Proper puppy tugging - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 16 (permalink) Old 10-03-2011, 06:54 AM Thread Starter
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Proper puppy tugging

Ok so Beau at 11 weeks is not destined for schtuzhund but the tug will possibly be part of his reward for cadaver work

He already latches on and holds on with it deep in his mouth but I want to develop his bite properly so he does not rebite or get chewy and I want him to take it when I offer it (as opposed ot mauling me for it). He does not seem intimidated by me even tugging close to me face and will look me in the eyes when we are tugging.

BUT I know you can damage tlittle teeth and even necks playing tug the "wrong" way. i have also been bit by dogs now knowing the rules of engagement and getting too excited, uncontrolled.

Right now he seems to like a little leather tug that i have which is maybe 2 inches across/folded soft leater/no filling. But most puppy tugs I have seen are fatter, not smaller.

Please help me select the best tug (and toy progression) and best approach with a wee one.

Nancy



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post #2 of 16 (permalink) Old 10-03-2011, 08:25 AM
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I don't do much tugging at all until after teething, but both of my SchH dogs were sort of "sleepers" as far as wanting to tug. They weren't super interested in it as puppies and around 6-7 months the prey drive started to kick in and they wanted to play tug, fetch and retrieve toys, etc.
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post #3 of 16 (permalink) Old 10-04-2011, 10:37 AM
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Michele Ellis on the Leerburg web site has an excellent video out about playing tug. Highly recommended!!
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post #4 of 16 (permalink) Old 10-04-2011, 12:07 PM
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How much I play tug with a puppy is dictated by the puppy's desire to play/engage. Some pups have little interest in tugs until a later age, some never acquire the interest, and other pups like it from the start. I do not allow teething to affect whether I play if the pup enjoys it. (Obviously I don't try try YANK the thing out of their mouth at 12 weeks), but if the pups likes it and a little bleeding takes place and the pup is still energetic about it I continue on. If a pup is so unresilent as to let reasonable tugging give permanent damage....probably isn't a dog with the kind of temperament I want to see in this breed.
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post #5 of 16 (permalink) Old 10-04-2011, 12:43 PM
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Yikes didnt realize tugging wasnt good for pups. We play tug a lot. But lately I have noticed two sores on either side of her upper inside lip. They look like perfect circles. Is this from playing tug?
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post #6 of 16 (permalink) Old 10-04-2011, 12:59 PM
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I didn't realize it either.
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post #7 of 16 (permalink) Old 10-04-2011, 01:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jocoyn View Post
Ok so Beau at 11 weeks is not destined for schtuzhund but the tug will possibly be part of his reward for cadaver work

He already latches on and holds on with it deep in his mouth but I want to develop his bite properly so he does not rebite or get chewy and I want him to take it when I offer it (as opposed ot mauling me for it). He does not seem intimidated by me even tugging close to me face and will look me in the eyes when we are tugging.

BUT I know you can damage tlittle teeth and even necks playing tug the "wrong" way. i have also been bit by dogs now knowing the rules of engagement and getting too excited, uncontrolled.

Right now he seems to like a little leather tug that i have which is maybe 2 inches across/folded soft leater/no filling. But most puppy tugs I have seen are fatter, not smaller.

Please help me select the best tug (and toy progression) and best approach with a wee one.
A few things are key as far as I know about pups,
1. Tug should be presented in prey manner. That is, moving away from dog not coming at the dog (defense).
2. Predators do not get to capture prey every time, so throw 3-4 misses before giving bite.
3. Pup should win (meaning after you tug a lil, let go of the tug, let the pup run with it).
4. After session, put tug away.

As far as type of tug, for a pup that age I would get a few of the schammies from the hardware store. They are cheap and pups love them.

Gnash von den Sportwaffen IPO3x2, AD, HOT
Brimwylf Creasy BH, HOT

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post #8 of 16 (permalink) Old 10-04-2011, 01:22 PM
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Originally Posted by GSD84 View Post
Yikes didnt realize tugging wasnt good for pups. We play tug a lot. But lately I have noticed two sores on either side of her upper inside lip. They look like perfect circles. Is this from playing tug?
Could be but if the dog is having fun I wouldn't worry about it. I don't do much tug with my dogs while teething b/c my dogs got a little crazy and I don't really like the blood on the toys and carpet. If they want to tug I let them tug with each other, outside (which they all did through teething and still do). Also I had some issues with the teeth of my last two dogs, so I'm paranoid about teeth in general. It's not because my dogs are sissies and get scared to tug while teething.
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post #9 of 16 (permalink) Old 10-04-2011, 01:42 PM Thread Starter
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He is definitely *into* tugging bigtime.

My goal is to not encourage rebiting (or is that gentic? I know you want it deep in his mouth and he holds it deep if I hold it right but if he catches it with his canines it is there)....He doesnt seem to need a flirt pole to excite him...I can't even tie my shoes without him going for the laces, and the vet took pity on me and gave me a chewy yesterday because I did not take a redirect toy.

Yes, letting him win and putting it up, at least I knew that. I am assuming his grunting while tugging is ok too. Not a growl. Ok for him to wrap his paws around my hands? What about thrashing vs pulling stright back (once again depends on how I present it)

I have a soft, fat two handled puppy tug. Would that be best? He loves this rope that I have - is that ok?

It is one of the areas where my background is deficient with a working puppy. Housebreaking and manners, peice of cake

Nancy



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post #10 of 16 (permalink) Old 10-05-2011, 08:17 AM
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Just play tug with him!!!! You're making this too complicated. If he likes to tug, is having fun, just play with him. He will let you know when he doesn't want to. You already said you are not doing Sch so why all the worry about technique?????that's useless! He's a puppy and you are playing with him.
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