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Walking on a loose lead

jessi76
April 21st, 2006, 11:40 AM
problem: walking on a loose lead only on flat collar.

Tucker has completed MANY obedience classes, and is currently in CGC prep going for the CGC test in few weeks. This is one test item I'm still having trouble with.

The objective: walk a set path on a loose lead, flat collar ONLY.

Head harnesses are not allowed. (although I did just get a Black Dog head harness that totally rocks, and he doesn't pull one iota on it) food not allowed. toys not allowed.

the current scenerio: Tucker scents & pulls. we start off fine, then it's nose to the ground, and pulling in every which direction to smell. keep in mind, tucker has been training in this SAME room since he was 12 wks old. he's 1 yr now. he only does this on the flat collar. sometimes to the point of choking/gagging.

what I've done:

be a post method - As soon as I stop, Tucker stops. sits politely, and waits for me to carry on w/ the walk. as soon as we start, we're back to the pulling. this doesn't work. he literally doesn't CARE that I stop every 3 steps. he'll sit, wait, and then go right back to the pulling.

the turn around - go other way method: stops him for a second, but then we're back to the tight leash again. I've walked around in circles, zig-zags, etc.. for MONTHS AND MONTHS. this doesn't phase him.

the turn INTO him method: basically making a tight circle INTO the dog's path so he HAS to look at me - Tucker complies, I get dizzy, and can no longer walk straight. resulting in a drunken-stumble while tucker is back to pulling. when i'm circling him he doesn't pull, he can't. but I can't spin in circles everywhere I go.

ditching the leash: fine. I canned the leash. In a fenced area I coaxed tucker to stay by my side. he did great. re-introduced the leash...and whammo - more pulling.

teaching him to walk nicely w/ the head harness as a tool.... he's 100% perfectly fine on the harness. walking w/ him is FUN on the harness. I go back to the collar, and well... you guessed it, pulling.

I have to walk a path, so I can't turn or stop in the middle of the test, unless instructed to. I've applied commands he knows, WATCH ME, TOUCH, HEEL, LETS GO, WAIT, LEAVE IT, etc... I can't get him to walk nicely (focus on me) when he's scenting. it's like he's suddenly gone BLIND, DEAF and DUMB.

my trainer suggested an old trick of Vick's on his nose to basically prevent him from scenting. he also suggested that some dog's way of thinking of the leash is "well, my owner is driving, so I don't need to pay attention, I know where she is, she's at the other end of this leash" ... sort of like riding in a car w/ someone, if you're not driving, you don't pay attention as much. which is why I took the leash away.

however, for the test he HAS to be on leash, and I can't just walk around in circles.

phoenix
April 21st, 2006, 04:09 PM
:grouphug:
I'm so sorry but I have no help to offer. This could have been written about my dog Sam. EXACTLY. So, I'm just offering the "it's not just you" type of support and excitedly waiting for someone with an answer.
hehe

jessi76
April 21st, 2006, 09:05 PM
This could have been written about my dog Sam. EXACTLY. So, I'm just offering the "it's not just you" type of support and excitedly waiting for someone with an answer.
hehe

thanks for the support! Just to let you know, I did just purchase a Black Dog head harness. It's an Austrailian product, not yet sold many places in the US. But my trainer got a few in, and let me buy one. It's AWESOME. it stopped the pulling immediately. It's like a Gentle Leader, but is designed for short nosed breeds.... such as boxers. So the nose strap does not ride up into the eyes. and it totally works. it took Tucker about 20 min to get used to, and he walks like an angel on it. Sadly, I'm not allowed to use this for our test though... so still awaiting any advice...

but just thought I'd let you know about this new harness, since Maia is getting bigger.

Joey.E.CockersMommy
April 21st, 2006, 09:52 PM
This the method that was done with Joeys obedience lessons a while back. Not all may agree with it - but it was done with a regular collar no chokes, haltis or pinch collars and no treats I am not a dog trainer by any means so its just what I have learned and it worked pretty good for Joey and I. I still use it when Joey needs reminders not to pull on occassion - for the most part hes pretty good.

As soon as your dog starts to pull flick the leash and say No - flick the leash until he comes to you on his own - the idea ( the trainer said is to make the dog uncomfortable so he knows when he is out there pulling he gets this annoying rattling sensation on his collar and its more pleasant to be near you. Also your not flicking so hard your hurting your dog - its just so its annoying to him also its important that the lead is under the chin, not on top.

As soon as he gets to a close enough distance that you feel is acceptable than offer him lots and lots of praise.

Also the trainer stated that its really important that you let your dog come to you instead of reeling him in this can take several minutes depending on the dog. With Joey it took about 15 minutes the first few time.

Good luck let us know what works for you. :D

Joey.E.CockersMommy
April 21st, 2006, 09:57 PM
Also I should add has part of our obedience testing we had to sit, stay heel come, down - walk past other dogs all on a loose leash.

Gee you know, youve just reminded me, I think I should sign Joey up for a refresher course I think it would be good for the both of us - maybe hubby can go this time.

phoenix
April 21st, 2006, 10:02 PM
thanks for the support! Just to let you know, I did just purchase a Black Dog head harness. It's an Austrailian product, not yet sold many places in the US. But my trainer got a few in, and let me buy one. It's AWESOME. it stopped the pulling immediately. It's like a Gentle Leader, but is designed for short nosed breeds.... such as boxers. So the nose strap does not ride up into the eyes.

Thanks! I'll definitely look into it.
Sam and I use an Easyway collar and it is amazing as well... no pulling at all... but it does ride up into his eyes. Maia for some reason accepts heeling like it was a natural thing. But things may change in the future!!

Prin
April 21st, 2006, 10:17 PM
Tenderfoot said a while ago something about "dinking"... Where you just annoy the dog with short tugs of the leash when the dog is pulling or whatever... I'm no expert on it though.. Maybe search for "dink" or "dinking"?

I think there can be history in there too though... You know? Just like if a previous owner abused a dog with a certain collar, maybe if a previous owner had let the doggy drag them on a flat collar... Or maybe I'm making excuses..:o

I mean my doggies have chokers, and I rarely if ever have to use them, and I rarely have in the past, but same as you, the minute I put a flat collar on, they're at the end of a leash. They do better completely OFF leash than with a flat collar. :confused: I thought it would be a good idea to switch to flat collars (I even got really pretty ones) but I just found them to be a hassle (they started to smell like rot), were bulky and heavy and ultimately, they went back to their chokers...

I know that doesn't help...

Good luck...

Joey.E.CockersMommy
April 21st, 2006, 11:03 PM
Prin= Tenderfoot said a while ago something about "dinking"... Where you just annoy the dog with short tugs of the leash when the dog is pulling or whatever... I'm no expert on it though.. Maybe search for "dink" or "dinking"?

I think thats what I was trying to explain above :D

Prin
April 21st, 2006, 11:11 PM
oh, you said flick.. I got all confused... (If you find the original thread where tenderfoot explained dinking to me, the whole concept seems to confuse me greatly...):D :o

Joey.E.CockersMommy
April 22nd, 2006, 08:47 AM
I never really understand things unless I actually see them being done - maybe TF will come and explain it again - it would be good to have a refresher course.

I hope she doesnt critque my explanation too much :D :o

Prin
April 22nd, 2006, 11:37 PM
Nah, she's not like that... Tenderfoot has a lot of patience with us.. usually..:D

jessi76
April 24th, 2006, 08:14 AM
Thanks for the replies. I've tried the "dinking" method.... to no avail. Tucker doesn't care that the leash is dinking... literally, he gives me the "are you having fun?" look, and will sit right down, and wait for me to finish "dinking" or whatever. He's a very patient dog really.

anyways... I'm still working on it but have become VERY strict about it. Holding the leash about 2-3 inches from his collar. This way he cannot get ahead of me, and he MUST pay attention. Any pulling results in him be PUT BACK to my side where he should be. since I'm only giving him 2-3 inches, this isn't hard to do. He also gets a verbal correction when this happens. so far so good.

hey, at the very least I'm getting a good arm workout. :rolleyes:

Joey.E.CockersMommy
April 24th, 2006, 08:34 AM
Jessi76 = Thanks for the replies. I've tried the "dinking" method.... to no avail. Tucker doesn't care that the leash is dinking... literally, he gives me the "are you having fun?" look, and will sit right down, and wait for me to finish "dinking" or whatever. He's a very patient dog really.

thats exactly what Joey did - the teacher was demonstrating the dinking method with Joey - he just stood there - then eventually sat down. "Its very important that you see this through - no matter how long it takes" the teacher says. "What you must not do is pull the dog towards you" she pulls Joeys leash to demonstrate - the class is on hardwood floor in gym - Joey slides across the floor still sitting. She said Joey was one of the most stubborn dogs she's ever met. :D But he passed the lose leash walking when came to take the test. That moment when hes sliding across the floor- sitting down is priceless I wont forgot that. :D

I hope you find something that works for you - maybe TF will come and give you some other suggestions - or someone else will - good luck :)

sprayeddog
April 24th, 2006, 10:53 AM
Hi Jessi,

I believe the methods you've used are all the methods I know on how to train a dog to walk on a loose leash.

The 2nd method (walk in opposite direction) worked relatively well for Matty (before he hit the rebellious stage at 9 mths anyways) ... only thing I did different was everytime he was just about to start pulling I'll say "Close!" loudly before I walk in opposite direction, sorta as a warning / command. So after a whie, as soon as I say "Close!" he'd stop pulling (as hard) and wait for me. I got this from Dr.Stanley's "Good Dogs!" show.

But otherwise it seems like you're doing everything right.

I think certain dogs are also a lot harder to train than the others ... my parents' beagle Toby, for example, everytime he goes out he's like a vaccuum cleaner and keeps sniffing every inch of his path from the moment we leave the door till he comes back. If he smells something interesting (say, racoon's or other animal's smell) he'll just take off and won't hear any command. We tried everything and in the end nothing worked. I resorted to the fact it's his instinct as a hound and there's just nothing I could do about that.


SD