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Old 10-12-2009, 12:31 PM
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Doberluv Doberluv is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: western Wa
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Default If there were only one thing...

that you could teach your puppy, and you did nothing else, what would it be?

That tug of war thread got me thinking about this because someone thought that most people don't know to teach their pup or adult dog the rules of the game and so they shouldn't ever play...that the dog would become aggressive and "mean." My take on this is that the rules are definitely important, but even if they don't teach rules, most dogs aren't going to get aggressive from this. There may be an accidental bite or some rough thing....or some may get really too worked up and it is conceivable that they may go from play to prey, but that is pretty rare. Most dogs see this as a game. After all, they invented this game. You see two dogs, sometimes three, playing tug with each other and it does generalize to humans. I know. I've always played with my dogs and it's really a trip when three of them get in on the game. (Chuli won't play, but my foster Beagle, toker and Jose` would play together.) And not too many people get hurt seriously from playing tug, even if they don't do it quite right. My little Beagle didn't know the rules, but I let him play anyhow. He had a super soft mouth and didn't get too worked up.

So, I thought that if I had to tell someone what not to do with their dog or what to teach their dog, the game of tug would not be a high priority to me because there are so many other things that people do wrong with dogs that cause really, really serious problems.

My biggest, hugest, giaganticist, most significant priority....if I could do nothing else in the way of teaching my dog anything else would be SOICALIZATION. To me, that is the single most important thing I can think of for the education of a puppy.
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