“Fetch!” It’s a game as old as time. And just like any game worth its salt, the variations are endless. It’s been played with sticks and tennis balls, fancy equipment and good ‘ol Chuckit! launchers. It’s been initiated by dogs running up with sticks until you throw them a bone—and by humans who throw tennis balls and gesture to bemused puppers until they get the message. However you play it, fetch is a timeless way to bond with your bestie. It gives us the best possible excuse to get outside and enjoy the weather—and it’s a great way to get that exercise that both you and your pupper crave! In short, it’s one of our favorite pet holidays. Started by Petmate to commemorate the 20th anniversary of its Chuckit! launcher— the hugely popular launcher that features signature slobber-free pick up—National Fetch Day™ is celebrated every third Saturday in October. So pick up your Chuckit!, head outside, and enjoy some quality time with your best friend!
When is National Fetch Day 2018?
National Fetch Day happens every third Saturday in October, because work shouldn't stop you from enjoying the sunshine with your bestie!
National Fetch Day - History
October 20, 2018
National Fetch Day becomes an official holiday
We didn’t need a day to remind us how great it is to play fetch with our dogs, but we’re glad there is one.
The original Chuckit! launcher hits stores for the first time
A major improvement over throwing a slobbery ball, the Chuckit! is sold for the first time to the acclaim of dogs everywhere!
The first modern dogs are bred
Humans began selective breeding techniques to bring out certain traits in dogs, resulting in a wide variety of companions from the tiny teacup poodle to the giant Mastiff.
The first dogs are domesticated
The earliest undisputed example of man’s best friend comes from a 14,000-year-old burial site near Bonn, Germany.
The Pleistocene Epoch
The first games of fetch are played
It is believed that hunters would send the precursors to domesticated dogs to fetch fallen prey.
National Fetch Day Activities
1. Host a Fetch Day party
Corral all the neighborhood canines at a local dog park and host an epic game of fetch. Bring some balls, sticks, chew toys, and of course, your Chuckit! launcher and watch your friendly Fidos compete to be the Best Dog!
2. Hit the beach
There are few places better suited for a great game of fetch than the beach. The mixture of the sand and the water will give your dog the added exercise she needs. Plus, tossing a ball into the waves adds an extra layer of excitement for your furry friend.
3. Train a pup in the ways of fetch
Yes, it may be in their nature to retrieve. But that doesn’t mean puppies couldn’t benefit from fetch training. Choose a ball or toy that your pupper likes. Toss it and chase the ball with your dog. Use phrases like “go fetch it” to add verbal cues. Then of course, reinforce their good behavior with treats.
Doggone It! 5 Crazy Canine Facts
1. The U.S. owns the most dogs in the world
We love our canine companions—and own more than 75 million of them! France ranks #2 for most dog owners.
2. Dogs actually get jealous
A study at UCSD claims that your dog can feel jealousy when they see you interacting with another animal. Spend some quality time with them this National Fetch Day!
3. 1 million dogs will get rich quick...
That’s the amount of dogs who are named as the primary beneficiary in their owners’ wills! Do you think Fido will take us with him on vacation?
4. The Saluki is the world’s oldest dog
The breed has been found in Egyptian tombs from as early as 2100 BCE. They were originally trained to help Egyptians catch game.
5. There are 703 breeds of purebreds
Every breed in the world is likely descended from a species called the Tomarctus, which existed 15 million years ago.
Why We Love National Fetch Day
A. To fetch or not to fetch isn’t even a question
Dogs have an innate instinct to retrieve things that is part of their hunting nature. A day that promotes this instinctive need in a way that doesn’t result in little “gifts” left on the back porch is always welcome.
B. It promotes healthy habits
Your canine companion needs as much exercise as they can get to keep them fit and healthy. Fetch is great cardio workout for them and can even benefit us humans too.
C. It helps us to bond with our pups
Dogs and humans have been bonding with each other for 14,000 years. Playing fetch is one of the best ways to build and maintain that bond, and a holiday dedicated to that union is a wonderful thing.