Sunday, July 29, 2007

Walk the walk (heel)

We all know that sometimes when out for a walk others will allow their dogs to get right into our dogs' face with out a thought in the world. This is not only rude it is sometimes asking for a fight among the canines.This leaves us feeling very uncomfortable and we have a tendency to pull our dogs away, while the other dog is coming after our dog. When you pull your dog away you are leaving your dog exposed for a bite.This is not only unfair it is dangerous for everyone involved.
The polite way to walk your dog is to have your dog at your side and paying attention to you, not the dogs coming towards them. Not all dogs are dog friendly. Should your dog look the other dog in the eyes, there is apt to be a fight. Most fights are not serious but they sure scare the hell out of us when they start. Should you have your kids with you when out for a walk, you are now endangering everyone.
This message is for all my clients who walk their dogs in the park or around town.Sometimes it is your dog starting the problems and sometimes the other persons. Blame is not the issue here, safety is!!!
Should you feel uncomfortable about an approaching canine while out for a walk, simply guide your dog to the side of the sidewalk or up on the grass area, place your dog in a sit and wait for the other dog to pass. If the other person stops to talk, keep your dog in a sit and do not allow your dog to get in the other dogs face. I have taught you all how to correct for unwanted behavior and if this is unwanted behavior at the time then correct for it.DO NOT wait for something to happen before you react. Correct for impure thinking if you must. Just apply a firm but gentle correction with the leash and your dog will pay attention to you and not the dog on the sidewalk.
Sometimes people just don't get it! They continue to come towards you and your dog even though you have placed your dog out of the way and at your side so the other dog can pass. If you're dealing with a person who doesn't get it, simply tell them straight up, "My dog is in training and can not visit at this time." That should get the point across!!!
Do not be afraid to stick up for yourself or your training. People will walk away respecting you for trying to create a well behaved dog. They will even think about getting their own dog trained.
Have faith in your dog and your dog will have faith in you. Please remember to take hold of a situation before it gets out of control.Don't wait for something to happen first, be ahead of the game at all times and watch out for the people coming towards you with a dog. Pay attention at all times.
Trainer and friend