Can your dog catch a ball?

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by witzend, May 27, 2009.

  1. witzend

    witzend Well-Known Member

    Mandy is an extremely athletic trim 2 year old labrador retriever. She can catch a popcorn kernel at six paces. :smug: But throw her a ball in the yard and it just bounces off of her nose, if it even gets close to her! It's one of the things that comes with a rescue street dog, I guess. She knows to chase things, but not to catch anything that isn't food. Luckily, she doesn't beg, either.

    I had been thinking for the past several summers of entering her in "Dock Dogs" for fun. She has a leap off of the deck like you couldn't imagine. But if she can't catch the target, that's kind of a no-go, right?
  2. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    Will she catch and retrieve a stick or anything else?
  3. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    My lab mix can chase a ball :D but not catch it.

    My two other dogs won't even look at thrown balls :sick:. Too lazy.
  4. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Good question! I don't think my lab mix does catch a ball but now I am going to have to try it, she usually just chases after it and brings it back. If it's food for sure she'll catch it, she came advertised as a living vacuum cleaner, we never have crumbs on the floor! on the other hand, we have dog hair everywhere!
  5. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    Hmm. I'll have to try it as well. Mine fetch great, but I don't think I've tried to get them to catch.......except like you said, food. lol
  6. Fran

    Fran Former Site Owner

    Nope. Nada! None of my 3 latest dogs, catch balls, chase balls, play with toys or tug on doggie rope. The most I get out of them is chase in the yard. I quit with toys. Even kongs hold no interest once the food is gone. They aren't chewers either. I always chalked it up to the working dog type breed.
  7. Josie

    Josie Active Member

    We just discovered our dog will leap high into the air to catch his toy. Then we tried to show husband and the dog caught it but waited for it to come down. I guess he realized it would come down without him leaping for it.
  8. busywend

    busywend Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Well, my cat can catch a ball in the air with his front paws. He brings it back down with him to the floor. He also can stop if from passing him on the floor - he would be a great soccer player!

    He basically will do anything to stop the ball from getting past him no matter if it is in the air or on the floor.
  9. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    Do they have to catch the target? Or just jump? I guess I thought they had to just jump.

    We have 2 dogs right now that will go to great lengths to catch a ball. Wee difficult child's jack russel and husband's blue heeler are both ball obsessed. We let them chase together, and the antics will have us all rolling.
  10. donna723

    donna723 Well-Known Member

    Usually whether dogs can catch well or not depends on the breed and on the way their eyes are placed on their heads. My Bostons, with their smooshy faces and big googly wide-set eyes can't catch worth a darn, but they will chase all day and bring it right back to be thrown again.

    My little mixed breed, Freebie though, is an excellent catch and she will leap high up in the air to catch something. Her eyes are set completely different on her face and she has a long, pointy nose. I really think she sometimes aligns things up by following her nose! She definitely has better eyesight than the Bostons (who have sometimes been known to look in two different directions at once!)
    Last edited: May 28, 2009
  11. DazedandConfused

    DazedandConfused Active Member

    The little dog in my signature does both chase and fetch and catch. I'm sure her being a herding breed has a lot to do with it. We can't even say "ball" within earshot of her because she starts yapping and won't stop.

    We go to the park about 2-3 times a week so she can retrieve a ball I literally throw the entire length of the park. When she sees the "Chuck It" come out, everything in her world becomes about the ball. She doesn't want to be petted or loved. Just throw the ball, people. Other dogs will come up to her to sniff and play and she just ignores them so she can go retrieve the ball. She will literally run after the ball until she collapses. So, we have to be careful, especially during hot weather. I have to always bring water for her.

    She also catches when the ball is thrown up in the air. She will jump way up, twist, and catch. She also does this little growl thing when she catches it. The more difficult the catch, the louder she "Goldie Growls".

    She didn't do any of this when we got her a little over a year ago. Daughter just discovered that she would chase a found golf ball around. Then, she got a tennis ball and began throwing that down the hallway with her. It just began to evolve from that.

    Our other sheltie has no interest in balls, catching or chasing. She's more of a show dog and I think that the instinct to chase and catch has been bred out of her. Sometimes, she will snatch Goldie's ball and sort of prance around with it, but then just drop it and lay down.
  12. witzend

    witzend Well-Known Member

    She will retrieve, but not catch. Not unless it's food, anyway. I suppose I could slather it in peanut butter. EW! Like dog mouth slimy isn't enough!
  13. witzend

    witzend Well-Known Member

    Shari, I just looked up the official rules at, and Section 501, (a), (v) states that the dogs get two attempts at each height to achieve a successful catch. So, it seems that they do. I guess I always just noticed that the dogs catch whatever they go for when I see the videos.

    Mandy can jump about 4 feet straight up to catch water out of the hose.:surprise: She'd wear herself out doing it if you let her!
  14. KTMom91

    KTMom91 Well-Known Member

    Bud catches food, balls, toy lobsters, rope tugs...and the kittens when they're out running around.
  15. witzend

    witzend Well-Known Member

  16. Abbey

    Abbey Spork Queen

    Are you talking about a human dog or a canine?:tongue:

  17. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    That's funny.

    difficult child's jack russell and his cat have some kind of sadistic relationship going, as well. The cat is outgrowing the dog, and kicks his butt on a regular basis now, but their pursuit of each other is relentless. 2am sneak attacks are fair game. Last night, they turned on the vacuum at midnight...

    The only thing we've found that dog won't fetch is rocks and eggs. Apples and oranges are fetchable. And he'll still chase rocks and eggs, if you decide to throw them...

    I think perhaps science should study jack russels. They're born and bred to have ADHD, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), and other difficult child-ish neuro disorders. Maybe they'd find the magic link...