Heeling Without Leash

12 Sep 2012 | by | Posted in: Training

Heeling Without Leash

Heeling without leash is just a step further in training for heeling on the leash. As You know  some dogs heeling almost comes naturally while others not only take time but also remain imperfect so long. So,the process that I am going to describe now is to cope up with such difficult cases in  training for heeling .

When the dog has attained a stage of acceptable obedience in heeling on the leash, but does not behave properly when set free, adopt the following procedure:

Stage One

Everyday at the end of your dog’s lesson and practice in heeling on the leash, walk for a short time with leash slack. Then increase the duration of walk little by little as the dog makes progress. In the beginning, let him walk with you in a straight line. Then, when he has learnt to heel with error, train to follow you in correct position around corners and along zigzag routes. Only after he has mastered all these variations at this, say about two yards long leash, keep the end in your left hand so that the middle portion drags on the ground. Then repeat the entire process of first walking with the dog straight, and then around corners and twists. If the dog behaves well, drop the string and let him drag it. This will give him the impression that he is still on the leash and not free, and hence the chances of his playing the fool will be less. Then go through the training routine under these conditions. If the dog tries to roam free, you can always step on the loose end of the string and stop him from getting away.

After he has learnt to heel satisfactorily dragging the string without you having to tread on it frequently, start going through the exercise, making the string progressively shorter and shorter. But do not be in a hurry to remove it altogether. Sudden removal of the weight of the string from the collar might give your dog the idea that he is free and it might tempt him to take advantage of the situation.This would only necessitate a repetition of the whole training procedure with the string –– an enormous waste of time and energy for both, dog and master.

Stage Two

The next step in the lesson involves making the dog heel free on the street. Make very sure before you try it that your dog is obedient enough so that he can be depended upon to heel properly or to come when called. Heavy traffic and crowd of people walking around you could be some of the few factors that could upset even your experienced and older dogs.

Stage Three

The method of training for this final exercise is same as the previous one,i.e. heeling first on a slack leash,then with tring, and finally free.Your dog should eventually be so trained that you can rely upon him to keep his position at heel on the training ground, in an open place,and through traffic with crowds,vehicles, and other animals,irrespective of your pace, turns or twists.

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