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Discussion Starter #1
I've posted about my newest addition in other threads, but I have a question about bonding. She seems to be reasonably connected to me, considering the time she's spent with me and her questionable background, but I really want to work on increased bonding and trust because I'm not sure she's ever had that with an owner up to this point.
I show lots of affectionate (petting, sitting with her, talking to her), the problem comes in terms of other activities. She doesn't seem to enjoy playing or walks, both activities I've used with previous dogs to develop relationships. I've tried engaging her with toys and getting her to play with me in a fenced yard, but with little receptivity. Additionally, she just seems to want to go on walks to do what needs to be done and get back in the house.
So I suppose the question is twofold. First, am I doing enough to bond with her and are there any other options beyond the playing/walking routes? And, should I be concerned about her lack of desire to go on walks? She is in heat now which could be part of the problem as she is a little extra anxious (has some medical issues which prevented her from being spayed, I am not going to attempt to breed her), but I just want to make sure it's nothing I should be more worried about.
Thanks in advance for any help!
 

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Training is a great way to form a bond with a dog and it will help build their confidence. Learning things gives them a sense of control over their environment, they do X and get Z.

I have no experience with dogs in heat so can't help you on whether that is influencing her interest in walks.
 

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Other than walking, dagwall mentioned training and I"ve found that taking a dog that trusts me to new and exciting places also is good for bonding :]
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks so much! We have done a little work on training and she does seem to enjoy it, particularly the treat getting aspect!
 

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Summer doesn't play but she loves training! I think agility class helped a lot and teaching stuff she finds fun.
 

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It can take a few months to get from the comfortable stage to the bonding stage. From what you describe, I agree that lots of training will help the bonding process...
 

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Training and time will definately help. I'd also suggest taking her places like PetCo, Petsmart, Lowe's, Home Depot, even when you run through a drive through of some kind if you're not doing that already.
 

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My Millie doesn't play very often infact she didn't play at all till I took her to a training class and the trainer showed me how to teach her to play and very occasionally she will bring a toy to play with ^^

She has a very cautious personality which doesn't help with my nervous personality I think she picks up on this as she is very nervous when meeting strangers.
 

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The only time Snowball plays (at all, not just with people) is in the yard at the in-laws, and then ONLY if he has a tennis ball or frisbee. He won't really do fetch (I don't think he was ever taught), he just runs around with it in his mouth and throws it/drops it and chases it, and then runs with it again from one end of the yard to the other... its hilarious to watch.

Training too - Snowball is hugely food driven, so anything where he can get a treat is a good time for him. Even if he has to put up with me and FI, who have no clue what we're doing half the time, lol.
 
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