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    Teaching a Puppy to Fetch a Toy | Dogs and Puppies

    Articledog training guidesWednesday 18 May 2011

    One of the first ambitions of any dog owner is to train a dog to fetch a toy. Many dog owners have an idyllic vision of strolling in warm sunshine around a park throwing a ball, stick or toy – and this dream can be realised, provided you’re prepared to put the necessary training in. Learn more about fetch training techniques in the guide below.

    Training a Dog to Fetch - The Essential Guide


    • First, of all, you have to prove to the puppy that fetch is a worthwhile pursuit; an activity out of which he can gain much enjoyment. Some puppies will instantly react to the game of fetch, while others may require a little more coaxing.

    • To pique a apathetic puppy’s interest in fetch, show him exactly what he’s missing. Throw the toy and chase after it. If the puppy refuses to join you in the run, pick up the toy and play with it, watching for the puppy’s reactions at all times. Wait for the puppy to come to you and investigate this toy – the more you attempt this ploy, the more likely the puppy will begin to express an interest in the game of fetch.

    • As with any other training technique, offer up a treat the first time the puppy joins in the fun – nothing works better as a sweetener to play fetch than a little reward for compliant behaviour.

    • Don’t let up. The true test of whether the dog has learnt the art of fetch is to try the process all over again. As soon as the dog returns with the toy for the first time, throw it again. If anything, it’s also an excellent method of exercise and a means of tiring a hyperactive puppy out before you return home.

    • Finally, it’s essential to master the ‘Drop’ command. This can be even trickier than getting a puppy to fetch a toy. Make sure the puppy learns the importance of releasing the toy by repeating the ‘drop’ command regularly in the early stages of training – the puppy may take tme to respond, but practice makes perfect.

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