Author Topic: Don't walk your dog  (Read 363 times)

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Offline Top Barks

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Don't walk your dog
« on: December 06, 2018, 04:32:54 PM »
Don’t walk the dog

That may sound shocking advice to some but hear me out.

When I am out with my dogs  I like to be the centre of what is going on.
Having spaniels I know that if I let them make their own entertainment when out then they will do and that entertainment does not involve me.
Many people take their dogs for a “walk” what I prefer to do is take my dogs’ and do some work on occasions. Of course the dogs don’t understand it is work, they just think they are having fun with dad. By working the dogs I keep their focus on me and not the bird flying overhead or the squirrel gathering nuts by the tree.
Many people seem to think that exercise for the dog has to be a route march where the dog gets on and does his own thing. This may work for people and dogs but when you have a dog that doesn’t listen to you whilst out it’s time to ask yourself as a handler “Am I worth listening to?”
Often the dog finds something more interesting than you or realises that coming back to you ends all their fun, so why should they come back? Get angry with them for not coming back and then there is a chance that the dog then becomes scared to comeback which makes matters even worse. To stop this happening you have to set yourself up to win possibly by having the dog on a long line or some sort of flexi lead so that you can engineer the right behaviour and help the dog to make correct choices. A line is also helpful if your dog likes to roam far away. The line ensures that we can reward the dog for the correct behaviour and rewarding the dog in whichever way is going to build value for the handler.
I want to be more valuable to my dog than the dog running in the distance or the rabbit running along the hedge and therefore I need to earn that value in many cases. This means I need to be very rewarding but please don’t think that means I have to stuff my dog full of treats. One of the biggest things you can do is find out what your dog likes and control access to it whatever that may be.
To do this I go out armed and dangerous with as many treats toys and other ideas that I think my dog will love when out. A golden rule of dog training is control what your dog wants and you control your dog. Also think about using the environment as a reward, for example if your dog likes to sniff then let him sniff as a reward for performing a desired behaviour or lay him a trail of something to find with his nose.
Luckily for me my spaniels love food rewards and kill for tennis ball so as long as I control these items then there is a very good chance I control my dogs.
I also like to lots of exercises where my dogs remain still and display self control when life is going on around them lots of down and sit stays as well as leave it games.
When out with your dog consider it may be more beneficial to sometimes work them rather than walk them.

Mark Sanderson BSc Hons (canine behaviour), FdSc CBT, CAP 1, CAP 2
Member of The Association Of Pet Dog Trainers (00977)
 
Check out my website http://www.topbarks.co.uk/  www.yorkdogtrainer.co.uk

Offline Pearly

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Re: Don't walk your dog
« Reply #1 on: December 06, 2018, 05:59:16 PM »
Every “walk” is a training opportunity and if you have a hard wired working dog like Coral, there is no such thing as a “walk” as soon as she’s given the command to go through the door she spins and waits for the next command!

Completely agree with your post

Jayne

Offline ips

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Re: Don't walk your dog
« Reply #2 on: December 06, 2018, 06:43:58 PM »
I also agree. Good post 👍
I also find that having a game / dummy bag over the shoulder keeps her attention as she doesnt know if when or what is going to.magically appear from it 😀
Muddling along in the hope that one day it all makes sense.

Offline lescef

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Re: Don't walk your dog
« Reply #3 on: December 06, 2018, 09:25:56 PM »
Excellent post.  I have one very prone to 'doing her own thing', she doesn't care where I am she gets so engrossed in sniffing! She's not interested in toys so we do lots of sniffing rewards in an attempt to keep her close.
Lesley, Maddie and Bramble

Offline ejp

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Re: Don't walk your dog
« Reply #4 on: December 06, 2018, 10:12:46 PM »
That is a really interesting post, I have to admit I am your average dog walker. I have not viewed it from that perspective. Nice to 'see' you Mark.

Offline Top Barks

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Re: Don't walk your dog
« Reply #5 on: December 06, 2018, 10:23:34 PM »
Thought I'd stop by and say hello :lol2:

Mark Sanderson BSc Hons (canine behaviour), FdSc CBT, CAP 1, CAP 2
Member of The Association Of Pet Dog Trainers (00977)
 
Check out my website http://www.topbarks.co.uk/  www.yorkdogtrainer.co.uk

Offline Anita

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Re: Don't walk your dog
« Reply #6 on: December 07, 2018, 08:00:48 AM »
Couldn't agree more. My two were very food and ball orientated so it always amazed people that they would come back and sit and look at me while lots of things were going on behind them :)
Anita

Offline ejp

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Re: Don't walk your dog
« Reply #7 on: December 07, 2018, 08:20:30 AM »
Thought I'd stop by and say hello :lol2:
You have been missed!

Offline Top Barks

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Re: Don't walk your dog
« Reply #8 on: December 07, 2018, 08:45:34 AM »
Thought I'd stop by and say hello :lol2:
You have been missed!

Awwww that is very kind of you. I've only one cocker left these days and 2 field spaniels and two bracchi italiani. Someone provided me with the inspiration to publish some of my work so thought I'd share it here as it is really all about my experience with both my spaniels and those of my clients. I don't advise on behaviour on the internet anymore but I may pop up with the odd post which hopefully will interest certain members if not all.
Mark

Mark Sanderson BSc Hons (canine behaviour), FdSc CBT, CAP 1, CAP 2
Member of The Association Of Pet Dog Trainers (00977)
 
Check out my website http://www.topbarks.co.uk/  www.yorkdogtrainer.co.uk

Offline ejp

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Re: Don't walk your dog
« Reply #9 on: December 07, 2018, 01:05:53 PM »
Thought I'd stop by and say hello :lol2:
You have been missed!

Awwww that is very kind of you. I've only one cocker left these days and 2 field spaniels and two bracchi italiani. Someone provided me with the inspiration to publish some of my work so thought I'd share it here as it is really all about my experience with both my spaniels and those of my clients. I don't advise on behaviour on the internet anymore but I may pop up with the odd post which hopefully will interest certain members if not all.
Mark
A wee photo or two would be nice as well  ;)

Offline Top Barks

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Re: Don't walk your dog
« Reply #10 on: December 07, 2018, 01:58:32 PM »
Awww thankyou not sure if I can remember how it's been that long  :005:

Mark Sanderson BSc Hons (canine behaviour), FdSc CBT, CAP 1, CAP 2
Member of The Association Of Pet Dog Trainers (00977)
 
Check out my website http://www.topbarks.co.uk/  www.yorkdogtrainer.co.uk

Offline ollie nathan's mum

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Re: Don't walk your dog
« Reply #11 on: December 09, 2018, 06:40:01 PM »
Great post Mark, thank you
Ollie D.O.B 29/03/2010

Offline sodpot2000

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Re: Don't walk your dog
« Reply #12 on: December 10, 2018, 02:05:53 PM »
Thanks for the post Mark. It makes a lot of sense.

Offline Barry H

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Re: Don't walk your dog
« Reply #13 on: December 11, 2018, 09:02:40 AM »
...
Luckily for me my spaniels love food rewards and kill for tennis ball so as long as I control these items then there is a very good chance I control my dogs.
I also like to lots of exercises where my dogs remain still and display self control when life is going on around them lots of down and sit stays as well as leave it games.
When out with your dog consider it may be more beneficial to sometimes work them rather than walk them.
If only!  All sound advice and and all fine and dandy if you have a dog that's is into food, balls, etc.  Sadly, there are some, like Jack who, when on a mission outside (ie every time we're out), won't condescend to give food 'rewards' a second look - even fresh, warm roast chicken.  Show him a ball and it could be a turnip as far as he's concerned. 

All points taken, especially about the use of a long line.  Much progress has been made, but it's been (and still is) a long, hard road training a great recall without something to come back to me for other than to be made a fuss of!