So, I know that our dog Jack is not the most normal of dogs. He has an interesting personality, and certainly fits right in to our small family. When we first got him, if we bounced a ball near him, he would flinch and leave the room, quickly. I'm thinking that this is probably because he received some abuse from his previous owners. How you could hit a dog, I really don't know. Not only was he afraid of the ball, but his list of fears included the broom, the mop, Ammon's guitar, the pressure cooker (when it starts to steam), Ammon's air compressor (though it is really loud, so it's understandable), and he only recently started coming into the garage when we called him. Even when he finally comes into the garage he skulks about as if we are going to suddenly start beating him. It's really sad, and nearly breaks my heart every time! Well, he has slowly started to warm up to the idea of playing with a ball. BUT...he is as unlike any other dog I have met. He will not chase a ball if he is standing next to me and I just throw it for him to chase. He just looks at it and then looks at me as if to say, "Do you really expect me to go that far for a silly ball that you are just going throw again when I bring it back?" He will chase the ball, however, if he is already running, and you throw it past him. When he sees it go by, his killer instincts must kick in and he pounces on it. Today, though, he has been enjoying playing with his new tennis ball that he got for Christmas (thanks Allyssa, he really likes it!). He will grab it and start chewing on it, when it will suddenly bounce across the floor and he will chase after it, batting it with his paws and pouncing on it yet again. Our rugs are heaps of material rather than floor coverings, and more than a few things have been knocked off our small end table.
So, I am just wondering, do most dogs chase balls like this, batting and pouncing, or do they prefer the chase and retrieve method?