Monday, January 31, 2011

Tug tug tug

Today, West decided he might like to play "finger tug". I've taught this to most of my dogs, partly to encourage maintenance of fantastic bite inhibition, and partly because it has proven a very handy reinforcer (heh. pun) on occasion. West is still not sure about playing with toys with humans, so when he showed an interest in tugging with my finger, I took it as a good sign.

I got him tugging quite enthusiastically (and gently!! good boy!) and added a very quiet "grrrr." He immediately spat out my hand and looked at me. Ok. Can't tug while human is making weird noises. I tried a quiet "good" which he knows as praise. Nope, still quit. I got him tugging again, and this time, added a REALLY quiet "gr". He maintained the tug quite well. I did this about 10 times, and he kept tugging about 6 of them.

Then, I got distracted reading something and he started to mouth my hand, hard, with his molars! I removed my hand, and he repeated. I thought, okay, let's teach him out! So, I got him tugging and looked at him and quietly said "Out". And, he didn't let go. He kept tugging. Weirdo dog. "Give" got the same "stop and look at me" as the other words did. I guess he'll learn "give" not "out" :)

1 comment:

  1. Would it be possible for you to elaborate on what "finger tug" is and how it differs from tug with a toy?

    I tried to look it up and couldn't find anything.