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Teach Dog to Fetch - Dog Trick

Dogs love to run after things as they derive a lot of pleasure from chasing after things. To teach your dog a new trick on how to fetch, you have to tap into this innate need to run after objects in motion.

Once you tap into this need, you can then move on to the next step of teaching your dog how to bring whatever they pick up back to you.

When training your dog, you will need to invest in a good leash and a collar. Ensure that the collar is well secured to the leash.

During training, you can remove the leash but always make sure you attach it back to the collar when you are done.


- Use your dog’s favourite toy or something else the dog loves (not food) and put it in front of his face to entice him. Once you have the dog’s attention he will try to get the object out of your hand, throw it some distance away then say “fetch”

- If the dog runs for the object and puts it in her mouth make her come back to you by calling her name. The dog should move towards you, but at times the dog will drop whatever is in her mouth and run towards you. If and when this happens, don’t get worried, it happens. Instead, pick up the toy and let the dog place it in his mouth then you can walk him back to the original position.

- Reward the dog for following your command and retrieving the toy.

- The dog may pick up the toy and decide to move with it in the opposite direction or run around with it. Get the dog’s attention by calling out the dog’s name when his attention is on you. The dog will move towards you, move back a few steps and some more. Never move towards the dog.

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You can also use another toy to get the toy to be retrieved back to you. In this case, the toy you’re using should be as enticing as the one the dog is holding or more enticing. Otherwise, the dog will just concentrate on whatever he’s holding.

- If the dog brings back the object but won’t let you have it, do not play tug with him. Try to pet the dog or give him a treat that will make him drop the object he is carrying. Reward the dog for accepting the treat and relinquishing whatever he is holding.

Tips during training

- Never throw the object a long distance away, this requires a lot of concentration and is very taxing on the dog. Start small then gradually increase the distance.

- Go to a place with as minimal distractions as possible.

- Always reward the dog when he does something right, whether it’s simply putting the object in his mouth or coming back to you.

- Yelling and scolding the dog will get your nowhere, if anything, it only causes your dog to be more distressed and makes following the instructions harder since the dog cannot concentrate.

- Some dogs are very sharp and will get it the first time, others won’t. Don’t compare your dog to that of your friend down the street. Your dog is an individual and should be regarded as such.

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