Marvin the Mastiff: How do I make a catch?

Dear Paws to Talk,

I am a 6-month old puppy. Each day, my humans take me outside and throw a round thing at me. They are always so disappointed when it drops in front of me on the grass. What am I supposed to do with this thing? 

-Marvin the Mastiff

Howl Marvin,

Welcome to the world! First of all this round thing is a ball. A game of ball or catch, which is what your humans are trying to play with you is one of the best parts of life. It is so fun! Oh I love to play catch!  Catch is a year-round game and a good way to bond with your humans. You need to learn how to catch the ball so you can experience the joy of the game.

Ok, perk your ears up. You’re in the yard with your humans and a ball. Before your humans toss the ball, pick it up. Get a sense of what it tastes like.

The ball is thrown to you. Focus your eyes on nothing but the ball. As it gets closer to you open your mouth as wide as you can. Whatever you do don’t close your mouth. As the ball drops toward you, bite it firmly with your teeth. Think of the ball as a pork chop up for grabs that you want to land in your mouth. If you catch it do a victory lap around the yard.

If the ball hits you on the nose and drops to the ground don’t worry. It happens to all of us. Just try again. Think of the pork chop. You may have to practice but it will be worth it.

Once you get the hang of catching the ball write back and we’ll move onto the frisbee. I can’t wait!











© Margot Ahlquist and Paws to Talk, 2012. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Margot Ahlquist and Paws to Talk with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

10 thoughts on “Marvin the Mastiff: How do I make a catch?

  1. I always read your posts. This lil fella should know something very important. Not all dogs will chase after a ball and bring it back repeatedly. Some dogs, like me, just do our own thing. I don’t chase a ball in the park, I wanna see what dogs I can play with and run about with and enjoy the smells. I love to chase a dog and then he or she can chase me, I take turns, I don’t chase the other dog around all the time. They can chase me too! It’s fun.

  2. You gotta TRAIN the humans to do this right. They have to have a treat in hand and reward you each time you put the ball in your mouth. Then you’ll catch it for them for a treat. It’s a learning curve. But it’s important to teach the humans to keep the treats in hand.

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