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Great dog but pulls on leash when other dogs come by...

This is a discussion on Great dog but pulls on leash when other dogs come by... within the Dog Training and Behavior forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Dogs category; Put a four- to six-foot lead on your dog's collar and start to walk with her. If she walks without pulling, praise her and continue ...

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Old 01-31-2019, 01:43 AM
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Put a four- to six-foot lead on your dog's collar and start to walk with her. If she walks without pulling, praise her and continue walking. If she pulls on the lead, stop and wait until she stops pulling. As soon as the tension on the lead is released, praise her, offer a quick treat and then continue walking.
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Old 01-31-2019, 06:37 AM
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Is there a park nearby with people and dogs there? If so try going there and sitting on a bench on the edge of the park- not in the middle of people but alittle ways away. The two of you just sit and chill for awhile watching people and dogs walk around, play whatever they're doing. Let your dog come to realize that the world is full of other dogs and she doesnt need to be excited every time she sees one. Show her by example that the other dogs are no big deal. You can also do this same thing outside of a dog park. Not inside but outside. Desensitize. The point is to show her that other dogs are just background noise while she's on leash. Progress to doing some fun obedience work while in these same areas. Eventually she'll start to understand.
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Old 01-31-2019, 09:07 AM
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I teach a watch me command that is rewarded by a treat. Watch me with a quick response any time is the goal.

Then I use a 12 tab loop on a prong with the leash on a harness.

The prong is just for instant reminder with watch me. Never any force or yank just a finger twitch.

The heel is standard on my left. I use heel or walk nice. My dog is conversational in that I talk to her a lot.

Pulling on the leash is by command go she is free to sniff and find a potty place and I give rewards for recall to heel.

Its a multi process thing that takes time. An Aussie requires you to be 3-4 steps ahead of her at all times. No time for the phone or cigs.
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Old 02-01-2019, 09:58 AM
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Thanks for the suggestions. I have been limiting my walks to our driveway and in front of our house, just to be on the safe side. Yesterday we had a little more success. A couple passed by with a small dog, and Xander initial lunged towards the dog wanting to play. I immediately corrected him and made him sit and stay. He whined but listened so that is a success. I am sure this will improve with time, but for now I hesitate going to far from home until I know I can control him.
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Old 02-01-2019, 03:03 PM
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Try training away from your house, may be easier for your dog

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Originally Posted by soflatechie View Post
I have been limiting my walks to our driveway and in front of our house, just to be on the safe side. I am sure this will improve with time, but for now I hesitate going to far from home until I know I can control him.
Just from my experience, I have noticed many dogs, including my own, are way more sensitive or reactive near their own house! Or on their own street.

So, you may want to consider going in your car with Xander and taking him somewhere "neutral" to train. Begin your training/practicing there to make it easier for him to succeed. Even if it is a few streets over you may have much better success.

I always like to set my dogs up for success by starting easy and working our way up to more challenging situations as they are learning.
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Old 02-01-2019, 03:34 PM
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When you say you corrected Xander for his reacting, what did you do?

Also, again, in the beginning it may be too much to ask your dog to sit while another dog goes by, esp if other dog is close by.

For me and my dogs, I would just give the treats any time you see the other dogs just to create the association that seeing other dogs is wonderful! Eventually you can shape the behavior into a sit or lay down or something more challenging.

Like today, I took Puma to Lowe's (huge hardware store) to practice our manners, etc. We saw another dog there and I took her to see the other dog at a large distance and immediately started giving her yummy chicken as I talked to her about how cool the little black pug dog was, etc. Soon she was laying down casually next to me watching the dog and eating the treats. In fact the other dog actually passed right next to as we were sitting down and no reactivity. We let the dogs say hi to each other and Puma was super gentle to the little dog.

But this has taken us quite a while to get to this point. Lots and lots of practice in many, many different places. And lots and lots of yummy food bites and happy chat

So much fun for both of us today practicing our manners at Lowe's--- esp since we kept getting so many nice compliments on her polite gentle behavior
So much fun that I ended up losing track of time and ending up being late for work! Dog training is so addictive.....
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Old 02-01-2019, 04:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AthenaLove View Post
Just from my experience, I have noticed many dogs, including my own, are way more sensitive or reactive near their own house! Or on their own street.

So, you may want to consider going in your car with Xander and taking him somewhere "neutral" to train. Begin your training/practicing there to make it easier for him to succeed. Even if it is a few streets over you may have much better success.

I always like to set my dogs up for success by starting easy and working our way up to more challenging situations as they are learning.
Thanks for the suggestions. With Xander I am not confident enough with him to take him somewhere where I cannot easily remove him from the area if something doesn't go right. Near the house or in our front yard I can do that. Driving to another area not so much. He is a big strong dog. Maybe once he gets more accustomed to me that may be an option. My goal is to eventually take him hiking in the north Georgia mountains, but we are not there yet.

Correcting is simply me telling him no, directing him away from the distraction with a treat and making him sit. He actually is very good at sitting and staying, so my feeling is that this is the best way right now to get him to calm down and take his attention away from whatever is distracting him.

I am concerned about giving him treats while he is in an excited state since I don't want him to think that is acceptable. Only when he is sitting and relatively calm do I give the treat.

I do give treats while walking him whenever he is not pulling on the leash, but not when his mind is excited.

We are going to have some more obedience classes soon to work on these issues. From what I was told he does know how to walk on the leash. The dog trainer seems to think he is really just testing me and we should be able to resolve it quickly.

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Old 02-03-2019, 03:24 AM
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I use a halti harness but I clip the lead into the back not the front- it clips to a collar at the front, so she get get it off. It does help becose it goes across the front of her legs. Another thing I do- practising walking her through ducks without jumping- I hold the lead with two hands, one hand half way down & gently & slowly pull back abit with that hand. I give the instruction at the same time, I say walking, walking ( she knows the diff between walking, stop & running) she feels me gently pulling her back & that is an indication - no jump, then I let it go & theres some slack, when its too tight again I repeat. Stay relaxed as your dog may pick up on your stress & become stressed too. Also if they sense your nervous they may think they need to be over protective of you. I agree that dogs can be territorial of their own property- so it may be good to start somewhere else but where there are not lots of dogs. Also give your dog a run around first before the walk, as they will be easier to manage with less energy. You could also try training with a large dog stuffed toy, a large cardboard cut out of a dog or dogs on t.v before going in public. Teach the greeting you want or the walk past you would like. This may sound a bit odd, but still works by recognition & association. You may want to have two people on your walks, to begin with so if you cant hold on, the other person can help.
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Old 02-04-2019, 08:10 PM
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Harness, collars for reactive and pulling dogs

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Originally Posted by soflatechie View Post
I have seen the harnesses online and wonder if that will help.
Would be really interested to know if the harness is worth getting or not.
I am currently using a body harness from Kurgo for my 54 lb Puma pup. Her other harness was rubbing her raw under her armpits and this new one seems to fit her much better. She has a deep barreled chest, but is slender all over, so most harnesses were not fitting her properly. (too big in one area) She is a puller at times (not reactive to other dogs) but getting much better now. But still I like using a body harness for now, until her pulling is completely not an issue.

I personally won't use a regular flat collar on a dog that pulls bc I don't want to do damage to the dog's neck area as they are learning not to pull. And I would never use any prong collar or shock collar since I know these can easily be used incorrectly--- and result in causing more stress and anxiety to a reactive dog!! Even knowing how to use one correctly, I personally would never choose this method for any dog.

My shy fearful previously very reactive(hugely fear reactive!!!) dog Gracie (40 lbs) started with a regular dog harness, and I clipped her collar to her harness with yet another collar since when she got spooked she would back out of her harness and collar in a jiffy. Scary stuff!

Now Gracie wears a soft fabric Martingale collar when we are out walking and she does great on that. She only slipped out of it once in 3 years and that was TOTALLY my fault bc it had gotten very loose on her over the years and I had not noticed that.

Hope this helps.

Last edited by AthenaLove; 02-04-2019 at 08:13 PM.
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Old 02-07-2019, 03:22 AM
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Hold your dog on a loose leash; a tight leash can heighten reactivity. Treat your dog when he walks next to you; if he pulls on the leash or crosses in front of you, stop walking. Use a treat to lure him back to your side. Walk toward the other dog at an angle or perpendicular to the other dog, rather than head on.
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