Leash Reactive Dog TrainingRead Now
“Vinnie my problem is that my dog lunges, pulls, snarls, or tries to bite people or dogs when they are on the leash”
Most owners of a dog who is severely leash reactive believe that the lunging at other dogs is the problem, but I’m here to tell you that it’s not the issue. The problem begins way before the lunge. Out of the next 100 leash reactive dogs that I will train over the next few weeks, I can guarantee 99 of them have two things in common. Terrible leash manners even before the stimulus comes into the picture. You will see a lot of weaving, pulling, smelling, and realistically a dog who has no understanding of heel, of following their human being. If your dog isn’t listening to the rules when there is no stimulus around, why all of the sudden would they listen when a dog/person/jogger walks past? If there is no expectation set beforehand, your dog will fail. Guaranteed. If we can teach our dog to heel, without stimulus around first, only then can we pass the dog with perfection. However, that expectation, that new standard on the walk, has to be set in stone ahead of time, and enforced indefinitely while on the leash.
Once we teach your dog to heel and walk properly on leash, we will run into our second issue, fixation. Prolonged eye-contact will inevitably get your dog in some serious trouble. Dogs, when staring at each other, are much like two men sitting across the bar staring at each other. The longer they stare, the more their chests puff out, frustration builds, and the inevitable, and altercation. Stopping your dog from being able to fixate on other dogs is the biggest piece to the puzzle. Imagine that your dog has a “freak-out” scale of 1-10. Once they get above 8, you’re in deep, let’s say “doggie-doo”. We need to start correcting the problem at a level 1/2/3. How do you do that? Back to our above statement, good leash skills and putting a rule in place that we are able to enforce. That is our job, to determine what is the best solution for you and your dog, and how to best correct the problem. Once your dog is heeling, we can enforce the next rule, no staring at other dogs nor people unless we are going to meet them.
There is a good chance you are dealing with this issue, whether it’s just minor and slightly annoying, or it is a major problem and extremely aggressive. Clients often ask, “How many sessions to teach my dog how to walk well?”
11/3/2019 01:03:26 pm
I have a reactive 3 year old English Mastiff but I live in Duncansville, PA. I am willing to drive to get him the help both him and I need so we can enjoy walks etc together without aggression. Do you do Saturday training sessions?
11/4/2019 08:22:53 am
Hey Jen! Yes ma’am, absolutely we can help. Give me a call or shoot me an email today so we can get some information, explain how the training works, and get the process started. Can’t wait to help!
1/19/2021 10:44:21 pm
Hello! I found you on Tiktok and am wondering if you do out of state consultation? I live in Houston and would love some support on our (very sweet inside the house) but very anxious and reactive outside the house 9 month old puppy. Thanks so much for providing all this great information! Anna
6/3/2021 07:38:20 pm
How do you stop a dog from reacting when another dog is approaching from a forward distance and you're both headed towards each other? This is when my dog loses his mind, even if we are across the street.We have learned to walk by people, workers, dogs and fenced yard's, but not dogs approaching in the distance.
6/14/2021 07:40:16 am
Can’t wait to try this! My pup got bit by another dog and not he is extremely leash reactive! It’s exhausting.
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