I’ve been lazy when it comes to writing, I know. The past few weeks I’ve been very focused on building up my new website and blog for my Guide Dog school and the one I am working for (more info to come). At the same time, the dogs and I have been doing a lot of traveling!
But in the mean time, my dog, Mowgli, has finally started to play with the rest of my pack on our walks. It’s not that he’s an antisocial dog. My other dogs are just big, one-year-old rowdy puppies and like to tumble in a big mess around the fields.
Mowgli is more of a one-on-one dog when it comes to playing and he doesn’t like a playing rough with a bunch of big dogs. What he’s done in the past is calmly walk around, hang out with me or join in with the other dogs when they go running around at full speed (Mowgli’s a cattle dog and loves to run).
So I’ve left him to do his thing, because he doesn’t have to play with the others! But how would we get a dog like that to have fun with a huge playing pack?
The day came where everything changed… A storm came through with strong winds and knocked many branches down from the trees surrounding our meadows. The place was scattered with sticks and branches!
Now the one thing Mowgli likes more than running is running with sticks. So when the other dogs started playing the game where one picks up the stick and the rest run after at full speed, Mowgli suddenly got interested. First he would play with the dogs because the stick was involved (it was more about the stick than playing with the others).
Lately, he’s been playing with them without any sticks present! And not just running around with them, but wrestling and playing around, too. For a dog to make a big jump like that with a personality like Mowgli is a big step. So it got me to think about how this could be introduced to other dogs to become involved with one another.
Of course the dog we’d be trying to interest would have to not be aggressive or over protective of objects, like sticks. But if we had a dog who didn’t like playing with big groups of dogs, we might be able to slowly introduce the idea by bringing in something they’re interested in. For Mowgli that was sticks, but for another dog it could be something else.