How to Play Tug with Your Dog - Teach Your Dog Proper Tug of War - Robert Cabral Dog Training

Pets & Animals 

How to Play Tug with Your Dog – Teach Your Dog Proper Tug of War – Robert Cabral Dog Training

How to play tug with your dog will help you understand how to build a great relationship with your dog and learn the best game for dog training. Some dogs don’t like the game of tug, but most do and can learn how to play and have fun.

Here’s a link to the tug I use and recommend:

Training your dog requires a system of rewards that builds a relationship between your dog and you. Tug offers that opportunity. Learn how to properly introduce your dog to the tug, how to challenge your dog and how to get them to let go of the tug. You control the game and you control your dog.

The full version of this lesson is available on my members only section at:

Follow me on all of my social media channels
youtube and more
@Robert Cabral

#tugwithyourdog #thegameoftug #howtoplaytug

Related posts

29 Thoughts to “How to Play Tug with Your Dog – Teach Your Dog Proper Tug of War – Robert Cabral Dog Training”

  1. Mister B’s -fish and things

    My pups Favourite game. Taking it slow and careful as he develops. Very useful info. Tnks

  2. Good Vibes Hunter

    Probably the best channel on YT for dog training ! I have a 5 years old crossbreed of a shepard and a corso (at least this is the most common idea among the vets that treated him, he is about 40kg and 71cm to the shoulder) . I got him from a rescue center when he was 3 months old and I never stop practicing obedience with him. For work we have travel a bit around in Italy and Spain but for a period for a sudden opportunity I had to leave him with my family for few months and than as soon as possible came back to pick him up. We moved ( he was almost 3years old)in a island where most (99%)of the dogs were very small sized(pugs and similar) and with owners fearful of big dogs. So no real opportunities to play with other dogs .I noticed that in time he started to develope some reactivity towards other males (he was always corrected in his bad behavior . We were living with a female Rottie that he really loved and I thought was partially reason of his reactivity against other males. His reactivity is triggered usually by SOME big dogs, he is quite friendly with small dogs and never had problem with any female, even if the female is aggressive with him ) . Now we moved back to home ( Sicily) and I m trying to work a bit more on it (with dogs of similar sized and always with leash and choke collar, that he has since he was 9 months of age) but I can not see real progress. I want to point out that he never actually got involved in any brawl with an other dog just a minor accident were he was actually the “victim”, but much later that reactivity came out. He will be reactive to dogs (some dogs, usually dogs that are themselves reactive or at least very confident) that are in the 10m radius. I try always to correct him when he changes his posture before he actually starts pulling and barking, but despite the correction and my attempt to keep him moving, when the dog get closer than 4/5 meters he will start pulling and barking. Any advice would be much appreciate. Could a prong collar be useful? and if so could you advice a good product. I apologize for any error. Greatings from Palermo


    I just kick my dog in his nose when he doesnt let go of the toy lol

  4. Rayanna Ashe

    Absolutely love your videos!

    You’ve helped me create a dynamic relationship with my high drive, 4month GSD.

    Without a lot of your insights, I’m certain she would be a hot mess.

    I have a balanced trainer now, but you’ve significantly helped me in the first few months to get a nice foundation.

    I hope you know how much you’re appreciated! 💖

  5. Bobandjeri Shaffer

    Another great one. Your previous vids on tug, fetch and play have fundamentally improved the experience of our shelter dogs. Almost all of them will eventually tug at least at modest levels IF I get silly, active, flexible and creative enough. A fire hose and rope tugs are used. Reluctant dogs often will start with a long floppy soft fabric tug w squeakers inside tossed into the air.
    QUESTION.. Some of our dogs go absolutely nuts over the Jolly Egg … remaining in hyper prey-kill drive past exhaustion…10 minutes or so, even longer. Afterwards they’re still fixated. They’ll cool off in a few minutes. My instinct is this is OK … what do you think?

  6. George Affonso

    As always this is is a very helpful training video. Good example there is so much more to understand like a simple game of tug. Thank you again and again for all your instructions. It’s as much about trading us first in order to train our dogs.

  7. Theresa w

    My dogs love to play tug! Thank you for the great video. You and Goffy are so handsome!I have 4 7 month old Pitbull great pyrenees cross litter mates. They are awesome with me as I work with them daily, they all listen like 80% of the time. I can have them all out together and they’ll come when called. We have 2.5 acres of property fenced for them.The other day my husband was fixing the gate and Bob got out. I heard my husband calling him and he was just ignoring him. I opened my front window and said “Bob come “! He came right back. My husband was pissed that he didn’t come to him. I told him that he needs to work with each one on the long line so they know his commands to. Any advice for us? Thank you for your help. I have learned so much from you me and my pack thank you! I am a proud member!

  8. marvona


  9. Fabiano Pina

    Where’s Dwayney

  10. Fabiano Pina

    My dog doesn’t play tug

  11. Perfect Weather

    Awesome video, thanks

  12. IZNroot

    For my dog, the best way to out is switching with other tug

  13. names Dixie

    This is an example of a VERY WELL trained dog playing tug. Understand when you start don’t give them the opportunity to bite your hand on accident. Meaning, like Robert says, start at the ends and work your way in. But in the beginning, start at the ends of the handles and work your way to like Robert displays for us.

  14. Francis Xyooj

    So how do you get them to come back for more?

  15. Tesla Nick

    What you want in a game of tug is for the dog to start strategising in order to “win” the game. You also need a purpose for the game, a goal you’re both trying to reach. Minor correction: tug is not tapping into defense drive – that would be bad unless you really know what you’re doing and using defense drive to “ignite” the game. Tug is all about play drive through prey drive. We’re practicing the act of killing prey via a cooperative game. I can learn more about a dog through games of tug than anything else. You really get to know what a dog is really about during games of tug. Some dogs will run away with the tug after a “win” and do victory laps and “fly bys”, so I give them that and then re-engage the game. Some dogs love to “consume” so they take the tug away and rip it apart. Understanding that and cutting the dog some slack for doing what he enjoys most is nothing to worry about. You just shape the game over time. I’ll help the dog to celebrate – participate in his joy at winning. Yes, I am a self confessed tug addict and tug geek. Decoys are the best people to learn about tug from. There are so many layers once you get into tug.

  16. Window Cleaning Anthony

    I’ve had lots of trouble with my Australian shepherd not wanting to “drop it” or “out” as fast as I wanted to. He always does it, But it takes him a second. I saw that a couple times with goofy. It makes me feel good that that is normal with a professionally trained dog!

  17. gazgibster

    another excellent video really good to watch keep up the great work.

  18. Marea Miller

    Always learn from you two! Plus- it being 17 degrees here I am also enjoying the beautiful sky and Goofys’ desire to find shade- Enjoy!!

  19. Martin Schrodt

    Hey Robert thanks a lot for all your information! It would be nice if you could talk a bit more about how to engage a dog to play tug that does not find it as interesting. I’ve always wanted to ask that, since I have 2 hound mixes here that I want to play tug with, but they seem to be not getting what I want…

  20. JSiah

    Beautifully advertised. 👌

  21. BtheEmo

    Great information. Scooby does great. I was wondering. He gets excited playing, but still behaves well.

    How would you get a dog to be extremely obedient on “aus”/out command. Like IPO training. I have always been impressed when I see a dog immediately release. I want mine to do that…any specific tips?

  22. Ratha

    Where do you buy your firehose tugs from?

  23. Sandi Salazar

    My dog loves to play tug but he is a 110 lb English labrador retriever and I have a bad back. I can only play with him a little bit but not as fun as you and Goofy. Great video. Thank you.

  24. jan niederschuh

    hey rob, do u have a good alternative for e collars? here in germany u cant’t have them

  25. Lydia Hutchens

    I always enjoy your videos with Goofy. I loved the ones you just posted on FB of him doing the bites. That was fun to watch

  26. Trap Town NCS

    Keep it up! Looking forward for more videos from you, don’t stop! Would you like to be YouTube friends? 🙂

  27. Trap Town NCS

    When is your next video? 😀 Keep it up! Would you like to be YouTube friends? 🙂

  28. Trap Town NCS

    Good! Keep it up! Would you like to be YouTube friends? 🙂

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.