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Training the Retrieve with Michael Ellis
Based on 1 reviews

Training the Retrieve with Michael Ellis

Based on 1 review
Training the Retrieve with Michael Ellis Cover Art
  • 3 Hours, 31 Minutes
  • Released April 2018
  • Instructor: Michael Ellis
  • Training the Retrieve Set is also available. Purchase the set and save $31 rather than buying separately!
  • The Retrieve Starter Kit is available for beginning your retrieve training!
  • Immediate streaming access when purchased with Leerburg account
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Over the last 30+ years, the methods used to train dogs to retrieve have been evolving. Traditionally, most dogs were taught to retrieve certain objects through the “Force Fetch” method, which relies heavily on negative reinforcement (pressure) to teach the behavior. While many dogs were able to get through this process, it was not the most pleasant experience for the dog (or the trainer). Many dogs wouldn’t bounce back from the continuous stress of the process and would eventually be ‘washed’ from training programs. When marker training started to gain popularity, trainers began teaching the retrieve in a manner that required no pressure and the goal was that 100% of the retrieve would be trained with rewards.

The 2018 release of Training the Retrieve with Michael Ellis is unique in that it not only teaches you the entire process of training a formal retrieve with the use of reward-based training techniques, but Michael also explains and demonstrates in detail, how and when to properly utilize pressure-based techniques in the retrieve if the trainer finds it necessary. Training the Retrieve with Michael Ellis is an excellent resource for anyone wishing to train a formal retrieve, whether it be for a sport or competition obedience dog, a service dog, hunting dog, or if you simply want to train your dog to get a beer from the fridge. This DVD will cover all of the foundational skills needed to train the formal retrieve as well as some common challenges trainers may face and techniques to troubleshoot those challenges. We’ve designed this DVD to accommodate a wide range of skill levels for both trainers and dogs with no prior experience is necessary to start this work.

For more detailed information on the skills you see demonstrated in this retrieve video, check out these Michael Ellis videos: The Power of Training Dogs with Food, The Power of Playing Tug with Your Dog, Advanced Concepts in Motivation, Leash Skills, & The Electric Collar Parts 1 & 2.


  • Welcome
  • Formal Retrieve VS Play Retrieve
  • Suggested Prerequisites

  • Preparation

  • Equipment

  • Conditioned Reinforcers (Markers)
  • Pre-Retrieving Games
  • Basics of Leash Pressure
  • Pre-Holding & Handling Drills

  • Teaching 'Take It'

  • Teaching the 'Hold'

  • Merging 'Take It' & 'Hold'

  • Backchaining the Retrieve

  • Troubleshooting & Additional Considerations
Introducing Pressure-Based Techniques
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