Tug-O-War Information, Rules and Guidelines



What is Tug-O-War?

Tug of War is a partnership to win so-to-speak, the dog and a team of 1 to 2 owners participate to outpull another team to win. This competition takes place grouped by weight and winners advance to tug against winners. If a lesser weight chooses to compete against a higher weight they will receive extra points. This is fun and a bonding experience with you and your dog. While many let their dogs tug against each other on their own yards - We encourage working with your dog yourself, dogs will not be allowed to see each other in our tug competitions.

What is the benefits of Tug-O-War?

The Benefits of Tug-of-War. Tug-of-war is a way to bond with your dog. Tug is a great way to leave your dog happy and exhausted, decreasing the chances of boredom or stress-related negative behaviors. The game allows a chance for rough-housing, with ground rules set and observed.

AADRI Rules and Regulations

1)      Safety for animals, spectators and exhibitors will be our top priority.

a.       All animals participating in TOW will be leashed with an AADRI provided and inspected leash at all times.

b.      Every pull will require two (2) handlers. One to maintain control of the animal and another to provide encouragement to the animal.

c.       Judge and one (1) handler on each side will possess a breaking stick.

d.      Pulling areas will be separate from the show grounds.

e.      No animals will be allowed in the vicinity of the pull other than the pulling animals.

f.        Handlers and judges are solely responsible for maintaining the safety of themselves and everyone around them.

2)      The Set Up 

a.       Ropes will be constructed with high strength rope and equipped with a quick release snap on each end with the ability of carrying 500 lbs or more.

b.      Rope should be 20’ in length with a center marker and a 6’ marker on either side of the center marker.

c.       Dogs will be separated by a wall (Such as plywood) that does not allow the animals to face and sturdy enough to keep accidents from occurring.

d.      Separating wall shall be 8’ wide.

e.      The slot that allows the rope to pass through the separation mechanism will be 2” wide by 30” tall.  This allows free movement of the rope.  Edges will be sanded to allow free movement and prevent rope damage.

f.        Lanes should be created in order to keep animals pulling within the guideline of the separation wall.

g.       Hides, soft rope, hydrant hoses and other means of tugs are allowed to be used and attached to the ropes.  Judges must inspect tugs prior to competition.

3)      The Pull

a.       TOW is subject to each club but it is suggested that TOW is held tournament style.

b.      Judge will position himself with rope in hand at the wall and ensuring both animals are brought in simultaneously.

c.       Handler #2 will hand walk the animal in and maintain the leash for the entire pull while handler #1 “baits” the animal with the selected tug.

d.      After the dog is on, handler #1 will acknowledge the judge and let it be known that they are hooked.

e.      After both are on, the judge will signal that the TUG is underway.

f.        Inside of 30 seconds, a judge may call a foul based off mis-bite, slip or fanged and ask both animals to re-hook.  There will be only 3 fouls per animal that will lead to disqualification.

g.       During the tug, the first animal to successfully pull the opposing animals 6’, wins and moves on.

4)      Misc. 

a.       Males and females will pull against each other.  Dogs will compete in weight classes

b.      If a dog is touched, this will be a foul

c.       Dogs have 30 seconds to begin tugging, or this is a foul

d.      Dog will have 30 seconds to grab on, or this is a foul

e.      Dogs compete until the weight ratio is unfair, then the handlers are allowed to decide if they will move forward with competition.  Loser will take 3 bonus points, winner will earn 15 for Best of Overall Tug-O-War