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Why do dogs like to play fetch?

Last updated on: February 6th, 2020

Most dogs I know like to play fetch with their owners. It’s safe to say that fetch is one of the favorite games for dogs and their owners. If you go to a dog park, you are likely to find many dog owners and their pets playing this game.

Fetch is a game where the dog runs and retrieves an item thrown by its owner. For many dogs, playing fetch is their definition of heaven, and it comes naturally to them. There are several explanations for this doggy behavior.

Beagle dog fun run in a garden with a green ball


Few reasons dogs like to play fetch

1. Inborn instinct

Dogs have an inbuilt ability to run after and retrieve items for their owners. One reason for this is that they are naturally obedient to the alpha in the relationship which is you – the dog owner. The other reason is that its an instinct that they inherit from their forefathers.

When dogs were first brought into the homestead from the wild by humans, they used them as hunting dogs. Their work was to retrieve animals during the hunt for their owners. It follows that this instinct has been part of many dog breeds to this day.

2. Bred skill

Some dog breeds are better at fetch than others. A good example is the Labrador retriever, which gets its name from this skill. These dogs are a result of breeding by humans to help find the dogs with the best fetching abilities.

When humans realized that dogs could help them in retrieval, they went ahead to breed them. They chose the dogs that were great at retrieving and bred them to get off-springs that were excellent retrievers as well. The Labrador retriever is a result of such breeding.

3. Rewarding

Most dogs operate on the premise of – do and reward. Anything they do that garners rewards and positive reinforcement for them will be their favorite pastime. The game of fetch falls in this category as it involves giving the dog a lot of praise, cuddles, and even treats for fetching and bringing the ball back to you.

Even if a dog is not a natural retriever, they will love this game because it makes you- the dog owner- happy. They also get lots of praise for getting the ball back. These are things that make it feel good and hence they will do it over and over again.

These are a few reasons why fetch is a naturally fun game for dogs. It also provides you and your dog with several benefits which is why every dog owner should play the game often with their pet.


Benefits for pets and their owners when dogs like to play fetch

If you do not play the game of fetch with your dog often, it is time you make it a habit. Fetch, and other games between you and your dog have far-reaching benefits than you can imagine.

1. Games sharpen your dog’s instincts and capabilities

The game of fetch may only look like a simple throw and retrieve pet game. However, for your dog, it exercises a lot of its senses and improves its skills. The result is your dog is active, fast and sharp.

The game of fetch requires your dog to pay attention to wherever the ball, toy or stick goes when you throw it. It also needs to obey your commands to fetch and bring the item back to you. So, it provides a lot of mental and physical stimulation that is great for your dog’s development.

2. Feel-good game

After a game of fetch with my dog, I often feel rejuvenated and happy. The same applies to my dog; it is relaxed, and joyfully exhausted from the game. The same applies to most dog owners with their pets.

Animal canine

When chasing after balls, sticks or chew toys, your dog experiences what we humans feel when exercising. A dose of the feel-good hormone serotonin flaws into its body making it feel happy. It is one of the reasons why playing fetch lifts your dog’s spirit so much.

You should also know by now that your dog lives to make you happy. Dogs love to obey their owners and get some treats, cuddles and kind words from them. Such interaction also releases warm feelings of happiness and contentment in you and your dog.

3. Keep your dog fit and healthy

Apart from taking frequent walks with your dog, playing fetch is another way to keep your pet fit and healthy and avoid separation anxiety. It involves a lot of running which is good for the dog’s heart and also strengthens its legs. It also keeps your dog from getting overweight by burning off excess fat.

If you have an overweight dog, fetch is a great way to help them get that weight down. Dogs like any other animal will suffer fatal ailments if they are overweight. It is your duty as a pet owner to make sure your dog maintains its ideal weigh at all times since dogs can eat forever if allowed. Portion control and regular games that encourage physical exertion such as fetch and tug will do the trick.

4. Help you to bond with your dog

It is almost a crime to have a dog and not spend time with it. Dogs are social animals, and they need to have a lot of quality time with their owners to stay emotionally healthy. Otherwise, they get lonely and depressed.

Spending time with your dog does not mean lying in front of the TV. It means going outside with your dog where it can interact with nature too. There, you can play games of fetch, ride bicycles, go for walks and visit the dog park. These are essential to your dog’s healthy mental development.

When playing the game, the act of throwing the ball and congratulating your dog when it retrieves it makes it a fun, interactive game. It makes the dog feel good when you pay it complements, give it rubs and treats and focus on it during the game. Its a great way to bond with your pet!

These are a few reasons to play the game of fetch with your dog. Unfortunately, it’s hard to find time to play with your pet sometimes. However, the fun doesn’t have to stop as you can use a the best dog ball launcher to keep the fun going and keep your dog happy.


Many dogs like to play fetch with a dog ball launcher

Animal bullThere are a couple of reasons that dog owners may find it hard to play with their dogs. Illness and old age are some excellent reasons. When you are old or sick, you may find it hard to keep up with the game and your dog’s enthusiasm.

You could also be busy with other things in the home and have no time to keep your dog engaged in a game of fetch. For example, you have a newborn baby to take care of or a deadline for a work project. During such times, a dog ball launcher comes in handy.

A dog ball launcher is an automatic ball thrower. It allows your dog to play a game of fetch even when you are not there. You can leave the dog in the yard to play fetch with the launcher for hours. It helps dog owners that cannot play with their dogs to ensure that their pets still play the game they love.

An automatic ball thrower works using electricity or batteries. It can launch balls over a distance of up to 30 feet. The launcher has a slot where your dog is supposed to return the ball after which the machine relaunches it. Once you train your dog to fetch and slot the ball into the launcher, it can play for hours without you.

A good dog ball launcher allows you to adjust the distance so that the ball always falls within your compound. You don’t have to worry about the ball going beyond your yard. Many of them can hold up to three balls.

It’s up to you to buy an automatic ball launcher capable of throwing balls big enough for your dog to fetch. A good fetch ball is the size of a tennis ball. It must also be sturdy enough to withstand the pressure from your dog’s teeth.

A good dog ball launcher with full batteries can launch balls for up to 250 times before the batteries go flat. That’s a lot of play time for your dog which can go on for days. You can even use the launcher in the house if you adjust the throw distance to short and use an AC adapter to charge the ball launcher.

Some ball launchers have a feature that rewards the dog with treats after a couple of throws. It’s a great way to keep the dog engaged when it is playing alone. Dogs love a rewarding game and will stick to it for long when they get some treats for it.


Mitchell orr


Dogs like to play fetch, and it is crucial that you find time to do so with your pet. When you cannot engage, toys like the dog ball launcher will come in handy. Overall, playing fetch is a great way to keep your pet healthy and happy.

Most dogs I know like to play fetch with their owners. It\'s safe to say that fetch is one of the favorite games...read more in article on our website.
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