Puppies and Dogs For Sale in UK

Tug Of War

There has always been a debate regarding the ‘tug-of-war’ game played with puppies and adult dogs, some say it is a really bad idea and some say it is fine. Now in my own opinion I think it is okay but there are certain rules to be followed.

One comment you will often hear concerning the game is that it can produce a dominant or aggressive dog, now whilst this can be true it is also very dependable upon the method in which you play tug-of-war with your canine chum. If you insist on always letting your dog ‘win’ the game then you are simply going to inform your dog that he/she is top dog, your actions will be observed as giving up and your dog will think that they now have full control over you. You gave up the ‘fight’ first as far as your dog is concerned so the best solution is to teach your dog how to leave the toy on command.

The easiest way to teach your dog how to ‘leave’ the toy is to arm yourself with some of your dog’s favourite doggy treats and the tug toy, encourage your dog to take half of the toy in his/her mouth whilst you hold the other half. Begin playing as you normally would and then offer your dog a treat whilst saying the word ‘leave’ clearly and firmly, when your dog drops the toy in favour of the tasty treat praise and reward.

By teaching your dog how to leave the tug toy on command you are displaying that you are in complete control over the game and your dog. Never attempt to pull the toy straight out of the dog’s mouth as this will encourage your dog to actually fight you for the toy and could lead to them having possessive tendencies which could then develop into aggressive problems. When you pull on the toy your dog’s natural reaction is to obviously clamp down harder and if you do not have the ability to ask your dog to leave you will run into problems.

The thing is that the dogs which will willingly ‘fight’ you for the tug toy are generally brimming with confidence and this level of confidence sits right on the brink of diving into dominance, a brave dog can become a dominant dog very easily.

Tug-of-war is a great confidence boosting game to play with dogs which are fearful because you are showing them that you are in control and that they can follow your lead and relax.

Many fearful dogs are confused in relation to their place in their so called ‘pack’ they simply do not know where they fit in, with a game such as tug-of-war you are allowing them to see that it is a fun game and that when you ask them to leave the toy you are displaying that you are in charge.

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