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  • Writer's pictureKristina Riggs

Teach Fetch!

This weekend it was funny to show my husband that my dog plays fetch; in the house! She is an older girl and I guess he figured we just sat around and watched HULU all night or something. While I do enjoy my TV shows, I love playing with Beatty even more. So, I just want to jot down a few ideas that some are not aware of when teaching, or trying to teach their furry friend, about fetch. You do not want to just toss a ball or toy and have your pal sit there and look back and forth between you and it. Because in their mind they are wondering why you did that and when you are going to go it!


Now, this is important to know. What does your dog like; or what will they like? You may have no idea! This is especially true if your furry friend is a rescue. Rescue dogs are often more reluctant and unsure of what they are allowed to like. This is not your fault, and it is not their fault either. It can simply be the environment that they were once in.

You will need toys; toys that they like. Whether it is balls or plush toys; some dogs prefer one over the other. There are even toys that have snack pouches attached to them to entice your pups even more. Make certain you do not get toys that are too big or to heavy for them to carry. If your pups are uncomfortable; it is game over!


The next important thing to consider is the treat! I say this is important for a few reasons; you do not want a treat to upset their tummy and you do not want one that is too big. An ideal treat for teaching is a small bit of a highly favored treat they enjoy. For puppies, many people simply use their own kibble. This gets the dog interested in their food source and helps keep them nourished at the same time. Whichever you are both comfortable with is appropriate. Just ensure it is not big pieces that will be too much for them at one time.


When you notice your pup showing interest in the same toy on a regular basis, you know which toy to use for fetch. Start slow and it may benefit you to even sit on the floor with your dog. Toss the toy a very short distance, still within your arms reach. And use the same command each single time you instruct your dog to retrieve the toy. I say, ‘go get it’ when Beatty and I are playing. As soon as your dog connects with that toy; it is success! Pup gets a treat, and you get the toy and do it again. Moving in the right direction; this might take some time. Days or weeks even. Go slow with them and there really is no reason to rush the process.

Once pup makes contact and brings it back to you the party begins! You can start putting more and more distance between you and the toy. You can get up off the floor and sit in a chair. Or you can dump the chair all together and stand! Just do not go to fast and overwhelm the pup. This can happen more often than you may think. Dogs are such people pleasing animals they really feel it when they think they have failed you.


Just remember that like with anything involving training; patience is essential. Scolding them or pointing fingers at them will not help the process at all. It will only make it worse. The thing is to always remember that they love you no matter what; so, return that love. Regardless of whether they ever learn to fetch or not. Just continue to love and it will be returned.

Thanks For Reading!


#KristinaWrites #fetch #dogtoy

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