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A question about playfulness


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Our foster girl (who we signed foster-with-intent-to-adopt paperwork) is not very playful, which we find a little strange given that she is only two years old.  Ultimately this is not a big deal, but we are curios . . . has anyone brought a young dog home who had zero interest in toys?  And if so, did they develop an interest, or remain indifferent to them?  We have had her 3 weeks and got her straight from a track kennel, so she is pretty new to "pet" life.  She is pretty darn easy in all of the ways that matter.  Just wondering if we will ever see a playful side to her.  We even bought her the ever popular hedgehog.  She sniffed it then walked away.  She has ready access to a wide variety of toys, and we try to engage her with them, but don't want to force or overwhelm her.

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It really depends on the dog, but most don't show a lot of interest in toys right off the track. She may start to show interest sometime in the next few months, or she may never play with toys. She may start playing with something weird, like cushions, or paper towels. Hopefully not your shoes! :lol Its sort of like the couch, some do, some don't.

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Try getting toys that make odd noises - the water bottle ones or really squeaky ones.  She's just never been exposed to toys before and has no idea what to do with them.  As stated above, she may or may not ever develop the urge to play with toys, but she will probably want to play with her people at some point.

Chris - Mom to: Lilly, Felicity (DeLand), and Andi (Braska Pandora)

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Angels: Libby (Everlast), Dorie (Dog Gone Holly), Dude (TNJ VooDoo), Copper (Kid's Copper), Cash (GSI Payncash), Toni (LPH Cry Baby), Whiskey (KT's Phys Ed), Atom

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8 hours ago, Remolacha said:

It really depends on the dog, but most don't show a lot of interest in toys right off the track. She may start to show interest sometime in the next few months, or she may never play with toys. She may start playing with something weird, like cushions, or paper towels. Hopefully not your shoes! :lol Its sort of like the couch, some do, some don't.

Agreed, hopefully not my shoes.  All the more reason to keep them picked up.  Funny you should mention the couch.  I have tried to lure her onto the sofa, even going so far as to put her up there, and she promptly jumped down.  So far, no interest in toys or the furniture.  My partner says the latter is a good thing.  I have a different opinion.  I love snuggling on the sofa with a dog.

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5 hours ago, greysmom said:

Try getting toys that make odd noises - the water bottle ones or really squeaky ones.  She's just never been exposed to toys before and has no idea what to do with them.  As stated above, she may or may not ever develop the urge to play with toys, but she will probably want to play with her people at some point.

We have a wide variety of toys that makes lots of different sounds, but she just ignores them all.  We are dog sitting a previous foster over Christmas who loved to play with troys.  She is a few years older and super confident.  I am hoping she will teach Bette the toy ropes.  But if not, that is definitely something we can live with.  

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Three weeks is still very, very early in her transition to home life.

Give her time and let her settle in.  Like Chris says...find something with odd noises like the honky pig. That was about the only one that perked Nigels ears up.

Our Nixon never ever played. Not with stuffies nor with us. 

Same with Ruby, Nigel and Sid - although the odd squeaky could grab their attention for a few seconds.  

However, Kibo (from 112 Carlota)  love love loves all the toys. The noisier the better!

 

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Nancy...Mom to Nigel (Nigel) , Sid (Peteles Tiger) and Kibo (112 Carlota Galgos)Missing Casey, Gomer, Mona, Penelope, BillieJean, Bandit, Nixon (Starz Sammie) and especially Ruby (Watch Me Dash) waiting at the Bridge.

 

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On 12/6/2019 at 5:15 PM, smt said:

 So far, no interest in toys or the furniture.  My partner says the latter is a good thing.  I have a different opinion.  I love snuggling on the sofa with a dog.

While there has been no headway on the toys, guess who jumped up on the bed today?!?  I must admit, I have been coaxing her, and she seems to be learning that there are big soft spots that await her.78709661_2815324841853592_20313228601605

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I can report that that we are also coming up on a month (this Sat) of having Bette in our home and she remains uninterested in playing with toys.  She is very affectionate and obedient, loves her walks, doesn't know a human or canine stranger, and I am really enjoying our cuddle time in the bed in the mornings, but so far, zilch on play time.  She will occassinsaly run a zoomie around the back yard, and once in a while will run after a tennis ball, though she doesn't quite know what to do with it once she picks it up.  She is JUST NOW learning that her buns are of the steel kind, and they can propel her up onto a bed.  If we could only get her to know that they will do the same when it comes to getting in a car/hopping into the back of a Subaru Forester.  Now that she has learned that she can jump on a bed, we are hoping this translates to jumping in the car soon.  We are using treats to coax her, but not a ton of success so far with that.  We believe that it is only a matter of time before the dots connect that she is in a pet and in her forever home.  If she turns out to be a dog who just is not into playing with toys, we will be a little sad to miss out on on the laughs that go along with that, but also relish in all the other delights she is sure to bring us.

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One of our dogs jumps on every piece of furniture we have but WILL NOT jump into a vehicle, including our Forester.  I am convinced that she will not jump in because it is a hatchback and the idea of a roof over her head, so to speak, causes her to refuse to jump.  She will, however, stand patiently for you to hoist her up and into the car.  No amount of treats or cajoling or instructing worked.  Thankfully, she is only 52 pounds and it is not our 80 pounder that refuses to jump into the car!  He, however, happily jumps into the car but will not jump on the furniture.  Go figure :rofl 

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Cindy with Miss Fancypants
Dante (Dg's Boyd), Zoe (In a While), Brady (Devilish Effect), Goose (BG Shotgun), Maverick (BG ShoMe) and Indy (BYB whippet) forever in my heart
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  • 1 month later...

I have had Stella over 2 years. All the toys I bought her are still in showroom condition. Occasionally,  if she has to go out, she will get all fired up and grab one and run around. If I throw it, she will ran and grab it maybe twice. Then look at me like I'm an idiot.  Just recently she has decided the couch is a good place and will jump on it to sit with me. Weirdly, she will stand at the edge and won't jump up until I say "left" left paw goes up. "Push" she pushes of and jumps up. I think she has me well trained. She has never once shown any interest in jumping on the bed, and loves to sleep in a cold, wood floor closet. She has multiple beds, but just likes the closet. I tried to put a bed in there, nope she will pull it out. We settled on a ratty, thin pad so at least she's laying on something. They can be very weird creatures. 😁

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Update ~ at almost 3 months, Bette is kinda, sorta, maybe starting to play with a few of her toys.  She is tentative, and seems to only like the teeny tiny ones that squeak.  Literally, they must be puppy size for her to show any interest.  She chews them until the squeaker is killed, then is done with them.  She, so far, is not one of those pups who fling them around or pounces on them, or what not.  She does want to snag clothes that are left out and drag them around the house.  She will also chase a ball in the yard.  So, there is a playful side in there, somewhere.  Just gonna wait and see if this part of her personality develops more.  

Oh, and re: jumping in the back of the Subaru, she will do it when we first leave the house if coaxed with a treat, but after a walk, we are still having to hoist her up.  So, work remains on that front.  The fact that she CAN do it, but won't,  is a bit frustrating, but if this is the worst of it, I will take it all day long.

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On 1/31/2020 at 9:38 PM, GreyStella said:

 They can be very weird creatures. 😁

Stella does indeed sound like she is her own girl.  And agreed, they certainly can be little weirdo's:crazy

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  • 3 weeks later...

We've had 3 greys...the first one never cared for toys but did play with our little dog for awhile, then stopped. She was a primadona (sp?) in every way. Our next grey was a bigger, much more confident girl who didnt care much for toys but LOVED to run and chase and play with other dogs. Our 3rs is still relatively new. Has tor. the stuffin's out of toys and completely intimidated our 2 smaller dogs with her rough play. Our experience  has been that their personalities all tooke time to shine.

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Another update . . . Bette has found her groove with the toys.  She has a morning routine in which she runs straight to the toy basket and grabs a stuffy and then zooms from sofa to our bed, back and forth, back and forth, bounding on them both, until she tires her precious little self out.  This morning, I must not have wiped her muddy paws too good, bc I had a comforter covered in dirty little paw prints after her zooms.  She will do another version of this in the evening, too.  It's so cute to watch her in action.  Also, we have had some warm and sunny days lately, and she DOES NOT want to come in when the weather is nice, so I expect she will be lots more playful in the yard, too.  Time to pull the trigger on this outdoor dog bed for our deck.  A girl needs a nice outdoor place to lay her little head.

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Don't forget, in addition to outdoor beds, she needs outdoor toys.  Indoor toys that go out, often get soggy and kind of gross, so they need to stay indoors and let the outdoor toys stay out where you don't really need to touch them.

I had a girl that loved squashed empty milk jugs.  They have that wonderful sour milk smell, and make neat crunchy noises when you bite on them, plus you can bang them against things.  That's what she told me anyways.  She would steal them from my recycling bin and the night before garbage day I would collect them from the yardand then she would start again with new jugs.

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  • 1 month later...
On 12/6/2019 at 2:39 PM, smt said:

Our foster girl (who we signed foster-with-intent-to-adopt paperwork) is not very playful, which we find a little strange given that she is only two years old.  Ultimately this is not a big deal, but we are curios . . . has anyone brought a young dog home who had zero interest in toys?  And if so, did they develop an interest, or remain indifferent to them?  We have had her 3 weeks and got her straight from a track kennel, so she is pretty new to "pet" life.  She is pretty darn easy in all of the ways that matter.  Just wondering if we will ever see a playful side to her.  We even bought her the ever popular hedgehog.  She sniffed it then walked away.  She has ready access to a wide variety of toys, and we try to engage her with them, but don't want to force or overwhelm her.

Ours was the same - 5 yo Ex racer timid chap who had no idea how to interact or play. Any fuss or touching and he would statue. 

We’ve now had him 8 weeks and he charges around after a squeaky ball, throws his toys around and wags his tail madly if we’ve been out (even for 10 minutes).

Its very slow progress, compared to other breeds, but a lot of patience and super gentle interaction (and lots of positive treats) has brought him out of his shell. 
 

Slow and gentle ..... she’ll start to learn to live a little 😁

 

 

 

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