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Tuesday Training Byte: Proper Leash handling

When teaching your dog to "heel" the dog should be taught to walk close to your left side. Eventually you pup will know where he needs to be and not dart around to your other side, between your legs or in front of you tripping you in the process. So that the collar will remain loose or return to loose on it's own, first take the running ring and run it up on the hanging side so that it forms the letter "P" as pictured. If it is a backward P then it is not correctly placed on the dog's neck. Here are the steps:

  1. As you face your dog, slide the P-shaped collar over his head. (Picture two)

  2. Do a visual check to make sure that the back of the "P" hangs down on the right side of the dog's neck (picture three).

  3. With your left hand, gather up about half of the leash in your hand and hold it toward your center waist. When you stand next to your dog (dog on your left) clip the snap onto the hanging ring of the collar.

  4. Be sure the leash has a little loose J loop in it (See picture four). Now you are ready to "heel".

  5. Do not walk with the brakes on- Keep your right hand off the leash and by your side. The slack in the collar and leash give the dog just a bit of freedom. Should your dog pull ahead staking up all slack, turn left into your dog reminding him to backup. Talk to your dog and encourage him in friendly tones to watch you and stay with you (I say "this way"). If your dog lunges ahead so that your left arm is now extended full length in front of you, stop all forward motion until your dog returns to you, or you can turn around and encourage your dog to follow you.

  6. Using the proper collar, put on correctly, and handling the leash correctly will make it more clear where your do is supposed to be. Happy training!

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