Guide To Australian Shepherd Training & Care

9 Month Mini Aussie Not Interested In Playing Fetch Anymore

by Jen
(Colorado)

When she was 3 months.

When she was 3 months.

Our 9 month blue merle Mini Aussie is starting to not play as much. She was playing fetch very well with the frisbee and balls and then all of a sudden stopped. We keep trying to figure out why she stopped and to get her interested again but she just won't. She also used to love playing tug of war with her stuffed animals but she does not do that either. It is almost like she has become bored with those types of play. We did keep her toys out for her to play with when are gone and have now put them away and only keep one or two out in order to try and get her excited about them when we do bring them out.

She does love to chase a bird wing on a fishing pole, she loves to catch the frisbee but not bring it back. She loves to play keep away and chase as long as we are chasing her and loves to go on walks or runs. And loves to be trained with basic and commands like sit, stay, come, wave, high five, shake, roll over, play dead, army crawl, dance, and jump and twist.

We have tried to get her to retrieve and retrain the retrieve but she is not interested. Can I get her back to retrieving on command? How are some ways to get her re-interested?

We are not big sports people and do not have time to do sports at the moment but if we decide to down the road we would love to introduce her to some type of sport and thought maybe the frisbee would be it but she seems to be getting bored with that too.

How do you keep a mini Aussie from getting bored and tired of the same things?

Thanks for your help.

Comments for 9 Month Mini Aussie Not Interested In Playing Fetch Anymore

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Re-sparking interest in playing!
by: Anonymous

I am working through this issue as well with my 7 month old mini aussie, so I hope some of these ideas will also help you!

Regarding getting bored with toys, I also took away the majority of his toys and have been rotating the ones I give him ever 2-3 days. I went to TJ Maxx, Home Goods, Marshalls, and looked on Amazon for a few new toys that are different from the ones he has, and upgraded from "young puppy" to "older puppy" as far as toy size and softness.

I found that changes in texture (nylon vs fleece vs suede) have helped re-spark his interest, and more variety of squeakers vs crunchy plastic water bottles in toys was good too.

Also, puzzles are worth every dime! I put his kibble in 2 different ones, then have 2 others which make him think to get the treats out. He now has 4 kong classics which I keep stuffed and frozen.

Now about retrieving, my mini also found it was more fun to play keep away and not bring his ball or frisbee back to me. I don't have a fenced in yard,so we play fetch on a 30 ft line. I shortened the line to about 10 feet, giving him less space to roam. Sometimes he would still not come back, so I waited him out, and when he came back I enthusiastically praised and rewarded him with a high value treat of hot dogs or freeze dried liver. I also got him a few new Chuck It balls and frisbees, which he LOVES! The change in colors, textures of the balls, and what they do (strato ball, fetch ball, erratic ball, etc) made a huge difference.

The big trick for my pup is to have 2 balls or 2 frisbees, so that he knows another one is coming.

I hope this helps, and best of luck!!!

They are not retrievers..
by: Molly and Dave

Our Aussie, now going on 5 years old has never been one to bring anything we throw back except to play tug of war. We have to pull out the little can of treats (just kibbles for this) and make him sit and drop the ball/stick etc. Before giving him the treat we take the retrieved item away and then give him his reward. As much as I would like for him to be a Frisbee dog like you see in the park, it just isn't in the cards for him.

It could be your mini is simply bored. Try mixing it up, make things more interesting. Ours loves to invent new games with us and will keep his interests up for hours on end! One of the latest is we throw 3 sticks in the water and have him get "all three" and bring them back (to a huge reward). He knows the words "Gee and Haw" to help guide him to the sticks. It is a real hoot and he gets a really proud expression when we praise him for being so smart..

9 Montg Mini Aussie
by: Jen

Thank you so much for these great tips. I will try them with her. I have noticed she got bored with her inside toys so we are still rotating and that seems to help.

I have wondered about the different types of chuck it things. But was not sure and just thought of them as regular balls. Thank you for introducing the different ones I have not seen before. I think this will make a huge difference.

She is now back to doing frisbee and we only do it once in a while and change it up with the wing and a soft ball.

Love the idea about the sticks in the water too. She love water and will only go in on her own terms so have something for her to fetch will help get her more used to the water.

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