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The failed pack walk…

The failed pack walk…

Being on a small suburban block we knew it was necessary to get the dogs out walking and getting to know their neighbourhood. As you may already know, coming from acreage they were used to running around off lead and when they went walking with my husband, they didn’t really see a lot of other dogs – the walk was for exercise and exploring not socialising. There was always lots of space and distance when seeing other dogs and that was perfectly fine for where and how we lived… but that had all just changed.

So off we went for our first walk in the neighbourhood… not 100m from home as we were walking around the corner of the footpath was a lady with a dog, before we knew it she was there, I was walking Wilma the Rottie and hubby had the Molly and Duke (for those that don’t know Molly is a 10yr Mastiff x and Duke is a 3yr 50kg Bull Arab), we were all a bit startled and off course Duke decides to react and wants to play – but he is on lead and he becomes very vocal and starts prancing all over the place like an idiot – this in turn causes Wilma to get cranky and she growls and very quickly it turns into a big mess and almost uncontrollable. Hubby’s tries to settle Duke down (but this makes him more excitable), I walk Wilma away and the lady quickly turns and scurries in the other direction with her dog.

FAIL, it was awful. It all happened in less than a minute on the side of the road, very close to home.

Has this happened to you? Have you seen it happen with someone else? Why did this happen and what can be done about it?

Well, there is a couple of options

1. Go home and cry and never walk the dogs again (which I felt like doing)

2. Continue on the walk but find a bit more open space

3. Think about what else we could have done or what we can do better

4. Make a plan and do some training

5. Learn to look around corners

What did we do? We continued the walk and found some open space, we cut the walk a bit shorter and had a bit of a discussion about a better plan of attack.

Hang on a second…’Aren’t you a dog trainer?’ – I hear you ask…. Yes, I am but my dogs aren’t perfect, they do a lot of things amazingly well and I understand them and they me. They have commands and tricks and their training up to this point was great for our lifestyle. But that lifestyle has just changed dramatically so it is important to think about why...

Why did this happen? There was a couple of contributing factors.

- Firstly, we were a ‘pack’ - hubby, me and three dogs. Duke especially is a lot more confident and vocal when he has Bruiser the Rottie to back him up.

- Secondly, we were in a completely new environment and the dogs – especially Duke was heightened, new sounds, smells, cars etc.

- Thirdly, we weren’t paying attention or prepared when suddenly there was a new person and dog and we reacted, which caused the dogs to react

- Fourthly, we had nowhere to go, it was hard to take distance and diffuse as we were next to a road on a footpath

- Fifthly, our dogs haven’t been conditioned to suburban life, they have grown up on acreage with their main pack.

What is the answer and how do I fix this problem? Stay tuned for the next blogs to find out and follow along with their progress.

(This is not a photo of our dogs!)

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2 commentaires

Michael Reid
Michael Reid
08 mars 2023

We've pretty much given up walking our dogs. The little poodle cross decided when he was about 3 years old he had to bark and go nuts at any dog. The black labrador learnt from that and so now does the same.... :-(

Michael Reid
Michael Reid
08 mars 2023
En réponse à

So, a few weeks ago I took them out individually. Apparently the poodle cross cried the whole time I was out with the lab.

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