Is your dog ball crazy?
Loves to retrieve a ball?
Or is happiest with a ball or two in his mouth?
Try a different ball game; "roll a ball"
First use a ball too big to fit in your dog's mouth.
Tell your dog to stay while he watches you place a small treat on the floor by the ball. Then roll the ball forward to almost cover it.
Stand close behind the ball so it rolls toward you and release your dog to get the treat.
As he takes it, the ball will roll. Say, "Yes!" and reward by tossing a treat behind him. He will turn away from the ball to get that treat. Place another treat under the ball.
Repeat this several times, encouraging him to push the ball toward you to get the treat, rewarding with a tossed treat. He will expect a treat under the ball and will quickly return to push it again after collecting the tossed treat.
At this point, quit putting the treat under the ball and just encourage him to push it. Dog s are optimistic - he will look for the treat and the ball will roll. You might use, "Yes, roll the ball," and reward with a tossed reward treat. Soon your dog will understand that pushing the ball earns treats. Gradually stand farther back from the ball, and he will learn to roll it a longer distance.