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About a year ago when I first got Hazel, I began to take her on walks. Me, being myself, belived I was strong enough to walk here without any problems, although she was not leashed trained, and never went on walks in her previous home. We went for a stroll and the minuite I turned onto what I now know as Death Row, I knew it was over for me. The enire street was filled with the one thing you do not want to see when leash training your dog. Rabbits. One house in particular, which I later nicknamed Death House, had tons of rabbits, and still does. I am going to spoil a few things real quick so you can rest assured while you read this.
#1: I am not dead
#2: I am alive
#3: I only have a few scars
#3: Hazel learned how to walk properly on a leash finally!

The stories *Not one single detail in here is exaggerated. I swear this all happened just as I am telling you.*
Story #1: The worst walk EVER: So here I am, walking up the street, thinking how cool I must look with my dog walking right beside me. Sure, maybe she was straining ahead. Sure, the leash might have had a death grip on that leash. But, we don't have to think about those small details. All I knew was these older ladies were out watering their garden, watching me and my amazing dog walk by. I was already on Death Row street, and to the house next to Death House. I walked along, thinking how I was "no small tators" (I don't know if anyone says that anymore?) with Hazel. Suddenly, I was being drug across the road toward Death House, holding on for dear life as Hazel towed me behind her. Before I knew it, I was on the ground, literally twisted around a bush holding onto Hazel's leash. To this day, I am astounded, along with everyone I tell this story to, that I did not let go of her leash. Eventually, I got back to my feet, pulled Hazel back into line, and continued walking. As we turned onto the next street, Hazel bolts yet again for another bunny. She drags me away *again* and my "amazing" luck strikes again. It was a hill. We were going down it. She pulls me down the hill and I lose both my shoes! We get to the fence of the yard of interest, and Hazel is crying for the bunny to come back. At this point, I am crying I am so upset. As I was getting my shoes back on, a teen comes out the backdoor with his reacitve dog, who charges the fence and gets Hazel wound up again. I quickly pulled her away and left my shoes. I walked on the gravel all the way home barefoot, and came back later for my shoes. And that was the worst walk of my entire life!

Story #2: My thumbs are about to fall off so I'm gonna make this short and sweet. I'm walking Hazel with a friend and she takes off again. I scream "grab me!" as hazel pulls me away. My friend stares at me, dumbfounded, as I get towed down the road?. She helps me up after I am dragged through the rocks and get a few small holes in my shirt.

I have many more stories about death row and death house, but that will have to be all for now! Tell me about some funny training stories you have got! Here is one lesson I learned from all this:
Predictable and dog do not belong in the same sentence!!?
 

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Kaiser was 5 months old, we were out walking in a national park where lots of people take their dogs... all dogs have to be on a lead in the national park. My 9 year old son asked if he could please walk Kaiser. I handed him the lead and said "Have you got him?" as I was saying this Kaiser spotted two dogs he wanted to go say "hello" to. My son starts to answer "Yes, Mom" and hardly has the words out of his mouth when Kaiser starts dragging him along to meet the other dogs. He dragged for a good 30metres... luckily the other dogs were friendly... I was laughing, the other owner was laughing and thank goodness my son was laughing too.
 

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At least you don't have to pay if things goes south.

During walk, two days ago, Archie (ex-stray dog, I started thread about him, "Walking drunk....etc.") hunted down a chicken, which ended up dead. :mad: :mad: According to quoted price it had to be some kind of magical chicken, laying golden eggs or something.

I had to blame my GSD for it infront of my wife, since she's not very fond of strays and Archie. And my GSD has a few 'good girl points' to spare with my wife... . :| :| :|
 

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I had a beautiful smart ridgie mix years ago. She was wonderful except the hunter in her wanted to chase squirrels. Nothing unusual there. I seldom asked her to heel since she walked so well on a loose leash and we took walks for miles. When I jogged a bit I had to make sure she was heeling. I hadn't quite gotten her to think I was serious about her position as we jogged. At least not until the crazed squirrel debacle. As we are jogging down a short hill, her right at my side, a squirrel runs right in front of us, across our path and into the bushes. My dog took chase and ran to cross right in front of me. I crashed into her, flipped over her and landed on the ground, glasses flown off. Leash somehow still in my hand. My dog stood over me looking as to say, "what just happened? and why are you on the ground?"

Of course after that she took position for our short heels much more seriously.


By the way, we have Dumb Bunnies here, too. On another thread we are debating the need for prong collars. All I have to say is when those dumb bunnies run across the street, or worse, sit in the middle of the street, I am thankful that the bit of discomfort of the collar is enough to keep me from reoccurring road rash. I could train my dogs to ignore rabbits, but the rabbits don't want to co-operate in the training procedure.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I had a beautiful smart ridgie mix years ago. She was wonderful except the hunter in her wanted to chase squirrels. Nothing unusual there. I seldom asked her to heel since she walked so well on a loose leash and we took walks for miles. When I jogged a bit I had to make sure she was heeling. I hadn't quite gotten her to think I was serious about her position as we jogged. At least not until the crazed squirrel debacle. As we are jogging down a short hill, her right at my side, a squirrel runs right in front of us, across our path and into the bushes. My dog took chase and ran to cross right in front of me. I crashed into her, flipped over her and landed on the ground, glasses flown off. Leash somehow still in my hand. My dog stood over me looking as to say, "what just happened? and why are you on the ground?"

Of course after that she took position for our short heels much more seriously.


By the way, we have Dumb Bunnies here, too. On another thread we are debating the need for prong collars. All I have to say is when those dumb bunnies run across the street, or worse, sit in the middle of the street, I am thankful that the bit of discomfort of the collar is enough to keep me from reoccurring road rash. I could train my dogs to ignore rabbits, but the rabbits don't want to co-operate in the training procedure.
I cannot bring myself to use a prong on Hazel, but I do sometimes use a "choke" chain, and it helps A LOT. I know many think it is cruel, but actually, it doesn't hurt them as long as you loosen it when they are walking nicely beside you. But of course there are those who do not loosen it...
 

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LOL loved your story. You have some real stamina to not have let go .


I had a similar story with our Daisy. on the day she graduated from puppy class. I decided to take her to the lake near us after her graduation. She had done well and was about 6 months old. I was given a blue retractable leash as part of her graduation goody bag and this appeared to be a great thing to use with my newly graduated pup. We get to the lake and she has the leash on and the first 10 to 15 minutes are a breeze. Then I see the ducks and geese and a few swans further out of the lake. I look at my prey drive prone pup and gather the said pup in close with my handy dandy retractable leash,. Daisy comes right in no issues and I keep her close. Were good. . What I didn't notice then was my dog wasn't looking at the migratory birds but rather away from the lake. Thrilled with this I continue on down beside the lake. daisy is still looking off towards the pavilion I think and I look that way and see a older couple eating lunch . Daisy looks that way still and I having let the leash out a little begin to draw her in. She steps back and then the race is on. She follows her step back with a jump and a pull and there I am with part of the leash dangling but no GSD. Daisy was running toward the couple and I run after her. By the time I get there (Daisy runs really fats and I'm kind of slow) she is sitting on the bench across from the couple and their KFC bucket. I rush up to them apologizing . Husband runs to get the old inferior leash at the car and I grab said GSDs collar. However by this time Daisy has had some chicken and is working on obtaining other culinary treats. What we learned that day was two fold I don't use retractable leashes on young dogs or pullers and Daisy learned that a chicken in a bucket is better than birds on the lake.
 
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I cannot bring myself to use a prong on Hazel, but I do sometimes use a "choke" chain, and it helps A LOT. I know many think it is cruel, but actually, it doesn't hurt them as long as you loosen it when they are walking nicely beside you. But of course there are those who do not loosen it



A choke chain will do more damage to a dog's trachea than a prong collar. Dogs will pull far harder on a choke chain and it encourages them to pull by eliciting their opposition reflex.

Dogs are extremely predictable, their body language is a great indicator of their thought process and pending behavior.

This is a really good example of when a prong collar would really help a novice handler. Also, a choke chain placed properly on a dog should loosen by itself when the dog is not pulling. You place the collar over the dog's head so the collar forms a "P" as it hangs down. The choke chain collar doesn't hurt the dog when it is pulling, it hurts when a strong correction is administered or when the dog rushes to the end of the leash and strongly corrects itself. A choke chain that is not not properly placed on a dog that does not loosen up automatically will cause strain on the dog, more along the lines of restricting air.

I've been working and training dogs for a long time, in my personal opinion a properly fitted prong collar is far more humane than a choke chain. I haven't used a choke chain in probably 25 years, except with handler aggressive and reactive dogs. Then it is a nylon slip collar and never a chain.

I'm glad to hear that you have resolved the issues with walking Hazel.
 

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I use a choke chain only as a back-up collar to a quick-release prong collar. Thankfully, the prong has not yet released on its own, so Beau has never had the choke chain tighten on his neck.

Slamdunc, I’ve recently been using an inch-wide semi-soft leather martingale as a test to see if I can manage Beau without the prong on our daily walks. Both work on him for leash pops, he still gets the message with and responds to the martingale. On a couple of occasions he has pulled suddenly and hard against the martingale (both times in reaction to an unexpected dog barking at him - we’re working on that reactivity with some success). He would do the same on a prong, but then yelp and stop when the collar closed on him. He doesn’t yelp on the martingale, but is also slower to correct.

Do you know if the martingale is more or less likely than the prong collar to damage him if he lunges?

Hope the answer will be useful to OP as well as myself!
 

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An inch wide martingale collar will not cause any damage from sudden pulling. He is slower to correct on the martingale because it is not as effective as the prong.
 

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Thanks! I get that re: effectiveness, it’s actually why I use it to test where we are with training. Just want to make sure I’m not risking physical damage.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I cannot bring myself to use a prong on Hazel, but I do sometimes use a "choke" chain, and it helps A LOT. I know many think it is cruel, but actually, it doesn't hurt them as long as you loosen it when they are walking nicely beside you. But of course there are those who do not loosen it



A choke chain will do more damage to a dog's trachea than a prong collar. Dogs will pull far harder on a choke chain and it encourages them to pull by eliciting their opposition reflex.

Dogs are extremely predictable, their body language is a great indicator of their thought process and pending behavior.

This is a really good example of when a prong collar would really help a novice handler. Also, a choke chain placed properly on a dog should loosen by itself when the dog is not pulling. You place the collar over the dog's head so the collar forms a "P" as it hangs down. The choke chain collar doesn't hurt the dog when it is pulling, it hurts when a strong correction is administered or when the dog rushes to the end of the leash and strongly corrects itself. A choke chain that is not not properly placed on a dog that does not loosen up automatically will cause strain on the dog, more along the lines of restricting air.

I've been working and training dogs for a long time, in my personal opinion a properly fitted prong collar is far more humane than a choke chain. I haven't used a choke chain in probably 25 years, except with handler aggressive and reactive dogs. Then it is a nylon slip collar and never a chain.

I'm glad to hear that you have resolved the issues with walking Hazel.
Hmm... Interesting. Yes, her choke chain does loosen itself, but I always wiggle the chain to ensure it is properly loosened. I have a lot of experience with dogs too, I have had them all my life, it's just that Hazel was pretty crazy compared to the others, though I shouldn't be surprised haha. I might try a prong, it just doesn't seem very nice to have spikes digging into the dog's neck. Just my opinion. Everyone thinks differently.
 

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LOL loved your story. You have some real stamina to not have let go .


I had a similar story with our Daisy. on the day she graduated from puppy class. I decided to take her to the lake near us after her graduation. She had done well and was about 6 months old. I was given a blue retractable leash as part of her graduation goody bag and this appeared to be a great thing to use with my newly graduated pup. We get to the lake and she has the leash on and the first 10 to 15 minutes are a breeze. Then I see the ducks and geese and a few swans further out of the lake. I look at my prey drive prone pup and gather the said pup in close with my handy dandy retractable leash,. Daisy comes right in no issues and I keep her close. Were good. . What I didn't notice then was my dog wasn't looking at the migratory birds but rather away from the lake. Thrilled with this I continue on down beside the lake. daisy is still looking off towards the pavilion I think and I look that way and see a older couple eating lunch . Daisy looks that way still and I having let the leash out a little begin to draw her in. She steps back and then the race is on. She follows her step back with a jump and a pull and there I am with part of the leash dangling but no GSD. Daisy was running toward the couple and I run after her. By the time I get there (Daisy runs really fats and I'm kind of slow) she is sitting on the bench across from the couple and their KFC bucket. I rush up to them apologizing . Husband runs to get the old inferior leash at the car and I grab said GSDs collar. However by this time Daisy has had some chicken and is working on obtaining other culinary treats. What we learned that day was two fold I don't use retractable leashes on young dogs or pullers and Daisy learned that a chicken in a bucket is better than birds on the lake.
Lucky me, I didn't have to learn the hard way that retractable leashes are not the best tool to use when leash training?. It seems like they would be awesome, but once in use, I guess they are a bit worse than they look
 

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I use a choke chain only as a back-up collar to a quick-release prong collar. Thankfully, the prong has not yet released on its own, so Beau has never had the choke chain tighten on his neck.

Slamdunc, I’ve recently been using an inch-wide semi-soft leather martingale as a test to see if I can manage Beau without the prong on our daily walks. Both work on him for leash pops, he still gets the message with and responds to the martingale. On a couple of occasions he has pulled suddenly and hard against the martingale (both times in reaction to an unexpected dog barking at him - we’re working on that reactivity with some success). He would do the same on a prong, but then yelp and stop when the collar closed on him. He doesn’t yelp on the martingale, but is also slower to correct.

Do you know if the martingale is more or less likely than the prong collar to damage him if he lunges?

Hope the answer will be useful to OP as well as myself!
Thanks! Hazel doesn't react to other dogs(which is awesome!) but, as learned from this story, she does react to small animals. She is awesome on the lead now so the choke chain is not used a bunch anymore. I have noticed some dogs will keep strangling themselves on choke chains so obviously that isn't good
 

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I'm old enough to have used choke chains. In fact in my story, that is what my dog had on. If I pulled it up tight around her chin she heeled nicely but was never comfortable about it. It was a looming threat. To be honest, she only got choked twice in her life and only for a short moment. Nearly all the time it just jingled.
 

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One of my dogs would chase rabbits if I let her. We see rabbits in a hiking area I like and she is not allowed to do anything but watch and then only if she sits. I don’t want my dogs thinking they can chase animals.
 

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When I was a child we used choke chains or nothing but a regular collar. The choke chained dogs were better trained. I also don’t remember ever owning a dog that could not walk nicely on a leash. My parents wouldn’t allow it. Sometimes I think I was a better trainer before I knew so much and so were other dogs owners. There were fewer pet dogs around.
 

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Hmm... Interesting. Yes, her choke chain does loosen itself, but I always wiggle the chain to ensure it is properly loosened. I have a lot of experience with dogs too, I have had them all my life, it's just that Hazel was pretty crazy compared to the others, though I shouldn't be surprised haha. I might try a prong, it just doesn't seem very nice to have spikes digging into the dog's neck. Just my opinion. Everyone thinks differently.
Try a prong collar on your bare leg. The prongs don’t dig into their necks, they slide sideways. I tried one before I ever bought it. I tried jerking on a choke chain the same way and it was painful. People stared, but I didn’t care. My dog was more important than what they thought. I wore shorts so I could test collars.
 

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I loved your story and it made me chuckle. My normal walking route begins with walking down what I call the hall of bark. The first 10 or so houses we pass have a dog and each feels the need to give us an earful. Lol. I get the not letting go of the leash, I call my grip the muscle memory vice grip because there have been times where I don't remember consciously clamping down on it.

Cats and dogs were my boy's trigger to take me for a ride.

At the time he was about 14mo give or take a couple months. I took him out front for a pee break. It was rainy and he had chosen a muddy area. While he was deciding the perfect spot, he paused and lunged, down I went for a slippery very muddy ride. I wasn't happy. When he stopped and realized the extra weight he was towing was me he ran to me and started giving me the "are you all right I love you so much" once over. That's what I thought until I realized that he was also using me as towel to wipe his face. All I could do was laugh.

I never saw what caused him to lunge but I think it was my neighbors cat watching him from under the car.

I have that grip down pat lol.
 
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We've got a Death Row too!
On this street of manicured large homes, apparently fences are banned.
So, Everybody has a Dog and an Invisible Fence...

Once as we walked down the middle of the street, we had dogs lunging & barking furiously at us on either side, standing at the very front edge of their yards,
and THEN, to add insult to injury, a stray cat ran across the street right in front of us!! I was like, I am never going to walk down this street again!!
This is like dog-walking ****!

I did have a wild bucking bronco on the end of the leash, but thankfully I stayed on my feet and kept my shoes on. :)
 

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LuvShepherds;9092005 I don’t want my dogs thinking they can chase animals.[/QUOTE said:
That works until the day they know they can. One experience was enough to change my mind about training tools.
 
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