Our Jack/Rat mix pup is almost 7 months old and smart as a whip. He picks things up in a snap and loves to do obedience and trick training. I do have a bit of a challenge with a husband that is not quite as sharp with the training, (repeats repeats repeats, treats at not optimal times, allows some bad behavior.....and this is what it is, there will not be any or a lot of improvements. Just something I've had to live with for years and have accepted cause I can't change it, nor could the trainers we''ve used.
We live on a small horse farm and I have been leash walking, mostly extendable ones, to date. We are working on heel when requested and he's doing well. I have needed to take both our dogs (8 year old lab mix also) on the walks because of time limitations, daylight savings and feet upon feet of snow. As spring sets in I can take them one on one and do more intense training.
I am hoping to be able to take him off leash, so that he can accompany me at the barn and on the property, hopefully coming on short trail rides. Our other dog does go off leash for planned walks to our pond, but no more than that. She is older, was quite abused, has some health issues, so she needs to be in a more controlled environment when off leash vs. letting her hang out down the barn and wander around. I'm hoping the Jack will be able to just hang out with me and enjoy the open space.
What suggestions to people have for accomplishing this? I've never had a dog completely off leash as I've always lived on busy streets/areas. We did have a Westie that I let stay off leash out our previous home, and he just stuck by me, hung out in the yard when I gardened etc. His health had failed greatly when we moved here so his ability to be off leash was only for a short time. I really want this little guy to enjoy the place, run as much as he wants, and be a good little barn dog. Would love to hear some advice.