A spring pole for Simi

Discussion in 'Dogs - General Dog Chat' started by AgilityPup, Nov 11, 2012.

  1. AgilityPup

    AgilityPup Agility freak!

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    So I've been thinking. Simi is obsessed with her jolly egg. I think a large reason is because her egg is outside in the fence with her 95% of the time and she plays with it most of the time she's outside. She's built up drive to her toy to the point where I can stand in the door way, hold her back and say "Get your eggie, get your eggie!" and she's literally screaming.

    I've recently started using her egg as a reward for agility and while it's awesome and I love it... I'd much rather have her use a tug... so I got thinking and came up with an idea that I'd like to get some opinions on from everyone in general, but more specific the high drive and/or sports dog people.

    I am wondering if I could set up a spring pole type contraption in the fence, tie a toy I can get several of to (was thinking a milker.. maybe a holee roller..) and try to teach her to play with that, hoping she'd build up a similar drive/love for that toy as she did her egg, and maybe be able to use that toy in agility....

    We have a tree in our dog fence I can tie a rope to with a tug... but I'm just wondering how I'd rig the spring part so pulling on it wasn't so hard on it... and also if this is a good idea in general. Simi is OBSESSED with her egg. I sometimes wonder if maybe too much, but after seeing the effect it has for agility, I am fine with it and pleased with it, actually. The egg obsession takes some of the hard work off of Psyche and Crash cause she's not bugging them to play all the time, and it gives her something that physically and mentally stimulates her when I can't.

    So basically thoughts and opinions on the idea to do it, and maybe if letting her build drive on her one and obsess over things like this is a bad idea..?
     
  2. Shai

    Shai & the Muttly Crew

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    I did something similar but with a holee roller as Mira's yard toy. She's pretty much nuts over it as a result. But she doesn't care if it's that holee roller or a different one---she is obsessed with them all---so for agility I have a smaller one...they squish flat so can be stashed easily, and they actually hold up to tugging surprisingly well, plus have enough heft to be thrown if that reward style is preferred for a particular exercise. Pretty versatile, really.
     
  3. AgilityPup

    AgilityPup Agility freak!

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    That's what I was thinking. I want a toy that's pretty common and easy to use for agility. Her egg is common, just not so easy to use for agility!
     
  4. AdrianneIsabel

    AdrianneIsabel Glutton for Crazy

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    I have not found spring poles to build tug drive but its worth a try. My dogs either love it or not. Backup is tug spastic both on a toy and the pole, Sloan loves to tug and enjoys the spring pole only if its the only option, Shamoo prefers interaction tugging, Arnold won't tug unless amped and never on a spring pole.
     
  5. AgilityPup

    AgilityPup Agility freak!

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    She has a pretty high tug drive in most places, honestly. I can usually tug with her to beat hell, but nothing I have found beats her egg. I'm also just considering buying a smaller one, drilling a hole through it, and stringing a tug into it, but not sure.

    In the house, Simi will tug with me on just about anything. But to use it as a reward for agility, meh, not so much.
     
  6. AdrianneIsabel

    AdrianneIsabel Glutton for Crazy

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    It's definitely worth a shot, especially because spring poles cost maybe 12 bucks. lol
     
  7. Aleron

    Aleron New Member

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    I have found that many dogs obsession with the eggs or the big hard plastic Jolly Balls can get to be...unhealthy. Jagger has had a major obsession with the hard plastic Jolly Ball that actually transferred to smooth rocks or even chunks of concrete, baseball sized or bigger. I dunno, I guess I just haven't really known dogs who played with those in a "normal" way. All the daycare dogs who played with them did so in an OCD, glazed eyes, drooly way. So I'm sorta torn on if they are really a good idea or not, especially after Jagger developed a related OCD issue.

    What about the softer Jolly Balls with a handle? You can always build drive for other toys too. A couple articles by Denise Fenzi about selecting toys for training and developing tug drive:

    http://www.thedogathlete.com/pages/choosing-toys

    http://www.thedogathlete.com/pages/playing-with-prey-drive

    Adrianne - I'm very interested in the $12 spring pole :)
     
  8. AdrianneIsabel

    AdrianneIsabel Glutton for Crazy

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    [​IMG]

    This was a 10 dollar spring, an old chain dog leash, and a tension strap that was sitting in the garage. The toys are rope tugs and a POS leather tug that always bled black on my clothes during training.

    I made a similar one off my moms deck when I lived with her and again at our last rental.

    We built a hangmans pole which probably cost 50 plus couple dollars for cement (3 feet deep) but honestly it's not needed if you have a supported over hang, tree, or the like.

    I've had several spring poles and none cost much but my one learning curve was spending money for a shorter and stronger porch door spring is a better option than a garage door spring. :)

    This was the hangmans pole one, eventually it weathered and broke.
    [​IMG]

    And this was the deck one... the spring stretched and rusted with weather but otherwise it did it's job, I don't recommend a hard surface as such, it really wears their paws down and could hurt the dog if they fell.
    [​IMG]

    Lastly this is Backup on a hang over attachment. Again, crappy spring but the support held fine with no structural damage.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H6cjIZl46_Y
     
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2012
  9. Aleron

    Aleron New Member

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    Cool! I have a makeshift one in our tree that I made with a bungee for puppies. Roust and Savvy discovered it and both like it but it's definitely not strong enough, especially not for Roust. Do you hang the toys out of reach when you aren't watching them or are they always available?
     
  10. AdrianneIsabel

    AdrianneIsabel Glutton for Crazy

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    I usually do because it's a dangerously high arousal state for Arnold and Backup to be in if they're just outside to potty and Backup starts tugging, which he will 99% of the time if it is there.

    Like.. this.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=25nTKDat9M4

    I was looking for a photo or videos but basically I took a carabiner and attached it to a spring like this:

    [​IMG]

    and attached the chain leash, both ends attached to one of these (with hooks on either end):

    [​IMG]

    then a carabiner attached to the toys on the other end. (I hope that makes sense?)
     
  11. Snark

    Snark Mutts to you

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    Riley has both the large plastic jolly ball and the egg - he prefers the ball and while he loves to knock it all around the yard, he's not obsessed with it. If I'm not there to toss it or play soccer with it and him, it sits in the yard and he ignores it.
     

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