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Thread: Bring Toy Back and Put into My Hand

  1. #1

    Default Bring Toy Back and Put into My Hand

    My BC loves to play fetch. The problem is he will drop the toy on the ground. I would like him to give it to me so I don't have to get up!
    For some reason I cannot think how I can teach him to do this. He drops the toy on the ground and keeps picking it up and dropping it but he has never put it in my hand so I have not had an opportunity to reward him.
    Thanks in advance


  2. #2


    Does he know targetting?

    Do you use a clicker?

    What other training do you do?

    I only ask because I don't want to dumb things down too much, so trying to guage how involved in training you are

  3. #3


    What Angela said but also how long have you been rewarding him by getting up and doing it ? As in thats actually what you are doing if you do indeed get up everytime to throw the toy , you are just teaching him that its the right way to do it.

    I know that with Tonk I need to still ignore him at times until he drops it on my lap or offers it to my hand,then and only then do I throw it ( having a dripping wet soggy ball dropped on your lap isn't the most pleasant experience )
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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Western Sydney


    ignore him at times until he drops it on my lap or offers it to my hand,then and only then do I throw it

    No return-No game! You can enforce the good retrieving behaviour using a clicker followed by good reward or treats. I also think BCs get more excited when the owner stands up and encourages the dog to bring it back with various signals etc.
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  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Southern NSW


    I teach a dog to hold first from my hand....I use clicker training. And I say thank you and the dog gives me the item, this is all trained with the clicker and reward. Not until this is perfect do i shape /capture the retrieve.
    The retrieve and return come really quickly after that.
    In my Water Training it is very important that the dogs hold until I take the object from them.
    My dogs will now even shake and hold the bumper until I take it.

    It all takes time and we slowly increase the holding time and on to the release in my hand.

    I did do some assistance training with one dog and taught that dog to deliver the item into someones lap. Again using clicker/reward

    Here is a site with some really good teaching videos
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  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2009


    I had one dog I could say "can't reach" to, and she'd bring it close to the point she'd dump soggy slobbery tennis ball in my lap - takes the fun out of being in a hammock I tell you.

    But the dog I have now - doesn't get it. I think I'd have to reduce the distractions a lot like give her not much other choice or opportunity to do other things. the back yard has too many opportunities for fun elsewhere if I won't do what she wants...

    PS she has figured out for herself if she dumps the squirrel dude in my lap there is a good chance I will put more food in it. Sometimes i put it in the cupboard but sometimes I give her more food.

  7. #7


    Thanks for your replies. I just use food treats for training, don't have a clicker.
    I think he is one of those ones that doesn't get it. I can't seem to think of a way to get the toy in his mouth because as soon as I pick it up he is off in anticipation. Maybe I should try pick it up then 'stay' and then try from there. I can ignore him but it as Hyacinth said after a while he goes off to something else.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2009


    This is a link to an insanely detailed break down of the retrieve to your hand - ie if you wanted to compete high level obedience this would be how you'd do it with a dog that "doesn't get it".

    Keepers - Shirley's Retieve

    You can use a short sharp word like "yes" instead of a clicker. You can also use a small flash light like those ones that attach to a keyring. So you make your mark (Say "yes" or flash the light), and then you give the dog a treat, and then count to three, and repeat... about five times to charge up your marker word or clicker if you have one ie so the dog knows when you do this, the dog has earned a treat.

    You could try being really mean to the dog. ie if dog doesn't bring the toy close enough just don't get up. Or if you have to get up, put the toy away. Or only get up if the dog brings the toy a little bit closer than usual (ie reward average or better performance).

    Most dogs will bring the toy a little bit closer if they think you haven't noticed. So try not-noticing until the toy is a little bit closer, and do that until the toy is a lot closer...

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    melbourne australia


    I found a tip for this in Deilde's Training in Drive book.
    Use of oppositional force. Try pushing your dog away from you by the ball in its mouth, the dog will 'oppose' the force and push the ball into you.
    Try that.

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