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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hi All -

Over the past few weeks I've been posting my experience with Parvo. My puppy that had it, Oliver, is doing pretty good after 9 days of illness and 5 days in the hospital and a few days of cooking him bone broth soup, chicken breasts, hamburger, etc. Now he's starting to get back to the puppy that he was when we picked him up (I only had 2 1/2 days before he came down with the illness).

Let me tell you - this puppy is something else. We chose him because of his outgoing personality. I had a black and white American working line boy that lived to be 13. He was similar in terms of intelligence, but OMG, Oliver is SOOOO much more assertive and confident. Rudy was apprehensive and aloof. Not Oliver. He is in your face. I'm not too worried because he seems very trainable and I am pretty demanding of my dogs. I really work with them and demand obedience.

I've been playing tug with him, something I haven't done with my previous GSDs, and I'm wondering if that is a mistake. I've heard both positive and negative experiences. With an assertive dog (not aggressive, but strong willed), does tug make the dog more prone to aggression?

I'm starting obedience with him in the fall, and we're already working on heal, sit, stand, and his hardest subject, 'leave it' (a lot of homework needed there). I was going to try and use tug as a positive reward mechanism and to teach 'drop it' and 'leave it', besides just food with a marker word, (my usual tack).

Any thoughts on this?

I'm posting a Google Photo link, in case anyone's interested in watching him run around a bit :)
Sorry, I'm not a videographer, but just some phone captures I did in the back yard.

By the way, he's a TERRIBLE ankle biter... which I told him that is reserved for chihuahuas, but alas, he's not convinced.

https://photos.app.goo.gl/my4sytVS7nctUSQx5

Mark
 

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Nice to see him without all his "stuff" attached! I have a picture of Shadow chewing on my ankle at just a few weeks old, I can relate.

He is a cutie for sure!
 

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Something I've learned about tug. The dogs ears are back flatter they go the more comfortable they are with the game(less conflict). If your dog gives the tug back without conflict better they are at the game. Teach your dog to love the game and invite you, encourage you to play. The point is..is it's just a fun game. Teach the dog the game. It's the same as keep away. I was told never play keep away with a dog. Well it's my dogs recent favorite game. It does not make him play keeps away when it matters it's just a way we play and my kids and other people play in the family. Avoid teaching conflict. One of the best things I did was teach my dog to things with me freely. When we play its PLAY. It's all fun and games. 🙂
 

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Hi All -

Over the past few weeks I've been posting my experience with Parvo. My puppy that had it, Oliver, is doing pretty good after 9 days of illness and 5 days in the hospital and a few days of cooking him bone broth soup, chicken breasts, hamburger, etc. Now he's starting to get back to the puppy that he was when we picked him up (I only had 2 1/2 days before he came down with the illness).

Let me tell you - this puppy is something else. We chose him because of his outgoing personality. I had a black and white American working line boy that lived to be 13. He was similar in terms of intelligence, but OMG, Oliver is SOOOO much more assertive and confident. Rudy was apprehensive and aloof. Not Oliver. He is in your face. I'm not too worried because he seems very trainable and I am pretty demanding of my dogs. I really work with them and demand obedience.

I've been playing tug with him, something I haven't done with my previous GSDs, and I'm wondering if that is a mistake. I've heard both positive and negative experiences. With an assertive dog (not aggressive, but strong willed), does tug make the dog more prone to aggression?

I'm starting obedience with him in the fall, and we're already working on heal, sit, stand, and his hardest subject, 'leave it' (a lot of homework needed there). I was going to try and use tug as a positive reward mechanism and to teach 'drop it' and 'leave it', besides just food with a marker word, (my usual tack).

Any thoughts on this?

I'm posting a Google Photo link, in case anyone's interested in watching him run around a bit :)
Sorry, I'm not a videographer, but just some phone captures I did in the back yard.

By the way, he's a TERRIBLE ankle biter... which I told him that is reserved for chihuahuas, but alas, he's not convinced.

https://photos.app.goo.gl/my4sytVS7nctUSQx5

Mark
In my experience, playing tug builds confidence rather than aggression. It may increase his prey drive slightly, but it won't inherently make him aggressive. It'll also help with the teething. I rather have a dog playing tug than chewing on anything he can get his paws on.
 

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Tug has always been a favorite game with all of my dogs. It becomes a nice reward and a good outlet for natural desires. It is important for your pup to learn you are in charge of when it begins and ends, though. I let my dogs have a win, then tell them it is time to put the toys away and then I just walk away. (of course, I don't let them chew on the tug).

Trying to get good videos takes practice. If you are using your phone you can prop it up in a shoe, like a tripod. Watching videos of yourself working with your pup gives you valuable information.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
It is great to see him running and playing after his ordeal! I personally don't think playing tug with your puppy is going to increase any aggression, but here's a good article on that very subject you might find interesting

https://www.preventivevet.com/dogs/playing-tug-of-war-without-encouraging-aggression-in-dogs
Good article... Who initiates the tug makes sense. If you initiate then the dog sees you in control, if they initiate, it enforces dominant behavior.
 
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