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Wow, that is one major game of tug! I wouldn't have the stamina to play very long with a toy that big or a dog that strong! My girl loves her flirt stick. In a couple of months we'll need to upgrade to something a little stronger but not as big as yours.
You have really got your hands full with that beautiful pooch. Hopefully, the Zero-to-Sixty issue will resolve itself in the next year or two. My GSD mixes were hyper pups but mellowed out more and more as the years went by.
I've never seen a dog try to get pet by a pine tree. I would love it if you could grab a shot of that silliness!

I'm curious about the previous post, the one where Brae will sometimes bite while playing. Does giving him a ball always solve that problem? Or have you come up with a long-term solution?
 

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Discussion Starter #262
Hi oldNgray, thanks for appreciating my dog!

The 0-60 is not really an issue... I can pet Brae with him remaining relatively calm and we cuddle all the time. It's still *different* compared to petting Soro or a less frenetic dog. Sometimes he does act pretty normal and loose when pet. Sometimes he 'flails' his snout all over the place, settles into a very full-contact kind of position (like it's not enough that a hand is touching him, he has to be IN THE HAND), and then does deep breathing as he tries to handle it all. It's quite comical. The problem my partner has created (as he said himself) is he amps Brae up a lot. When I pet/cuddle with Brae, there are no surprises. My partner will be petting him and then slap him around to rile him up. It's no wonder Brae sees his interaction as a potential precursor to playtime.

The biting is also a very predictable behavior. He does not spontaneously snap at us. But if he *does not have something in his mouth* and you try to play rowdy with him, he will jump forward and bite. It's not malicious at all. But most other dogs I solicit play with in this way (playful pushing and grabbing, play bow at the dog, etc.) will get zoomies, jump back, jump forward, sometimes some head flipping or mouthing. But Brae does a very obvious lunge-and-bite. If there is a stick or pinecone or toy, he will redirect and get the toy. So he really tries his best to practice self control! The long term solution is we don't do physical play with Brae unless he has a toy in his mouth :D

In general is a very forward and pushy dog. I see this in his dog interactions as well. He hasn't gotten into a scuffle and fought back yet. But if he is playing too rough and the other dog tells him off, he will stop what he is doing but he is still tall with high fast wagging tail. As in, the pressure from the other dog amps him up instead of bringing him down. Usually I call him off and he is fine. And when he is in a calmer state of mind, he will calmly walk away if another dog even passively shows no interest in playing.

But the big picture is.... He is a high arousal dog. In the face of physical pressure he will always push back. He loves it when I kick him or hit him (quite hard) when we play tug. But he is not a dog I would let mingle among other dogs without supervision. He is around people and children regularly, super sweet, but I do not let people play tug with him.
 

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Hi oldNgray, thanks for appreciating my dog!

The 0-60 is not really an issue... I can pet Brae with him remaining relatively calm and we cuddle all the time. It's still *different* compared to petting Soro or a less frenetic dog. Sometimes he does act pretty normal and loose when pet. Sometimes he 'flails' his snout all over the place, settles into a very full-contact kind of position (like it's not enough that a hand is touching him, he has to be IN THE HAND), and then does deep breathing as he tries to handle it all. It's quite comical. The problem my partner has created (as he said himself) is he amps Brae up a lot. When I pet/cuddle with Brae, there are no surprises. My partner will be petting him and then slap him around to rile him up. It's no wonder Brae sees his interaction as a potential precursor to playtime.

The biting is also a very predictable behavior. He does not spontaneously snap at us. But if he *does not have something in his mouth* and you try to play rowdy with him, he will jump forward and bite. It's not malicious at all. But most other dogs I solicit play with in this way (playful pushing and grabbing, play bow at the dog, etc.) will get zoomies, jump back, jump forward, sometimes some head flipping or mouthing. But Brae does a very obvious lunge-and-bite. If there is a stick or pinecone or toy, he will redirect and get the toy. So he really tries his best to practice self control! The long term solution is we don't do physical play with Brae unless he has a toy in his mouth :D

In general is a very forward and pushy dog. I see this in his dog interactions as well. He hasn't gotten into a scuffle and fought back yet. But if he is playing too rough and the other dog tells him off, he will stop what he is doing but he is still tall with high fast wagging tail. As in, the pressure from the other dog amps him up instead of bringing him down. Usually I call him off and he is fine. And when he is in a calmer state of mind, he will calmly walk away if another dog even passively shows no interest in playing.

But the big picture is.... He is a high arousal dog. In the face of physical pressure he will always push back. He loves it when I kick him or hit him (quite hard) when we play tug. But he is not a dog I would let mingle among other dogs without supervision. He is around people and children regularly, super sweet, but I do not let people play tug with him.
I have been staying away but thought to comment on this.

With working dog breeds we have found there are "snatchers" and "carriers." Some dogs prefer to snatch a toy (we use a ball) and then lose interest (my training partner has such a dog and he snatches the toy but without someone engages on the rope he drops it and looks for "the next thing" with snatching being his best reward). Then there are carriers and their best reward is to have the toy in their mouth and that helps them be comfortable (you might want to consider this in your discussion of resource guarding a few posts back). They are happy to keep a toy in their mouth and Brae sounds like the latter (tho I do not know.. you know the dog and see him).

This is a young working dog. As he matures he *may* get more serious about the slapping and playing. I can recommend that behavior cease. Use a toy or a ball (I like a ball on a rope and there are many varieties) and have that as something to unload on when he is riled up. Brae going for the toy when riled up can be less about self control and more about a safe thing to unload on. As he matures if he is a confident dog he may at some point CHOOSE to unload on your partner. Not saying he will, just saying it is something to consider. Nerve may be the determining difference in the choice the dog makes when more mature.

A working dog should push back in the face of physical pressure (that is why they do "stick hits" in the drive in the protection routine). A good dog will amp UP and a not so good dog will be driven off and the two behaviors are separated by genetics (though a dog too young in the head can be driven off if the decoy introduces stick hits too soon.. and this is one of many reasons for a good decoy in training that phase of work). And plese don't take "good" literally. It means "good for that work." Dog may not face up to physical pressure and still be a fine pet dog. I have learned I need to explain everything I say.

You know your dog. I do not. I am just laying this out there as he is a working dog and what you describe is my (as you would describe) narrow range of focus and expertise.
 

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Discussion Starter #265
Sometimes photoshoots get intense


Better...


Reward


Tryouts to be on Santa's sleigh team


Happy holidays!



(sorry for the sizes. The forum photo uploader keeps saying "invalid file" when I do it that way)
 

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Love them all! What a handsome guy. Practicing the deer in headlights look with those antlers.
 

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The antler and Santa hat photos crack me up. I agree with Sydneynicole about the Deer-in-the-Headlights look. And the Santa pic reminds me of a kid who doesn't want his picture taken but is doing it just because mom says he has to. I especially like the last picture, where Brae is airborn, paws spread out with his catch firmly in his teeth. Nice shot.
 

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lol, those are awesome pictures!
Especially the last one.
My son tried to put antlers on Sage last year. She shook them off, grabbed them
and ran off. All that remained were bits of red material.
Happy Holidays to you as well.
 

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I LOVE that big happy grin in the first pic.
Looks like someone got a new tug rope for Christmas. No wonder he's smiling.
Brrrr...looks cold with all that snow! Doesn't seem to phase Brae at all. Here in SoCal, residents complain that it's "freezing" when temps drop into the high 50s. Brrrrr!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #276
Thanks SuperNova! I hope your year is good too so far and I hope your situation with Nova is resolved!
And thanks Patricia!

Here are a few pics from our snowshoe hike today:




rare to see him roll in the snow, but he does do it!

 

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Discussion Starter #277
Happy 2nd birthday to my boy! Other same-litter owners have been posting on FB and it's so nice to see all his siblings having a blast too.
We went on a hike, he got to play with a bunch of dogs, chase a disc, chew a bone, cuddle... Brae's just a very happy boy :D











 

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Happy Birthday, Brae!! Looks like he had a blast.
 

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Discussion Starter #279
He did, thanks! :D

Here's a vid from this morning. Sometimes I just want to casually kick a ball around. Brae never does anything casually.

 

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Discussion Starter #280 (Edited)
The snow is finally melting and we enjoyed the balmy, gorgeous weather today.

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And here's a somewhat sloppy video of some heelwork (on both sides) this afternoon. We didn't do it for a while and with just a smidge of bare ground it was a nice day to revisit it.

Man I love this dog. Despite being very high energy, high arousal, and overall one of the most intense dogs I've met, Brae is such an easy dog to live with these days. We chill, we play, we cuddle, we walk around... I never feel worried about how things will go with other dogs (compared to when I had Sor), with people, that he'd run away, etc. He's just amazing. The world feels very large and open with him. Classroom to mountaintops and all. I'm just very excited to have his company for the years to come.
 
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