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  • Writer's pictureMichelle

Before You Go For A Walk

Updated: Apr 3

What behaviour does your dog demonstrate when you grab it’s lead, your keys or anything else you do as part of the ritual before you go for a walk? Does it get highly excited, run around in circles, jump up at you, bark or whine? If you begin your walk with your dog in this state, it will likely be difficult for you to lead your dog on the walk in a peaceful and calm way.

Tip: If you have this issue give yourself more time before leaving for the walk, wait until your dog is calm and peaceful before attaching the lead. Getting your dog to sit can be helpful but if your dog is not responding to your command don’t persist repeating the command, just stand there ignoring your dog until it calms down. Do not talk to your dog, make eye-contact with them or touch them, just stand calmly. With patience and consistency your dog will learn that you are not going to attach the lead or go anywhere until it is calm. This will result in your dog learning to be in a calm and relaxed state whenever you grab its lead and go to attach it, before you go for a walk together.

Another useful thing to do is to randomly grab the lead, or that object that usually triggers your dog to go into an overexcited state, several times a day at times when you're not going intending to walk your dog. The exercise is complete when your dog calms down, and at that point you put their lead or whatever object you are working with back away. Eventually your four legged friend will learn it needs to be calm before you take it out for a walk.

We as humans associate excitement with happiness and therefore think that when our dog is excited it is happy however this is not the case in the dog world. Excitement often represents an unbalance and can lead to other negative traits such as aggression or anxiety.

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