The summer of frisbee.
We have a new passion in our household: disc dogging. All we need is a sunny field, some tie-dye, and a bag of frisbees.
It’s harder than I thought it would be to teach a dog to catch a disc. I figured Lucy’s intense ball drive would transfer over to a frisbee. That wasn’t the case.
The first step to our new addiction was teaching Lucy that biting the disc is fun. I started by rewarding her with food for any kind of mouthing on the disc. Then I rewarded her for grabbing the disc out of my hand. After that I started doing small tosses or drops for her to catch. Always with food as a reward.
Type of disc is important. I bought cool plastic discs but she didn’t care about them at all. We had to start with a small fabric frisbee and work our way up. Eventually we made it to the cool plastic discs. We developed a training pattern of a short toss/catch and then a reward of a treat tossed on the ground.
At that point Lucy was excited when the discs came out. Drive building was going well. To get to the next level we did a few things.
1. I started using more than one frisbee at a time. So Lucy would catch 4 or 5 while running back and forth across our yard.
2. Ryan started playing tug with the frisbees. It’s a fact that he is more fun than I am.
3. I learned how to throw a roller. Rollers are just really fun to chase. I had tried them before but wasn’t doing it right. Once I learned what to do it immediately made a difference.
Number 3 leads me to my next thought…I suck at throwing! While Lucy is learning how to play frisbee games I’m learning how to throw. And I need a lot more practice.
Frisbee is just a lot of fun. Lucy and I are going to join the Brooklyn Toss & Fetch club this next season. We are working on longer throws/catches and BRINGING THE DISC BACK (lol). We also played UpDog for the first time for Lucy’s 2nd birthday. WOW! It was awesome. And welcoming to beginners! We can’t wait to play again.
Our distant goal is to be an awesome freestyle team. And I think we can do it - we just need to practice :)