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Discussion Starter #1
Hello

My little Mac is doing great. Sleeping in his crate through the night and then 1 hour of play and two hour nap cycle throughout the day.

I find though that sometimes his 1 hour play session doesn't match my free time and wondering if there is a way to get him to play independently while in the kitchen. Anytime I leave him to play he cries for a bit and then will do a pee or get destructive. He is 9 1/2 weeks old. He plays with his toys as long as someone is holding them or throwing them but once we stop he cries and is completely unable to play by himself. Any ideas on how to get him to play on his own?
 

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He'll start playing on his own naturally, but he's way too young to expect it just yet.
You have become the center of his world, and he's emotionally dependent on you at this stage of his life.
You have about 6 weeks to accomplish 75%+ of his foundation that will effect him for the rest of his life. Maximize this time. He's a little data chip waiting to be programmed.
 

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Perhaps it may be helpful to set his play schedule around his potty times instead of letting him choose play/nap times.

We kept our dogs in wire a wire crate and allowed them out
every 45 minutes to go potty followed by a brief interactive play time and back to the crate where they had 3-4 chew toys. I like Kong toys stuffed with veggies/apple/kibble/cheese.

This way we managed our business and Sam our V. :p
 

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He should be crated when he can't be closely watched. I hope he is not peeing in the house. If so, read all you can on crate training. A pup his age does require allot of attention and it's the time you can use to bond with him. :)
 

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It takes time. Lucy is now 14 weeks and playing on her own. Though, there are times she wants us to play and lets us know. She started this a couple of weeks ago. The first few weeks were constant attention and playing. Certain toys are now becoming more interesting to her, like her kongs.....thank goodness! Things that make noise keep her attention longer and uses lots of energy :)
 

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If you have short time slots to play then try mental games that will help tire him out. I found doing my V's basic training at this stage, incorporating sitting, waiting, fetching with the play worked well. Good luck :)
 

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I have to say, Rosie (now 2 years old) has never wanted to play on her own much. She's uber-velcro. Her idea of play is to bring us a toy for a game of chase or fetch. Maybe there's something we could have done to encourage more independent play, not sure.
 

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We really lucked out with our V Abby. She is almost 5 months old and has learned to play by herself since day one. We play with her every day, but she seems to really enjoy running around the apartment with her toys in her mouth just prancing. She has one toy that is a monkey fist ball on one end with a 1.5 ft rope on the other side and she loves to carry the rope in her mouth run and prance around while simultaneously hitting herself on the head with the swinging ball. Its soooo funny to watch.
We also encourage to her to play find and seek, to keep her busy when we are trying to cook dinner or such. She is getting better at it with some time.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks all for the advice. A bit of an update on this one and it is good. Mac like all Vs wants us to play with him all the time but recently he is getting better about laying down and having a chew on a bully stick or raw hide which is fine while in the same room as us so I can make sure he is safe on them. Also he now loves when I cook dinner. Sits on his blanket and just watches me with that great head tilt that they do when thinking. He is becoming more independant but still loves to be as close as possible. That is what makes Vs so great!
 
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