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?