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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi ya,

What is considered to be the best method for leash training a Basset approx 14-15mths old? I have had Basil since October last year and although he now walks better i feel he must be able to still improve.

The house exit is now really great, he took a few days to get that going and then reminders to reinforce my expectations, we have recently added in the sit after leaving the house and before re-entry (to simulate keys and carrying things) and so my real issue is now with just plain walking. At times he will try to get in front or remain forward, i can tug or knock and say Back and he sort of then retreats but overall i do feel that he hasnt quite got to the point where i can 'forget' i have a hound on the leash.

Are me expectations to high or am i perhaps being impatient? If not, what methods have others used? I must be doing something right as he isnt 'wild' like in the beginning but i just want that lil bit more if its possible at his age and breed.

Many thanks for any help.

Nat.
 

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Hi ya,

What is considered to be the best method for leash training a Basset approx 14-15mths old? I have had Basil since October last year and although he now walks better i feel he must be able to still improve.

The house exit is now really great, he took a few days to get that going and then reminders to reinforce my expectations, we have recently added in the sit after leaving the house and before re-entry (to simulate keys and carrying things) and so my real issue is now with just plain walking. At times he will try to get in front or remain forward, i can tug or knock and say Back and he sort of then retreats but overall i do feel that he hasnt quite got to the point where i can 'forget' i have a hound on the leash.

Are me expectations to high or am i perhaps being impatient? If not, what methods have others used? I must be doing something right as he isnt 'wild' like in the beginning but i just want that lil bit more if its possible at his age and breed.

Many thanks for any help.

Nat.[/b]
 

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You didn't mention what type of collar you use on Basil. We use a choke chain collar when we walk with Bogie. After putting him through the AKC Canine Good Citizen obedience classes, which used a choke chain collar, he heels so nicely on a loose leash. We don't even have to tighten the collar any more. Just a slight tug and release for a correction when needed, and our walks are a pleasure with a loose leash.
During the classes, there were 24 dogs, and they had us do a lot of sit then walk in heeling position, sit again then walk, that tends to keep the dog guessing and focused on walking slowly at your side. Also one of the instructors suggested when we were out on our own and practicing to do the following if your dog started pulling or going ahead: as soon as the dog starts to go ahead or pulling out of the heeling position you immediately turn around walking in the opposite direction holding the leash firmly, which will sort of snatch the dog and make your dog turn around and follow you. After proceeding a few steps have the dog sit, then say "Basil, heel", turn around and proceed on your walk. If he starts going ahead or pulling repeat with the heading in the opposite direction quickly, and they soon learn to stay put by your side without pulling.
This worked with Bogie. Good luck!!
 

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Hi Nat, I got my big guy at 18months and he pulled like a steam train. I went to dog training classes with him and this is how I was taught to train him to 'walk to heel'. I don't know about down south, but, up here choke chains aren't allowed in any dog training classes that I am aware of, so,I could either use a collar or a no-pull harness.

Hold the lead in your right hand with the dog at your left side,hold a treat with your left hand just above and in front of the dog's nose. Start walking keeping the treat just in front of his nose saying at the same time, 'Basil heel, good boy !!!!!Basil heel' keep repeating this in a really happy voice for about 50 yards or so then give him the treat all the time repeating 'basil heel good boy basil heel'. Just keep repeating this. He can then walk for longer before getting the treat.

Got to say though, I have never been able to walk with him and not know there is a dog on the end of the lead as if he gets a sniff of something then he stops, but all in all it has stopped him pulling unless he sees something really exciting up ahead.

This is called the 'positive re-inforcement method' Toby really enjoyed learning this, probably because of the involvement of food.
 

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1. I am a big fan of the sporn no pull harness as a tool but it is not a magic cure

2. teaching loose leash walking is one of the hardest things to teach a dog because the criteria is so loosely defined in the dogs and humans mind that either or both faiure to meet the criteria is not consistently punished and meeting the crieria is haphazardly rewarded so it is never clear to the dog what the criteria is in the first place. Personally I find it easier to teach a heel. This however requires a lotmore work for the dog. A walk around the neighborhood at a heel is rarely fun for the dog so I break it up the dog is rewarded for heeling with free time to do what he wants to do. THen it is my job to keep up with the dog rather than the other way around. When need be we revert back to heeling with a simple command

3. Clicker solutions has a myriad of techniques for using reward based training to teach loose leash walking they can be found here! What works for one does not work for all and ussually some tweeking is need for the individual dog. Dog training is as much of an art as it is a science.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Hi ya,

All 3 of you have come up with some points that i havent exactly tried much or one of them at all.

I think i did the walk in opposite direction thing in the first few days or weeks i had Basil, unsure why i stopped that was now to be honest. I do change direction but perhaps should try the opposite direction, it might be more obvious to Basil if i did that.

I havent tried suspending a treat in front of Basil either, he gets them when he does "Back" but it will be worth a try, both this and above will add variation or an extra dimension at the least.

Clicker training, hmmm, i have read a very short bit on it so i havent tried it and will read more to see what its all about. I think my PetsAtHome shop sell them.

Many thanks for all the ideas, i appreciate your time.

Nat

Ooo, incidentally, he has a regular lead at present
 
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