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Teaching Your Puppy To Come And Fetch

In teaching your puppy the "Come" command, position yourself several feet away from him. Kneel or bend down, say his name and then come, at the same time you are clapping your hands. Repeat this several times if necessary to get the puppy to come to you. As the puppy begins to understand this exercise, and as you begin to get his attention more easily, move back a few feet farther.

Do not make the mistake of calling him from a distance of twenty-five or thirty yards when he is not paying attention to you. If you do that and he ignores you, you are teaching him that it is okay to ignore you. You are defeating the purpose of puppy pre-training, which is to pattern him to pay attention to you and to do what you ask of him.

Another great activity is the "Fetch" command. Even if you have a breed that is not a retriever, fetching is a great thing for the puppy to learn. It is not only an easy and pleasant way to exercise a dog but is also the basis for many other tasks the dog can learn in the future such as carrying the newspaper.

Teaching retrieving is easy and fun if you do not expect perfect performance the first few times. Remind yourself that this will not come naturally to all pups at first, especially the very independent and the very shy pups. You just have to keep at it. The rewards are great. The younger you begin teaching this, the easier it will be.

Tie a sock or small cloth (white or light color) in a knot. Dangle it excitingly in front of the pup's mouth. Encourage him if he starts to lick it or opens his mouth. Toss the sock a couple of feet in front of the pup. If he goes to it and sniffs, praise him like crazy! If he picks it up, attract his attention to come back to you by calling him, clapping your hands, patting the floor or whatever will entice him to return. Do not overdo this exercise. Two or three retrieves at a
time is plenty. If he is not too excited about it, once is enough.

Gradually increase the length of your throw. If the pup reaches the point where he picks it up and runs away, put a cord or string on his collar and gently guide him back to you. Some people prefer using a small ball. The movement is a good attention-getter. Just be sure that you do not throw the ball too far to get the pup's attention.

Experts suggest using a brightly colored ball and rolling it off his nose from the top of his head. If the movement of the ball does not interest the pup, face him close to a wall so that the ball will roll back out towards the pup again.

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Teaching Your Puppy To Come And Fetch


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