Just before I get started: I mentioned this in my last
email, but just in case you didn’t watch this already,
I highly reccommend that you check out this video on the
shocking truth about the dog food industry.
Tell me if this sounds familiar. You get home from work,
greet your furry friend and then go to snag the leash.
Your dog immediately starts running in circles and jumping
up and down. You get him outside, and he practically pulls
your arm out of its socket on a beeline to whatever it is
You smile sheepishly to the neighbors, pull back a bit on
the leash and try to get your dog to slow down – but no
way, Fido is on a mission, and there’s nothing you can do
to stop him.
This is how most people start their walks with their dogs,
and it tends to turn a walk into a chore more than
something enjoyable for owner and dog alike.
The result is a dog that doesn’t get enough exercise and
an owner who is embarrassed to take their dog out the
* Stop the Behaviour
Dogs pulling on their leashes are not new. After all, dogs
are not genetically bred to have their throat wrapped in a
collar and tied to your arm. They pull because you’re
pulling back, and the only real way you’ll ever get him to
stop is to train him that the walk isn’t going anywhere
until he slows up.
I’ve seen hundreds of dogs with this problem, and the vast
majority simply didn’t know what they were doing wrong.
They’re not trying to assert dominance by running in
front. They’re not trying to make you mad. They’re just
excited and want to smell everything they can.
That’s why you need to take control of the situation.
Like anything in your dog’s life, it’s your job to control
what he has access to and when he can have access to it.
By showing your dog how his behavior hinders his walk
(rather than yelling, which only confuses him), you’ll
solve a lot of problems.
* Revise the Walking Ritual
To be effective in revamping your dog’s walking behavior,
you need to start with the moment you pick up that leash.
As you may have noticed, your dog learns very quickly
which of your behaviors signal that they’re about to go
You need to take control of this situation because it sets
up his reactions for the next few minutes on your walk. If
your dog decides he is going to jump around and whine in
excitement before a walk, wait until he calms down.
Simply waiting 5-10 minutes will often drain him of that
over-exuberance. I know it’s cute, but it’s hard to
control a dog that gets that excited.
Before you even open the door, make sure he is sitting in
a quiet, calm position. From there, don’t do anything
until he’s waiting patiently.
Once you get outside, let him relieve himself right away,
but then take control and limit his exploration.
Because a dog pulls back when he is restrained, you cannot
teach him to stop pulling by pulling back. You need to
stop walking and make him sit beside or behind you.
It can take a long time, but if you stop your dog from
walking every time he starts to pull, he’ll quickly learn
that the act of pulling on the leash stops the walk.
This is important. He needs to recognize that the pulling
action is causing the stoppage. Anything else will be too
complex for him.
Once you’ve done this, you should be able to slowly work
him up to walking beside or even behind you on your walk –
both will make your life infinitely easier. Take treats
with you as well. It can make the process much easier if
you can reward him for good behavior.
One last time, if you haven’t already, I suggest you check
out this video that’s making dog owners all over the world
change the way they feed their dogs.
I hope you enjoyed today’s newsletter!
Talk to you soon,