What is a Puppy Mosh Pit?
This has been written in part for the Puppy 101 class at International Puppy Tampa 2012 by ”Papa Woof” Roth. Please feel free to use this for your own group, event or contest. All I ask is that the proper credits are given.
I can’t stress enough how important knowing First Aid is, as well has having a First Aid Kit on hand. For Mosh Pits you will need from small band aids to the 2”x2” adhesive bandages or 2x2 or 4x4’s with sterile tape.
The mosh pit can be a rough and tumble place where pups romp, wrestle and play. So some things to remember -
Do wear something that is comfy and cool - things like singlets, tshirts, etc are great
Do wear soft soled shoes - martial arts, toe shoes or wrestling shoes are good
Do wear something that will keep your hands safe - MMA Gloves and some mitts are good (even socks)
Do make sure and wear knee pads if you have them
Do make sure you drink lots of water - If you feel thirsty stop and drink water, diluted gatorade or similar
Do make sure you don’t over do it - If you feel dizzy or really tired stop and rest
Do make sure a first aid kit/band aids are available
Do use toys that can be washed - squeak toys and empty plastic bottles are great!
Do be aware if there are treats, you ask before you eat them and alert of food allergies before.
Don’t wear body jewelry - If you can’t take it out, tape it down
Don’t wear clothes with lots of zippers, spikes, studs on them
Don’t wear combat boots, hard shoes, etc
Don’t use plush squeak toys or other toys that can’t be sanitized.
Don’t keep playing if you are bleeding. Stop and get cleaned up and bandaged before going back in.
Rules for the Trainer, Handlers, Most Pit Audience
Some pups are owned, others aren’t. Look for a collar or tag on the pup. Offer your hand and call them over. If they shake their head no, there is probably a reason to move on to another pup. Pups get very much into headspace in the mosh pit and sometimes they may realize them have hurt themselves or that they have been romping for hours and need a drink or need to take a little break. Handlers and Trainers are not only responsible for their pups, but if they see an issue they need to either bring it to the attention of the pup’s Handler or to the one running the mosh pit. If you have treats make sure you stay away from nut/honey based treats because of common allergies. Have lots of bandaids, bandages and tape ready. Pups will get booboos!
Talk with your pup before they go into the mosh pit!
If you have a pup or watching over a pup, make sure that they know and understand what is expected by you and the person running the mosh pit. Safety is the first priority!
Do not bring a favorite toy unless you are prepared to lose it. Even in a mosh pit, no means no. If a pup sends signals they do not want to play with you (another pup) just move on to someone else. Pup play can get sexual and you are entitled to say no if you want to.
Be safe and healthy!
Health conditions, allergies, etc are all things that need to be understood before diving into the mosh pit. It’s a tough job being a puppy and sometimes you need to take it easy even if you don’t want to. Remember your body is doing something it may not be use to with the energy level and roughness that can happen in the mosh pit. If you have a several allergy, make sure you know your surroundings and don’t eat treats you don’t know what’s in them. Conditions like Asthma or a heart condition are not fun if they are aggravated. If you have something like a rescue inhaler, have it with someone that will be there in case it’s needed. Joint and spine issues can and will be aggravated with the roughness so make sure and keep yourself safe.
If you are thirsty then you are already dehydrated!
There should be water close at hand and given to pups frequently. A pup may not be able to manage a water bottle in their hood and mitts, so long straws are a great help. Things like replenishment drinks are great but pups should not drink it full strength if they are really thirsty as it may be too strong for their system. Dilute it down by half so it’s easier on the body. One I really recommend is Vitalyte sold by REI. It’s powdered so it can be put in the pup’s water easily. (again be aware of allergies) If there are pups without handlers, Handlers, Alphas and brother pups, look out for them and make sure they are kept hydrated and safe.
What to wear to your first mosh pit -
Wear as minimal clothing as allowed. Don’t wear anything that you would be upset if it gets torn. Lycra shorts or wrestling singlets are great when more coverage is required.
Loose collars and tags that could get hooked should be removed
Keep your paws safe! MMA gloves, mitts that give you a safe hand position, even a couple pair of socks on the hands can keep them from getting skinned up
Tails can be worn in the mosh pit, but a harness on it is a good thing. You have to be careful of bumping into someone, potentially getting your tail pulled or worse yet, sneezing and losing your tail!
Knees will take a beating! Even with padding it can be hard on a pup’s knees. Knee pads or padding on the knees is always a good idea. Handlers, keep an eye on the pups to make sure their knee pads are in the proper place.
Mosh Pit First Aid - Most the time you will have some mosh pit booboos. You will need to keep on hand a variety of bandages from small to large, waterproof tape to tape down any piercings that may be loose, alcohol wipes to clean up the booboos, and something like Clorox wipes to clean up if there is a bit of blood on the mats. Also make sure you have a ziploc bag to put any contaminated wipes into and just don’t toss them loose into the trash can. Also make sure and have a supply of water and paper or cloth towels.
Have fun, be safe and look out for each other!!
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