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Old 08-04-2013, 09:19 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Off leash

It's a 2 thread day for me

Nova is a good boy, I have a 30 ft leash to give him space, and he's no more than 5-10ft away on a loose leash. On our walks he is too distracted. Any little bird chirp and he's looking around ears perked up. I want him to walk off leash so bad I'm tempted to let him loose but I don't because I know he'll take off. He sees other animals and wants to go play but doesn't pull on the leash unless he's overly excited.

How do I teach my dog to walk off leash and stay by me at all times? Does he need more obedience training or can it be taught in spite of it?

Thanks in advance
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Old 08-04-2013, 09:40 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Are you talking about off leash around the streets or off leash hiking type walking?

Go to an area where you know there are no other people or dogs like the middle of the woods and just give it a shot. Drop the leash and walk.

Chances are if he's that distracted by the things around him that he's not ready to be off leash and fully trusted. How old is he? How reliable is his recall?
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Old 08-04-2013, 09:43 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Sorry I meant when we go on our daily walks for him not run off.
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Old 08-04-2013, 10:11 PM   #4 (permalink)
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you need a solid recall before attempting off leash. teach your
dog to heel on or off leash. start training without distractions.
train indoors and outside. slowly add in distractions. be
consistent with your training. train often. i like training often
but in short sessions. i taught my dog to heel on either side
with or without leash. when i want him to switch sides i
say "other side".
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Old 08-04-2013, 10:40 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Are you in the middle of the country where no one cares? If you're in areas where other people are walking their dogs too, it's poor etiquette to not have your dog on leash. Kind of like not picking up after your dog poops. I can't stand when people walk their dogs without leashes in my area. I don't know if your dog is friendly or not. A leash just shows other people the dog is under control.

Does your city or town have leash laws?
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Old 08-04-2013, 10:53 PM   #6 (permalink)
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While I can leave Bella off leash because her recall is great, I rarely do it because of all the unknowns it's just safer for her to be on lead. The only reason I taught her to be off leash is heaven forbid she ever got loose whether it be my kids left the door open or she just got away from me for some reason, I didn't want to play a game of catch me if you can with her. I have been there and done that with another dog and it was no fun at all

My primary reason for not letting her off lead is because we have alot of dogs that get loose or roam and I fear that they might attack her and I would like to prevent that at all cost, just not worth it.. but good to have her know in an emergency to stay with me at all times..

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Old 08-04-2013, 11:02 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Once you have trained as others have suggested and have progressed past being comfortable dropping the leash, some dogs respond to having a tab on their collar. It won't drag but the weight and feel of it can be enough to keep some dogs behaved as if on-leash.

Also, you can consider training with an e-collar. You'll get many opinions on that here; it's a polar issue. When done responsibly it can be an extremely effective tool, and in some jurisdictions you can 'get away' with bypassing leash laws by having your dog under control via e-collar.
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Old 08-05-2013, 12:27 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucy Dog View Post
Are you in the middle of the country where no one cares? If you're in areas where other people are walking their dogs too, it's poor etiquette to not have your dog on leash. Kind of like not picking up after your dog poops. I can't stand when people walk their dogs without leashes in my area. I don't know if your dog is friendly or not. A leash just shows other people the dog is under control.

Does your city or town have leash laws?
I agree.
I guess I dont understand why you would want to. Walking neighborhood/city streets off leash is a real liability. I wouldn't risk it even if city ordinance allowed.
We do designated off leash walking trails so I dont expect my dog to walk by my side. We just rely on a solid recall. It seems like you're using a really long leash if you want him to walk by your side.
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Old 08-05-2013, 12:39 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Fephie View Post
Walking neighborhood/city streets off leash is a real liability.
Yep.

I can walk Pongu off leash in the city; I've tested it at off hours (by which I mean going down side streets at 4 or 5 a.m. -- and even then, taxis come through my neighborhood every couple of minutes), and very occasionally by necessity when I find myself unexpectedly carrying large and unwieldy burdens and can't manage the leash.

He's pretty close to perfect. I can have him hold a competition Heel for several blocks if necessary, and I can also have him on a more relaxed 15-foot invisible emotional tether. The one and only good thing about a fearful dog is that he won't willingly stray from my side.

So I can do it. But I still think it's an awful risk and I would never dream of doing it routinely. All it would take is one stray cat or one loud truck backfire (or a gunshot, we have those too here...) and a speeding taxi and bam, I wouldn't have a dog anymore.

If you're truly out in the country in the middle of nowhere, I guess you might not have to worry about this. But if you're anywhere else, I wouldn't chance it. No matter how good your training is, it's not worth the risk. Dogs are dogs. They make mistakes, they get tempted to chase things, they get scared and bolt. It's up to us, as responsible owners, to prevent those momentary lapses from ending in disaster. A leash is an important way of doing that.
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Old 08-05-2013, 12:53 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Lucy, we live right next to a big popular field where kids play sports which are a huge distraction, and there are a lot of fellow dog owners, also if my city were to have leash laws the police department here wouldn't enforce them.

doggiedad I will look into "recall" for off leash thanks.

Thanks for all the posts, I guess just seeing others walking with their dogs off leash makes me want the same, and I never thought about the liability factor, but I will still teach him just as a safety net.
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