Playing fetch, (teach your dog to fetch) has been a game that dogs have enjoyed for centuries. The simplicity of the game makes it easy to teach your dog how to play, plus it is an excellent way to exercise your pup!
Not only will you be teaching them this fun new trick, but they will also get some much-needed exercise after sitting around all day at home. In this article, I am going to share with you my tips on how to teach your dog to fetch. Let’s get started!
Why Teach Your Dog to Fetch?
If you’ve ever been around a dog, then you probably know that they love to chase after any object or toy that is moving. This happens because most mammals have the natural instinct to chase down prey and once your dog figures out that there is nothing to catch in this case, it will try again and again until it catches on.
It’s also great because they will have the extra energy out of them after playing this fun new activity. When teaching your dog to fetch, it is very important to make sure that they know what you want them to do before starting the activity. If not, then you’ll just be throwing toys for no reason at all and there won’t really be any point in doing it.
How to Teach Your Dog to Fetch
The first thing you need to have before teaching your dog to fetch is a toy that can be thrown, and something that they like such as rawhide bones or treats, whatever works best for them. Your dog needs to know which one it’s going after so make sure they’re easily distinguishable from each other.
Initially, you want to show your dog the object that you are going to throw for them so they can get used to seeing it being thrown in front of them or near them at any time. Start by tossing it around while their head is turned or even behind their back, so they have no idea where it’s coming from until later on when they realize that this is normal
Once they do realize that it’s not going to hurt them, start throwing the object closer and closer to your dog so they can see you throw it. If you have a smaller area, such as a fenced-in backyard they’ll be comfortable being confined in, then try throwing the object straight up and down right by their side at first until they understand what is going on and continue from there.
You may also want to give them a command for fetch at this point so if you’re throwing an item over their head like say with a Frisbee, you would tell them “Fetch” when you are tossing it over top of them while pointing at the same time. At first, it will most likely just be luck getting them to actually go after it, but they will eventually figure out what you want them to do.
Once this happens, then you can try throwing the object further away from you and make sure that they go after it before rewarding them for doing so. As your dog learns how to fetch, experiment with different objects such as tennis balls or even an old sock if that’s easier for them to get a hold of at first.
Put the Object on the Ground Near You and Say “Fetch!”
Once your dog looks at the object in confusion, pick up the object and show them again by tossing it out in front of them. Keep trying this process over and over again until they catch on eventually!
Once your dog catches on to how to fetch then you can start using different objects like stuffed animals or even a shoe if they are struggling to understand what is being thrown very well.
If they are having trouble catching onto the idea that when you say “fetch,” they should go get whatever object you just threw, try putting it back into their paws so they can understand what exactly you want from them. Or even holding their paw out while saying “fetch” as if expecting them to drop it in your hand.
If they start to catch onto the idea of fetching and dropping an object, then you can try again with holding out a different object.
If you find that your dog is not responding or getting frustrated, do not yell “no!” or hit them because this will just make them afraid of you instead of listening to what you’re saying and acting upon it. And even if he does understand fetching objects off the ground but doesn’t know how to bring it back yet, don’t worry!
Do some more training exercises such as having him drop it from his mouth every time so he’ll get used to the idea of doing so when needed while at the same time also teaching him where exactly he needs to drop it.
When Your Dog Gets Close to Fetching, Praise Them or Give Them Another Treat
Whenever your dog follows your command, give him a treat or praise to further encourage them to continue in this line of thinking. And once they start dropping the object in your hand, again reward them for doing so by giving them another treat or praising them again.
And that’s how to teach your dog to fetch! Once more advanced methods are introduced into the mix of what you’re teaching them, such as spin or even overhead throws with a Frisbee, you then have to continue building upon their skills so they can handle each new technique thrown at them!
Repeat This Process of Fetching
You will most likely have difficulty getting them to understand at first so don’t get discouraged and try again later that day or even next week if need be.
Put the object on the ground near you, say “fetch,” then ask your dog to fetch by giving him the command again. Once your dog looks at the object in confusion, pick up the object and show them again by tossing it out in front of them. Keep trying this process over and over again until they catch on eventually!
If they are having trouble catching onto the idea that when you say “fetch,” they should go get whatever object you just threw, try putting it back into their paws so they can understand what exactly you want from them. Or even holding their paw out while saying “fetch” as if expecting them to drop it in your hand. If they start to catch onto the idea of fetching and dropping an object, then you can try again with holding out a different object.
Teach your dog to fetch – Final Word:
Teaching your dog to fetch is a great way to keep them entertained and increase their intelligence. If you have any questions or need help teaching your pup, let us know! We’ll be happy to provide you with more resources to keep your dog happy, healthy, and active!