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Zeke and I get physical when we play. For example, we play ball off leash often. He'll run past me with his ball and I'll open-handed slap his sides as he goes by. He sort of prances in and out and I slap whenever he's in reach. He loves it, I love it. It's fun. I was thinking how this might look in someone else's eyes. Am I being to rough? Am I teaching him that my hands are weapons? He always releases the ball on command, comes when called, is very gentle with his mouth. He's a super nice boy and I pretty much worship him. Is it okay to play rough? Anyone else sort of slap their dogs in play?
 

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You dog beater, you!

It's OK if Zeke thinks it's OK and neither you nor he is being injured and are both having fun. (And assuming there are no other problems that have cropped up with him.)

Lots of dogs like to play a bit rough but they can't always figure out how to do so without hurting their human or over-escalating.

When I used to play a bit rough with Ash (I'd pretend grab his toes!), he'd go grab a toy so he could bite and shake and growl safely. Jubilee likes to grab my arm in her mouth and then wrap her front legs around me and pretend to beat me up (while being gentle all the way). Zeke's mom just looks at me like I'm crazy and goes to get a toy. :)
 

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Yeah, I am rough with Nikon. When we tug I play-kick him around. Sometimes I swat at his ears. Then I let him win if he's fighting me good and he runs back and jumps up to body slam me. B/c he's so big and strong I reach out and push him back when he does this. Some people walked by last night while we were doing this and laughed. He will keep running and jumping at me, trying to body slam the tug back into my hands. I also do this thing where I get him in a headlock while we're tugging. He just really likes to play-fight. It's funny because people look at him like he's over possessive of his toys, but he has never ever growled or snapped when you reach into his mouth or grab the toy. He *wants* you to try to take it because he loves to tug and "fight" over it. The toy itself has no value. If I ignore him he will start shoving the slobbered toy into my lap. He has never used his mouth on me, not even as a puppy.
 

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Hondo and I will play rough when outside. I'll slap him in the face and he'll try to grab at my hands/arms. I found wearing welding gloves saves my hands, and gives Hondo a source to grab and pull.

If you were to drive by my house it would look as if the dog were attacking me and I was running backward. Sometimes I end up on the ground attempting to hang onto the glove. It looks rough, but he rarely misses the glove.

He knows when to turn it off. He also knows he can play rougher with my husband then he can with me. He knows we play quiet games in the house. He knows when I say 'enough' it's time to quit.

I find it interesting that he NEVER engages with the welding glove game when my husband is actually welding. Even while he is setting up. Hondo totally ignores the gloves. Shows no interest. Doesn't run and hide when he starts welding, but will lay down with his back to my husband. It is only when we initiate the game will he engage.
 

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If he likes it then I don't see a problem. I have one who loves rough play and one who doesn't so I alter my play style to my dogs' preferences.
 

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Lots of trainers and behaviorists say this is dangerous behavior- but in my uneducated opinion, if you both know it's play then it's play. My husband plays rough with Stosh but he stops as soon as my husband calls it off. Stosh will do the body slam when we're chasing each other around but it's always well placed and not enough to knock me over
 

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Sasha came to me not really knowing how to play with toys or anything like that. She only knew how to play like a dog, and dogs play chase, they wrestle, etc. So I play chase and wrestle her. I didn't do this at first (because she was afraid of hands) but now when be play we'll both get down in pounce position and I'll slap her paws one by one, and then she'll get so excited she just has to zoom (a little tricky in my little apartment lol). Sometimes when we're playing I'll beat on her slide, or I'll slap her rear as she goes by. She loves it. I never hurt her and she almost never hurts me (every once in a while I get an accidental head to the face). It's so funny because when she gets really rilled up she just HAS to attack something, and she won't attack me so....her poor little snowman gets it lol! There is he, innocently watching us "fight" and all the sudden he's being scratched and shook and flung lol! Snowman lives a hard life.
 

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My husband plays rough with Dakota, and she gives it back and they both love it. He initiates the play. He just says enough and game over. She does not play rough with me as I do not encourage it.

When it is controlled I don't see any harm unless the dog is having other issues.
 

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Sheva gets rough-housed, too. She eats it up! There's a difference between playing and abuse. I'm sure everyone knows that...especially since you aren't drawing back a bloody stump when you slap, lol.
 

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Is it okay to play rough?
The way I look at it is this: My two dogs play VERY rough with each other. They slap at each other, jump on each other, bite at each other, take each other down to the ground.

It looks for all the world like they are seriously ticked off and going at it.

But they aren't. And they both know it's just play. Not only that, but if one of them accidentally takes it too far, they back off. No hurt feelings.

They enjoy playing rough.

Brody isn't always in the mood for the "slap" game, but when he is, you can see it. His eyes light up, his tail wags, he gets a big grin on his face, and he bounces around like a puppy. A 105 pound puppy.

Who am I to deny him that fun? ;)
 

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I play rough with Abby. It helps maintain her sense of humor and confidence. She has pals that she plays rough with and they control themselves very well. Today we invited a boxer to join the play and it started well but he became aggressive and started a fight. Play at home with humans helps (I believe) them to know how to play well with dogs.
 

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You dog beater, you!

It's OK if Zeke thinks it's OK and neither you nor he is being injured and are both having fun. (And assuming there are no other problems that have cropped up with him.)

Lots of dogs like to play a bit rough but they can't always figure out how to do so without hurting their human or over-escalating.

When I used to play a bit rough with Ash (I'd pretend grab his toes!), he'd go grab a toy so he could bite and shake and growl safely. Jubilee likes to grab my arm in her mouth and then wrap her front legs around me and pretend to beat me up (while being gentle all the way). Zeke's mom just looks at me like I'm crazy and goes to get a toy. :)
That's my dog exactly!! :)

I think he just gets confused - he's like OK I know I'm not supposed to bite or jump but he's being a crazy human again with his rough human-play... better get a toy so the rules are clear... ugh humans

lol
 

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I pound on Max all the time, esp. his sides. It makes such a satisfying thud sound. :D He loves it. He loves his "rowdy time" too.
Yes I know it sounds funny, but being chased and slapped and pushed around is his idea of a good time! :p
 

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i play rough with samson-i just always have to keep that in mind when a little kid wants to play with him. i would never ever leave him alone with a kid that was 12 and younger-he's not mean but he's not gentle at all-and i like him like that :)
 

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IMO as long as the dog is enjoying it and they don't get overly rough when you do it (such as using their teeth) I think it's fine.
My previous dogs loved it when we played and I pushed/nudged or slapped them playfully. When I first got my Golden she was scared of raised hands so I purposefully taught her that a raised hand is NOT a bad thing but instead means a nice thump on the side which she always liked (she liked to have her sides drummed on like she was a drum, and it made a nice loud noise because of her big chest heh). So that if I raised my hand up instead of cowering as when I first rescued her, she'd grin and wag her tail and be happy waiting to be pet. I wanted to get her over her fear and that worked the best to do it.

I don't really roughhouse too much with Bianca but I do give her playful shoves and thumps/drum on the sides once in a while.

None of them ever get too rough or start play biting or pawing me or anything like that (like Bianca does when playing with her dog 'friends') when I play that way so I had no issues with it.
 

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I think most dogs like to be slapped/thumped on the sides and rump. All of mine have. I don't see a problem with playfighting your dog, but I personally don't roughhouse with my dogs anymore... simply because I don't have the desire to get roughed up. I'm getting old. :)
 

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I think most dogs like to be slapped/thumped on the sides and rump. All of mine have. I don't see a problem with playfighting your dog, but I personally don't roughhouse with my dogs anymore... simply because I don't have the desire to get roughed up. I'm getting old. :)
I'm getting old (67) too. Playing with the dog keeps me limber.
 

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At one point when my current dog was about a year old, we were going at it in the front yard. I mean we were jumping and tackling and growling and barking and wreslting really hard. The harder I went, the harder he went. Any way at that moment when I was on my back and he was on top of me someone happend to drive by. They slowed down, stoped, started creeping forward, and stopped again and got out of the car and yelled "Hey, hey...". Well i saw them driving by and stopped them before they got all the way out of the car, but apparently the were under the impression I was being mauled by my dog, which was absolutly not the case! Good to know I have neihbors who care!
 
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