As mentioned yesterday, it is an awesome experience to walk side by side with your beloved canine. Almost a spiritual connection as both humans and their dog pace their gait in one accord. But if you are constantly being yanked ahead, that peace may change to anxiety and irritation. For the next few posts, we’ll look at some reasons WHY dogs do this, and how this can be corrected.
Tara Schatz from yourdogadvisor.com begins with the question, “Why does my dog pull so much when we walk?”
“While dogs have been living and working with humans for thousands of years, they come with a totally different set of instincts and behaviors that make loose-leash walking incredibly difficult.
You may be focused on getting from point A to point B, but your dog is on high alert, using his exceptional senses to take in the sights, sounds, and smells around him. Your dog is naturally curious about the world around him, and he will instinctively pull toward external stimulus, whether it’s another dog, a dropped sandwich, or a passing squirrel.
If your dog succeeds in pulling your toward this stimulus, he is essentially being rewarded for pulling by getting to whatever it is he is pulling toward. Even if this behavior only works occasionally, your dog will try it over and over again, reinforcing the negative behavior and making your daily walks together very frustrating.”
Join our discussion tomorrow when we share how to use Positive Reinforcement to accomplish the goal!