My dog is an addict and the ball is her drug.

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My dog is an addict and the ball is her drug.

This is a discussion on My dog is an addict and the ball is her drug. within the Dog Training and Behavior forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Dogs category; My dog, Addie, is OBSESSED with the ball. OBSESSED . Whenever she is around a ball, her entire disposition changes. Her pupils dilate and she ...

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Old 02-16-2017, 06:40 PM
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My dog is an addict and the ball is her drug.

My dog, Addie, is OBSESSED with the ball. OBSESSED. Whenever she is around a ball, her entire disposition changes. Her pupils dilate and she becomes hyper-focused on it. I can't even say the word "ball" without her freaking out.

Her favorite thing to do is to play fetch. I'll throw the ball and she will bring it back, over and over and over and over. If that's not feasible, she will settle for catch. I will toss it in the air and she will catch it, over and over and over and over. She will even play to the point of over-exhaustion. When we initially stared this game, I figured she would stop when she was tired, but she got overheated on quite a few occasions, so we've had to dial it back.

Her favorite place to play is at my parents's house, as they have a bigger yard. When she is there, it is all she can think about. She never settles down or plays with their dog; she ONLY wants to play ball, the entire time. She stays with them when I go out of town, and drives my mom crazy the whole time. That said, we totally enable her, but I feel like we need to stage an intervention, lol.

I don't find her behavior to be problematic, necessarily. More annoying, than anything. When she wants to play, she will be absolutely sure that we know it. Has anyone observed similar behavior in their dogs? Or is mine the only psycho?
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Old 02-16-2017, 06:44 PM
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Border collie comes to mind! They can be quite intense about it. My neighbor had a chocolate lab mix that was very ball focused. Some dogs are just like that! Yours definitely isn't the only one though, my grandmas BC Yoda used to fetch until he became physically ill. It's like they really are addicted! And he would fetch anything, balls, frisbees, hot dog buns, rocks, you name it he'll bring it back to you.
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Old 02-16-2017, 10:38 PM
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Glad to know she's not alone! Luckily she just wants to fetch the ball, or some toys occasionally. It really is a wonder that she doesn't make herself sick sometimes!

My mom likes to count how many throws she gets, and it's not unusual for her to get over 200 within just a few hours. I've thought about getting one of those launcher things, but I think she'd end up passing out from running after the ball so much, lol!
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Old 02-17-2017, 01:04 AM
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Oh I have one of those though Cosmo isn't obsessed with it so when he's tired he'all drop it away from me as a way to say ok no more for a minute haha

Have you considered teaching impulse control? :0 that way she doesn't hurl herself into a couple children playing ball or if someone threw one into the road? I'm not sure if that's something you'd need though, just a suggestion if you ever get bored and want to work on something! Lol
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Old 02-17-2017, 01:16 AM
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She's actually really good about only running after the ball if she knows it's for her! I figured the dog park would be a nightmare, but she couldn't care less about other people playing ball there! She's also VERY particular about the type of balls she likes. She likes regular tennis balls OK, but her favorite are the orange rubber Chuck-it balls. I bought a couple of packs one time that had an orange one and a blue one (but were otherwise identical in every way) and she refused to play with the blue ones! She might not be the only one, but she's definitely a little weirdo.
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Old 02-17-2017, 02:15 AM
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OMG that's so funny they're little characters!
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Old 02-17-2017, 09:19 AM
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They definitely are!!!
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Old 02-17-2017, 09:46 AM
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My pup is obsessive about her balls, they have to be away or she won't sleep or do anything but watch them, we waited 6 hours once. It's a very good reward for training though.
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Old 02-20-2017, 01:42 PM
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My dog acts similarly about the laser pointer, and that is why I will ONLY use it at the dog park, which I am now reconsidering because I cannot sit on a bench and read without him STARING at me waiting for it. He will not do this at home because I never use it at home, but as soon as we get in the park he expects it. There is a regular there that does the same thing to me, he runs up to me, looks at me then stares at the ground waiting for the light.

I'd suggest going to a place specifically for playing with the ball, and never ever show her the ball in a place you do not want that behavior!

I totally get the annoyance, it's not like Draco is nudging me or barking at me for the laser pointer, but I HATE being stared at! Even though he isn't necessarily doing something 'wrong' and he isn't being bad, it just drives me nuts :P
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Old 02-21-2017, 11:54 AM
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My lab is the exact same way with tennis or baseballs. Looses her mind completely. I have to keep all of her soft baseballs put up and only come out when we are playing. She will also over-exert herself if I give her the option. When a ball is out, nothing else matters.

You are not alone.
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