This is an easy trick to teach, and your dog will love it as much as you do. When teaching your dog to catch things, it's best to start by learning how to teach a dog to catch treats. Toys could hit your dog in the face, which may cause injury and make him scared of catching things in the future.
Some dogs struggle to learn this trick, but for most it will be very easy. It will be especially easy to train your dog to catch a treat if he is food motivated. Teaching him to catch treats is the first step in teaching him to catch other objects like frisbees, tennis balls or rubber dog toys.
Not at all dogs are naturals at jumping up and catching food, so be sure to have patience and be consistent. Have fun with this training. It will take a lot of repetition, but you'll have a lot of laughs and plenty of fun in the process.
How To Teach A Dog To Catch Treats
I recommend starting with popcorn. It is less dense than most dog treats, so it falls a little slower and is easier for your dog to follow. If your pup isn't enticed by popcorn, you'll just have to use a tempting treat that will hold his attention.
Have your dog sit on the floor about 2-3 feet in front of you. Hold the popcorn high above his head. Begin by dropping the treat down to your dog. Once he can catch it every time you drop it, you can start tossing it.
Make sure you get a decent arc up in the air when you toss the treat. This makes it easier for your pet to follow the treat and gives him time to align himself underneath it. If the treat falls to the floor, try to scoop it up before your dog can get to it. This will provide incentive for him to catch the treat and not let it drop.
Once he is consistently catching the treats, you can begin making things more difficult. Switch from popcorn to small treats or pieces of kibble. Throw the treats faster. Try to throw them in a more direct path instead of arcing them high in the air.
When you have mastered how to teach a dog to catch treats, you can move on to catching toys, frisbees, etc… The most important thing is to have fun, and make sure your dog is enjoying it too. It may take a lot of repetitive training, but your dog will get it if you keep trying.