Does anyone play/exercise their dog with RC cars? - German Shepherd Dog Forums

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Old 11-24-2012, 02:53 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Does anyone play/exercise their dog with RC cars?

Aside from the traditional walk or socialization, I feel the best form of exercise is having a dog play fetch. It engages their mind, it's extremely fun for most dogs with prey drive and my dog will drop dead of a heart attack before she will stop chasing a ball haha. I also believe it's the most natural possible form of exercise and release for an animal that's largely a predator. Going on hikes and stuff are great too. I like to try and simulate nature as much as possible. Swimming as well.

Anyway, fetch is cool but there are a few constraints with it. Aside from training a dog fetch or teaching it, balls tend to get lost and broken, etc. and you have to physically chuck the ball and you can't control its course. If the dog gets distracted and you throw the ball really far, it's counterproductive to the exercise. Your shoulders may hurt after a while, can't throw as far as you would like, etc. I still play fetch but I'm looking into buying a RC car to exercise my dog. Dogs absolutely love to chase RC cars and much like chasing small prey or rabbits, they go absolutely crazy over it. The kind of physical exercise and mental calculation in chasing something that moves, turns, slides, stops, etc. is much more enticing and stimulating than just throw a ball or just walking around a block. (Though all those have their own benefits)

Does anyone regularly use RC cars as a form of play and exercise? I have a few questions on choosing and maintaining RC cars as I know that alone is a huge hobby field with various types of cars, brands, controllers, modification, etc. There's something made specifically for dogs but it's listed at $300 and it's pretty slow.
Some things that I would consider would be:
- durability: It would be great if it had a selection of very hard and durable covers or tops so the dog doesn't destroy everything internal.
- fast: would like it to be very hard or impossible for the dog to catch. hence, preventing destruction
- traction: ability to perform on grass. dont like my dogs running or playing on hard surfaces like asphalt so would have to have enough power and traction to have some speed on grassy surfaces.
- easy to medium maintenance and setup: I know the world of RC cars can go in DEEP, much like any hobby. You can spend $100s if not $1000 on upgrading suspensions, frames, wheels, custom engines, gas, etc. but I'm looking for something that is just easy to maintain and setup, durable. Gas is fine as long as there's nothing complex.
- fairly cheap: $200 or under would be a good price point if it lasts. If it fits all the criteria above and is durable and would not need replacing, it would be a very good investment for me and my dog. much better than $50 cars that would need replacing every time my dog destroys it.


Probably a long shot but I have access to a very large field that enclosed with close proximity to my house and wondering if anyone has any experience in this area? Much appreciated.
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Old 11-24-2012, 03:16 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Lol no clue, ill stick to frisbee :P
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Old 11-24-2012, 03:34 AM   #3 (permalink)
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How about a flirt pole? Probably a lot cheaper and you don't need a ton of space. My guy loves it and you can throw some obedience in with it. My husband and I made one with an old broom stick, bungee cord, eye hook, and a de-stuffed toy tied at the end lol I think it just needs to be flexible


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Old 11-24-2012, 06:09 AM   #4 (permalink)
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fetch can be a lot more than just throwing a ball and having
your dog return it. when you play fetch you could incorporate
"stop", "drop it", "drop it, come". you could throw the ball and let
it land. then send your dog after it. you could throw the ball,
let it land, send your dog for it then call him back to you before
he reaches the ball. you could throw the ball. when your dog
is bringing it back to you you could use hand signals to command
your dog. if your dog becomes distracted you use that time to teach
him how not to be distracted and stay on the ball.

i don't have a RC car. i wouldn't mind having one. i can see playing
with the dog with it.
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Old 11-24-2012, 09:01 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Raina caught and chewed the RC car we had. I would suggest lure coursing for prey exercise.
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Old 11-24-2012, 09:07 AM   #6 (permalink)
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I have played ball for decades and have not had any of those problems and $200 will buy me a lot of balls. A string or chuck it cuts down on shoulder issues.

I actually don't want a lot of twisting, turning and sliding. I put a baffle fence in my yard so the dog looses its visual and has to slow down and hunt for the ball each time. Had too many injuries from dogs running into trees, holes etc.
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Old 11-24-2012, 09:10 AM   #7 (permalink)
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If the dog can catch it and shake it, smoosh it, or slobber on it, I'd say fine. If not, kind of like a laser pointer in that there is no reward at the end. And what Nancy said.
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Old 11-24-2012, 09:48 AM   #8 (permalink)
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my gsd just watches my rc car he won't chase it my rotties chase it bark at it and try to catch it when they catch it they nip at it
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Old 11-24-2012, 11:08 AM   #9 (permalink)
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I have. And boats. Boats are the best
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Old 11-24-2012, 02:57 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Boats? Do they chase it in the water?


I actually think I found a good one, someone said their 75 lbs dog can't damage it and it has torque and speed. It's called the traxxas and it's a bit expensive but all the parts are replaceable for very little $, it's fast, it will allow me to engage with my dog in a huge field that a ball doesn't allow me to. I still throw fetch and play tug, it's not one or the other (as well as the flirt pole) but they're very boring for me and I want to simulate fast moving prey which I personally think is much more engaging and fun for the dog. I also think I can tie a small furry squeaky toy on the tail end and her chase that instead of the car itself.

I think i'll try a rc car forum cause I dont know anything about the various models and all the little differences. Maybe I can find one for cheaper, the traxxas is at least $300+.
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