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Getting dog to play

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Cat   

Just as a bit of a background - Hamish is 12 and Yuna is nearly 11.  

 

Yuna's idea of play is sumo slamming and tackling Hamish and they'd roughhouse running around and crashing into each other and play biting.  Yuna isn't interested in balls.  We'd throw them for Hamish and she'd chase him.  

 

Due to a combination of osteoarthritis and lack of muscle tone due to prednisone and being unwell lately Hamish isn't up to roughhousing.    He thinks she is still a puppy but Yuna has knocked him over a few times when they have played.  I have tried to play with Yuna,  I got her to tug on a toy a bit but she isn't really interested in me. 

 

Just wondered if anyone had any ideas for things I could do to get her more interested in playing with me to try and make up for Hamish not being able to? 

 

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Tassie   

I'd suggest having a long tug toy .. preferably one with some bungee and some fur bits .. and having Yuna chase you  to catch hold of the toy .. then have a good game of tug .. letting her win, then you win, then she pulls you .. until you're ready to end it (temporarily) .. make sure she will give you the tug … wait a moment .. then start the game all over again.     You will need to be pretty excited and genuinely active in this .. not boring.  You will see the value for you and the game growing.  Once that's grown some, you can play things like hide and seek .. distract her, then hide, then as she finds you either have a game, or run away from her just as she's getting to you .. then have a game.  Hopefully that will take the pressure off poor Hamish.

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ish   

You could try one of the big hard plastic balls like a kazoo roll a ball or Aussie dog enduro ball - dogs seem to be all or nothing about them though. If they like them, they smack them and push them around, tunnel them between their legs, dig on top of them etc because they can’t pick them up with their mouths. They’re best with a bit of space to play. My dogs go crazy for them and they’re exhausted after a good session because it’s an all body workout 

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Diva   

Try lying on the ground to initiate the game. Mine find it irresistible 

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Like others have said, you'll have to persist and act like it's soooo exciting.

 

If she's treat/food motivated try a couple of IQ puzzles too. :) Great for oldies to keep their brains active (could be good for Hamish too if he can't roughhouse anymore)

 

There's also toys 'crackle toys'. A real hit here. "Crunchy Duck" especially, got chewed and carried around until he started to fall apart. 

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Tassie   
2 hours ago, Diva said:

Try lying on the ground to initiate the game. Mine find it irresistible 

Yes .. or kneeling and bending over and hiding your face while making funny noises .. cat meows .. that can treally get them started trying to find your face and the source of the noise.

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leac1801   

If you can get her to tug, let her win when she's trying her hardest. Look away and give the tug (not necessarily let go, but take the pressure off) and be a bit 'Argh ! You got it !' They will try even harder, and become more engaged. Michael Ellis, Leerburg, Larry Krohn etc have some good youtube videos about playing tug. 

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