Positive Play - Episode 1

Hi, I'm Chelsea Tug-E-Nuff's play expert. Like many people currently I'm stuck at home, so I'm trying to think of ways to keep my dogs busy. While we're here we thought it'd be a great opportunity to answer some of your questions, whether that be play-related, training-related. Hopefully I can get you some answers. Let's see what questions we have today.

1. This question is from @gemanddoggo. The question is: Does the choice of fleece, real fur or faux-fur really make a difference? Here at Tug-E-Nuff we do quite a few options ranging from sheepskin to faux-furs, as you know. This is primarily just because every dog is different. If you're using a tug toy as a motivator, then it's important that it's something they really, really, really love. You need to get that perfect match really. My own dogs, they absolutely love the sheepskin products, something like this. It's got a fluffy bite area and a nice texture to it.

Faux furs are also incredibly popular and they're a great all rounder. It's got a soft bite area still and a bit of fluff to it, but it's probably a bit more durable than say a natural organic material such as the sheepskin or ... No, not for you ... Sheepskin or rabbit skin. We've also got fleeces. The rabbit skin is very popular typically with terriers and gun dog types too. But it's not always down to the breed. It's important to look at the individual dog. That's why we offer a money back guarantee on all our products. You're welcome to buy them and test them. Even if they've been slobbered on, but you'll find it's not the perfect match for your dog, we are happy to have them returned and exchanged.

2. Another question we've got is, How should I introduce play with two dogs without them getting competitive for attention? What about dogs that like to play tug together? Toys only last 30 seconds. In all honesty, our products are made for interactive play between human and dog. We think it's really important to build that bond, build that connection when training as well and using it as a training reward. For that reason, all our products have got a handle for the human on one side and then the bite area on the other. That reason we wouldn't really recommend letting your dogs play two together with the tug toy, mainly just because that's not what they're intended for. There is only one bite area.

Having two dogs tugging on it, it won't last that long. However, if by playing one on one with one dog at a time, it is really, really good for establishing that bond as well. I'd recommend spending time one on one with each dog. If you can maybe train a place or a settle for your other dog and reward maybe biscuits every now and again as you're playing with the other one. Or if the other dog is struggling, just pop it away and focus on spending time with each dog individually and I'm sure they'd appreciate that.

3. This next question is from @therottweilerbruno and it is: What ways can you keep your dog enriched and mentally stimulated without choosing food? There is plenty of ways. I'm quite lucky, my dogs like food and toys so I can mix and match and do different things ... But tug, obviously we love to tug here at Tug-E-Nuff. But tug has many, many benefits. It can be used to boost your bond. Actually, we do a whole guide all about boosting your bond through interactive play.

You can play tug. Tug's also really, really good for trick training as well. It doesn't have to literally be for agility or flyball or anything like that. You can use it as a training award for other things. Yeah, it doesn't always have to be food based. I do a lot of scent work with my dogs. I have used the clam with food before, but I've also used something small, maybe like a rabbit skin pocket squeaker. My dog's know the scent of it, they know what it is. I might hide this around the garden or I might hide it around the house. So start easy to begin with, hide it under pillows and send the dog in the room and go find it. Find it and they go hunt it down and find it. Once they've got it, we play a game of tug.

Start easy with something like that. Just put it under a pillow and then eventually you can progress making it a bit harder and hiding it in more obscure places for your dog to find. That's quite nice for rainy days or days when you're stuck in and you can't go do anything and doesn't always involve food either.

That's the end of our Q&A session. Hopefully that's answered some of your training and play questions. As always, we're available via email, phone, and Facebook Messenger if you do have any queries or maybe need some toy recommendations. Thank you so much for joining in and we'll do another one next week.
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