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How to Play Dog Leg Poker


DOG LEG POKER: A combination of 5 card draw and 5 card stud. Start the game by dealing and playing 5 card draw in the normal manner. After the draw the game turns into a variation of 5 card stud. Each player arranges their cards in any order they wish and places them in a pile face down on the table in front of them. Once that is done, the order of the cards may not be changed and players may no longer look at their unrevealed cards. Each player initially reveals their first two cards, but thereafter cards 3, 4 and 5 are revealed one card at a time There is a round of betting between each reveal. May be played high-low split. May be played as cards speak with no declaration (preferable). Optionally declaration can be used. If so, declaration should be made prior to revealing the last card.

Summary of action:
Deal 5 hole cards to each player.
Draw cards.
Arrange cards in pile.
Once arranged, card order can not be changed. Cards must be revealed in order.
Reveal 2 cards.
Bet (Highest showing hand always starts betting)
Reveal 1 card.
Reveal 1 card
Declaration (optional)
Reveal last card - Showdown

Playing Tips for Dog Leg Poker


Although described as a combination of 5 card draw and 5 card stud, Dog Leg poker is actually simply 5 card draw poker. The resemblance to 5 card stud is the novel method of arriving at the showdown and how that can influence your play. When played as a high only game, the common strategies of 5 card draw should be observed. When played as high-low split a more liberal strategy can be employed.

Position is very important in Dog Leg poker. Because this game includes the opportunity to draw cards the players in late position have an advantage. They get to learn how many cards the players before them draw before they have to make their own draw which is useful in assessing the potential strength of their opponents' hands.

Starting Hand Selection


As already mentioned, Dog Leg should be played observing the basic strategies and starting hand selection of 5 card draw. However, the method used to arrive at the showdown increases the number of post-draw betting rounds from 1 in classic 5 card draw to 3 rounds in Dog Leg. Because of this you can be more liberal in selecting starting hands. If you don't hit your draw you fold after just 1 round of betting. If you do hit you now have 3 rounds of betting to make up for poorer drawing odds. For example, you could play any pair, any 3 card flush or straight, a 4 card inside straight and possibly even 2 or 3 big cards.

When played high-low split you can add most 3 cards of 7 or less, perhaps even a "good" 8-low such as 82A, 83A or 832. Pay attention to how many cards the other players draw as it help you determine how good your hand needs to be. Having an ace as one of these cards is much preferred since you could miss your low draw but pick up a high hand like aces up.

Arranging & Revealing Cards


Deception is the overriding objective in arranging and revealing cards. You will usually want to reveal them in a way that hides the strength of your hand as long as possible or in a way that makes your opponents uncertain to the direction (high or low) of your hand. Examples are:
2 pair so that neither pair is shown until the 4th card (eg. 32,A,3,A).
3 of a kind so that it is revealed with the last 2 cards (eg. 75,4,7,7).
A straight so that is looks as though you must fill an inside straight with your last card (eg. KQ,T,9,J).
A flush revealing the lowest cards first.

On the other hand, when you do not have a very good hand, you could reveal your best cards early and hope you can deceive your opponents into thinking you have a better hand than you do. Unfortunately, in real life there is usually low chance for success. When an opponent can not beat your shown cards he will fold immediately. So long as he can beat your shown cards he will probably call you down, especially if you are the only bettor. Of course, as soon as he knows he has you beat, he will raise you.