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Thread: 10 month dog behaving strangely on leash, any advice?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2017
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    Brisbane
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    Question 10 month dog behaving strangely on leash, any advice?

    Hi all,

    First time post so please feel free to let me know if I've done anything wrong.

    I'm hoping to get some tips related to this odd new behaviour my 10 month old Kelpie Cross has started to do.

    First of all, she was great with all basic training and learns incredibly quickly, she is very friendly and absolutely loves other animals (my poor cat constantly gets licked by her).

    When we're on walks, when she sees another dog she gets excited and wants to meet it, once I've asked the other owner if she can say hello, they do the normal sniffing and typical behaviour but when we decide to say goodbye, this is where her strange new behaviour starts:

    When the other person begins to walk away and the other dog is out of her reach because her leash is tight and as extended as it can be (normal sized leash). She begins to growl and sounds nasty. Which typically sets off the other dog.

    I've Googled leash aggression and I don't think this applies to her because she's happy and excited to meet other dogs when they approach and while they're meeting I make sure the leash isn't tight. It's just when she can't keep saying hello to the other dog it's almost like she's frustrated they're out of reach.

    I've tried to make sure I'm calm and don't unintentionally pull on the leash when it's time to say goodbye because I am aware it can cause the dog to think there's something to be on edge about, I'm recently trying to distract her when it's time to say goodbye (before she's growled) with a treat so she hopefully associates saying goodbye as a good thing, similar how I got her to understand cars driving by aren't scary.

    Her typical behaviour on a leash is to pull when she wants to see / sniff something so I'm currently attempting to train her out of it by not budging until she comes back and sits next to me (which is working when we are just walking and there's no distractions).
    I've also started to teach her "Let's Go!" when she's distracted by sniffing something and she's learnt that means it's time to stop what she's doing and keep walking which is great.

    I read somewhere about dog greeting that if she's pulling to say hello to the dog that I need to reinforce that pulling doesn't get what she wants, so yesterday when I was attempting that, we would be walking and a dog was approaching us, she started to pull so I stepped off the footpath and stopped moving so she would focus and sit but she continued to pull and same as when we say goodbye, when the other dog walked past her and she couldn't reach it to say hello she started to growl.

    Sorry for how much I've written, I just wanted to make sure whoever reads this has enough information to provide any useful tips.

    Regards,
    Matt

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
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    Southern NSW
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    It may not be leash aggression yet, but it can sure become that very quickly...

    You have to teach your dog to be polite at all times on leash.... that means a smile in your leash at all times and if there is no smile (loose) you are going in the opposite direction. I don't like standing still, I like to move away, come back, move away and come back or until the leash is soft.

    Your young dog sounds a little bit rude, which is quite normal for the age group. there is often another fear period about this time to work through. and if not handled right may become a reactive dog

    personally I like the BAT system.... Google it and you can buy ebooks online. We could rewrite the whole lot here, but easier to google.

    If I allow my dogs to say hello, it is only soft or smile leash and if that is not happening, there is no hello.

    and sometimes you just do a lot of changing of direction to get this..........so start forward, say four paces, change (go left, go right) direction for four paces, change again, go back wards and on and on, till they walk softly beside you. Anytime they pull, there we go again. ... I click at anytime my dog looks at me a reward... what you get is a softer dog. Any time a dog I am training pulls I do this... it can go on for quite a while... I also do backwards heeling, I walk backwards, click as soon as the dog looks at me and I turn to end up in the correct heeling position beside my dog and again click when they look at me... of course when I click I reward... every time with new dogs , I click and treat... but with my own we can have up to five clicks for a treat.

    Anytime I take my five for a walk, I do this for just the shortest session.... It is just letting them know that I am going where I want to go and they are following. it gets to the point they seem always attached to you and just stick with you.

    Google Kikopup and she has some great videos on clicker training....
    Pets are forever

  3. #3
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    Dec 2017
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    Brisbane
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    Great thanks for the advice!

    I'll definitely try that .

    Any suggestions on how to act when she starts to growl when she doesn't get to say hello? I usually just say "Naughty girl" or "Ah Ah" in a deep tone but I've never had her act this way before so I'm not sure on the correct way to handle that.

  4. #4
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    Southern NSW
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    say nothing and walk away.... walking away is a negative punishment.... talking is almost a reward... dogs like to be talked to, we do too much of it

    If I made any sound it would be an Aghhh and a quick turn around... walk back and if it starts again walk away. I can tell you now it becomes quite repetitive and initially you think nothing is happening. Give it time, they take a while... But I prefer to say nothing and just walk away. My dogs do not get many "hello" moment on walks... I want them to concentrate on me. I do however have walks with friends, where it is all about the social contact... but we all train the same, so impolite or pulling and away you go...
    Pets are forever

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