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Lilly & Katie Play

The same day that Lilly played with Pitsch, our Borzoi friend Katie graduated from her first obedience class. She came in third overall with a score of 183 out of 200, which is tremendous (not to be breed prejudiced) for a sight hound. She came over with her parents (Pat and Bear) so celebrate and to show off her cool new trick (jumping through a hoop). As I’ve said before, there is something about Katie that Lilly really likes. She treats Katie in a different way than she even treats Ginko. Compare these videos I shot to those I posted of Lilly and Pitsch and of Lilly and Ginko. Seriously, what other dog can do *this* without getting a rise out of Lilly?

They kept up the fun for quite a while.

Then, they did this hilarious wrestling thing. Notice how Katie handicaps herself so that Lilly will play with her and not be intimidated by her size.

Of course, there is this — border collie pestering. Katie stole the ball and is perfectly happy to weather the storm.

Those of you with more experience in dog-dog relationships …. I’d be curious what differences you see in these interactions that I can capitalize upon.

Roxanne Hawn

Trained as a traditional journalist and based in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado, USA, I'm a full-time freelance writer for magazines, websites, and private clients. My areas of specialty include everything in the lifestyles arena, including health and home, personal finance and other consumer interests, relationships and trends, people and business profiles ... and, of course, all things pet related. I don't just love dogs. I need them in my life. Seriously.

Robin Sallie - June 6, 2008

These are very interesting. My greyhound makes himself smaller and slower to play with smaller and slower dogs. But he doesn’t do it with my other dog.


Robin Sallie
Burnsville, MN
http://robintinaysallie.blogspot.com/

Rox - June 6, 2008

Thanks. Yes, it is agility-like behavior. A piece. A morsel. We’ve tried playing real agility at home when Katie is watching, but Lilly shuts down. So, we’ll stick with things she thinks are funny, like tricks and play. Remember, Lilly doesn’t play in front of other dogs except Katie either.

It’s a shame I didn’t start her agility training with the trick mindset. Maybe we wouldn’t be stuck.

Lisa - June 5, 2008

I am enjoying all of the Lilly videos! Thank you for posting them.

Um… that hoop that Lilly was jumping through — jumping through happily with a huge smile on her face — Doesn’t it kinda sorta bear oh, I don’t know, just a *little* resemblance to an agility tire? 🙂 Lilly, doing a tire in the presence of another dog? :-))))

Valerie - June 5, 2008

I’ve always loved watching how some big dogs handicap their play for smaller. Toby does the same thing Katie does when he interacts with small dogs… all except Reba, our Shih Tzu who lives with us.

But wow… I see what you mean. She seems SO much more at home and comfortable with Katie than with the other dogs in your videos. I’d be interested in hearing what other people have to say too…

Rox - June 5, 2008

We do work on her interacting with me, when Pitsch is around. Play is hard. She almost NEVER plays with me in front of other dogs, but I often can get her to do little tricks and engage with me in other ways. But, straight play, is still illusive. What’s interesting is that so far Katie is the only dog Lilly will play with me in front of. Sometimes, if Ginko is occupied with something, she’ll play with us … of course.  But, Lilly will actually play fetch with me, when Katie is around. Sometimes Katie chases her or whatever, but often she just goes off and does her own thing.

Typically, if they play together, like that wrestling video, it’s Katie that instigates the play. Come to think of it, it’s usually Ginko that instigates play at home as well … maybe Lilly doesn’t know HOW to ask another dog to play. Then, when she does play, she just gets bossy.

Something to ponder for sure.

As always I value your input.

Elayne - June 5, 2008

I’m certainly no expert but if it was me I’d try to get Lily to play with me while the Aussie and his owner were playing with each other. The Aussie seems far more interested in the ball than in Lily and it might be a good opportunity to teach her that yes you can play with me while other dogs are around.

I think I’d just let her play with the Borzoi since the Borzoi seems to have a pretty good grasp of doggie language. Seems like she’d be a good teacher.

On the one hand it’s probably not a great thing that she’s bossing them and getting away with it. On the other she’s almost certainly bossing them out of fear and if she can eventually learn that she can have good interactions with dogs without having to boss them then that’s a good thing.

Just some thoughts, it’s hard to get the big picture from a few videos.

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