Teach Your Dog The Names of Toys

by Alessia

If you play fetch with your dog and you want him to bring you a certain toy (heck, maybe you want him to bring you the remote control), you can teach your dog the names of toys (or household objects, like the remote control) so that he can differentiate between different toys and bones.


Step One: When your dog looks at his toy, or brings it over to you, call it by it’s name and then either use a clicker or a treat, or both, while saying the name of the toy. For example, when your dog looks at a ball, say “ball”, use your clicker or snap your fingers, then give him a treat. Eventually he will start to understand the word “ball” is that object.

Step Two: Once he knows the name of the ball, only treat him when he touches the object while you hold it in your hand. So say “ball”, and when he goes to the object in your hand and touches it, treat him. Make sure every time he touches the ball to say “ball”.

Step Three: Say “ball” and wait for him to go up to the ball on his own. Once he grabs it or touches it, say “ball” and treat him.

Step Four: Once steps 1-3 are mastered, your dog should know the name of the ball and will retrieve it for you at the sound of its name. Repeat steps 1-3 for the rest of his toys, or household objects.

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