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Took my boy to the big, woodsy dog park nearby a little while ago. Took him to the back area where there is a big lake so he could stay cool while getting exercise.
Was doing his normal 'swim & splash, while trying to catch the water he splashes upwards' game.

A guy there had thrown in a ball at some point for his dog, but it wouldn't go out far enough to get it. The other dogs were too busy running around & playing, barely going into the water. The guy came over to me and asked, "do you think your dog would get a ball out of the water? He seems to have no issue with swimming." "Well, he'll retrieve in the water, but it kind of really helps if he sees it get thrown out, but I suppose we can try."
I called him to shore, as he was half way across the lake; he swam back like a little crocodile. Instructed him to follow me. Sat him down to be lined up with the ball. I pointed out towards the ball and told him to go get it (while wondering if he has any idea what I'm actually pointing to, as there are sticks floating nearby & along the way to the ball). He went in and started swimming out.
It felt like everyone was watching, as I heard someone a bit behind us say, "no wayyyy" as if in disbelief. He grabbed the ball, spun, swam back, dropped the ball onto dry land, and sat next to it with a look of, "task complete. Awaiting further instructions."

Picked it up and handed it to the guy. "That's awesome!" He excitedly thanked me and said to his dog, "now that's a real dog!"

Lots of compliments today on his behavior & how well he listens, too. Almost 15 months old now and it's been feeling like the last month or two he's been really dialed in.
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