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  #21  
Old 06-07-2011, 01:40 AM
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Re: Low energy owner, high energy dog... can it work?

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Originally Posted by critter View Post
Hi, those of you that moan about depression ought to try being Bi-Polar!, your either on a self destructive low energy downward spiral or you are absolutely buzzing, so wired that there are'nt enough hours in the day so you use the night as well, 3 or 4 days and nights without sleep of any kind is quite common!
Not to overreact or anything, but I don't know if that is the most helpful thing to say on this thread... it's not like people with depression feel better by thinking "well it could be worse, I could have ____." When I think like that it just makes me feel guilty for being sad when I have such an awesome life otherwise.

Also, severe anxiety leaves me "buzzing" and unable to relax OR concentrate on doing anything other than worry, and doesn't exactly help with sleep so I'm sure if we traded problems none of us would be much happier.

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Originally Posted by critter View Post
getting a dog was one of the best things I did, it diverts my focus from myself onto him, as one of my doctors said to me "a dog is a wonderful form of therapy, because you have to take his needs into account, rather than concentrating on how you feel all the time", very wise words that I have taken heed of and feel better for the physical exercise it gives me!, as regards exercising your dog, get yourself one of those 'whanger' things that throws a tennis ball, that way your dog effectively runs twice the distance that you walk!, the same can be done with a frisbee, good luck!. wayne.
Yes! One of the main reasons I decided to take Jack in was that, firstly, people are constantly telling me to exercise more but it was hard without a motivating labrador, and secondly that it'd be beneficial for me to have something to keep me occupied and stop me from feeling isolated. He is very therapeutic. (I mean, he also drives me insane with worry and with destroying my shoes, but at least he take me for walks and forces me to meet new people at the park.)

He stole a frisbee off another dog at the park once, so I guess he would like one of his own...
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  #22  
Old 06-07-2011, 03:38 AM
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Re: Low energy owner, high energy dog... can it work?

I know I for one would not make it without my dogs. I think there will always be guilt that you are not enough for your dog no matter the person or the breed. Just like mom guilt.

I'm off during the summer but during the school year I am gone 9-12 hours. I found a cute little boy who walks my dogs every afternoon for me. He is dirt cheap and as i found out a month or so ago. They LOVE him. I must admit I was jealous. I was home sick one day and when he got here my dogs went ape. They were more energetic then when I come home. Okay maybe not but it felt that way.

I also treat my dogs to a weekly romp at the school up the street they get to run wild and no one bothers us. I must confess that when I lived closer to it I used to use the cemetary. It was great all fenced in and no one complained (coulod be because they weren't alive ).

Anyway don't beat yourself up, do the best you can and snuggle him a ton he will be fine.
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  #23  
Old 06-07-2011, 05:24 AM
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quote mania!

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Originally Posted by Cassia View Post
I also suffer from extreme anxiety aswell as depression and I'm also tired almost all the time due to it, it's horrible I know.

I'm afraid a low energy owner and a high energy dog don't always work out well... that's why you have to do research prior to getting the dog to find out if it's needs can be met.

Maybe you could try throwing a ball with one of those those throwy things lol (I don't know what they're called)

There's no easy way out of it unfortunately, these excercise requirements just come with the breed and if you are not a high energy person, it's going to be a tricky one... but, getting out into the fresh air is good for depression etc

My decision to get him was very fast, from someone who had just got him from the pound but couldn't keep him so unfortunately I didn't get to select the breed. Actually, the woman who had him before me mentioned he only needed a half hour walk a day . I had done some research into labs over the week's notice I had before collecting him so thought that sounded far too low... so he's definitely getting more exercise with me thsn he would have with her! If I'd had a choice about breed I think I'd have gone for more of a couch potato, maybe smaller too.

I've bought a throwy thing (I call them that too, lol) and he loves it- maybe I'll put some pictures in the photo section.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 912142 View Post
There are loads of ways you can tire him out - you can either walk him or stimulate him or a combination of the two. It also depends on where you walk him. If you take him on the same route each day it won't be as much fun or have the same stimulation. So variety is a good way of getting him to exercise and sniff (which takes energy and tires them out).

On the days you have less energy - given that he gets one good walk a day, the other session could be in the garden - just playing around with him and a ball or frizbee or you could hide things in different places and set him off looking for them. Make it a fun thing. When you are finished with that let him sit down to knaw on a big marrow bone. You will have one happy lab after that!

You could take him swimming - great way of exercising and I am sure he would enjoy that.

You could try him out as a pat dog - that would keep him occupied and stimulate him whilst socialising him too (win/win).

Have a friend come round with their dog and let the two of them play around in the garden.
A pat dog- is that a dog that visits resthomes and places like that? I'd like that a lot, but he's definitely not calm enough or well-mannered enough to do it... yet.

Quote:
Originally Posted by pearltheplank View Post
Mind games will help to wear him out. Many often forget that brain stimulation can be very taxing. Hide toys, food etc for him to find. There are also many 'games' you can buy that are like problem solving for dogs. Or even just a few extra training sessions dotted throughout the day. Good luck
Quote:
Originally Posted by Malmum View Post
A ball chucker is a great idea if he has good recall or a long line lead to give him more freedom when out and more exercise.
All good ideas, I'll try more games and mental challenges with him. As for throwing a ball, my friend had a good idea for doing it safely while he still has unreliable recall- the local park has tennis courts that are spacious, fully fenced, and rarely used.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Malmum View Post
I know it's hard but sometimes if you make yourself do something your depression is easier to deal with, that's what I found when I had it years ago, the worse thing I found was to be idle, gave me too much time to think about depressing things.
Hopefully you new medication will help you and your dog make you make that extra effort too and help you beat this awful illness.

Good luck.
true.
Thank you

Quote:
Originally Posted by Twiggy View Post
Yes it can work and don't beat yourself up.
A chuckit, so that's what those things are called.

He loves playing with other dogs so I really should organize playdates. Time to overcome my social awkwardness...

It's always nice to hear that other people have problems with anxiety and whatnot too, makes it less lonely.

We live a walk's distance from the beach, would it be safe for him to swim there? I have some reservations about the thought of him getting washed away.

Guess I could tie him to a long rope.
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  #24  
Old 06-07-2011, 06:52 AM
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Re: Low energy owner, high energy dog... can it work?

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Originally Posted by tashaA View Post
But you just gotta exercise them or else they will become destructive and worse! LOL. Honestly when I am inside with her, I am usually miserable. But when I take her out, I feel better. It's also pretty good weather to walk them in. Plus it'll tire them out! I do some brain games with her. Usually some training and that tires her out aswell.
Anemia sucks... it always seems to come back... when you need energy the most.

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Originally Posted by sheriffjonny View Post
I was gonna suggest the ball slinger thingy aswell, but everybody else seems to have had the same idea. Failing that have you had a look to see if there are any dog walking services in your area?
I'm definitely considering it- there's one lady I see around and she always has different dogs with her, so she must be a dogwalker...

Quote:
Originally Posted by astara View Post
hi, please don't beat yourself up there are ways round this without worrying yourself here a few suggestions tennis balls are great for most dogs buy a chuckit get him on a field and they love it. can you get someone to walk ur dog on the days u feel you can't swimming is a good way of tiring him out have you thought of cycling with your dog it being out door can help with depression i speak from experiece if you have a garden take a chair outside you can sit and throw a ball don't dispare it can work
Cycling would be a good idea, but I think he'd probably knock me off it... I've also had roller blading suggested, but the problem with both of these is he is difficult to walk, pulls a lot, and it could definitely result in a hilarious but dangerous situation where he drags me, on wheels, 400 kilometres before someone stops us... must work on training.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Goblin View Post
Other alternatives include flirt poles or swing poles. Flirt pole is simply a bit like a fishing rod with something at the end of the line the dog chases. You can stand still moving it while the dogs chases the end. Easily found, including suggestions on how to make your own through google. One you tube video is YouTube - ‪domino on the flirt pole and how i built mine‬‏
Sounds a bit like a carrot on a stick type thing. I will definitely try and fashion myself a flirt pole.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Leah84 View Post
i found that without a dog in my life i tend to let the illness get the better of me whereas my dogs are a reason for me to push myself as i have no choice but to exercise/play with them - it`s THE best form of therapy out there and i`m pretty sure any doc would also agree as exercise combined with the stimulation of playing with the dog is highly beneficial and actually elevates your mood as well as helps to focus more clearly and diffuse stressful situations.
I kind of think of him as my therapy dog.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jackie99 View Post
As others have said if you really struggle because of your health issues and have a garden do some mental stimulation games to tire him out which the dog can enjoy just as equally sometimes, it keeps their mind ticking over, mine enjoys me hiding tasty treats all over the garden then releasing him to sniff them out or even hire a dog walker or arrange for a friend/family to walk him so you get into a bit of a routine and have your time off as well.
I really should utilize the garden more in exercising and entertaining him, I think. Also, I do have family members tha can help so really should tempt them over with cookies more...

Quote:
Originally Posted by 5rivers79 View Post
What i find with depression is people focus on the negative things more. Like in this situation you are focusing on how will i fulfil a high energy dogs needs??

Thats where the problem lies..you got to stop thinking about how this how that i cant do this i cant do that.

Enjoy your dog because honestly he will make you feel better about yourself. Enjoy your walks with him if it makes you tired then so be it, you will sleep better the more tired you are. Having him will mean your focus will be on him, meeting his needs and doing whats right for him. This will give you less time to think of the things that make you depressed.

If you just do what you need to do you will find you dont have the time to sit and be depressed and that should make you a happier person
I appreciate your comment... while I wouldn't say depression is all about sitting around consciously thinking about sad things I agree that the distraction and the activity can only be beneficial. And my negative thinking is a problem, it's true. Working on it...

--------

Just to be clear, exercising him significantly less isn't really an option no matter how I feel- I'd feel terribly guilty if I was doing less than the time I've set myself- though on occasions when he got less (like when I had flu recently) he was pretty well behaved on just 40 minutes a day of exercise.

But... I'm going to force myself to do this. And it's good, because he's forcing me to do things. I actually have to get out of bed nowadays.
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  #25  
Old 06-07-2011, 06:59 AM
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Re: Low energy owner, high energy dog... can it work?

I have a high energy Collie X and I am not a particularly fit/high energy person (although fitter now than I was when I got her 2 years ago!)
She is superb off lead so that is how she gets all the exercise she needs plus she loves to play fetch which wears her out.
We are always playing and she gets lots of mental stimulation too.
She is perfect for me
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Old 06-07-2011, 07:41 AM
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Re: Low energy owner, high energy dog... can it work?

As an owner of an extremely high energy dog Iím constantly looking for new ways of tiring him out. There are a lot of thing you can do that will tire your dog out while not leaving you to knackered. Some of these may not be appropriate for all breeds but Iíll leave it up to you to decide

Flirt poles: basically are like a fishing rode with a toy tied to the end, you can get your dog to chase after the toy and keep it just out of their reach. Its great exercise for the dog.

Spring poles: these might not be suitable for all dogs and some people may frown at them. Its basically a toy attached to a spring/inner tube/bungee cord etc etc which in turn is attached to a high point like a tree branch, your dog bites the toy and can pull on it. some people think that it encourages aggression but I think this is rubbish.

Weight pulling: again this may not be suitable for all dogs, but some really enjoy it, and so long as you keep it fun, and donít overdo it it can really be good exercise for your dog.

Cycling: if you have a bike itís not to much hard work to cycle for a couple of miles and itís a really good work out for your dog to run for that kind of distance.

Playing catch: itís an obvious one but can help to wear your dog out particularly if you do it over some rough ground or in water

Playing with other dogs. If you can meet some other dog owners, there is nothing like having to dogs together to where each other out.
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Old 06-07-2011, 08:25 AM
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Re: Low energy owner, high energy dog... can it work?

There have been some great suggestions. How about going out more often for a walk. Could you fit in a couple of other walks in the day. When I lived in a town my dogs had a long walk first thing in the morning, another long walk around lunch time (depending on my job) and then one at tea time and one last thing at night. When I had boarding kennels I used to walk the dogs 4 times a day too to break the day up for them.
How about joining your local dog training club and going along to classes - that way you will make doggy friends as well as occupying your dogs mind and then your extra walks can be training sessions doing your homework.
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  #28  
Old 06-07-2011, 09:09 AM
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Re: Low energy owner, high energy dog... can it work?

Sorry to mention his name(!) but Caeser Milan puts high energy dogs on a treadmill - never tried it myself but has anyone tried this? (could be a good idea for when the weather is really bad?)
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Old 06-07-2011, 09:16 AM
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Re: Low energy owner, high energy dog... can it work?

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Originally Posted by cbrookman View Post
Sorry to mention his name(!) but Caeser Milan puts high energy dogs on a treadmill - never tried it myself but has anyone tried this? (could be a good idea for when the weather is really bad?)
Yeh but then Caeser Milan is bascially a moron
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Old 06-07-2011, 09:23 AM
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Re: Low energy owner, high energy dog... can it work?

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Originally Posted by julesmcc View Post
Yeh but then Caeser Milan is bascially a moron
I wouldn't say ALL of the stuff he does is stupid... the treadmill is a great idea in addition to normal walks/run etc.
He does allot of things that we don't agree with but then again does some things that are a very good idea.
He's not a bad person (I'm not defending some of his techniques!!) but he does suggest allot of good things allong with the bad.

ONCE AGAIN... NOT DEFENDING MR.MILLAN... just saying there are one or two things he teaches and suggests that aren't a bad idea lol!
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Last edited by Cassia; 06-07-2011 at 09:29 AM..
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