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Discussion Starter #1
I have a 9 month old Mini Schnauzer\Shih-Tzu mix puppy and I'm home all the time with her. It's been raining for 3 days now and we're supposed to get 3 more days of it.... AARRGGHHH!! She is such a sweet and obedient puppy, but she keeps coming to me all the time giving me this sad look like it's ME who is supposed to entertain her ALL the time. It makes me feel guilty....is it just me? She has all kinds of toys and interactive toys, but she still comes to me. I work at home on the computer and she comes up a lot putting her paws on my legs and pulling me with her paws. Am I just feeling guilty for no reason or are there ways I can entertain her without giving her treats all the time. I try to limit them. Thanks for any suggestions OR letting me know it's okay to tell her "no!" and to go play.
 

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If you have a kong, try stuffing it with peanut butter, freezing it, then giving it to her when you want her to be busy for a while.
 

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If you have a kong, try stuffing it with peanut butter, freezing it, then giving it to her when you want her to be busy for a while.
This!

Also games. Make sure she is getting the mental/physical exercise she needs even while its raining. Taking 30 minutes a couple times a day to play with her or teach her new tricks would really help mellow her out.

Hide and Seek: When she isn't looking try to hide somewhere in the house and then call her "Puppy! Puppy!" or her name or whatever. When she finds you reward her with a lot of treats and praise. This will get her thinking and using her senses to try and find you. Also it is fun and teahces her the beginnings of a recall.

Food puzzles: Get or make your own food toys. A tupperware or cardboard box with holes in it works fine (just watch her to make sure she doesn't start eating pieces of these) and then put some kibble inside. Encourage her to figure out how to get it out.

Hiding food: Hide food or treats around the house and encourage her to look for them. I just recently bought some easter eggs on sale. You can put kibble in them and show your dog (I only do 1 at a time so my dog doesn't get too confused) and then put her in another room. I hide the egg and then open the door and release her saying "Find it!" In the beginning I needed to walk around and help her a little, but gradually start backing off as she "gets it".

Touch: When I want an hour on the computer but the dog isn't having any of it I do this. I taught her touch, which means "touch your nose to my hand". When I am on the computer and she is bugging me I will get half of her meal (1/2 cup of kibble in this case) and put out my hand, palm flat (which is a cue for her to touch it with her noise). If she touches it, then I say "Yes!" and throw a kibble across the room. She runs to eat it and then comes back. I just put out my hand and if she touches it I'll say "Yes!" and throw another kibble across the room. Keeps her stimulated, feeds her some of her meal, and let's me have a break on the computer.

Training: Train her to do basic commands. Sit, down, stay, leave it, etc. Keep it fun and positive. Kikopup has some good videos on YouTube that shows you how to teach them step by step. If you get those down do some fun stuff. Teach her to crawl or bark or dance in a circle. Training really helps tire out a dog's mind.

But do be sure to give her the time she needs too. Just because it's raining doesn't mean she doesn't need exercise and stimulation.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for the advice. I have about 3 Kongs and have mixed it with steamed carrots (she loves them) and part of her dog food. The hide-and-seek was good too. I just took your advice and we played about a half hour of "peek-a-boo" and she's learning to "stay" or "wait".....she loved it. It tired her out....but she's laying there looking at me which is what makes me feel guilty. I'm thinking she may just be playing me 'cause she knows I'm a sucker. :-D

I'll keep working on the games. Yep, she also has a ball toy that I can hide food in and I made one out of an empty peanut jar (plastic) by cutting holes in both sides and putting her kibble in it. She just tires of the toys very fast. I think I may need to work on ME instead of her. Again...... :-D
 

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Thanks for the advice. I have about 3 Kongs and have mixed it with steamed carrots (she loves them) and part of her dog food. The hide-and-seek was good too. I just took your advice and we played about a half hour of "peek-a-boo" and she's learning to "stay" or "wait".....she loved it. It tired her out....but she's laying there looking at me which is what makes me feel guilty. I'm thinking she may just be playing me 'cause she knows I'm a sucker. :-D

I'll keep working on the games. Yep, she also has a ball toy that I can hide food in and I made one out of an empty peanut jar (plastic) by cutting holes in both sides and putting her kibble in it. She just tires of the toys very fast. I think I may need to work on ME instead of her. Again...... :-D
I'm glad she is having fun! I know what you mean. It's hard to resist those eyes! We have also been battling a lot of rainy weather.

Also, be sure to teach her that play time is on your time too. When/if she goes off to do something herself (lie down, chew on something appropriate, etc) then get up and get a game going. If she pesters you to play just ignore her until she lies down, then play! You are rewarding her for being calm this way. Playing should be on your time and not demanded from you so it's good to make sure she can entertain herself those days when you aren't around, does that make sense?

You can also mix kibble with more enticing treats like small pieces of hot dog. It almost becomes a kind of lottery, "What will I get next?"
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Hey....playing on MY terms was a big "ah ha" moment for me. I've been letting HER dictate it....duhhh!! In fact, she's napping now. I think it will be ME this time who 'pesters' her! :-D Thanks a lot for that tip....and the hot dog thing too. I don't eat them, but I'll look for some chicken ones. YES....it makes great sense.
 

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Sometimes I like to hide a bunch of treats all over the house, and though she finds them all quite quickly, it's fun for her!

Also, when I'm lounging on the couch and don't feel like going on all fours to play with her, I play tug a war, but first she has to catch the flying blanket before she gets to tug with it :) She loves this game, and when I say drop it, she has to let go of the blanket (that's the rule).
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I like the tug a war thing.....I just played it with Missy and a big fluffy bath towel....but I made it a "where's Missy" game. She loved it. Also I took some toys & a few treats and put them in a box and made her look for them. She's doing very well with the "on MY terms" playing". How simple is that....I should have known. I've been stopping my work every now and then and getting her.....even is she's napping....and having a playtime. OH....in case you haven't guessed, it's STILL raining here and is supposed to all the way through Sunday....aarrgghhh!!! Did someone steal the sun when I wasn't looking and where DID I put that wood for my ark??? Oh, here's a pic of my baby with some of her toys. I dried her off first. Thanks for all the great tips for play. I learned some lessons with training in the deal.
:-D
 
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