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Discussion Starter #1
I am trying to get Jake to fetch and I am having no luck. I throw the ball, frisbee or stick and he runs gets it and then goes in the other direction with it and lays down and proceeds to chew it. If I walk toward him he runs so I have learned to begin walking away from him so he gets up to follow me and most of the time drops whatever he had in his mouth and then comes to me. I am sure there are some very helpful hints and links to show me what to do and what not to do. Any help would be wonderful as he is not catching on...
 

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I wish I had some advice for you. I can't even get Ava to chase the ball or anything. She has ZERO play drive. She will play tug but that is all. I dont know how to get her to chase the ball, let alone bring it back to me.
 

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My dog didn't know how to do it either, but he learned from watching my other dog. She just naturally chased it and brought it back.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Jake is an only...no others to teach him...so I need to learn how to teach him.
 

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Molly was the same to begin with and all I did was when she buggered off with the ball or frisbee (whatever) I would throw another one so she chases that and so on and so on. In other words have at least 2 balls on hand! Now she will go for the ball and I say "get it" and "bring it back" and when she drops it, I throw the next! She got the hang of it pretty quickly. Not sure if that helps but I think perhaps it is just his age :)
 

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You can try this: put a long line on him and when he has the ball, start backing up, encourage, encourage, encourage, and all the time gently pull him in with the leash. Flexi leash works great for this because as the flexi contracts, it will exert a slight pressure on the dog and pull the dog towards you. When Jake gets to you, take the ball from him (as gently as possible) and AS SOON AS YOU HAVE THE BALL, toss it again. Don't tease him, don't tug, immediately toss it and let him go get it. The idea here is you want to teach him the point of the game is for him to chase and catch the ball, not some possession game between you and him (i.e. tugging). If you tease him with the ball, guess what he is going to do when he has the ball? Yup, tease you with it.

Also remember, with pups, start slow and easy. Don't chuck the ball across a football field and expect him to come back with it. Start with short tosses (4-5 ft) and work up from there.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
well see that's one thing I am doing wrong, i throw it pretty far...how long of a lead?
 

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You can start with your regular 6 ft line in the beginning. Remember, the further the dog is away from you, the less influence you will have of the dog. This is true of all dogs but especially true of puppies. At 2 ft away from you, the dog may sniff and then you call and the pup will go "Oh, mom's calling me" and come back. At 6 ft, the dog might still come back but not as fast. At 10 ft, the dog might just decide "Yea, yea, yea, I hear you. In a minute". Circle of influence. Start with a tiny tiny circle and work out from there.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
ok, going to get a few leads tomorrow, thank you for the great advise. I knew I was missing something and for starters I am allowing him to get to far from me...so I will start there.
 

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stop blaming the dog for not reacting.
maybe it's your training mehtods.

why not find a trainer?

I am trying to get Jake to fetch and I am having no luck. I throw the ball, frisbee or stick and he runs gets it and then goes in the other direction with it and lays down and proceeds to chew it. If I walk toward him he runs so I have learned to begin walking away from him so he gets up to follow me and most of the time drops whatever he had in his mouth and then comes to me. I am sure there are some very helpful hints and links to show me what to do and what not to do. Any help would be wonderful as he is not catching on...
 

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For me, clicker/treat training really helped. Started out with the treats to build up the ball drive a bit...then he just took off.
 

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How old is he?

I know lucy didn't show interest in fetch or chasing balls until she hit around 6 months. It's like a light switch turned on and now she's a nut when it comes to chasing things, but in the beginning, she could care less.
 

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Did you read my post in the thread I linked to about backchaining?

Backchain it - teach him to take the ball and then trade it back for a treat. Then have him hold it a few seconds before giving it up. Once he'll hold the ball in his mouth and give it back to you, try running backwards a couple of steps and calling him to you. Start small, and work your way up. Once he'll take the ball and bring it to you if you run away from him, try rolling it away from you instead. I wouldn't throw it very far at first.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
But how I don't want to chase him with the ball to trade it....I definitely have been throwing it WAY to far. He has no trouble running to items and picking it up...just wanting to bring it back isn't working. Going to try working in much smaller distances...
 

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He has no trouble running to items and picking it up...just wanting to bring it back isn't working. Going to try working in much smaller distances...
That's exactly the kind of situation where working from the end of the behavior rather than the beginning works well. He's got the beginning part down - some dogs won't even run after and pick up a ball, so you're already ahead in that department!

Practice giving him the ball and trading it back for a treat without going anywhere for a while. Then give him the ball and step away from him so he has to come to you to trade it for the treat, working up to being able to run backwards a few steps. THEN try rolling it a few feet away rather than handing it to him, and running backwards. Eventually you'll be able to fade out all the other stuff and just stand there and throw the ball, but he hasn't put all the pieces together yet. Putting him on a long line and reeling him in after he's got the ball is great as long as he doesn't drop the ball somewhere along the way. By teaching him to give you the ball first, before you work on sending him after it, you can prevent that from happening.
 
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