Jump to content
BC Boards

Won't touch the ball @ Flyball

Recommended Posts

I have a 1 year old Border Collie in flyball right now. She does the jumps perfectly, and has clicked that that part of flyball is now a game.


But she won't touch the ball at all there.


At home, she'll go crazy for it when we're playing in the backyard.


I haven't started to structure her and stuff yet, I just tell her "Ready... ready... GO!!" and throw ball, and she scrambles off to get it, and brings it back. Before, I was using tug as a reward, I've now switched to little cheese bits, to see if it will help. But it isn't.


She won't even LOOK at the ball at flyball.


I just don't understand - she does it so well at home, and we can even do it outside with distractions - but she won't have anything to do with it at flyball.


My trainer suggested clicker training her with it, which I will try doing if I can't find any other methods.


Any suggestions? :rolleyes:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It might just be that the distractions at flyball class are a little too overwhelming. You could try taking her to some new places like Petsmart & having her retrieve there. If it's too much at first, you can start in the kitty litter aisle (where there aren't likely to be many dogs) then build up to where she can handle a full busy weekend. Other good places to try are sidewalks or grassy areas near a busy shopping area (only on leash of course for safety), soccer fields, and playgrounds. You also might find that your dog will settle in after a class or two and do just fine. If you end up needing to do more specific training on retrieving, there is a great article by Pam Martin at: http://www.flyballdogs.com/training.html#easy_retrieve


Good luck. : )



Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks RDM and Dana!


We haven't combined box and ball yet, as we've only been in training since January. We're working on box turns without the ball right now.


Like I said, we've been in training since January, so it's kinda funny if she hasn't settled in yet! lol


I'm definitely going to give the pet store retrieving a try, thanks. :rolleyes:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm glad you asked this, Jess. Alex is having the same trouble. He will retrieve and tug like crazy at home, but once he's around the other dogs, all he wants to do is watch them or try to chase them. It's just the distraction of it all.


I'm going to work on it in other enviroments, as suggested. Thanks!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

A dead ball retrieve is actually different than retrieving. At home, you need to work on a totally dead ball retrieve (you are not throwing the ball what-so-ever by the end). You need to have some be able to place the ball on the ground and be able to send him to get the ball.


I have my students start by rolling the ball and sending the dog-until consistent

I then have them roll the ball until it stops and then send the dog-until consistent

Finally, I have someone else placing the ball on the ground (this step may need to start with person bouncing the ball and then placing) but you want to get to the point of just placing without having to make the ball fun


It is always funny to see how many people think their dogs have a dead ball retrieve when they really don't. The dogs have a moving target retrieve. Yes, I learned this the hard way too

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Create New...