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Discussion Starter #1
I am looking for some advice on the appropriate manner in which to keep Cooper focused when the two of us pass other dogs on our walk. I take him for a three mile walk every morning with him wearing his backpack. He loves it! I have run into several situations at the park where people allow their dog loose, or the dog has a long lead ahead of the owner. These dogs come running up to Cooper and I. I have noticed in the past month that Cooper does not want to sit patiently while I wait for the owners to pass, or catch up to their dog to control them. He has started to try to pull me. Even though he is still young... I realize that someday he will be almost 90 pounds and I must keep him focused, or he'll be dragging me along somewhere. Just this morning I decided to step off the path to allow a woman to pass with her two little dogs, but she allowed one of them to dart towards Cooper. Cooper tried to get up and go, but I made him sit again and wait until they were further down the path. Once the dogs pass us he goes back into being this wonderful obedient dog.

If anyone has any advice for me on what I could do to keep him totally under control, or at least some steps to work toward getting him totally under control, it would be great. I do use food rewards and praise already.

Thank you.
Terry K.
 

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Do you use "high value" treats? Something really yummy that
he ONLY gets for walks, not other times, and teach "watch
me". Teach it at home first.

You could also try bouncing a tennis ball, or a short rope tug
tossed in front of him. Anything to make YOU more interesting
and fun than the other dogs!! (Squeak a toy in your pocket?)

 

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Originally Posted By: valbYou could also try bouncing a tennis ball, or a short rope tug tossed in front of him. Anything to make YOU more interesting
and fun than the other dogs!! (Squeak a toy in your pocket?)
Careful, you'd probably attract the other dogs, too!
 

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I use the word "switch" when we're on walks and we're coming up on dogs and I don't want them to socialize. I just say switch and she or Cooper go to the other side of me. This has always worked well for me wether we're on walks in the neighborhood or in PetsMart, the vet etc.

Not sure if this helps but thought I would try ...
 

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How old he? We have to be careful when they are still young to socialize and have them realize other dogs are ok (not that he has to interact or play with them all). Sometimes if we always get strict and commanding when other dogs are coming near, it may may our dogs think they are BAD or SCARY or things along those lines. Rather than just an ordinary part of life and lets keep going.

Think if it was leashed dogs coming past, I'd just put him on the opposite side of me (so it would be new dog, me, my dog) as we pass and keep on moving.

You doing group dog classes? They gave me alot of skills that were very helpful when out in the real world. And my pups gained alot of confidence in me AND in my leadership/guidance as a result of the classes.
 

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"Think if it was leashed dogs coming past, I'd just put him on the opposite side of me (so it would be new dog, me, my dog) as we pass and keep on moving".

Yes, or better yet pass the other dog in a half circle- since dogs wouldn't normally walk straight towards each other.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I probably would attract other dogs if I bounced a tennis ball up in the air. Tennis balls and a red soccer ball are Cooper's favorite toys.

I use treats that I would consider "high value," but maybe I am wrong. Most of the time it is chicken, sometimes cheese. If I don't have time to cut something up before I have to run out the door I grab some of his favorite dog bones. I was using hot dogs, but to tell you the truth I don't eat hot dogs so I stopped. If there is another "high value" treat out there that I should consider, please let me know. I may try squeaking a toy. This idea never crossed my mind.

I like the switch idea. I am always looking for new things to teach Cooper. Cooper will be 8 months on February 13th. I didn't think I could make him feel like other dogs could be "bad." I am not tense, or giving a strong command when other dogs head our way, but I guess if I am constantly moving off the path and making him sit I could be giving the wrong message to him. It's hard though, because the majority of the people I meet allow their dogs to lead them, or the dogs are loose. I make Cooper walk at my side, or behind me a little. So, here I am walking down the trail on one side and heading my way is an owner with a dog (or dogs) where the dog(s) are leading, and taking up most of the trail because they are going from one side to the other.

Cooper is in a Level 2 obedience class with other dogs. Hopefully, if all goes well, he will be earning his Canine Good Citizen Award in 4 weeks, then I can move onto the Level 3 class. During class he is pretty good about passing the other dogs. Every once in awhile he attempts a greeting with another dog, but this is not allowed during the class.

Today it is raining, so tomorrow I will pack my pocket with another tasty treat, a tennis ball, and I need to buy a squeaky toy. Try, try again, until I reach my goal.

Thanks for your help everyone.

Take care,
Terry K.
 
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