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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm having trouble getting Oscar to hold objects.

He will mouth them and put them in his mouth and pick them up off the floor(sometimes, not always) but as soon as i give it a slight pull(to encourage him to hold it) or let go (hoping he will hold it for even 3 seconds) he just lets it go.
He just wont grip the item.

I have tried using a piece of yellow piping (which was about a foot long), a dish rag rolled up (thinking it might be easier to hold), a plastic bone toy (similar to the pipe i used) and also a bucket handle.
With all of these he will mouth but will not actually take and hold. He will pick up the bone and the rag off the ground if i move it around or throw it but if i hold it out in from of him he will only mouth it. And even if it is thrown on the floor and he picks it up he soon drops it.

I have been trying to shape the hold but i just cant get the mouthing to a holding behaviour.

Any tips????


Oh and to add,
I am training a back chaining method to the retrieve,and i clicker train.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I'm looking into getting 'the clicked retriever'

I was going to hold off until i got my kindle but seeing as its only €11.31 to get it from the book depository its actually cheaper to get it in book form rather than in kindle.
So I'll see about ordering it tonight.


I have been looking at Kikopups videos (i love kikopup!) And i have tried doing what she said but I'm still stuck on the mouthing stage.

Thanks!
 

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So the dog will pick things up and then drop them again.

I am taking a stab in the dark here but does the dog drop them when you click the clicker? If so it is probably in response to clearing the way for the treat to go its mouth.

What happens if you whizz the toy about making it really exciting to the point where the dog is chasing the toy and then just tossing the toy a few feet?

I've taught multiple dogs to retrieve to hand or just to drop it at your feet and it all comes from making you having the toy rewarding and interesting otherwise there is no point bringing back to you.

I'll take a look at the site and see how they do it and see if I can fathom it out for you from there.
 

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So the dog will pick things up and then drop them again.

I am taking a stab in the dark here but does the dog drop them when you click the clicker? If so it is probably in response to clearing the way for the treat to go its mouth.

What happens if you whizz the toy about making it really exciting to the point where the dog is chasing the toy and then just tossing the toy a few feet?

I've taught multiple dogs to retrieve to hand or just to drop it at your feet and it all comes from making you having the toy rewarding and interesting otherwise there is no point bringing back to you.

I'll take a look at the site and see how they do it and see if I can fathom it out for you from there.
The dog is SUPPOSED to drop the item when you click in the clicker retriever system. ;)

The idea is to teach in low drive to minimise dropping, mouthing, crunching etc.
 

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The dog is SUPPOSED to drop the item when you click in the clicker retriever system. ;)

The idea is to teach in low drive to minimise dropping, mouthing, crunching etc.
Right, but my line of thinking goes that if you click when the dog holds the toy and then it drops it, how many of these do you have to do before the dog starts second guessing you and doing it as a automatic response, one, two, three or five? Once the odg has it in it's mind that it only needs to hold on to it for a few seconds and then the treat is coming it may second guess you and then it's back to the beginning which is what I think is happening with here.

It all seems a bit complicated for what is a pretty straight forward task to teach a dog - the toy is at it's most interesting when I have it in my hands.
 

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Right, but my line of thinking goes that if you click when the dog holds the toy and then it drops it, how many of these do you have to do before the dog starts second guessing you and doing it as a automatic response, one, two, three or five? Once the odg has it in it's mind that it only needs to hold on to it for a few seconds and then the treat is coming it may second guess you and then it's back to the beginning which is what I think is happening with here.

It all seems a bit complicated for what is a pretty straight forward task to teach a dog - the toy is at it's most interesting when I have it in my hands.
I can see for a non clicker trainer it can appear complicated but it is very simple.

All you do is ask for duration; the same as heelwork, you ask for one perfect step, then two, then three etcetera and then introduce a variable schedule of reinforcement.

I suspect that the OP has missed out a step, made it too difficult or has not got excellent timing.

People often get stuck whatever the system they choose to use.
 

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I can see for a non clicker trainer it can appear complicated but it is very simple.
Huh??? :confused: :confused: :confused:

I clicker train all of the time, just not with a clicker but the same principals apply and I have said how simple it is as it only takes a couple of 10mins sessions to get a dog retrieving.

You can save a heck of a lot of time just by playing with the toy in front of the dog by whizzing it about and teasign the dog until the dog is chaising or trying to mouth it, then let the dog take it in its mouth, play tug-o-war with the dog so having the toy between you is the best fun (that is the key ingredient), then click and offer a treat to release, do the whizzing about, let the dog go to take it but just drop it out of reach, when the dog picks it up play tug-o-war, click to drop it, whizz it about and now toss it a couple of feet away, when the dog picks it up, turn away slightly or run away a bit and the dog will bring it back to you to engage in a game of tug-o-war again. Ta daaaaa, you have a three foot retrieve in about 10mins. Then all you do is build the distance up and begin to phase out the tug-o-war games and give a word instead of a click such as "dead" or "drop". 20mins and you can have a dog retrieving in the garden.

I can't see the point in over complicating things with "duration of hold" and I am sure there are other steps that can be bypassed without issue, when it really is that simple.

Watch two dogs with a toys. They always want the one toy the other dog has got and love the game of chase. Once they both have hold o fit they have a tug-o-war and then one will win and run off with it. If the other dog doesn't follow the game becomes dull and boring so the dog with the toy will go and tease the other to try and engage the chase and game again. You just apply those easy steps and the dog is putty in your hands.

Step 1 - you want the dog to want the toy you have so you make it exciting, turn away from the dog with it, whizz it about, tease the dog with it and increase it's interaction with you (works wonders for bonding too).

Step 2 - allow the odg to get hold of the toy and have a game of tug-o-war for a bit so the best game is both of you having the toy.

Step 3 - Don't chase the dog to get it back, do the opposite. The toy and game isn't fun unless you have some involvement in it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Huh??? :confused: :confused: :confused:

I clicker train all of the time, just not with a clicker but the same principals apply and I have said how simple it is as it only takes a couple of 10mins sessions to get a dog retrieving.

You can save a heck of a lot of time just by playing with the toy in front of the dog by whizzing it about and teasign the dog until the dog is chaising or trying to mouth it, then let the dog take it in its mouth, play tug-o-war with the dog so having the toy between you is the best fun (that is the key ingredient), then click and offer a treat to release, do the whizzing about, let the dog go to take it but just drop it out of reach, when the dog picks it up play tug-o-war, click to drop it, whizz it about and now toss it a couple of feet away, when the dog picks it up, turn away slightly or run away a bit and the dog will bring it back to you to engage in a game of tug-o-war again. Ta daaaaa, you have a three foot retrieve in about 10mins. Then all you do is build the distance up and begin to phase out the tug-o-war games and give a word instead of a click such as "dead" or "drop". 20mins and you can have a dog retrieving in the garden.

I can't see the point in over complicating things with "duration of hold" and I am sure there are other steps that can be bypassed without issue, when it really is that simple.

Watch two dogs with a toys. They always want the one toy the other dog has got and love the game of chase. Once they both have hold o fit they have a tug-o-war and then one will win and run off with it. If the other dog doesn't follow the game becomes dull and boring so the dog with the toy will go and tease the other to try and engage the chase and game again. You just apply those easy steps and the dog is putty in your hands.

Step 1 - you want the dog to want the toy you have so you make it exciting, turn away from the dog with it, whizz it about, tease the dog with it and increase it's interaction with you (works wonders for bonding too).

Step 2 - allow the odg to get hold of the toy and have a game of tug-o-war for a bit so the best game is both of you having the toy.

Step 3 - Don't chase the dog to get it back, do the opposite. The toy and game isn't fun unless you have some involvement in it.
I'm not training him to retrieve toys,I'm training him to retrieve unusual objects,like dumbbells, remotes, leashes etc and to hold things like buckets etc.
He can retrieve toys just fine but it was not something that i sat down and trained him to do, i just did it from the day we got him when we actually played (ie. you dont return with the toy the game ends and i go away,he quickly got the concept)

Its a formal retrieve i want.

I have some new ideas to try now so i am going to give them a try.
I dont think i have skipped any steps. I started out teaching a present position, then i showed him the object and rewarded for touching it in the beginning,then worked it up to mouthing.
I dont think i have made it difficult either,its done in the same room each day with no distractions and he got each step before i moved on.
My timing might be off,but i'm not sure.
 

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Riiiiiiight. Penny drops.

I'll give it a go with mine and see what I can produce for you. You mean a bit like an assistance dog with picking stuff up and bringing things by the name of the object?
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Riiiiiiight. Penny drops.

I'll give it a go with mine and see what I can produce for you. You mean a bit like an assistance dog with picking stuff up and bringing things by the name of the object?
Yeah,thats it! :)

Maybe not by name but i might do that for a few objects once i've got the initial retrieve done.
 

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keep working with it, it took Chester a good few months before he grapsed the idea of what I was wanting him to do..at first you would think his retrieve item had somethig vile on it, he couldn't get it out of his mouth quick enough :smile:
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I got him a new toy yesterday. Its another astro bone (its a plastic chew toy thing) and i gave it to him. He took it from me perfectly,held it in his mouth,carried it around and all. So i though i would try using that for the training tonight and guess what....

.... he wouldn't touch it!! :thumbdown:

When i want him to hold it he must see poison on it! :blink:
 

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Huh??? :confused: :confused: :confused:

I clicker train all of the time, just not with a clicker but the same principals apply and I have said how simple it is as it only takes a couple of 10mins sessions to get a dog retrieving.

You can save a heck of a lot of time just by playing with the toy in front of the dog by whizzing it about and teasign the dog until the dog is chaising or trying to mouth it, then let the dog take it in its mouth, play tug-o-war with the dog so having the toy between you is the best fun (that is the key ingredient), then click and offer a treat to release, do the whizzing about, let the dog go to take it but just drop it out of reach, when the dog picks it up play tug-o-war, click to drop it, whizz it about and now toss it a couple of feet away, when the dog picks it up, turn away slightly or run away a bit and the dog will bring it back to you to engage in a game of tug-o-war again. Ta daaaaa, you have a three foot retrieve in about 10mins. Then all you do is build the distance up and begin to phase out the tug-o-war games and give a word instead of a click such as "dead" or "drop". 20mins and you can have a dog retrieving in the garden.

I can't see the point in over complicating things with "duration of hold" and I am sure there are other steps that can be bypassed without issue, when it really is that simple.

Watch two dogs with a toys. They always want the one toy the other dog has got and love the game of chase. Once they both have hold o fit they have a tug-o-war and then one will win and run off with it. If the other dog doesn't follow the game becomes dull and boring so the dog with the toy will go and tease the other to try and engage the chase and game again. You just apply those easy steps and the dog is putty in your hands.

Step 1 - you want the dog to want the toy you have so you make it exciting, turn away from the dog with it, whizz it about, tease the dog with it and increase it's interaction with you (works wonders for bonding too).

Step 2 - allow the odg to get hold of the toy and have a game of tug-o-war for a bit so the best game is both of you having the toy.

Step 3 - Don't chase the dog to get it back, do the opposite. The toy and game isn't fun unless you have some involvement in it.
I know, I am rubbish explaining it aren't It?

But for precision competiton retrieves it pays, IME, to break the retrieve down into all the component steps ie

the sit
the wait
the mark
the go out
the pick up
the carry
the present
the release
the return to heel

in order to get maximum points in whatever discipline you are competing in at the very top level of competition.

In any case it does not matter what the dog retrieves, once the exercise has been taught correctly the dog will retrieve anything from a matchstick to anything it can carry.]

Of course we have to teach lots of other things as well, the above are just the bare minimum.

Then we have to train the dog to retrieve whatever we are doing, wherever we are, and whether it can see it or not.

The variables are endless. ;)
 
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