Monday, May 4, 2015

New Online Class! Loose Leash Walking for Service Dogs

Teaching a dog to loose leash walk is a foundation skill for every dog. Walking with another being attached to a leash does not come naturally to them. They normally move about independently. Seems like an obvious point, but it is one that most people forget. Having a tight leash causes frustration and leash aggression in many dogs due to the feeling of confinement. For people with disabilities, a tight leash can aggravate joint issues,  pull the handler off balance triggering a fall and cause injury.


This series of classes provide the structure you need to successfully teach your dog to walk on a loose leash with you, so the leash becomes the cue to stay close. It becomes an emergency back up, rather than the primary means of control. We want the dog to choose to stay close to the handler. No corrections or strength are required to teach this skill.

Learning to walk on a loose leash is an incremental process that can be taught while you are teaching other skills, but you do need to put time and energy into training it just it on its own just as you do other skills and service dog tasks. The main focus is building value for being near you no matter what obstacles you may encounter.

In these classes, the use of distractions are integrated into the training process early on so you and the dog know how to deal with them as they come up and also how to train for each one that is a challenge for your dog.

Work at your own pace on your own schedule. The more often you train, the faster you will progress. If you are starting with a puppy, you will instill good habits in both you and the pup early on. Starting with an adult dog who pulls will take longer. That's why the classes are designed in a set of 5 and spaced out to allow you and your dog to continue to practice and generalize the skills in months when the classes are not offered.

A checklist is provided for each class so you can keep track visually of where you and your dog are in the process. It can be a long haul for dogs that have already learned that pulling gets them what they want so that's why the humans need reinforcement! Puppies learn quickly and easily and maintain good habits for life-if the handler is consistent in her responses.

Level 2 Classes start today! Level 1 is a prerequisite and can be purchased at the same time as level 2.
Registration closes Sat May 9, 2015

Join our online classes and our school community!

Check out our video trailer!
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bmN8iOEHugQ

Go here to register:
http://dhill1.wix.com/donnasdogs#!service-dog-training/cr8z