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Discussion Starter #1
Bus has lots of toys, and a fair number of them can be used in water. However, I find that many of them aren't good water toys, and result in him either grabbing a mouthful of water with the toy when he grabs it, OR sucking up a bunch of water while breathing around the toy as he comes in. He's chest heavy, so his front end tends to sit lower in the water than his butt, unless he's really swimming fast (going out to the toy he's usually fine), and any added drag from pushing a toy puts him even lower. It's slightly better with his life jacket, but he still ends up consuming a fair amount of water.

Ideal water toys for him are fairly small (biting surface 1.5" or less in height so he can grab it easily), and sit high in the water for easy pickup. For toys at the larger end of that spectrum, I prefer they be soft so he can get a good grip. I try not to use any sort of ball shaped toy, as he nearly drowned (sinking, legs sticking out with head under water :( ) years ago chasing a regular size tennis ball (which he can pick up fine on dry land) that he couldn't grab, and has problems with even the small ones sometimes slipping out of his mouth when he tries to grab them. His front teeth including canines are worn mostly flat, so I'd guess that doesn't help his gripping ability.

Current toys we like are the chuck it zip flight:
, which floats pretty well and is easy to grab, but tends to catch lots of water, and the other day he scared me when he wore it like this:
and cruised blindly past the boat ramp where he was supposed to get out, then circled twice in confusion while I called him repeatedly and vaguely panicked.

Toys like this:
work ok if they float well.

Balls tend to do this:
when they try to grab them and don't do it precisely, which results in circling, diving, lost balls and in Bus' case, maybe sinking.

We often play fetch at the beach with pieces of driftwood, as it's usually easy to find ones of appropriate size and length, but I feel like there have to be toys that would replicate the feel and flotation level of a stick without the dangers of it. He's not picky, and will fetch anything you throw in the water, and even finds his own stuff to bring ashore if you don't provide him with something (rocks, debris, waterlogged sticks/logs).

Toys also have to be at least vaguely durable. I don't let him keep them all the time, or have chewing sessions on them, but we might play tug, or sometimes he'll rough them up a little before bringing them back.

Ideas?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks! He had one of those triangular bumpers and it worked fairly well, I think it's still around here somewhere. I haven't seen the water skimmer around here, but it looks promising- might have to order it online. I think the boomerang would work pretty well too, it looks "thin" enough that he should be able to grab it easily.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
The main problem with poly rope is that it floats because it's super light weight, so it's not going to go far when thrown (ask me how I know :) ). Second problem is that it floats, but fairly level with the water rather than on top of it, so if he's not above the water line (still on land) when it lands, it'll take him a while to find it. I'm also not too keen on encouraging him to play with plain rope, as he currently gets in trouble for "helping" with (grabbing and tugging) the lines on the boats/skis when we're trying to trailer them. There is the possibility that I could use it tied to floating toys so he can keep his mouth closed more coming in- I'll have to do some experimenting :)
 
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