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Control Your Dog In Public with Leads, long lines and Retractable leads.

I have been trying to decide what my passion is and after much thought I have decided:
My passion is LEADS - on or off?

There are many different schools of though about leads.

We often hear clients saying "my dog is fine off lead but aggressive to other dogs on lead" and I wonder if this is the cause of so many off-lead dogs causing mayhem in parks and even attacking other dogs, that and the fact that some owners cannot walk their dog on a lead because it pulls too hard. However, a dog will never learn to walk without pulling unless it is walked on a short lead correctly and frequently, incorporating follow my leader. Of course a lot of people opt for a head collar and we all know that they can be uncomfortable and dig into the eyes and cause damage, but they are very widely used. I saw many dogs at Crufts with head collars and halti's on.These are quick fixes or actually no fix as the dog still pulls.

There are also the people who are arrogant or get some kind of buzz from having their dog off lead everywhere "look at me my dog is perfect" that's ok if the dog IS perfect but more often than not it is running at people or dogs and the owner says " it won't hurt you he just wants to play " Infuriating for anyone with a reactive dog when someone else's dog is jumping all over everyone. 

Then there are long lines and retractable leads. Long lines are the best for working dogs in the field but many people find them too difficult to use because they get in a tangle and of course they get muddy if it's wet.

That leaves the retractable lead and they can whip back and hit the dog if the owner lets go, also if the dog runs to the end it can jerk the neck if the lead is attached to the collar.

However, used correctly the retractable can be an awesome tool. The giant retractable is what Dave often uses on training walks. It is 26ft long and although a little heavy it makes demonstrating changing direction easy. We never use a retractable for short lead road walking as there is no connection with the dog and it makes pulling the dog in close difficult. The other downside to the flexi is the fact that there is always tension on the neck so you never get that illusive "loose lead"

The giant flexi is great for allowing a busy spaniel to run around and sniff. We never allow any dog to run to the end and either call them back before they reach it or turn at right angles. The dog gets freedom but we have control.

Dave received a text this morning. It said " Hi Dave I saw you in the field yesterday and was amazed at how differently you walk the dogs to everyone else. I was also surprised that the dogs were really enjoying themselves. Can I book a training walk with you"
Dave was using the giant flexi

A 6 month old Cockerpoo was attacked on Sunday by a Bull Mastiff in Berkhamsted. The Cockerpoo was on lead the Mastiff was not
A man wrestled the pup out of the Mastiff's mouth and his hands were badly bitten. Sadly the Cockerpoo died yesterday and the owner has a bill of over £1000

All this would have been prevented if the Mastiff had been on a lead.

I have lost count of how many times people say to us " aren't you going to let them off?" Why? If the dog is enjoying it and we can relax knowing that it cannot run off or cause damage or injury or worse still run into the road or get lost.

There is so much hype about dangerous dogs but instead of blaming the breed they should introduce a law make owners keep their dogs on lead and therefore under control in public places ( by that I mean recreation grounds not the countryside) it would prevent or at least reduce the number of attacks.
 
Keeping dogs on lead is not the answer to everything, I realise that but it would make a huge difference to a lot of people who don't have the luxury of being able to walk in the countryside and just want to enjoy walking their dog in the park.

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POSTED BY: HELEN SIMMONDS- DOG TRAINER- BUCKINGHAMSHIRE
MARCH 14TH, 2014 @ 16:13:46 GMT

 
 


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