Here are 6 simple steps to teach your dog how to catch a frisbee!
Get no less than 2 dog discs. Human discs (“frisbees”) can hurt your dog. Try to find the brands Hyperflite, Hero or Aerobie. These discs are specifically developed to cut down risk of hurting your dog. There are discs for destructive dogs (the Hyperflite Jawz) and soft floppy discs as well (the Aerobie Dogobie). The Flippy Flopper is a soft fabric disc available at most pet stores. The Kong Flyer is also a good choice.
Get your dog to become thrilled about the disc by associating it with very positive things. Such as:
- Make use of the disc as a feeding dish for 7 days.
- Scrub hot dog on the disc and reward your dog for pursuing it.
- Play tug carefully with the disc. Always allow your dog win. Avoid ripping the disc out of your dog’s mouth.
- Praise any behavior that indicates “drive” to get the disc. This implies that even if your dog jumps up and grabs the disc out of your hand without waiting for you to offer it to her, this is positive!
- In no way tell your dog to ‘DROP’ the disc. Always make use of a 2nd disc to attract your dog to drop the one in his mouth, on his own. Keep in mind, always motivate your dog’s drive to have and get the disc.
Throw “rollers”. Rather than throwing the disc in the air, toss it so that the disc rolls on the ground such as a wheel. This will help your dog transition from fetching a ball to retrieving a disc. Dogs really like to chase discs this way. It helps them learn to “target” the disc and pick it up.
Throw the disc in the air and alternate with rollers. Get started with short, slow throws, and be cautious to avoid hitting your dog with the disc. At first, your dog will likely let the disc hit the ground before retrieving it. It may possibly take 100 or more throws prior to your dog grabs it out of the air for the first time. Be patient!
Stimulate your dog’s drive to get the disc. Ultimately your dog will get used to the flying disc, find out how to track it in the air, and at some point will desire the disc so badly (“DRIVE!”) that she will not want to wait for it to drop to the ground and will rather get it out of the air. This is the moment you’ve been awaiting! Great job, you now have a Disc Dog!
Get ready to be astonished.