UGH still pulling!

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Katlin
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UGH still pulling!

Post by Katlin » Sat May 24, 2014 6:40 am

Wylie has become a nightmare to walk. I got rid of the prong collar after seeing positive results (and hoping to move back down the severity ladder) and he's gone from pretty ok most of the time to an absolute shit. He's awful! He will walk along nice and loose leash when suddenly he'll lunge at literally a random patch of grass, then lunge back the other way. He's not afraid, he wiggles like mad when I pull out his leash and will sit nicely at the door, then we hit pavement and boom! Wylie is gone and his tasmanian devil cousin is attached to the lead.

I've tried the front leads, I've tried the halters, I've literally tried every piece of equipment known to Canada besides a shock collar (not happening). I know it's down to training him but I can't keep his attention...doesn't care about treats, praise, or anything. I'm at a loss. All I'm able to do right now is let him run loose in our field...Can anyone provide a stick of advice please? I will try anything right now.

BTW please don't think I'm a bad trainer. Wylie is a wonderful dog offleash, in the car, and in my home....it's just on sidewalks or on a leash that he's bad.
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Re: UGH still pulling!

Post by Tana » Sat May 24, 2014 11:03 am

Hmm Cesar Millan would say you're not the pack leader :P Ok, enough jokes. Maybe you should try like he's doing. Choke or pinch collar on the top of the neck and
require him to walk beside or behind you. If he pulls, you use the same "force" for correction. He stops, you stop. Teach him to sit when you stop, to look at you and then you let him go, on a longer leash, to sniff, pee. Then you decide when is enough freedom and again, require to walk beside or behind you. And of course you have to be calm and assertive and do it with a feeling. The same thing you can do without a leash (later), so he won't run away as soon as you remove the leash. Teach him self control, gain his respect.

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Re: UGH still pulling!

Post by Taz » Sat May 24, 2014 2:54 pm

I know a trainer who took on a Dobermann as an older puppy, said he was the most difficult dog she's ever worked with. Inside the house brilliant, outside, completely overstimulated by everything. She used a dogmatic headcollar, don't know if you can get them where you are, I like them, tough and secure, good for control whilst you work on the issue.
Anyway, she ended up having to find the most boring environment for a dog she could, a street with no grass, and walked him on laps around it, until he could cope there, and then moved on.
Boring, yes, and I'm sure the people around thought she was a bit weird, worked though, in the end he could be walked anywhere, past anything on lead, but it was extremely hard work apparently.


I'd go back to basics, treat him like he's a young puppy that you've just got, and doesn't have a clue about what you expect from him.
If my dogs pull, I stand still, or turn sharply in the opposite direction to where they want to go. I also teach a release command for when they're on lead, which is basically giving them permission to sniff things etc, that in itself can be a reward. You walk nicely, I'll let you go sniff that grass, or pee on that tree.

Hope you can crack it.
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Re: UGH still pulling!

Post by Katlin » Sat May 24, 2014 6:14 pm

Ok thanks guys, I think we'll go back to the prong collar and start in a street and move up from there.
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Re: UGH still pulling!

Post by chelle784 » Sat May 24, 2014 8:50 pm

Taz wrote:I know a trainer who took on a Dobermann as an older puppy, said he was the most difficult dog she's ever worked with. Inside the house brilliant, outside, completely overstimulated by everything. She used a dogmatic headcollar, don't know if you can get them where you are, I like them, tough and secure, good for control whilst you work on the issue.
Anyway, she ended up having to find the most boring environment for a dog she could, a street with no grass, and walked him on laps around it, until he could cope there, and then moved on.
Boring, yes, and I'm sure the people around thought she was a bit weird, worked though, in the end he could be walked anywhere, past anything on lead, but it was extremely hard work apparently.


I'd go back to basics, treat him like he's a young puppy that you've just got, and doesn't have a clue about what you expect from him.
If my dogs pull, I stand still, or turn sharply in the opposite direction to where they want to go. I also teach a release command for when they're on lead, which is basically giving them permission to sniff things etc, that in itself can be a reward. You walk nicely, I'll let you go sniff that grass, or pee on that tree.

Hope you can crack it.

This worked for us too - the '2 types' of leashed walk. She must walk at a heel unless we use the release command then she can go to the side and sniff around. The turning around thing/ change direction has been quite effective too.

She walks at a heel unless there is a dog nearby so she wants to say hi, which is why when we go into the city (right downtown Toronto) we use a headcollar in case there are dogs in close proximity on the subway. I know you said Wylie isn't treat motivated and I guess this is the other main thing that worked for us too as we have now been able to phase the treats out.

I've been watching too much Victoria Stilwell so I haven't used any prong collars/choke chains (have only used easy walk harness or Lupine no pull harness) but it helps that Pepper is treat motivated so we can train her using positive methods only and she responds really well to praise. My husband walks her at heel on a flat collar as he does the evening walks as it's quieter and the squirrels are not out!

Good luck!

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Re: UGH still pulling!

Post by Tiantai » Mon May 26, 2014 4:46 pm

Tana wrote:Hmm Cesar Millan would say you're not the pack leader :P Ok, enough jokes. Maybe you should try like he's doing. Choke or pinch collar on the top of the neck and
require him to walk beside or behind you. If he pulls, you use the same "force" for correction. He stops, you stop. Teach him to sit when you stop, to look at you and then you let him go, on a longer leash, to sniff, pee. Then you decide when is enough freedom and again, require to walk beside or behind you. And of course you have to be calm and assertive and do it with a feeling. The same thing you can do without a leash (later), so he won't run away as soon as you remove the leash. Teach him self control, gain his respect.
I'd like to see Millan try this on a human, if only. I've seen many parodies of these ethically-questionable methods of his.

As for the pulling problems, I have found that it is reduced on the Alusky when a doggy backpack like this one in the example photo is strapped on with some water bottles. Have you considered giving Wylie this task?
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Re: UGH still pulling!

Post by Hawthorne » Mon May 26, 2014 4:59 pm

I also think this is his age, too. Just be consistent with him. He should start to chill out around three years old ;)
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Re: UGH still pulling!

Post by chelle784 » Mon May 26, 2014 5:04 pm

Oh actually - that works with us as well - the backpack on the walk to the park keeps her at heel then after she has had a run around the park, she stays at heel on the way back without the back pack - I think because she doesn't think it is worth the effort to try pull ahead/ she's super tired.

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Re: UGH still pulling!

Post by chelle784 » Mon May 26, 2014 5:05 pm

Hawthorne wrote:I also think this is his age, too. Just be consistent with him. He should start to chill out around three years old ;)
So they do chill out eventually?! Pepper is coco loco sometimes so this is hard to imagine hehe

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Re: UGH still pulling!

Post by Tana » Mon May 26, 2014 6:27 pm

Tiantai wrote:I'd like to see Millan try this on a human, if only. I've seen many parodies of these ethically-questionable methods of his.
I don't want to start discussion about him or his methods. You can use it ONLY, if you have enough feeling and If you know EXACTLY what you're doing. In this case, there's nothing ethically-questionable. Btw, I had the same opinion of CM like you until I had got the opportunity to work with a red-zone case. That experience has completely changed my view.

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Re: UGH still pulling!

Post by Katlin » Mon May 26, 2014 10:10 pm

Wylie LOVES backpacking, in this pic he has 4L of water. It doesn't slow down his pulling at all lol!
10152032_10152791828604418_5994129098630360928_n.jpg
I have been working with him with a prong collar with much smaller links and that's made a huge difference. I've also been training him competition heeling which seems to also be helping :) He likes that better than regular heeling anyways.

I'll post another update when we see more progress :)
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Re: UGH still pulling!

Post by Tana » Mon May 26, 2014 11:15 pm

He looks so pleased with himself :D What kind of backpack do you use? Looks similar to Ruffswear's. And I would love to see video of his competition heeling. Maybe you can post a video of his pulling as well? It will be easier to say what to do.

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Re: UGH still pulling!

Post by Taz » Mon May 26, 2014 11:38 pm

Tana wrote:
Tiantai wrote:I'd like to see Millan try this on a human, if only. I've seen many parodies of these ethically-questionable methods of his.
I don't want to start discussion about him or his methods. You can use it ONLY, if you have enough feeling and If you know EXACTLY what you're doing. In this case, there's nothing ethically-questionable. Btw, I had the same opinion of CM like you until I had got the opportunity to work with a red-zone case. That experience has completely changed my view.
And what about all the trainers who successfully work with dogs equally or more difficult than the ones he works with, without using those methods, and who don't get bitten nearly as much? Funny, I've never seen him take on one of the serious stock guardians, you'd think they'd make prime red zone material... Maybe it its because he knows that if he tried it, he'd be chewed up and spat out.
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Re: UGH still pulling!

Post by Katlin » Tue May 27, 2014 12:39 am

Taz wrote:Maybe it its because he knows that if he tried it, he'd be chewed up and spat out.
Hahaha no kidding, he's just in it for the money now, and he's making a LOT.
Tana wrote:He looks so pleased with himself :D What kind of backpack do you use? Looks similar to Ruffswear's. And I would love to see video of his competition heeling. Maybe you can post a video of his pulling as well? It will be easier to say what to do.
:lol: :lol: That's his "happy" face. This is a backpack by Canine Equipment, they make some pretty awesome stuff. Wylie's between ruffwear sizes (although I have a Webmaster harness for him and love it!) when it comes to backpacks so I found this one and bought it. Works great and doesn't slide around which is a huge pet peeve of mine. I can also remove the bags really quickly and carry them myself while he continues to wear the harness portion. Here's the link for it, Wylie wears a large. http://www.rcpets.com/All-Products/Acce ... 8&DeptID=9

I'll try to get a video of the competition heeling, as for the walk, I would be hardpressed to get a video of that since he's just about pulling me over, but I'll do my best.

EDIT: Tana here's a video of him learning to heel with me :) viewtopic.php?f=62&t=4185&p=85867#p85867
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Re: UGH still pulling!

Post by arianwenarie » Tue May 27, 2014 5:58 am

I just thought of this during dinner...have you tried a dominant dog collar on Wylie? I remember the trainer I used to intern with used dominant dog collars if the dog didn't respond to a slip chain. It works like a slip chain should except you use much less force for a correction and it always stays at the top of the dog's neck.

Don't read anything on Leerburgs website, I only support these collars he makes: http://leerburg.com/746.htm

If you're lucky, you'll catch sales on odd sizes and crazy colors if that doesn't bother you. lol. You want 1.5-2inches of slack when taut on the dog. So, for example if your dog's neck (top right behind the ears) is 18 inches, you'd order a 20 inch. You'd clip the brass clip onto the ring in the shape of a letter P if you're walking dog on your left and the letter 'q' if on your right - just like you would for a slip chain.

The only thing to be really careful with the dominant dog collar is the amount of force that's exerted on the collar itself since with enough force (and it won't take too much) will choke the dog out. Most dogs will respond to this collar with little pressure exerted on it when being corrected because it's uncomfortable and it sends a clear message to the dog that you're serious. Might be something worth trying out if you're comfortable with the idea... if not, then I agree with Tana and Taz - go back to basics as if you were teaching a rebellious teenage pup. ;)

EDIT:

Btw, I know it looks like a slip collar, but it's not as the fit doesn't allow it to slip down a dog's neck by very much at all, if even.

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Re: UGH still pulling!

Post by Katlin » Tue May 27, 2014 6:11 am

I know what a dominant dog collar is, I will never use one. They are meant to cut off air supply by choking a dog, then you release them. You actually have to hold your dog partially off of it's front legs to choke them partially out until they get the message. Those collars are not quick, sharp snaps. They are grab and hold. That's also a great way to damage their tracheas, thyroids, and other sensitive tissues in that area. Prong collars may look barbaric, but I honestly find those dominant dog collars much much worse. I'm sorry but I will not choke Wylie.

The prongs are fitted perfectly on his neck and it seems to be working much better. I got a prong collar with much smaller links and the difference is astounding. We saw 4 bunnies and 7 dogs and he only tugged once tonight. Old collar is on the right, new one is on the left.
10303757_10152884422304418_7753535246635567439_n-1.jpg
Either way he did much better tonight and I'm happy with the progress, no matter how long it takes. Also note***these are very expensive prong collars, almost $50 so they are well made with no sharp edges to hurt Woo. I also test them on my own arm and leg to be sure they are in working order. Just a heads up :)
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Re: UGH still pulling!

Post by Tana » Tue May 27, 2014 3:33 pm

Taz wrote:And what about all the trainers who successfully work with dogs equally or more difficult than the ones he works with, without using those methods, and who don't get bitten nearly as much?
I'm very open-minded and like to see different approaches. So, please, tell the names.
Taz wrote:Funny, I've never seen him take on one of the serious stock guardians, you'd think they'd make prime red zone material... Maybe it its because he knows that if he tried it, he'd be chewed up and spat out.
I don't know, maybe he had such a case, just not on the TV show. Every dog is something special and needs a different approach and I believe he would find a way. Friend of mine successfully rehabilitated stock guardian dog (Yugoslavian Shepherd Dog) using his methods. Another friend had the opportunity to know Cesar in person and spent a week with him. She said he's an amazing person, who lives for his dogs and loves what he does. She uses his methods, rehabilitating dogs, her specialty is breed Dogo Argentino. For me it's funny, I don't know, if you are familiar with horses, Pat Parelli uses practically the same techniques on horses (based on horse psychology of course) and he is known as horse friendly trainer. I remember his words: "We want people to be gentle at the right time and firm at the right time. Most people are gentle at the wrong time and firm at the wrong time. And in the wrong way. You have to know where to be, when to be, why to be, what to do when you get there and know when to quit doing what's you doing. It's teaching you, as I would say, an extreme middle of the roaders. Calm-assertive."
Katlin wrote: This is a backpack by Canine Equipment, they make some pretty awesome stuff. Wylie's between ruffwear sizes (although I have a Webmaster harness for him and love it!) when it comes to backpacks so I found this one and bought it. Works great and doesn't slide around which is a huge pet peeve of mine. I can also remove the bags really quickly and carry them myself while he continues to wear the harness portion. Here's the link for it, Wylie wears a large. http://www.rcpets.com/All-Products/Acce ... 8&DeptID=9
Thanks!
Katlin wrote:EDIT: Tana here's a video of him learning to heel with me :) viewtopic.php?f=62&t=4185&p=85867#p85867
I was using pivoting with Tana too :D good job.

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Re: UGH still pulling!

Post by arianwenarie » Tue May 27, 2014 3:39 pm

Katlin wrote:I know what a dominant dog collar is, I will never use one. They are meant to cut off air supply by choking a dog, then you release them. You actually have to hold your dog partially off of it's front legs to choke them partially out until they get the message. Those collars are not quick, sharp snaps. They are grab and hold. That's also a great way to damage their tracheas, thyroids, and other sensitive tissues in that area. Prong collars may look barbaric, but I honestly find those dominant dog collars much much worse. I'm sorry but I will not choke Wylie.
That's fine. I respect that. lol. Training tools you use should be whatever you're comfortable and knowledgeable in using. If the new prong collar with the smaller prongs works for you, then that's great. Hoping this continues to work long term for you and Wylie. :)

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Re: UGH still pulling!

Post by Katlin » Wed May 28, 2014 1:49 am

Sorry I think I came across too strong. I had read about them and I've seen the damage they have done. I guess I'm not comfortable enough to use one...they scare me to be honest. Have you ever used one?
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Re: UGH still pulling!

Post by arianwenarie » Wed May 28, 2014 2:41 am

Katlin wrote:Sorry I think I came across too strong. I had read about them and I've seen the damage they have done. I guess I'm not comfortable enough to use one...they scare me to be honest. Have you ever used one?
LOL. That's OK. Just can't read the emotions behind text...inventors need to fix that one day. :lol:

I have used one before, but only on a dog who has been trained on one before and not like they're advertised nor 'supposed to be' used. That's why I said to ignore absolutely everything on Leerburg's website about the dominant dog collar other than, well....the price, colors and size. :P

Here's a video of how I was taught to walk a dog on a leash with a slip chain (note that I never call it a choke chain because I don't use it that way): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bo0BKCTncEc

The same technique can be used with the dominant dog collar except everything requires less pressure since the collar almost never slips down. You can certainly try this with Wylie on a slip chain to see if it works. I have never used this walking technique with a prong collar (no offense, I'm just not comfortable with them) and if used, I don't recommend the 'drop and turn' technique.

PM me if you have any questions. :)

EDIT:
For the dominant dog collar, the ring and clasp should be under the dog's chin - exactly like how you'd use the slip chain in the video.

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Re: UGH still pulling!

Post by AZDehlin » Mon Jun 02, 2014 10:14 pm

Zephyr is a nightmare to walk on a leash... I have tried over a dozen collars or contraptions to help teach dogs to walk nicely they have all turned out to be a waste of money. He is so over stimulated and excited outside of the house that I don't take him on many walks anymore, mostly just harness work on the four wheeler and dog sled where I have more control/ weight to hold him back. Maybe by the time he is a old man I can get through to him, he is only three and crazy as ever on the leash.

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Re: UGH still pulling!

Post by Katlin » Sun Jun 08, 2014 9:52 pm

An update. Wylie is doing wonderful for heeling with all your tips (thanks everyone!!!). We went back to basics and with the little links on the prong collar he minds much better. He's walking with a loose leash about 60% of the time now and when I stop he'll back up and sit right away! He still is doing some lunging at cats and squirrels, but not as much as before. He now has two release commands, "go pee" (his favourite) and "go sniff" which he doesn't really like as much.

Here's a picture. We upgraded to an Ultrahund biothane leash which feels like worn leather but is super flexible and waterproof (like rubber, but textured) and he does well with it. This is a picture I took at twilight so it's a bit dark.
10358573_10152917787219418_5088115091025632102_n.jpg
Thanks again for everyone's help :D
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Re: UGH still pulling!

Post by Katlin » Tue Jul 01, 2014 6:24 am

Horray!

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Re: UGH still pulling!

Post by arianwenarie » Tue Jul 01, 2014 6:30 am

Whoo hoo!!! Loose leash walking!! CONGRATS! Keep up the fantastic work. :) This made my night...so now, off to bed for me. lol.

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Re: UGH still pulling!

Post by Katlin » Tue Jul 01, 2014 7:56 am

arianwenarie wrote:Whoo hoo!!! Loose leash walking!! CONGRATS! Keep up the fantastic work. :) This made my night...so now, off to bed for me. lol.
Hehe thanks! So happy he's doing better now, about time :roll: Yeah I should go to bed too....considering it's 1am :P
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Re: UGH still pulling!

Post by Taz » Tue Jul 01, 2014 8:09 am

Glad you're making progress with him.
Now if only I could sort out cato's territorial agro.
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Re: UGH still pulling!

Post by Tana » Tue Jul 01, 2014 4:40 pm

Great! :)

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Re: UGH still pulling!

Post by Tatzel » Wed Jul 02, 2014 11:40 am

The thing about correction/punishment based training is that as soon as the punishment disappears from over the dog's head, they will go back into shenanigans, because there really is nothing that stops them from doing so, and because pulling is self-rewarding and reeinforcing behaviour.

Here is how you can teach your dog how to behave better with reward based training:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ueE1S1k74Ao
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sFgtqgiAKoQ
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k4LoPU1g310
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xHwu0T7PoSw

Good luck!
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Katlin
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Re: UGH still pulling!

Post by Katlin » Wed Jul 02, 2014 2:56 pm

Wylie has zero drive for rewards of any sort outdoors...Food, praise, toys, or otherwise. That's why we went to the prong collar in the first place. His training is not 100% punishment based, it's 60/40 (reward/corrections).
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martinbernstein
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Re: UGH still pulling!

Post by martinbernstein » Sun Jul 13, 2014 5:30 pm

I'm reading a lot of 'nightmare pulling' and 'impossible to walk' comments on the forum in general. But isn't that to be expected? I mean after all we acquired a breed that has serious sled dog genes in it, why wouldn't your tam pull?

I gave up trying to train my girl out of pulling. I got her specifically for pulk pulling on trails, and we do skijoring and trail running so I never put her on a regular leash, I just hook her up to a bungee which is hooked up to a belt around my waist and she pulls me everywhere we go. It's great! I feel like I'm harnessing her instinct and energy.

Why work so hard to train them against their very strong pulling instinct? Why not find a good outlet for that energy instead? I believe that my girl is much more fulfilled when she gets to pull me. It's not a dominance thing at all, I still tell her to go left, right, stop, go. I'm the boss, but she happens to be in front of me pulling because that is what thousands of years of selective breeding are telling her to do.

Set realistic expectations. Even Cesar Milan gave up on those three huskies in that one episode. He decided that it wasn't productive to train them to walk next to him, so he strapped on a pair of roller blades and let them pull him.

Just my two cents.

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Re: UGH still pulling!

Post by chelle784 » Sun Jul 13, 2014 5:55 pm

'Why work so hard to train them against their very strong pulling instinct? Why not find a good outlet for that energy instead?'

Why not both? A lot of people have managed to do both. If I'm walking down a really busy road I want my dog next to me, not in front . Other than potentially hurting my back with constant pulling, I don't want them to go round a corner before me if I can't see what is around there. The 14 month old is a dream to walk with (who doesn't pull) compared to my 3 month tam who constantly pulls right now.

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Re: UGH still pulling!

Post by Tana » Sun Jul 13, 2014 10:25 pm

chelle784 wrote:Why not both? A lot of people have managed to do both. If I'm walking down a really busy road I want my dog next to me, not in front . Other than potentially hurting my back with constant pulling, I don't want them to go round a corner before me if I can't see what is around there. The 14 month old is a dream to walk with (who doesn't pull) compared to my 3 month tam who constantly pulls right now.
Exactly. If you offer your dog enough mental and physical stimulation, I don't see a reason why you shouldn't require to walk on a loose leash at time to time. You can easily conditional harness with pulling (working) and collar with nice walking. My friend has a hunting dog (vizsla) and dog knows exactly when he will hunt or when he will go only for a walk. On normal walk he never goes far from the owner, while on the hunting he searches game with all his heart and mind and is really a good working dog with strong instincts.

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Re: UGH still pulling!

Post by martinbernstein » Mon Jul 14, 2014 3:07 am

Good points. Both would be the best. As you say, a hunting dog should be trained to hunt, but also to know when the hunt is over. A shepherd dog needs training in shepherding, but needs to know appropriate times to work and not.

The point I'm trying to make is that it is completely natural for a sled dog to pull when on leash, and rather than think of it as 'nightmare walks' and train against it one should seek to work and train with it in creative ways.

This goes back to my general concern that I've had since I joined this forum that many people are attracted to this breed simply for the wolfy appearance and fail to take seriously into account the breed's genetic background, capabilities and limitations. As with many specialized working breeds, training a dog with wolf and sled dog ancestry has to be appropriated to the breed characteristics.

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Re: UGH still pulling!

Post by Katlin » Mon Jul 14, 2014 7:12 am

What I'm aiming for is, indeed, both. He must heel on a leash and collar, but I allow lots of pulling on the harness and bungee. He's doing very well with the balancing :)
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Re: UGH still pulling!

Post by ASaroka » Tue Jan 27, 2015 10:58 am

I had the same problem with my dog. I also went through everything and ended up with a prong collar i with a dog backpack that weighed 10 lbs (4.5kg) a few times a week. It was a miracle. I'm not sure how old Wylie is, but Ianto didn't calm down and not pull until he was 5; loose leash walk, listening to commands, etc like a pro.

Although, I do also attribute this to teaching him that it is okay to pull in harness, but not on leash. He picked up on that fast on the difference.

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