Leash pulling/overexcited - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 01-14-2019, 12:27 PM Thread Starter
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Leash pulling/overexcited

My girl is 11 months old. We walk her usually twice a day, but sometimes only once, because it's cold out. We walk to the park, which is 3 blocks from our house. At the park, she's off leash, playing fetch and getting some training for 30 min to an hour.

We use a martingale collar and keep the leash short enough, so that she's a step ahead of us at most. She never gets a loose leash unless we're letting her sniff at a spot of our choosing.

She likes to walk ahead of us, so she tends to pull. When she does, we either give a correction with pulling her back or we stop walking. When we do either of these, she sort of corrects herself. She'll kind of shuffle and move backward. But it only lasts for a second and three steps later, she's in a hurry, pulling again.

We've used a Prong collar and it works OK. It just makes her shuffle a lot. I can't stand it though, because it's hard on my hands and I can't get it on and off by myself, which makes it almost useless to me. We tried the gentle leader and she hated it. She wouldn't walk with it at all. We used a harness, with the leash on the back. It was not as good as the martingale.

It seems that she's just overexcited and distracted. She knows we want her to walk by our side, but it's not her priority. My question is, are we on the right track or should we be expecting more from her at this point? Should we be doing more? If so, what can I we do differently?

I'm wondering if it's just a matter of maturity. She's still a puppy and pretty great for the most part.
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 01-14-2019, 01:46 PM
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Hi you have my sympathies I am in the same situation but in the UK which is kinda worse. Someone used a prong in Devon and he got reported to the RSPCA and a mug shot in the local newspaper for cruelty, he may as well have beaten the dog. I am also using a martingale (which I got yelled at for by two separate people, apparently it was too tight despite the fact the you could get your hand between the dog's neck and the collar). The issue I have is my dog, Luke, is rapidly growing into a strong male, and the only thing I found that worked for any period was holding the leash relaxed and walking a bit faster (dogs naturally want to trot) but the moment he gets to the end of the leash, giving a hard pop and then a pull back into position. I only did this after a long walk where he pulled so hard my shoulder was killing me! This also got me dirty looks, but it also gave my shoulder relief for the rest of the walk. I won't use a harness because they are designed to make a dog pull, and the ones that clip at the front will disturb how a dog walks, they get this weird sideways gait. And halties can make the area under the eyes sore.

Not much or very good advice, sorry.
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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 01-14-2019, 01:57 PM
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Sounds like my dog. The only way I can get her not to forge and pull is with an e collar. My fault as I let her drag me on leash as a puppy. I'm not suggesting an e collar. I'm suggesting never let your dog pull against the collar. It only gets to sniff or potty when you release the dog from walking with you. May take a long time, consistency is the key.


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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 01-14-2019, 02:18 PM
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My doberman was a huge leash puller and nothing I ever did could break her of it. She'd choke herself without thought on any sort of collar. We used the gentle leader halter for years...she hated it, but she'd accept it because she loved walks so much. Every four or five steps, she'd drop her head to the ground and try to rub it off....not just at first when she was trying to get used to it, but for all the years we continued to use it. Finally, we discovered a harness with the D ring at the front, at the center of the dog's chest, rather than on the back. This made the harness behave similarly to the halter, but without the annoying contraption wrapped around her face.

Something like this: https://www.petexpertise.com/easy-walk-no-pull-harness/

It didn't solve the lack of discipline while walking...she still tried to explore everything under the sun and chase after squirrels and want to meet other dogs and people. But it DID take the painful pressure off of my hands, arms and back trying to keep the powerful dog under control. Made walking far more pleasant for both of us.

-- Judy

Yazzy the feisty GSD ~ Jan 6th, 2019

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Mira the goofy Doberman ~ Dec 1st, 2007 - June 2nd, 2018
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