Question about Toys
I'm a first time GSD owner and we just brought home our new 8 wk old pup a few days ago, Lexi.
Our breeder has bred two of her most calm, low key, kind dogs and that is why we got on this litter. That is exactly what we wanted which is why we picked this litter. I am very happy with her temperament.
One of the things my breeder told me, and that I have seen online in training videos, is that the toys should be ours. i.e. we don't leave them on the ground with her, so that when a toy comes out it is only when WE are playing with her with the toy. That way it really is a great reward, and she is always excited to play and we are super special to her. So we have been doing that...and just leaving nylabones and a kong tire, and other similar items around for her on the floor and in her create for her to chew on her own.
She is doing a pretty good retrieve with her ball. I roll it about 5 - 15 ft away, and she will chase after it and pounce on it and push it around and then bring it back for her reward. She isn't as into tug, she will play a little, and she is already playing more aggressively then she would a few days ago, so I think she is starting to like the game.
Now here is the problem. It seems that sometimes she wants to chew on something soft. Most of the time she is happy with the nylabones, kong tire, etc...but every once in awhile she goes out searching for soft things, parts of the carpet, a robe hanging up, etc. Usually we can redirect her to her nylabone but sometimes, it seems useless like she just has to chew on something soft. If I put down a toy for her to chew on, she stops going after those soft things and is content with the toy.
However I have already notice that when I try to play retrieve or tug with her after she has had a toy on her own, she isn't as interested...she just wants to take the ball or tug and lay down on her own and chew on it.
So I am trying to figure out what to do:
Keep her toys back unless I am able to play, builds better tug and retrieve drive = her looking for soft things to chew around the house occasionally
Letting her have a few soft toys (whether different or the same that I play tug with her with) = less of her looking to chew soft things around the house, but less tug and retrieve drive.
Any help is appreciated.
I am not trying to create super high drive in her....I am not looking to do IPO or SCH with her, and we purposely got her because we knew she would be a bit calm, low-key or even soft, but I do want to build and keep a little drive in her so that I can use play as a reward and have fun playing with her.
Thanks in advnace.
First time GSD owner with a brand new puppy - Lexi