bootstrap asked in PetsDogs · 1 decade ago

My mother keeps expecting our big terriers to retrieve items. Can terriers be trained to retrieve?

I have two bigger sized terriers. A soft coated wheaten and an Irish terrier (a rare terrier that is similar to an Airedale). They are extremely well behaved dogs. Smart and good sense of humor. I keep telling my mother that terriers are not retrievers. They are ground hunters and look for rodents in the ground. Also they try to get snakes out of the ground. I wish they wouldn't try to get snakes because we live in Florida and they might dig up a coral snake. Extremely poisonous. You would think that after 7 years my mother would figure out that terriers don't retrieve. In fact, they go after something (a plush toy or a ball) and play keep away with you. Like it is a game. A very funny game I might add.

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  • 1 decade ago
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    they can be taught to retrieve.....it may not be there first choice of things to do.....but they can be taught.

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  • 1 decade ago

    Don't Jack Russell's retrieve instinctually? ;-) I've never actually met one that doesn't retrieve... no matter what name they go by... Jack or Parson Russel (same breed, diff registry) And I've met at least 20-30 at local dog parks... ;-)

    Anyway, any dog can theoretically be trained to retrieve, though not all dogs like it. My whippet will chase anything you throw, but needed a good bit of training to learn 'bring it' reliably. Now she won't really make it a game... but she'll bring whatever I point too as long as I tell her to.

    So yeah, you can train any dog to retrieve; where some will enjoy it as a game and fun others will only be doing it in obedience to you.

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  • 1 decade ago

    Yes, any dog can be taught to retrieve. Its actually fairly easy to do. My parsons russell terrier is 8 months old and already retireiving. As a terrier, he also is bred for going to ground and hunting. But retreiving is just plain old fun. Mine brings his toy (he's a squeeky addict) and drops in right into my lap. He knows I will not chase him to get the toy off him, and if he wants to play with me, hes got to play by my rules. Terriers are smart. Very smart. In order to train them, you have to be smarter than they are, or they train YOU.

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  • 1 decade ago

    I may be nuts here but I think all dogs can be taught to retrieve or I think the term is fetch. Neighbours had a huge Irish setter I think and she could fetch , retrieve all kinds of weird stuff. It's good to teach your dogs to bring you things.

    Shouldn't a good obedience class cover that?

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    If your mum keeps pushing them to retrieve you may find them one day bringing you an arm they retrieved from your mum.

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  • 1 decade ago

    all dogs can be trained to do it, just takes time

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