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Discussion Starter #1
So far, I've been training Dante by myself, in my own spare time. At one point, he knew how to do sit, down, heel, recall, fetch, place, "nose" and even some form of "roll over".

After a while, he stopped doing those correctly (he would started to pull really hard and my girlfriend actually fell because of him) and I was a bit upset, but reading the messages around here and some books, I realized that I was expecting too many things from him when he was just 4-5 months old, so I decided to step back a bit, play a bit more, try to make sure he gets just a couple of commands right and then slowly build things. As Jeremy Hunt would say, I'm trying to create a connection with my dog and then learn him tricks.

Right now, we're working on "sit" and "heel" and there's definitely some progress. He still pulls, but only when it's something really interesting for him, like a dog. His sit is almost excellent, as long as he's on a lead. Of course, we're working on these two mainly outside, when there are various distractions.

Indoors, we're working on "fetch". He never gets tired to run after the toy or ball or bumper, but he comes back only halfway or simply starts running around while chewing the toy (he tries to put one paw on the toy and tries to tear the toy by biting one of the corners and turning his head to the other side). Probably that's my fault, because I kept getting stuff that he took out of his mouth and sometimes yelling at him (once I was really pissed because he was chewing my glasses). At the same time, we're working on the recall. He's doing OK, as long there's nothing else more interesting and he gets a treat most of the time.

Here's my question after that lengthy introduction:

How do you teach the retrieve? Do you teach the recall and then use the recall to tell the dog to come back? Won't that mess up the retrieve because he'll spit the dummy out expecting a treat? And if he doesn't come back, won't that mess up the recall?
 

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Personally don't mix the two at the moment.

For retrieving and based on what you've said id be sitting on the floor and giving him something to hold and then making a great big fuss of him when he's holding it. If he goes away, stop the fuss and words and you'll find he will come back to you for more fuss. U need to get him happy to have something in his mouth and being near you.

For recall, have really tasty stuff and try and get two of you some distance apart, not too far to begin with and call him from one to the other. Fuss and reward and then the other person gets his attention and calls him. Be happy clappy open body language and big smile when you are calling him, as he's running towards you re Enforce the 'Dante come' as he is running so he gets to hear the command as he's already doing the action
 

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Discussion Starter #3
_Sam_ said:
Personally don't mix the two at the moment.
I figured that's the best solution for now, at least until Dante has a very good recall.

_Sam_ said:
For retrieving and based on what you've said id be sitting on the floor and giving him something to hold and then making a great big fuss of him when he's holding it. If he goes away, stop the fuss and words and you'll find he will come back to you for more fuss. U need to get him happy to have something in his mouth and being near you.
I think I might have taught him to chew things by providing Kongs and chewable toys, like rawhide bones. Right now he tries to chew or bite most of his toys and he doesn't "hold" them properly and probably I should start with what you said. Thanks!
 

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Sonny will 'come' to me all of the time but only in the house, trying to retrieve the thing he has in his mouth is another thing as if I call him when he has it, he'll only just drop it and come to me. Hmmm.

I also have the problem where he only seems to chew what's in his mouth and not 'hold' it.
 
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