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Thread: Fetch the ball!

  1. #1

    Red face Fetch the ball!

    So my 4month pup has decided now he wont bring the ball back.
    up til two weeks ago he always brought it back to me. He loves playing fetch with the ball!

    However in the last two weeks he has gotten a bit cheeky/naughty across the board (wondering if hes going through the dog equivalent of his rebellious teenage phase?).
    But now he runs back half way towards me and then proceeds to prance around like a show pony showing off how clever he is and when i try approach him to retrieve the ball he thinks its a game and runs off like a brat! a very cute brat!

    I tried turning my back and ignoring him - so not to play his game and encourage this - thinking after awhile he might give up the show pony prancing and bring ball back for me to throw but this hasn't worked.

    Any advice on how to get him to bring ball back to me so we can keep playing??


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2009


    Lol Chumps

    You gotta think about what joy the dog is getting out of this new game.

    Every puppy loves the game of "chase me" and you have to be really careful if you want recall and fetch - how you play that game.

    You can get a chuckit ball which has a webbing handle through it which will allow you to tie a bit of rope to the ball - which makes the game of keep away harder to play.

    You can also redress the balance in the joy of coming back to you... treats. Randomly or "average or better". Ie if puppy rockets back to you in a straight line with the ball - he gets a treat. If he stops to sniff or takes a weaving path or goes slowly - no treat.

    And pay attention to his threshold - ie how many throws do you get in before he loses it and does victory laps? Do one less throw and change the game.

    Also with a four month old bull dog - you probably don't need to play for longer than 15 to 20 minutes - may be less for a bull dog - in one session.

    So with my dog - I think she will fetch maybe 5 to 10 short throws and then she decides to chew the ball up... chuckits cope quite well with this but I end the game if that happens. I try to end the game before the chewing starts, and while she still wants more. So she doesn't associate the ball with chew toy, it's only for fetching...

    It's a tricky balance - ending a game while the dog still wants more. You can get a demanding dog that way, but you also get one that is keen to work with you when you want to train.

    Something different you can do that is not quite so taxing on the joints - would be to teach dog to skate board... very good for body awareness and co-ordination... first you need to hold the skate board steady and reward dog for checking it out...

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2012


    I have a ball that is 'mine'. When Maggie did this as a pup I would pick up the ball and finish the game. Took a while but she learned if she wanted me to throw it she had better bring it back.
    Another option when the pup does that it is to stop that game and start another with a non throwing toy.
    Food driven pups may just come back for a treat. Didn't work with mine but she was more interested in the ball than food.
    Do be a bit careful though as sometimes they start that because they are getting a bit tired and it may be a signal to change games to something less full on.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2015


    My dog has this problem he used to not bring back the ball I used encouragement in the form of treats and lots of praise when he bought the ball back. I keep this up until he was reliable in bringing it back. He still has problems sometimes releasing the ball around other dogs and tries to play keepings off but we ignore that and his reward for good behaviour we throw ball and praise.
    Word of advice don't play or start playing tug with the ball in dogs mouth it causes aggressive behaviour and will encourage him not to drop the ball or give up the ball easily, it also prevents dogs teeth biting down on your hands

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