your instructions.
Alternatively, use the force retrieve method which involves throwing the ball a short distance away while manually walking your dog to the ball and waiting for them to pick it up. When they do, be sure to reward them generously. You could also have someone else walk the dog out to pick up the ball, and then walk them back to you when they have picked it up. Thereafter, you should also reward them well for succeeding in retrieving the ball.

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