Dear Diary 10th December

It has been a good day today, and I may well be facing a different kind of challenge in the near future.
There are a lot of dogs around us, and most love fuss from Yours Truly who is happy to give it. Owners don’t mind and a few have been surprised as their dogs don’t normally go to strangers. I’m convinced I was a dog in a former life and the canines of today recognise that.

One lady we became chatty with some months ago has a springer spaniel, though I have seen her walking three or four different dogs, so thought maybe she was a professional dog walker. This is not the case, she just walks her neighbours dogs occasionally, but the springer is hers, and she’s had her for about 8 months.
The dog is about three years old and from a rescue shelter, but has had no training, especially on a lead.
She has tried halties and harnesses, but the dog pulls and on a couple of occasions almost pulled her over. The haltie she was using today was cutting across the dog’s eyes which we pointed out so she took it off.

Hubby did most of Maggie’s training whilst I was at work, concentrating on off lead, so the on lead stuff came later. We got there, eventually, but it was hard work, though she wasn’t anywhere near three years old when we started.
This lady is at her wit’s end, and thinking about returning the dog to the shelter.
I’ve offered to walk the dog with her on a double lead (ie. one lead each) to see if we can work something out.
We tried it today, and it was four or five steps OK, then a lunge, and boy, that dog is powerful. Even plying her with treats doesn’t help to keep her at your side, which is how we trained Maggie.
The good news is she knows who her Mummy is, and also where home is.
But here’s the thing, on her walks, she seems to want to get home quickly which suggested some kind of anxiety to me, though she’s not actually nervous and apparently loves to run on the beach and go swimming.

We’ve loaned her the harness we used on the boat for Maggie as it also helped enormously to stop her pulling and almost choke herself in the process.
Anyone have any tips please that may help me help this lady train her dog?


About pensitivity101

I am a retired number cruncher with a vivid imagination and wacky sense of humour which extends to short stories and poetry. I love to cook and am a bit of a dog whisperer as I get on better with them than people sometimes! In November 2020, we lost our beloved Maggie who adopted us as a 7 week old pup in March 2005. We decided to have a photo put on canvas as we had for her predecessor Barney. We now have three pictures of our fur babies on the wall as we found a snapshot of Kizzy, my GSD when Hubby and I first met so had hers done too. On February 24th 2022 we were blessed to find Maya, a 13 week old GSD pup who has made her own place in our hearts. You can follow our training methods, photos and her growth in my blog posts. From 2014 to 2017 'Home' was a 41 foot narrow boat where we made strong friendships both on and off the water. We were close to nature enjoying swan and duck families for neighbours, and it was a fascinating chapter in our lives. We now reside in a small bungalow on the Lincolnshire coast where we have forged new friendships and interests.
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12 Responses to Dear Diary 10th December

  1. blindzanygirl says:

    Aww, pensitivity – this is such a lively story, but that doggie sounds one piwerfuk doggie! I haven’t any ideas, though we have had many dogs in our time, once, we had four big dogs. But never a problem like this. Oh I do hope you can solve it between you. It woukd be so sad if the dog had to go back to the shelter. Please keep letting us kniw how it goes. Good luck.

  2. You are working with a dog that is breed to hunt. I learned the hard way. My German Shorthairs would hunt on the lead. They are bread to hunt for man while the Shepard and are working dogs. I actually convinced one dog she didn’t like the jumps as she would point the gritty birds while I was working. When I realized what was happening we did healing and work first than We hunted birds. Sprinters are much the same . It takes about 15 minutes a day for about 2 months of repeating. As she gets older she will calm down. Obedience trainers who work with the sporting breeds who were bred to hunt and point the bird until Hunter reaches them. They know where the smells are. BT ty, sprinters are intelligent dogs. Goodluck.!

  3. colinandray says:

    Ray was a “puller” until he realized that he would get treats from a hip pocket when his head was level with our bodies. It didn’t take him long to grasp the idea that if he stayed close to the treats, there was a good chance he would get one. Like any positive reinforcement training, the treats could slowly be withdrawn until they only needed to be used for the occasional reminder.
    Ray will still pull occasionally if he sees a cat, or a squirrel, or is in a hurry to get to Lululemon, but that is a more instinctive reaction … and none of us are perfect!!!
    If the dog is not treat motivated? Now that is outside of my experience with Ray!

  4. Pingback: Quickie doggy update | pensitivity101

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