Most of the posts I have on this site are instructional, a collection of “how to’s” if you will. I’d like to change gears a little with this post and make it mainly an informative one. I’d like to talk a little about realistic expectations, or maybe unrealistic ones. Many people get a dog and put very little thought into the decision. They see a breed that looks cool or appeals to them in some way and that’s about as much thought that goes into the acquisition. Continue reading
At the heart of all of my recommendations for behavior modification is exercise. One of the best forms of exercise is walking with your dog. Not only is it great cardiovascular activity for both of you, but it CAN be great bonding time as well. I all caps CAN because, for many of my clients, walking their dog is a nightmare filled with stories of bad shoulders and backs and pulling. This type of walk is anything but pleasant. Luckily, there is a better way. There are many ways to tame your sled dog in training, I will discuss the easiest, fastest, and most human of these, the Gentle Leader. Continue reading
There are several reasons why dogs bite their leash. Some do it out of boredom, some out of play, and some out of control. Regardless of the reason, the result will be that your dog will control an interaction with you. An interaction that could lead to problems when you really need your dog to listen to you.
Leash biting can be an annoying habit. Not only is it annoying, but it allows your dog to control the interaction. If your dog is controlling this interaction it will be much less likely, if not impossible, for you to control your dog’s behavior on a walk when you need to. Here are some tips on how to stop this habit.
#1 Allow your dog to carry a toy in his mouth
#2 Teach the “drop it” command and reward dropping of the leash
#3 Use a Gentle Leader. When you apply some tension on the leash it will automatically close your dogs mouth, gently of course.
#4 Abruptly change directions.
#5 Step on the leash approximately 6 inches below the point that he is holding in. He will likely not want him muzzle that close to the ground. Hold this position, while being silent, until he releases, then resume the walk.
#6 Walk fast, like you’re late for a very important appointment. Do not allow your dog to “sniff & pee” the entire time.
#7 Use a chain leash. Be careful with this one. Most dogs do not like to chew on metal, but some do. In a battle between enamel and metal, metal will win.
#8 Never pull back. This can turn into a game of tug of war.
What tricks do you use to combat leash biting? Let me know!