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Discussion Starter #1
I have something of a game idea. He has really taken off with loving his little baseball and catching it and pouncing on it if I roll it at him.

The idea is he stands at a spot and I roll a ball at him, trying to get it past him. He has to stop it and bring it to me then I would send him back to his spot. He's aware of mat work so I figure I could just use that concept for getting him to see his position. I imagine a mark and reward when he pounces on the ball would teach him what to do and build drive to do it.

Is this a good game to teach? Would this help achieve more eye-mouth-paw coordination in a fun way?
 

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You and Wally can do no wrong. I don't see a downside, b/c it sounds like a typical Prey/Seeking behavior, which dogs love!

One day, we'd like to see videos of everything that Wally can do.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Heh, maybe one day I could manage a video. :)

Btw, if a dog's tongue is hanging out the side of his mouth, that just meanw he's getting a workout, not that he's over-extended or that I'm pushing him too hard. I forget sometimes that he isn't a bigger dog or a working breed, and it's impossible to tell since he's all eager and going all out.
 

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It sounds like fun. We play a version of that game called "Who's faster?" She has to try to pounce on the ball (or ice chunk if we're outside in winter) before it gets by her. She gets ready when I say, "Who's faster--Poca or the ball?" Then I say, "Ready?" to get her excited. If I count she gets more excited waiting. Then I kick the ball, trying to get it past her. She usually wins. She brings the ball back and then waits for me to kick it again. The hard part was teaching her not to crowd me. I had to teach her to back up to give me room to kick. Never thought to teach her a position, which would have been helpful. A better solution than me backing up, which I sometimes do.
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
Played this a bit "informally" to let him get the overall idea of the "job" at hand. He loved it. In fact, he started coming to the ball with his mouth on the carpet like a shortstop fielding a ground ball.

I started getting it past him, though, by changing the angle and he tried slap it with his paws, which didn't work. Then he tried his mouth-to-the-ground strategy and came a lot closer.

It's always fascinating to see how he approaches things, how he judges what is or isn't working for him and to see his adaptations to try to have success.

Then we had to stop because he kept circling around instead of getting ball - and I know what THAT means LOL

Since he has the idea - I'll come up with a name for the position ("goalie" is a good one). And start getting a little more formal with it in terms of teaching.
 
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