Treibball originated in Germany in 2003. It utilizes the basic concepts of herding with a slight twist. Instead of herding sheep, cattle, ducks or anything else, the dogs push exercise balls around.

What: Treibball
Description: Soccer with Exercise Balls using Herding commands
Training: Can be taught at home but should take classes
Time until ready: 6 months
Age to start: Pretty much any age can start. Younger or smaller dogs start with smaller balls.

The game is relatively simple in concept. The dog must run out behind an exercise ball and bring it back to their handler, who is standing in a goal area. However, it is a bit more complicated in execution. The dog must go out behind the ball(s) and perform a sit, down or stand without pushing a ball. Then, upon handler command, the dog must bring the ball(s) to the goal.

At the beginning levels, the dog must retrieve one ball. At the highest levels, the dog must retrieve eight balls. The handler directs the dog and gives commands indicating how to approach the ball(s) and which one to retrieve. The dog must bring the ball all the way back to the goal area.

This is a fun sport for herding breeds and any dog that just likes playing with a ball. It is taught using positive reinforcement methods as the deep herding instinct is not activated by the balls in most dogs. Corrective training methods tend to cause dogs to lose interest in the balls.

Treibball is a bit easier to start then some other sports. You can start the basics in your back yard with little outside assistance. There are some videos on Youtube that will help you out. However, if you wish to compete in the sport at sanctioned events, you will need to take classes to learn how to perform the outrun and pause correctly. Even if you don’t want to compete and earn ribbons, this is a sport that makes your dog think. They have to figure out how to bring you the ball.

In North America, there are several organizations that sanction Triebball Trials. One even offers virtual trials for those that are not in a location where trials regularly occur.

ATA American Treibball Association All Dogs
CHU Canines and Humans United All Dogs
DSA Dog Scouts of America All Dogs
NATE National Association of Treibball Enthusiasts All Dogs
WIG Wag It Games All Dogs
WTL World Treibball League All Dogs

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