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On Leash

August 30th, 2010, 11:47 AM
No idea if this is in the right forum.

I just had a wonderful addition to my family yesterday and he's a complete angel. He does pull on walks though, so hard that he infacts chokes himself and sounds like he has smokers cough.

I'm giving him a few days to see if perhaps he's just excited in a new area (he's a rescue dog, approx 3 years) and perhaps he'll calm down before calling on a trainer for some help.

Any tips for how to perhaps correct this on my own? I'm scared to do damage cause he's a rescue. I also have a normal lead but my mother who I'm currently living with feels it's cruel and is now buying an extended leash. Am I wrong to think that that is NOT helpful?

August 30th, 2010, 12:10 PM
Go buy the Premier Easy Walk Harness. It ties in the front. There are many sizes so ask for instructions. Global has them. My dog was still pulling at 6 yrs old so I got one for him. It's amazing. My other dog had one from the get go cause she has a sensitive trachea.

August 30th, 2010, 01:06 PM
Go buy the Premier Easy Walk Harness. It ties in the front. There are many sizes so ask for instructions. Global has them. My dog was still pulling at 6 yrs old so I got one for him. It's amazing. My other dog had one from the get go cause she has a sensitive trachea.

Good suggestion. Also, extended leads are the worst things ever. You have absolutely no control with this type of leash.

Dog Dancer
August 30th, 2010, 03:15 PM
Firstly thank you for rescuing. Your new pup will repay you ten fold with his devotion. I have to agree right off that the extending leashes are the worst thing for you to get. Return it immediately!! That works for a dog who does not need to be controlled at all. I have a friend who has used the harness recommended and loves it. My suggestion to you, in addition to this harness, would be to get both of yourselves into a "positive reinforcement" obedience class. Doing obedience with your new dog, even if he's already well trained and just hasn't settled yet, will help him to bond with you as his new Alpha owner. Don't send him to school - this bonding will only come if you actually go through the classes with him. The training actually teaches the owner as much as the dog on how to get the dogs trust and respect. I really do wish you well, please post pics when you get a chance. We love pics. Good luck to you, and patience and perseverance will be key. Always stay positive with him, he'll respond much better.

August 30th, 2010, 03:40 PM
NakedSun,I too live in Oakville and if you have not been to Ren's Petdepot,you should go there,nobody has a bigger selection in leashes,harnesses,toys,the best food etc...etc...

August 30th, 2010, 09:22 PM
Against my wishes my mother went ahead and bought an extendable leash. Let's hope I can avoid letting her walk him at all costs.

I will look into the harness for sure. Thank you for the advice!

August 30th, 2010, 10:36 PM
Hope there's pics up somewhere of your new boy :goodvibes:. Congratulations on the adoption!!

My input on the extendi-leash...once he gets to the end of it, he's just going to continue pulling. In addition, those type of leashes actually teach a dog that when they pull against the spring pressure, they get to go further...completely contrary to teaching loose leash walking.

When we first adopted him, our Lucky had actually pulled me right off my feet :rolleyes:. Didn't matter what kind of collar or head halter we had on him. With the Easy Walk harness, it was much easier to have more gentle control while teaching him to walk on a loose leash without him choking himself silly.

Here's a great article:

And several videos by Emily Larlham of dogmantics that demonstrate how to gently teach loose leash walking where both handler and dog can have loads of fun learning:

September 8th, 2010, 09:22 AM
Got to be the number one issue..straining on the lead.
I've tried many different techniques over the years..every dog can have different response levels.

Have always managed to end up (recent memory) with a 'good walker' either way. The foundation is persistence, patience and lately remaining calm (at least try and project that <grin>). I don't necessarily believe in using 'cheats' or 'aids' unless they are used only to correct behaviour and not a mainstay to the walk. It's behavioural remember..resolving mentally is preferred to physically or mechanically restraining.

Unfortunately, addressing it as a behavioural issue takes much more work and commitment of the handler..however it is catalyst for life-long results.

Be the leader, always the leader, never not be the leader..lead anytime as long as it is all the time.

I have in the past year (with several dogs) adopted a technique by Jan Fennell and am having good results without frustration or sore arms (or chocking). It does take a little more reserve and PATIENCE but very relaxed and passive adjustment.

Two tactics:
#1 Principle: no moving forward till dog is relaxed and slack.
Methodology: STOP, don't pull back..just hold fast..don't allow forward movement (heels dug in) ..only one energy pulling holding and standing ground..eventually slack will happen (the duration is dependent on the dogs level of persistence) maybe seconds (ha!) maybe minutes.
Quite often dog will slowly return to you and don't worry where they end up, preferably next to you but take anything reasonable.
When some degree of relaxation is realized..praise and move forward.
If lunging and straining continues repeat the the whole process.
Expect a long short walk in some cases.

#2 Principle: redirection and reset
Methodology: dog pulling on lead on left side for instance..reach ahead as close to shoulder with lead in hand and redirect firmly to the right and have the dog circle with you as you rotate 360 in a circle ending facing where you started with dog close to left side (at heel) and try to get a moments relaxation in that position and placement ..continue on with praise ..repeat again if pulling continues. Expect a long short walk in some cases.

I find little 'pulsating tugs', correction release.correction release..on, off..on, off little jerks by moving your controlling hand a couple inches (correction) and release as you redirect in the is only to the degree to initiate and maintain focus. Be easy on yourself as well as the dog and allow the dog to move as much on its own as possible as per your directing guidance.

The whole point is we don't move forward if pulling exists..and we only move forward on MY terms.

Always do it with a smile and the less said the better..when you have him looking up at you occasionally you have won respect and the walk will be pleasurable for both.

We quite often want results as close to immediate as possible and hence give in or give up too soon. There is no substitute for experience.

best of luck you wily leader you

September 8th, 2010, 02:28 PM
We just bought our 65lb puller an Easy Walk Harness as well. Its amazing. I have back/hip problems and was unable to walk her, until now. Its so good, even my 6yr old daughter can walk her now too (with me there of course)

September 8th, 2010, 09:16 PM
I started with harnesses that could also be used as seat belts in the vehicle. I liked them because they don't choke. When we walk we walk for about 3km and I give them lots of stopping time to do some exploring. ... or we go to the dog park so there is free time when they can ran to their hearts content.

I also think it's a whole new ball game with a Rescue. I got my Rescue last January and when you think about it... (She was 2.5 years old)... had lived her whole life in a tiny cage.. she didn't have great muscle development... how could she?? She had never been on a leash ... so how is she sapossed to act?!? It's not going to happen overnite! They are exploring so many new things... 'everything' is new!

I guess I didn't think it was that important for her to learn all the rules too quickly or to be a perfect walker. We just walked and walked.... and now she's a great little walker. I have to spell the word Walk if I'm not leaving that second cause she's so very eager and so happy to be going 'out'.

She will pull if she sees a chipmunk ;) but she was bred to do that!

I'd recommend more Dog Park runs for a Rescue and just let her explore... the worlds a whole big new place.. maybe she just wants to run and discover it. She'll walk better once she figures it all out.