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Old 12-31-2013, 04:32 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Problem teaching 'Fetch'

My pup is now 5 months old and her training has been doing really well. The other day I decided to start teaching her fetch but have been having some problems teaching her the concept.

When I throw a toy she will run to it, grab it and run back to me. Then just before she reaches she swerves to the side and starts playing/chewing the toy.
The next time I tried I got the treats out and when she came to me with the toy I quickly grabbed her attention and in return for the toy I gave her gave her the treat.

When I through the toy again she ran to it but didn't grab it. Instead she just ran back to me and sat there expecting a treat. I've tried a million times but she just keeps doing that.

What am I doing wrong and what can I do to teach her fetch properly.
Should I teach her drop first or use a lead. Thanks
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Old 12-31-2013, 07:35 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Use two balls.

How to teach fetch?
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Last edited by Sunflowers; 12-31-2013 at 07:39 AM.
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Old 12-31-2013, 08:22 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Can I suggest you look into "clicker " training
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Old 12-31-2013, 08:31 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Sounds like your timing with the treat may have been off "marking" the behavior. Try playing using very short distances, even in your living room to start. Treat immediately after the pup returns the ball/toy successfully.
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Old 12-31-2013, 10:14 AM   #5 (permalink)
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My boy Dude has so little toy drive but I recently taught him fetch shaping the behavior with a clicker.
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Old 12-31-2013, 10:22 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunflowers View Post
Use two balls.

How to teach fetch?

^ This! Using two balls and keep the game fast paced and short for a while. By using two balls and throwing past you every time making the dog run past you, keeps you at the center of the game.
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Old 12-31-2013, 10:26 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Some dogs don't get the "fetch" game until they're older. My boy didn't fetch properly until he was about 8 months old. It's transitioning from chewing being the fun part, to chasing being the fun part, and realizing that if they give the toy back, you're going to throw it again.

For a while I was worried he wouldn't know how to fetch, and then one day he just did it. Now, I can throw things anywhere (large field, Lake Michigan) and he'll go out and bring it back. No "formal" training necessary.
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Old 12-31-2013, 05:35 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Two balls works, I've also kept some treats in my pocket and traded for that.
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Old 12-31-2013, 07:54 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Thanks so much. I will definitely try the two balls and clicker training.
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Old 12-31-2013, 08:11 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Sounds like your timing with the treat may have been off "marking" the behavior. Try playing using very short distances, even in your living room to start. Treat immediately after the pup returns the ball/toy successfully.
That is what you should do, don't make things more complicated with additional tools, make it simpler. Stop using food treats, just ruffle her neck.
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