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Old Yesterday, 01:31 PM
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Annabell Annabell is online now
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Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Oregon
Posts: 337
Default Building Toy Drive

How have you guys built toy drive in your dogs? I know some dogs are more inclined to play with toys than others, but just in general.

Fable enjoys a game of ball or tug every now and then, but she is never really really into toys like some dogs are. I would absolutely love it if some day I could get her interested in playing disc with me, but I don't think that's going to happen if she never has the drive to get the disc. Is it even possible to build toy drive in a dog that has never really played with toys before? Fable has a really strong prey drive (like I have to keep her and the cat separated because Fable will kill her strong), so I was thinking I might use that to help get her interested in toys, but I honestly have no idea how to do this.

Any advice/tips are absolutely welcome.
Fable: 3 year-old ACDx
Unless Someone Like You Cares a Whole Awful Lot, Nothing is Going to Get Better. It's Not.
-Dr. Seuss, The Lorax
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Old Yesterday, 01:45 PM
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PerformanceDog PerformanceDog is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Minnesota
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Denise Fenzi has some books about motivation/building drive. May be worth a read?

With Chloe I am working on building her drive (but also working on other things as well, so my time isn't exactly focused on just doing that). She used to never play tug, but doing trick training helped her confidence, then she would grab on to the rope if I made it seem like it was alive moving it around on the floor, and I would give her a tug and then immediately let go (she won) and then when she was getting good at that I wouldn't let go until she pulled back a little after I pulled, and lots of praise while doing this.

Now she really likes to play tug, she is finally chasing after rollers and she enjoys catching things if they are tossed right to her. Trying to work on her chasing after rollers for longer periods of time, or to catch discs that are flying to her, but where she would have to move a little to catch them.

If she seems to have a lot of energy or be in a playful mood I will try and play with toys with her, or sometimes I will just initiate to see, if she is interested we play. I try not to play for too long, because I want her to be excited for the next time.

Hope that helps!
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Old Yesterday, 02:37 PM
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Samsonyte! Samsonyte! is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Seattle, WA
Posts: 275

If she has a strong prey drive have you tried a flirt pole? I have one with just a piece of sheep skin at the end and it's helped a ton with tug drive at least.
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Old Yesterday, 03:11 PM
krissy krissy is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Edmonton, Alberta
Posts: 761

Totally doable.

Summit had zero interest in toys when I got him, and after working with him for a bit he started even playing with toys on his own. Every once in awhile he even tugs. I never really promoted his toy drive for training purposes though.

Kili loved toys as a puppy but didn't tug, so I built that and now she's a sold tugger. She was also over a year old when I first introduced the disc. She doesn't like to tug with it, but her disc drive has come along really well. For both we played a lot of games where we'd race for it, I had bg parties by myself if I won, stuff like that.

Kristie and the Apex Agility Greyhounds:
Summit (BBF Dropout) - Retired from racing, not life
Kili (Lakilanni Where Eagles Fly) - Walking dreamer
Future Puppy - Coming ~2016-2017
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Old Yesterday, 03:33 PM
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BostonBanker BostonBanker is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Vermont
Posts: 8,596

I shaped Meg to play fetch with tennis balls and soft frisbees as an adult dog who had zero interest in toys. Mostly back-chaining, literally starting with "touch your nose to the ball". She would happily play chuck-it or frisbee for 20 minutes or so at a time after I trained them, although I never trained frisbee tricks or anything. She'd run and jump to catch them (sometimes even successfully) and that was good enough for me.

Mostly repeating what others have said, but be very excited, make it the Best Time Ever, and always stop when they still want more. You can try pairing the game with food if she likes food rewards. It was the only way I was able to train Meg.

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