German Shepherd Dog Forums

German Shepherd Dog Forums (
-   Schutzhund/IPO Training (
-   -   Question about Tug of war that benefits retrieve vs grip. (

gabyeddo 03-15-2014 05:03 PM

Question about Tug of war that benefits retrieve vs grip.
Now, my dog is 9 months. She lost her gripe after teething. When she was a pup, she had tight grip and she wanted to fight. She pulled flirt pole all the time.
So, I bought the power of playing tug of war by Michael Ellis from leerburg and watched it. Michael suggests not to let the dog run around with the tug, but the dog should come back to the handler to play again for the retrieve purpose. My trainer tell me to play tug of war with my dog and let her win and let her keeps the tug and run around for better grip.

My question is which method should I apply first?
Because if I let her keep the tug and run around I might have difficult time to deal with retrieve. If she give the tug back to me, she will not want to possess the toy and loosen her grip.

Please correct me if my understanding was wrong.

Sent from Free App

Suburbandiva 03-15-2014 05:20 PM

I haven't seen the Leerburg video, and we aren't training our dog for any real purpose other than having fun, but for what it's worth we play the following game, and it's been great for retrieval, for learning "out" (or drop it). So - this might totally not answer what you're asking. :)

We have a great tug (it's the zoloflex bumi by westpaw design) that our 11 month old loves and also a very durable chewber frisbee thingee. She gets maybe 15 seconds of all out tug, and then we say "out" and she drops the tug and we throw the chewber. She races after it and drops the chewber at our feet and goes for the bumi that we had hidden behind our backs. Repeat. After about 20 minutes she's totally wiped out. We won't throw the chewber till she drops the bumi, and she can't have the bumi till she drops the chewber. Also - if she doesn't drop the chewber close enough, then she has to go back and get it and drop it close before she gets the bumi again.

She goes all out on both the tug and the retrieve, and because she values both of them so much we've been able to add in more commands to both before she gets what she wants. It's been a great training tool.

mego 03-15-2014 05:41 PM

9 months her jaws are probably still sore so I wouldn't worry about the grip

a little bit of walking around I don't mind but I also prefer the dog to come back and play with me with the tug - ME's idea is you want 'you' to be fun not the toy, so if she carries it around she should hopefully get bored of that - don't chase her, don't laugh, don't praise the carrying it around because tugs are not supposed to have value - you are.

Mine carries it for a second just out of habit and then prefers to come back, so I wouldn't scold or something for prancing with it, just don't reward it and it should fade away

gabyeddo 03-16-2014 12:24 AM

Still when I let go of tug, she looks happy and runs with the tug for 4-5 rounds. I tried to call her but she doesn't seem to want to give it to me.

Sent from Free App

mego 03-16-2014 01:33 AM


Originally Posted by gabyeddo (Post 5209266)
Still when I let go of tug, she looks happy and runs with the tug for 4-5 rounds. I tried to call her but she doesn't seem to want to give it to me.

Sent from Free App

mine did this for awhile too. I tell her good job for winning and that's that
I literally ignored her when she was running with the tug, didn't smile at her or anything, but if she started to come towards me on her own will even a little I patted my legs and encouraged. If she tried that thing where she gets arms reach and I reach out and she dances backwards for chase, I turned my back and walked away. It took about a week. Now she doesn't do it anymore and she likes to run right up so I can grab it. :)

Baillif 03-16-2014 01:55 AM

You need rules in your tug play, and once the rules are known this kind of crap isn't a problem.

What rules do you need.

When you say out the dog should out.

When you give a signal for the dog to return the tug to you the dog should return the tug back to you.

The dog shouldn't go for the toy until you release them to allow them to access the tug.

Break a rule? Suffer a consequence and stoppage of play.

I won't go into detail about how to create those rules that's the kind of thing Id get cash monies for teaching.

Once you have those rules in place it's game on. I can have my dog win the tug and allow him possession and chase him and let him play keep away. Most trainers would be like don't do that! Why the **** not? If a dog enjoys possession then let them possess. The whole point to tug is to reward a dog. There is value in possession for many dogs. As long as they return the tug when you signal for it back then everything is groovy.

Now will that help grips? I have my doubts. It's either there or it's not and if it is you find it in bite work not in tug play.

TheJakel 03-16-2014 02:04 AM

From watching the Power of playing tug, plus another webmail video Michael ellis has done, and comparing that with what your trainer has said... M.E. and your trainer have 2 different perspectives.

Since youre paying for your training, and work with him... I would follow his advice at least at the club.

M.E.'s focus is on engament training and building handler focus. The retrieve is an added bonus because it becomes inherent. In the web mail, M.E. says that tug playing is different than bitework playing. That when playing tug M.E. isn't worried about grip so to say. M.E. does say you can help with grip by playing tug by pulling on the tug when your dog has a full grip and stroking the dogs head gentl and praising, then relseasing. But the purpose of playing tug, is to build focus and re enforce handler engagement.

Your trainer obviously feels different where he wants the tug to help re enforce the bite work by working on full bites while playing tug.

lhczth 03-16-2014 10:08 AM

Long line. Circle, dog comes back, pet, circle, comes back, fight, circle, comes back, out, etc. Mix up the game, but they work on a long line so then they cant go away with the toy. Builds good habits.

Sorry, one handed typing.

All times are GMT -4. The time now is 09:55 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
vBulletin Security provided by vBSecurity v2.2.2 (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2017 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
User Alert System provided by Advanced User Tagging (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2017 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome