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OT- My Std. Poo Wont Play

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  • OT- My Std. Poo Wont Play

    So I adopted my Standard Poodle puppy Vespa a couple months ago. She was 16 weeks so shes about 6 months now.
    She is by far the best dog I have ever had. Don't get me wrong I live to love all my girls but she is just so sweet. She is so different than my Schnauzers and my ChiX.

    She likes my other girls and cuddles with them and plays with them sometimes or will play by herself but most of the time she is either at our feet or sitting beside us on the couch.
    Where I work we have daycare and I take her there and she kind of plays with the other dogs but again really would rather follow the people.

    I just don't understand why she wont play. I sit on the floor every night to play with my dogs. I throw the ball for my schnauzers and a stuffed toy for my chi. And Vespa just wants to sit in my lap.. I put toys in her mouth she drops them.. I throw a toy she doesn't even follow it with her eyes would not even think about following it.. I've tried to put the other dogs away.. Nothing. I put some kong stuff on a rope toy and put it in her mouth. She would lick on it but not try to tug it away from me.

    I have never had a dog who doesn't want to play. She will go get a toy and chew it a little or get a ball and chew it but shes not really even all that interested in the treat balls. We have every single toy imaginable. Literally over 150 toys from stuffed to tennis balls to kongs to rubbery toys. EVERYTHING and nothing interests her.

    Is she unhappy? Shes a puppy she should be playing. I don't want her being unnaturally attached to me or my husband for that matter. She seems obsessed with sitting in front of the couch in between us and if we are anywhere near the couch she has to obsessively sit there. If she moves its like she is anxious to go right back to that spot. I want to make her move but then she acts like shes in trouble?

    She is just sooo different from my other dogs. She seems so sensitive. My Schnauzers are BONEHEADS I adore them but they are little brats when they are in trouble they know it when they are happy they are happy. Vespa is like one solid state alllll of the time.

    Any suggestions?

    We are starting a group basic class next week. I try and take all of my dogs by themselves as I find it easier to train them apart with other distractions that aren't their sisters.

    /sighs I am just afraid shes unbalanced and I don't want that everyone in our house meshes really well together and I want her to feel at home.

  • #2
    hehehe you have a poodle. she doesn't want to belittle herself by chasing a ball like a "dog" Oh no...neva ! she wants to sit in your lap while the "dogs" fetch....such common


    • #3
      [Broad generalization] Alot of a puppy's "imprints" happen between 6 and 20 weeks, and you don't say if you know anything about her background before you adopted her?
      Might she have been an only puppy? Abusive situation? Socially neglected?

      Could have been so many things that went on (or not, good socialization) prior to you adopting her, that set the patterns for her behavior overall.

      More so than her "not playing"'s her general clinginess that would be of concern to me IF I wanted a bold and bouncy outgoing dog...which just may not be in her constitution.

      I think obedience classes are a good start and would definitely be a great benefit to her....they help build confidence, and it sounds like she could use a good dose of that. Good luck, keep working with her....she's not fully cooked yet.
      Often it's not what you say, but how you say it.


      • #4
        baddog said it

        You didn't know that Poodles are not dogs?????????? THEY know it, and they SHOW it, lol.

        Some Poodles play, but not a bunch, and not necessarily like other dogs. Some Standards are goofy and will play more, but I think that territory may be a boy thing more than a girl thing.

        And I don't care WHAT they say about their hunting background, fetch is NOT a strong Poodle behavior!!! lol

        So you have a princess that wants to associate with people, and she is fine with that. She may develop some games over time, but they may not be the usual. Enjoy! Stop worrying.


        • #5
          Sorry to the Poodle lovers, but Poodles ARE dogs. They have the same basic drives as any other dog.

          That said, I agree with Bernie. I'd be really concerned about her clinging to you all the time, her seeming anxiety when she's moved from "her" spot, and her lack of interest in play.

          Get a thorough medical check up. Pay special attention to joints and muscles. She may be in pain, not just unsocialized.

          Even my Oli, who is stoic and sober minded, will play with Whiz. Not so much other dogs, but he's always played with me, and he'll chase Whiz from one end of the house to the other...when his back isn't hurting.


          • #6
            I have to agree with Helly. A poodle is just as much a dog as is a lab, shepherd, etc. A dog is a dog first and a breed second. The clingyness could turn into a big ugly issue if not re-shaped now. Others may not like my advise, but for now, I wouldn't let her on the couch "clinging" to you. Have a dog bed or blanket near the couch and teach her that she is to lay there. When you want to cuddle with her, sit on the floor and let her sit and cuddle in your lap. If you are taking her to work with you daily, leave her at home a couple of days a week. Make no big deal about leaving or coming home. Just calmly and stoicly leave and same when returning. Basic obedience classes are great for a dog that needs some self-confidence. Get her a toy that requires her to use her brain. Tug-A-Jug is one of my favorites. Find a food treat she adores and then play Hide-N-Seek with it. That is a game that can get progressively more difficult as time goes on. Teach her clicker training so you can use the clicker to "mark" proper behaviors (anytime she is not clinging to you and doing more doggy stuff) Ceasar Milan books talk quite a bit about dogs that are unbalanced. I know many do not like his methods but they have helped tremendously with my shy, singleton puppy. She is getting more balanced daily.
            Lisa VanVleet, RVT


            • #7
              A lot of good tips so far, I thought i'd share that I adopted a rottie mix Murphy, he is probably around 6 or 7 now, I adopted him 3 years ago and he had no idea how to play with toys or other dogs. He would just carry a ball in his mouth but wouldn't fetch it. I don't know what his former life was like but it is clear he had no socialization and was likely kept tied outside alone. (he could spend hours in our yard in the summer.)

              When we brought him home we already had a 1 year old lab Jake who was DYING for a playmate. He would take a rope toy and try to entice murphy to play with it by dangling it in his face. Murphy would just sit or lay there looking pathetic. Then Jake starting literally hitting murphy in the head with the rope toy. It was pretty funny. Then one day it was like a light bulb went on in Murphy's head, and when Jake brought the rope toy over Murphy grabbed on! He didn't tug but actually let Jake DRAG him across the floor. But his tail was wagging!

              It was our second lab Mara that taught Murphy how to play chase and to play bow. It took 3 years but the other dogs finally taught murphy how to play. He plays fetch, tug of war, chase, he plays alone with toys even. I never thought i'd see the day he grabs a toy and starts playing with it.

              I guess my point is get that puppy in day care and other classes where it can interact with other dogs. Dogs are such better teachers of how to be dogs that people are!


              • #8
                I used to foster an aussie who didn't play. I don't think it was because she didn't want to, she just didn't know how. She was a real no person dog when I got her, tried to eat me the minute the breeder took her out of the truck! I had to keep her on a longe line for 2 weeks (in the house) so I wouldn't need to chase her (also to teach her not to chase the cats) She eventually learned to come when I called her ( thanks to the sheep I tied her to) and made friends with a neighbor dog. They never played anymore than just running and chasing stuff. If I gave her a toy she would carry it around like a puppy and even tried to get some to nurse. But she was more socialized with dogs than your poo probably is.

                I would bet she doesn't know how to play with you or the dogs and is clingy because she has been socialized more with humans than dogs. I would just give her some time and let her watch you play with the others, and keep letting her play alone with other gentle dogs. I'm sure she will come out of her shell.