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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hello everyone. We're new here, but we like what we see so far. Everyone seems quite friendly, so we're glad to be aboard.

We're Eric and Anna out of southern California, and we have a newly adopted (on April 1st) shelter dog named Ollie. We love him dearly already and for the most part everything is great. However, there are a few things I'm curious about...

One, his size. We were told he is an approximately one year old black lab and duck-tolling retriever mix, and he does look like it, but if that's true, he seems incredibly small for his age (please see pictures at the bottom, he's not much bigger than the chihuahua's in his cage). He weighs only 17.2 lbs! We know nothing of his history, but based on his personality we suspect he was neglected as a puppy. Could this be from lack of proper nutrition earlier on? If so, what steps could we take, if any, to possibly correct this? Any suggestions would be appreciated. We have him on a high quality dry food (this one: http://www.bynaturepetfoods.com/productpages/duckandsweetpeas.php ). But lately, because he has a case of the kennel cough, we've been spoiling him with grilled chicken.

Two, he doesn't know how to play. I got him a big tennis ball and a small tennis ball, a Mr. Wishbone squeaker toy, a Kong and a chew bone, but he doesn't really care about any of them. Except for a Kong stuffed with peanut butter, but in that case he just likes the peanut butter. I've tried to engage him in playful behavior, getting on my hands and knees and barking, or by biting a tennis ball and just in general acting like a playful dog, but he just looks at me with curious eyes. Anyone have any experience with "playing dog" and teaching one how to play?

The other things is, a black lab mixed with a duck-tolling should be really high energy. But he's so relaxed, it's almost worrisome. He very recently had his vaccinations, and rabies, and neutered, and as I said, he is sick with kennel cough. I'm sure that has something to do with it. I'm just venting I guess, because I want him to be healthy and get well. He's a really great dog, we've had zero problems from him.

Anyway, phew, wrote a lot. Sorry, but this is our first dog. Just like new parents, super worried about everything. Again, good to be here. If anyone has suggestions about him, I'm happy to hear them.





Err, whoops. I thought this was in the general section. Could someone please move it there? Sorry.
 

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What a cutie. :)

I definitely see the Lab and the Duck Tolling Ret in him. He looks like he might also be mixed with some kind of small terrier. (He's got that face) and that might account for his size.

As for his energy level, he could just be a mellow dog. If he's been to the vet and everything checks out it's probably just his personality. I have a Beagle/JRT/Doxie mix and she's the laziest dog ever.

Some dogs just don't know how to play at first because they've never had anyone toplay with especially if you adopted him as an adult dog. Keep encouraging him like you have been and he should eventually get it.

I hope this helps
 

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Ollie is so cute .... 17.5 pounds ... my 11 week old lab just topped 15 pounds .... I would guess breed with a small breed as well ....
 
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