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  January 10, 2013
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 Puppy Bite Development with Michael Ellis

Puppy Bite Development with Michael Ellis

This video shows the same puppy being worked in bite development with Michael Ellis at 8 weeks and 10 months.

January 10, 2013   |   3 Minutes, 35 Seconds

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Leerburg Q&A
Ask your training question

Question: My dog has a bad hip, can I still play tug with him? Is playing tug hard on the joints?


I'm interested in purchasing The Power of Playing Tug to help grow my training with my cattle dog. However, he is 7 years old, had been in an accident with his previous owner, and has a somewhat bad hip. I was wondering if playing tug is hard on the joints?

Thank you!

Cindy's Response:


If you are using proper technique playing tug (as outlined in the video), I don’t see why a dog with a less than perfect hip couldn’t participate.

I worry more about dogs with neck or shoulder issues and there is more room for error with the front half of the dog. You can also tone down the intensity of play if you need to.

I hope this helps.

Cindy Rhodes


Cindy -

Great, thank you so much!

For more questions on this topic, see our Q&A on Playing Tug with Your Dog.

We get a number of Q&As every week, if you would like to read this week's Q&As, click here and check out the 'Recent Questions' section!

Have a question for Ed & Cindy? Try the Leerburg Q&A Search. If you can't find the answer to your question by using our search engine, you can email Cindy here at Leerburg at If you have your spam filter on, make sure you set it to receive our replies!!!

Customer Comments

On Leerburg's Website

Hi Cindy,

My husband and I have three young boys and we are getting a new puppy in a few weeks. I grew up on a dairy farm and we always had a dog or two around, but I really couldn't remember much about training them. I stumbled across your website, and I just want to say how happy I was to find you guys! I absolutely LOVE your training methods, and we have since purchased several DVDs. I am placing an order for an ex-pen and a few other training items as well, prior to the puppy's arrival. It is REFRESHING to hear your methods presented, and they WORK! I am honestly somewhat embarrassed to admit this, but after watching the Establishing Pack Leadership Videos, my husband and I commented that so much of what you teach is applicable to parenthood and not just pet ownership ;-) I honestly thought long and hard after Ed talked about being a fair, calm pack leader and wondered if I couldn't try harder to be that way with my children!

I think that you and Ed are spot on when it comes to dogs and dog training. I am looking forward to applying your methods on our new pup, and I hope that with focus and dedication, we will have a calm and enjoyable family pet for years to come! I think that the idea of tethering the puppy and using an ex pen will be critical considering I have three young boys. I want the dog to learn to live with the boys, and not have the boys hate the dog because he is hyper and obnoxious whenever they are playing.

Anyway, no particular question. I simply wanted to take the opportunity to say THANK YOU. You have been such a valuable source of information, and I have recommended you to many of my friends with pets and pet problems.


The Michael Ellis School for Dog Trainers

2013 Schedule Now Available!

Read more for additional information and dates.

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