Monday, November 12, 2018

When Your Dog Pulls on the Leash

We were walking down the street and Petey pulled ahead enthusiastically.
Around the corner he pulled toward a squirrel.
He heard a dog bark and he pulled toward the dog.
Later, we walked into a room of dogs and he pulled hard, barking.
Petey's pulling had become a problem.



Now that Petey is more than a year old, he's nearly full grown and strong. He also has boundless energy. We use many techniques to help. We provide him with lots of interactive toys to keep him busy. We also use a good, front attaching harness. We like the Easy Walk harness. This has always made a big difference in all our other dogs, but Petey is an especially difficult case!

My first instinct was to stop going out in public. It certainly was easier! But this wasn't teaching Petey anything. Plus, we want to be able to take him places with us, and hopefully eventually he will do therapy dog work with us. So we bought a supply of training treats. I began rewarding him every time he made eye contact with me.



Then I began using this technique when out on a walk. Every time he pulls, I stop walking. He usually eventually stops looking at whatever he's pulling toward and looks at me. I say "yes!" and he comes to me and gets a treat. First of all, this makes the walk really slow! But every time we practice, I notice him pulling less, and stopping to check in with me more.

My friend and dog trainer sent me this video. (Thank you Teri!)



With practice, he's improving. We even walked back and forth in front of a house with a barking dog, and he didn't bark back at all! I'm very encouraged by his progress but I know that it's up to me to keep working with him.

Does your dog pull? What have you found that helps you?

Disclouse: This post contains affiliate links. The products are those I personally use or think you will like.

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