Teaching a Dog to Fetch

Train Your Dog To Fetch!

How to teach your dog a "Fetch" command so that he or she brings you a thrown stick or other object with great joy? "Fetch" command will become a favorite dog command if the owner is able to get the pet interested in fetching. Even those dogs that have absolutely no interest in thrown sticks will be willing to bring the owner anything. The “Fetch” command is not useless. It is very important to teach the dog to perform it. What for?
Walking. Dogs need to walk as much as possible. Most breeds are very active and love to play. By getting rid of energy excess, it will be easier to train a dog, because it will be much quieter and more obedient at home, and will fully develop physically. The latter is especially important for owners of serious dog breeds.
Teaching to search the area. Not the most needed command. You can easily do without it, but for the overall development, you only win if you teach your dog this rather simple command. It is possible to teach a pet to search without a "Fetch", but with it, nevertheless, it becomes a lot easier.

How to teach a puppy to fetch

Begin teaching the command even if your puppy is one month-old. All training will be in a form of a game, and only since 5 months age you may make the puppy bring you an object, sit by your left leg and hold it as long as necessary.
You can teach an animal to perform the “Fetch” command only in a form of a game. That is a puppy or a dog will bring the thing you threw, and give them by a command "give". Further complicating the command is not necessary. Of course, obedience training will benefit as a whole, but the strict implementation of "Fetch" command is not so important. There is no need to teach the animal to bypass the handler behind his back and sit down without instructions by his left leg, keeping the object as long as the owner wants, if you are not planning to take part in professional dog sport competitions, of course.

Dog Obedience Training
So let's not waste time and move on to the process of training the command in games. That is, the dog will bring anything you want, but you'll use it only to play. Want to teach the animal a complicated “Fetch”? You can do it easily over time, as you will already have the base, the foundation for further learning.
Kindle an interest. The problem is that there is only one way to teach your dog to bring objects. It should be interested in that very object that it needs to bring. Take a favorite toy, buy an inexpensive soft puller or take a stick. During a free outing do everything possible to make the dog grab the object by its mouth. If a pet is passive and not interested, then you are either playing on an unfamiliar terrain, or you're a bad actor.
Those who know the best how to play with the puppies are children. They almost dance around it, luring the puppy's attention with all their toys. When surrounded by such an activity, even inside the laziest creature playfulness awakens.
You can throw a stick on the floor and start kicking it with your legs. Surely a puppy will be interested and will run for a stick. As soon as it grabs the stick, take the other end of it and “fight” a little. You can simply take a toy and play with the puppy. Once he grabs it - start playing the same game. Every owner knows how to play his dog out. If you do not know - try to spend more time with the animal and to play more.

Small Dog Fetching
The dog needs to awake an excitement, a desire to pick up the stick. Then it would rather give up food than the pleasure to play with its owner.
When the dog fights with you for a stick, repeat from time to time (every 10 seconds, several times): "Fetch, fetch, good." Praise it only at the moment when it is holding a stick with its full mouth and fights for it with you. You read that right, now you are just playing tug and saying the dog from time to time: "Fetch, fetch, good." You can stroke the dog simultaneously by your free hand on the side as a sign of encouragement. To pick up the object give the command "Give". After holding the object for a few seconds continue the game and, after 5 minutes, take the object away again saying "give".
Your goal is to develop passion for the game. The dog needs to know that if it brings the stick (or any other item) to its owner, then it can have fun. Therefore, to start with, play with it for a long time to develop interest. He'll bring you objects later. 

Malinois Fetching
Teaching to bring. Attach a leash to the collar of an animal, and take its end. Then take a favorite toy or other item and throw it 1-1.5 meters (do not rush to throw more). When the dog runs after it and grabs - tell the command "Fetch" once (not more), tighten the leash to yourself and make 2-3 steps back. The puppy will run to you with the object in his mouth - then grab the other side of it and start playing, repeating: "Fetch, fetch, good." Play as much as you want, but not less than 3-5 minutes.
If you threw an object, and the pet does not even want to run to it, then you must first arouse interest toward the object. The next several outings just play, repeating: "Fetch, fetch, good." If you do not make the doggy play - it will not work.
Perhaps the animal rushes to the thrown object, but just stands beside it? Then run up and kick a little the stick, thus "animating it." Kick the object until the doggy grabs it by its mouth. As soon as he grabs it, play with him.
Later, when you throw a stick, the dog will run after it and grab with its jaws. Then it's time to say "Fetch", pull it by the leash and, after it approaches, start actively playing and praising. After 5 minutes, take away the stick at a command "give". Again, throw it and make the dog approach, pulling the leash. If you see that the dog loses interest specifically to the fetching of the object - do not worry, do a "Fetch" the next day.
Thus, we offer a dog some game if it comes to us. It soon realizes that it is more profitable to bring things to the owner, because this is the only way to play with him. Other methods will be inefficient and the dog will be happy to play with you in exchange for an object brought.
Off leash. Now throw the stick on small distances (1-2 meters), but without a leash. Push the dog to fetch it. Does not work? Then you need to work more on a leash. Obtain the result when the object is brought to you, and then complicate the process.
Throw on longer distances. When the dog brings toys or something off a leash for a short distance in exchange for the game with the owner, it's time to throw further. Even if first you work on a long leash, increase the length of the throw. You'll have to play and throw a lot and for the dog always to bring you objects. Your goal is to throw the object at least 5 meters and get it brought back, instead offering the dog all the same a game. Take the object away saying "give" after a few minutes.

Fetching for Small Dogs
Summing up. Play with your dog every time it fetches the object. Do not run after the distances and start with small: just throw an object and use a leash. Then stop using the leash and gradually increase a throwing distance. The main thing is not how far you throw, but how well the dog brings it back to you at your command.
Only in the beginning, to work out the command, you need to play every time for the object fetching. When the animal is good in bringing things and performing the command "give", then you may not play immediately after the dog approaches you, but to take an object away, saying "give". Remember that if the dog brings things badly at a command, you need to work more with this very command.

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