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Discussion Starter #1
Hi there. I am wondering what you think about playing tug with my lab puppy. He is 8 weeks old and likes to play tug. I did allow tug with my previous puppy (who turned into a very big dog!) but have seen conflicting advice on this topic. I trained my other dog to "drop it" when I said so (which he always did) and he also had good bite inhibition so that if he re-grabbed the toy during the tug play he would be very careful about where he grabbed so he would not get your hand. But, now that I am starting over, I thought I would get your advice.
 

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If your dog likes it and you don't mind then yes of course play.

I play with mine often or they play with each other and they enjoy it very much.
 

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If you both enjoy it, why not?

Tug is one of my 5 month old Saint Bernards favorite games, its played often around here.
 

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I never understood people telling me not to play tug with Ludo. Ludo loves tug. Between tug and fetch and "here hold my bone while I chew on it" he has a happy and playful life.

The problem comes when the dog doesn't know when enough is enough or they get grabby and nip your hands (Ludo is still guilty of these when too excited). But both issues can be handled with proper training.

And, honestly, don't be afraid to let the dog lose. He wont feel bad or lose interest. It is all a game to him. I incorporate tug and fetch.
 

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Tug is just fine to play with a dog. Tug is a great confidence builder and also a great reward. Just make sure to teach the "drop it" command and play on your terms.
 

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I play tug with my Malinois all the time. We actually have a rubber chew ring he likes for that reason. The tug ropes we don't use anymore because he tends to swallow fibers accidentally.

That dog is strong too. One day he nearly yanked all 160 lbs of me off the couch.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thank you. You have confirmed what I was thinking. My dogs love it and I have actually thought that it was a good bite inhibitor in a way because if my dog gets my hand, I stop playing. I also have made sure that they can stop when I say stop. Thanks for the confirmation.

I'm off to play tug with my puppy now!:)
 

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Thank you. You have confirmed what I was thinking. My dogs love it and I have actually thought that it was a good bite inhibitor in a way because if my dog gets my hand, I stop playing. I also have made sure that they can stop when I say stop. Thanks for the confirmation.

I'm off to play tug with my puppy now!:)
Yes please play tug with your pup. Great game. Then you got the other hand the fast movement with a 8 week old pup can also damage the neck muscles also because they are so soft, if it over done. In the Working side of Labradors tend not play this game to encourage play more with a dummy to bring back to you.. Then you got the worry of what sort of toys as well. very soft toys I would advice nothing hard in the mouth. Good Luck.



Regards

Pam
 

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Discussion Starter #13
His breeder said you should never play tug with a lab but I know that was more about cultivatibg the retreiver side of him. I will be doing agility (if he likes it) and not hunting or field work. Thanks for the reminder about his neck muscles.
 

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Tug is great exercise for a dog as well. My Lab is very good at tug and hardly anyone ever wins against him :)D)...he puts his whole body into it. You can also use it as a reward when training.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Yes, I knew about the jumping. He and I will start agility next summer when he is 13 months old. He won't jump higher than his knees until he's over 18 months which will be the following summer (I only do agility in the summer). Plus, I'll just keep a close eye on his body structure and weight, etc. My trainer is very good about being careful with the health of our dogs. Not to mention the fact that I'll have to wait to see if he likes the sport. If he doesn't like it then I'll try something else.
 
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