yeah, it's more a case of teaching them that to stop the uncomfy ear pinching, ya gotta hold whatever it is that's being given to ya. Don't take it and the ear pinches. Take it and hold it, and the ear pinching goes away. It makes it black and white, and very clear to the dog that when it's told to retrieve, it's gotta pick it up regardless of what it is, or it'll get an uncomfy ear. lol.