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Old 11-14-2006, 06:12 PM
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ToscasMom ToscasMom is offline
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Default I Made Tosca All Confused. I need to undo this.

Ok up until recently, I never played tug of war too much with Tosca because I read someplace where it wasn't a good idea. But after you guys told me it was ok, I started doing it. Mostly I had a large terrycloth towel that I knotted and we went at it together quite a bit. She loved it because she always wants to play Tug but I was never too cooperative.

Ok. Boink. This morning it was raining cats and dogs out and I stepped in a Poodle. Ok, sorry. Tosca was in the yard and when she came in she was all wet. Soooooooooooo, I had a nice fresh towel to dry her with like i have always done. She loves being towel dried. Well not THIS time. THIS time, she wanted to play Tug. I had a horrible time and couldn't get her to stay still and savor being dried like she's always done. I got flustered. She got flustered. I kept demanding she leave the towel alone and kept trying to dry her. Finally, I gave up and she sensed I was very flustered so she went into a tailspin. She ran all around the house making her whine and other noises collies know how to make. She was running wild, chasing her tail, chasing the cats. Very flustered. It wasn't till several minutes into this that I realized I had confused her and she wanted to please me and didn't know WHAT THE FERSHTOONK I wanted her to do! I have never seen her so flustered. It was like MA! What? What did I do wrong! We played Tug with something like this yesterday and now you are mad! I felt awful for her.

What I need to do is now undo what I created teach her all over again that towels are for drying. Obviously i blew it because the towel reminded her now of TUG. We are getting tons of rain and soon the wet snow will come, so towel drying will be a necessity. I had it going so well with her. And now, I undid it.

So.........how do I undo this situation. Obviously, Tug with anything remotely resembling a towel is out of the question from now on, but how I am going to reprogram her?

I could smack myself.
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Old 11-14-2006, 06:25 PM
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SHE'S A COLLIE!!!!!

Your baby is soooooo smart I think she will get it when you stop playing tug with the towel. I know this because I have made such a mistake in the past and Colt had no problem reversing the course when we stopped playing with the item (mostly toys!!! ). He is younger than Tosca too. Colt is always confused with us, hehehe, there are 5 of us and my mother-in-law has been here for a month....It's a good thing he is so highly intelligent, I think he is smarter than us and is actually training us in proper human behavior !!!!!
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Old 11-14-2006, 07:25 PM
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Congratulations Bumhouse. You have been officially COLLIED!
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Old 11-14-2006, 07:46 PM
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Poor Tosca! What I would do is go out and buy one of those rope toys made specifically for tug of war. When you want to play tug with her bring out both the towel & the toy but just keep the towel laying on your lap. If she tries to take the towel just say NO and entice her with the toy. I think after a few good play sessions she'll get the idea. When she goes out I would keep the toy handy where you usually dry her off. If she reaches for the towel quickly give her the toy and occasionally give it a little tug. I think she'll get the idea that the towel again is just to dry her off & the toy is for tugging.
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Old 11-14-2006, 08:49 PM
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Ok Poodlesmom! I get it and will get right on it!

I know you're kind of laughing but I just HATE when she feels bad and it's really my fault. She burned at least 300 calories in that tantrum too!

Hey Bumhouse, it feels good to know you did it too! heh.
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Old 11-14-2006, 09:48 PM
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There is no way I would be laughing at you! Been there & done that myself years ago. Didn't realize what a bad idea it was to give a pup an old sock & old shoe to chew on. He didn't have any way of knowing good ones were off limits!
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Old 11-14-2006, 10:01 PM
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Quote:
Didn't realize what a bad idea it was to give a pup an old sock & old shoe to chew on.

HHHHAHAHAAAAAAHAHA!
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Old 11-14-2006, 10:18 PM
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To me it's less about teaching the dog towels are never tug toys as much as it's establishing the rules of the game of tug. At our house the rules of tug are: 1) tug games only start when I hold out a toy and say "get it" we can tug for seconds or minutes wild and crazy or pretty sedately but 2) when I say "drop" they drop. Teaching a reliable drop on cue is a good thing BEFORE starting to play tug with your dog. A 'leave it' cue would be helpful in this case too.
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Old 11-14-2006, 10:21 PM
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Tosca'sMom, I just wanted to tell you that Tosca is brilliant! Not only did she learn quite quickly that towels were for tugging, but when things changed on her, she devised a way to let you know that this was all wrong and that she was totally confused. And bravo for you that you received the message loud and clear!

poodlesmom, your fix was perfect. Can't wait to hear how it worked!
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Old 11-14-2006, 10:39 PM
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Sam brought up some very good points. Tosca is still a young pup and the time is right to start teaching her "leave it" & "drop" commands. In my house I also use the cue word "enough" and my 2 know whatever it is they are currently doing is to stop now - it could be barking, playing tug, wanting me to throw the toy again for the game of fetch or just playing too crazily for too long.
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