Leash as Communication Tool

Feb 24, 2017 |

“The best way to stop husky pulling is to let it off the lead”

Dog Collar and dog lead connect us with our charges physically but does not create the necessary emotional link, communication tool. But it can and it should. It can spoil any communication channels existing, but may enhance the union by providing the tool for clear emotional exchange without creating a confusion of fear or uncertainty.

Correctly fitted and properly used dog lead enables us to not just train, but also support our hard-working students, without having to resolve to anger, punitive methods or simply accept the unacceptable behaviour. By managing a “not-100%-reliable” pooch with the means of the lead you wouldn’t have to chase your escapee around the park or catch and pin him down in order to deliver a message. Being helped with the lead of an appropriate length, your dog becomes tuned into you and as a captive student will respond in a satisfactory manner to your supporting messages combined with praise and a good “pay package”. After all, with or without your help he still came back, didn’t he?

While explaining the above, I would offer you two scenarios. One – is where the dog is kept close with a little hinting of the lead attached to his collar. This is good for training, walking from A to B or simply filling in the gaps between, say, a good  play and way home. Another way – long lead, or a lunging rein connecting you two. We do not use Flexi leads, or retractable ones due to many negative side effects of that – dogs constantly feel our presence due to the spring in this device, and end up checking on us lots less, as well as un-interrupted pulling becomes the way of life and the style of their walking. Long lead can trail behind them either freely, or being held by the other end depending on the level of a dog and your state of fitness. This helps with exercising your pooch in an “off-lead” – on leash manner, providing them with the space to run in a safe and secure environment. Interactions are easy to administer which helps us to provide consistent and determined training session. Beginner dogs are better off with a 20-30-40 foot lead which we hold in order to help them learn what we mean when we yell for them to come back, or want that toy brought back. Dogs with higher rate of successful responses can be trusted with the lead lagging behind them. Just dry it up and stick it in a washing machine every now and then. At a later stages you’ll be allowing the dog to roam much wider by letting the leash go and slowly promoting him from walking on a long leash, or lunging rein, to a short lead that just trails behind reminding your dog that he still belongs with you. You can just use a rope that you would shorten according to the trust your dog enables you to have in him.

The leash will provide you the ability to take the time to teach, before asking your dog to do something he has not yet learned or chooses to question in certain circumstances. That being said, once a dog is truly trained on-leash, progression to complete off-leash work could commence.

And under no circumstances do not underestimate the safety aspect of using the dog’s lead until the point when it is simply not needed, but do not go the other way around please.

Britain is busting with areas where you can exercise your dog without a lead. But take my word for it – there’s no single place on this land where you can get away with walking your out of control dog without the lead.

Good habits and social manners will develop in proper and positive habits when controlled and supervised especially in the early stages of your puppy’s life and first days of taking out your new rehomee.

This all is a common sense, and the foundation of responsible dog ownership. When you respect other park and open spaces users, your dog will also do just that.

And I would add that having an untrained or aggressive dog is not a crime. But letting them act on it and endanger other people’s and animal’s lives – is!

Please, please, please remember – your dogs being off leash when outside the house is not their right, it is a privilege! 

Lead is an invaluable training tool when it comes to teaching your dog any particular or complex tasks.

Imagine yourselves having your dog on leash teaching him to STAY without following you. You have the lead hooked on a fence or bench in a safe place, and you calmly walk away without repeating yourselves a million times. What will the dog learn this way? You stay when told to do so. You like – stay; you don’t – stay, after all, what other options are there? Be patient, progress gradually and vary the scenery, and the job will be done in no time. And now imagine the anxiety of having no lead attached to your un-trained pooch! This is why so many of us resolve to shouting, smacking, loosing their cool and destroying relationships.

Leash supplementing most disciplinary commands is like magic. Wish it was this simple while dealing with children, or people in general…

Think about it, process the information, line up a course of action – and keep safe!


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