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Sarah Wilson
Award-winning Pet Expert
Teacher, Trainer & Author

Walking On A Loose Lead!

In this pet podcast... Everyone wants it and most people struggle with it. Why? Because we're going about it the wrong ways! Listen while Sarah takes a walk with Pip - does everything go "perfectly"? No... but you'll learn who Sarah handled it and made the walk successful even with a band of dirt bikes roaring into the woods frightening her dog. Listen as she helps Pip over her concerns, explains the games she recommends for walking work, what she thinks of various equipment and why some tools make matters worse.

Have questions? Write her at


Lead in: Pet life Radio! (dog barks)

Male announcer: You're listening to Pet Life Radio Dot Com!

Female announcer: (Bell rings) Okay, class! Take your seats! I said, take your seats! Class, sit! Shh! I swear you're all acting like a bunch of animals. (Animal noises from the class.) Pet Life Radio presents, Teacher's Pet. Where you'll learn how to understand and communicate with your pet, and train them to be the best pet they can be. (dog barks) It's time to see the world from your pet's point of view. So, give a tail-wagging welcome to your Teacher's Pet host, Sarah Wilson.

Sarah Wilson: Hello, welcome to Teacher's Pet on Pet Life Radio. This is Sarah Wilson, and today I'm going to take you on a walk with my dog, Pip, and I, and we're going to talk about the ever-popular and hard-to-achieve loose-lead walking! So, we're going to hear from our sponsors and we'll be back to you in just a minute.

Female announcer: (Bell rings) Okay, class! Grab your tuna flakes, biscuits, and bones! Teacher's Pet will be back in two shakes of a tail (dog barks) right after recess. (another dog barks and a horse whinnies)

(Commercial Break)

Male announcer: Let's talk pets - on Pet Life Radio Dot Com!

Female announcer: (bell rings) Okay, class! Hang up your collars and leashes. Teacher's Pet is back in session. Now, park yourselves on the floor. (dogs barking) I said 'park', not 'bark!' Okay, Teacher's Pet, with pet expert and author, Sarah Wilson. Pay attention - there may be a quiz later.

Sarah Wilson: Welcome back to Teacher's Pet, this is Sarah Wilson, and we're on Pet Life Radio. We're about to go out the door, and start on our walk, Pip and I. Now, the thing to remember about walking on a loose lead is that it is completely unnatural for your dog. Dogs do not walk in formation next to each other. They do pay attention to each other's face, and that's how we're going to get loose-lead walking. I do not think about this as a leash exercise, anymore, I think about it as a space exercise. Think of it this way: if we were walking along, and I was yanking you periodically, yanking you on the arm, and telling you, "Targ!" Yanking, TARG! Yanking, TARG! ... How long would it be before you guessed that what I wanted was for you to hop along on one foot? A long time, right? In fact, I might be able to yank you for years, until you targ, and you would never think to hop on one foot. Well, welcome to the world of dogs. How many of you have a dog, or have watched your neighbors walk along and tell their dog, "Heel?" "Heel! Heel!" But the dog doesn't understand what that means, so for years they do it! And what do they say about the dog? They say that the dog is stubborn! No! The dog has no clue! So. You're going to teach this as a space game, and the game is: the space just in front of your nose is mine. I need it. And the only way for a dog to walk in decent position and give you access to the space just in front of their nose is to walk in a nice heel position, approximately at your knee. That makes much more sense to the dog. These games we're going to play make more sense to the dog, they start to understand what you want, and then they start walking in a nice position fairly quickly. I find it much easier for all concerned. Now, you are going to hear wind - we have a beautiful, crystal-clear late-October day here in New Hampshire, and you may hear the leaves and you certainly will hear the wind. We're going to walk down to a local dirt road and I'm going to let Pip have a run and we're going to talk. So, the very first thing I'm going to do before I even open the gate is I'm gonna put my dog on lead and I'm gonna start to remind her to pay attention to my space. I do not let her drag me out the gate. Because my rule is I go nowhere without my dog and if she's dragging me, then we're not together. Here we go.

Sarah Wilson: (In the background, almost) Hey, Pipster. Alright.

Sarah Wilson: So, as I open the gate, I have my hip a little bit in front of her. Whoops, she just started to leave without me, so I gave her a little bump and she hopped back and sat. (to Pip: Oh, you're so good!) Notice, the word is 'bump.' Not 'kick!' (laughing) Kay? We are not harming this dog, we are reminding her, 'don't push through!' (To Pip: Good girl!) So, I'm going to do that again, there, very nice. Now, she's excited this morning, she pulled a little ahead, so I did a right turn. We're walking past our van; I'm gonna do-- (To Pip: Good girl! That was terrific!) I pivoted in front of her and reminded her, 'you need to be in position!' (To Pip: Good. That's really nice. Good job!) She goes, 'I got it. I remember!' So, as we're walking along, my leash is in my left hand, it happens to be draped over a couple of my fingers, she's moving loosely -- Good girl! -- Any time she shifts herself into perfect position, or looks up at me, I'm going to be right there to tell her 'What a good dog! So smart!' Now, as we go along, I'm going to see how much she's paying attention. I stop, I-- Oh, very nice! -- I stopped, and I pivoted in front of her, a little bit like closing a door. At my level, I end up facing across from her, so she's still facing forward and I'm facing across, sort of in a T position. You may end up facing directly in front of her, so you're facing back the way you came. That is sort of the stronger position. So, we're walking along - it's gorgeous out, oh! So pretty. Now, walking on lead is one of those things that people get so frustrated about because the way they've been taught to do it just doesn't help. One of the popular things right now is, 'be a tree.' If your dog pulls, you stop, you don't go forward until the dog notices and comes back to you. Well, I remember, a couple years ago, watching a really wonderful handler and her terrific nine-year-old dog. who's highly trained, lots of titles, and they're walking through my farm and they're being a tree! She stops, the dog stops, immediately comes back, they take about ten steps, the dog pulls ahead, they stop, she immediately comes back, away we go. And I thought to myself a few things. Number one: If that method was gonna work for that team, it would have worked - I dunno - about seven and a half years ago? And, if it doesn't work for this team, what hope do normal people have of doing this? 'Cause this was a really gifted trainer. And, lastly, it reminded me of a dinner I had years back with a bunch of wonderful trainers, who would, I think, present themselves as all-positive -- Good girl! There you are! Good! She just looked up at me, fabulous. -- And around the dinner table they were saying, 'Ya know? There's just no all-positive way to get walking on a loose lead.' Now, I got thinking about that. And I, too, was frustrated with my loose-lead walking techniques. I didn't like all the jerking -- Good girl! I just did a little half-pivot. She stopped and sat and looked up at me, very nice. We're staying in good connection. -- You are so good! Yes, you are! Let's go. -- And it just wasn't seeming to make sense to the dog. So, that's when I started playing all this spacial work. And using that I'm gonna do a little-- whoop, she missed it! I did a little left turn and she was a little distracted. -- There ya go, good girl! Very nice! Now I've got better attention, so we can do half-halts, we can do left turns, you can play Catch My Drift. If she wasn't connected to me in the driveway pretty quickly, I wouldn't leave that driveway until I had her focus. Catch My Drift is a wonderful game for that. Beat The Clock is a wonderful game for that. Don't leave without your dog's brain! And also don't get attached to how far you go. Get attached to how long you're outside. Figure, you're gonna go for a half-hour walk. And if that walk turns out to be games up and down the driveway? So be it! But it's all training. So, don't miss a training opportunity thinking, 'Well, I'm gonna go for exercise, so I'm gonna let my dog drag me around.' No! That is not gonna help you! Especially if you've got a dog who's shy, or reactive. The minute they're out in front, you are no longer on their radar. They are walking you. And the problem with that is that the next thing that comes over the horizon? They're gonna react to. Because they don't know what else to do. I want my dog to look to me when in doubt, not to panic or react on their own. -- Oh, there's my neighbor, Julie. Mornin', Julie! (Laughter) How are you? Yeah. (Laughter) Headed up to the road for a run. Thank you! You, Too! -- So, don't leave without your dog. And if, somewhere along the way, your dog disconnects - reacts to something, gets upset about something - work it there. Work when the problem occurs. Unless, of course, you're so deep into it that you can't get your dog's attention, then move away. But get your dog's brain back. Use games like pre-flight checks. If the runner doesn't work, if the flaps don't work, the pilot doesn't take off. Well, if your dog won't pay attention, if the dog can't stay focused, if the dog is yanking you all over the place, you're not ready for takeoff! You may just taxi up and down the runway for a while until you get this together. Once you have it together, walks become such a pleasure for both of you. Notice how I am not discussing equipment. I really don't care about equipment, except that you use what works for you and your dog, and that you use it on a slack lead. If your lead is constantly tight, then your dog never knows when they're right. And if they don't know when they're right, then they stop trying to be right and they just haul along because why not? It's tight all the time, anyway. The slack in the lead is a big signal to your dog, 'this is what I should be doing.' At least, you want it to be a big signal to your dog. If it isn't, if the tight lead means pay attention and the slack lead means, 'you're off, go play!' Then, your off-lead work is gonna really suffer, because you've trained them, 'slack lead means don't pay attention.' Ah-ah. For me, my lead is slack -- Hi, sweetie! What a good girl! Sorry, I will always interrupt for some fabulous moment with my dog, because you guys can wait and she can't, and that's true for your dogs, too. Good girl! Let's go. If you're in the middle of conversation or doing something, and you notice your dog does something great, notice it! Take that moment! The human being can wait! You can wait! The person on the cell phone can wait. Everybody on the radio can wait. You know who can't wait? Your dog! Never miss an opportunity to say, 'Ah, that was great! That was just what I wanted! You looked at the cat and then looked back at me? You didn't drag me toward the chicken bone? You came back on your own? What a good dog!' Alright, now we're to the dirt road - it's gorgeous. We're gonna come up the hill a little bit, and if nobody is around, we are going to let this little rip off lead for a bit. Now, one of my rules for letting my dogs off-lead is they must listen and respond to some basic commands before. Which means, if she doesn't listen to 'sit' or 'down' or do that instantly, why would I let her off-lead? She's already telling me, 'you don't really matter to me right now. I'm too excited!' Well, too bad! There's nothing out here that's more important than your responsiveness to me. So, if I have to help her, I simply won't let her off until she's able to listen and respond. That's a wonderful reward. And it's a good message. Right? Listening to me earns you everything you want. In this case, freedom. I look down this beautiful pine-lined dirt road, sun is dappling through, and I don't see another living soul! Just the way I like it! Alrighty, let's see how the girl's doing. Pip, down. That's a good girl! Very good! Excellent! Okay. And, off she goes. You notice the tone, there? It's not, "PIP! DOWN!" I remember going to a rally class a couple years ago, in another state, and the head of the school was there, demoing with her dog. And when she gave the dog the down command, she pivoted in front of the dog, raised her arm up fast, and bent down, and snarled. "DOWN! DOWN!" I thought, 'oh my god! That's not how I want to give my dog a command - to threaten it!' And this happened to be a very soft female of a very soft breed. Now, I don't think there's any excuse for doing that, with any breed, myself, but for a soft one are you kidding me? No! Do not threaten your dogs! Commands are not conflict! They are not threats! They're opportunities for connection. That's it. If your dog misses it, you help them. And you say to yourself, Ha! Maybe I need to do more work in XYZ situation. This is the overview. I'm now gonna sign off for a bit, and walk with my dog, and I'm gonna pick up with you in a minute, when we get down to the sand pit, I think. And we'll talk about other things. For right now, I'm just gonna enjoy this glorious Sunday morning. Be right back, you guys are gonna listen to sponsors, and we'll pick up in a minute.

Female announcer: (Bell rings) Okay, class! Grab your tuna flakes, biscuits, and bones! Teacher's Pet will be back in two shakes of a tail (dog barks) right after recess. (another dog barks and a horse whinnies) (sound of door closing)

(commercial break)

Male announcer: Let's talk pets - on Pet Life Radio Dot Com!

Female announcer: (bell rings) Okay, class! Hang up your collars and leashes. Teacher's Pet is back in session. Now, park yourselves on the floor. (dogs barking) I said 'park', not 'bark!' Okay, Teacher's Pet, with pet expert and author, Sarah Wilson. Pay attention - there may be a quiz later.

Sarah Wilson: Alright, All good plans come to an end. We were sitting down by the sand pit, about to talk to you guys, and what comes over the horizon but five dirt bikes and an ATV with guys all decked-out. I got a little nervous. Pip got real nervous. So, she started to spin and bark cause she didn't know what the heck, and they didn't see us at first so they were really zipping around. As soon as they saw us they slowed down and went to the other end of the pit. Which was very nice of them, but then I had a dog whose brain was gone. That can happen from time to time, especially with sensitive dogs. So, the answer to that, was not to allow her to panic, cause that's not helping her, nor was it to console her, or participate in her fear, instead I gave her things to do. Down, sit, back up, do lefts, whatever is necessary to get her brain back. And I got pretty demanding about that, down was down. Not that I was correcting her hard for it in any way, but I was insisting that she do it right away, and guiding her right away. My message to her is, no matter what's going on, the answer lies in looking at me. Paying attention to me, following me. So, as we left the sand pit, and she wanted to watch over her shoulder to see what the bikers were doing, pull forward to get away from it faster, and all of that, I just kept structuring and guiding and she got her head together. Her tail is still down, but now she's awfully -- Now, there the tail goes! Good girl! That's what I like to see! What a good dog! So, it's not that dog trainer's dogs don't have moments, of course they do, it's just we have -- Good girl! We have more ways to deal with those times and more faith in the dealing, that they will work out, that the dogs will settle in, and that faith in it really helps the dogs. So, people are always surprised when they hear. 'Your dog's not perfect?!' Heck no! Pip, come! Good girl! Here come the bikers. Hope they don't go down this road. What I'm doing is putting my dog back on lead, and we're going to turn to see what these guys are gonna do. (motorbike sounds) Go the other way - Good girl! I stopped, she sat, she's looking at me with her ears back, going, 'Ooh, I hope this works.' Let's go. That's a good girl! Oh, so smart! Excellent. I turn and face them, mostly because that's an old horse pattern, see what's comin'! Cause she's gonna bolt and spin anyway. That's a good dog! Excellent! That was so smart. What a good dog. Lots of scratching on the chest here, good girl. Yeah. Excellent. Okay. And off she goes. I took her off lead because they headed back where they came from. Alright! Got that? So, there you go. That's handling a dog through panic. One of the keys - oh, she gave herself a good shake-off, which says to me she's letting go of her anxiety and tail's in a normal position, ears are in a normal position, good. We're over it. For the moment. I wanna talk a little bit more about equipment. One of the trends I see these days is people want equipment that will do the training for them. They don't want to participate in any way, shape, or form with actually using using the equipment to help the dog learn. They just want the dog to hit the end of the lead and turn back to them. The key is of course that any dog is capable of learning to get around almost any piece of equipment. If you don't teach them what it is you want them to do, which is inevitably to turn back to you when they get to the end of the lead, instead of dragging you on the lead. And, somehow, in the current fervor to be more and more humane, which is a good fervor, we have completely abdicated any role in teaching the dogs what to do on lead. This is underlined for me by someone who came to a seminar a few years back. She came in, dog was on a flat collar, I think. And the dog was dragging her, dragging her across the floor. The other teams in the class has been to me before, the dogs were hanging out next to them, sitting, lying down, nobody was dragging. Her dog was dragging left, dragging right, up and down, it was all over the place, and she had one of those two-hand holds on the lead that looks like somebody's waterskiing. They're leaning back and just holding on for dear life. And we got her settled into a corner and clipped into our wall-teather - yay for those. And I looked at her and said, "You know, he could learn to be responsive to leash-pressure so he won't haul you like that." And she said "I won't do anything with the leash." And I said, "Well, you're doing something with the leash whether you mean to or not. If you look at the other dogs in class, notice that they're not dragging on the leads. So, they're not hurting themselves, the same way your dog could potentially hurt himself. He's really hauling." She goes, "Well, I won't do anything. If he does it to himself, that's okay, but I won't participate." And I thought to myself, 'Oh, dear. You are participating, whether you mean to or not. Whether you do it thoughtfully or not. And your dogs trachea doesn't give a rat's behind whether you are morally justified in holding on like an anchor or you're trying to teach them something productive.'  What I remind my class of often is that your dog can feel a fly land on his ear. He can feel the equipment. He doesn't know what to do on the equipment. Or, he's been allowed to drag on the equipment for so long that he reacts to pressure on the equipment the way you react to pressure from your shoes. You ignore it cause it doesn't mean anything to your feet. Right? You just go about your day. So, if you want to change equipment, fabulous -- Good girl! Hey! What a good dog you are! Sorry, she just stopped in a little bit of sunlight and then looked at me, beautifully, and then when I praised her she came back, swung into heel position, beautiful, thank you. So, whatever piece of equipment you decide to put on your dog, use it, but use it in a quiet area and teach your dog when you feel this sensation, very light sensation, I want you to come back to me. So, whether... whatever it is - halter, plastic prong collar, flat collar, martingale, I don't care - what I care about is that you teach your dog to respond to it. And they don't abdicate that responsibility just because you've got some theory base in your head that you won't ever use any sort of correction. If you attach a leash to a piece of equipment on your dog, you are by definition using positive punishment and negative reinforcement combo whether you want to or not. So, let the theory be at home and use it as specifically and as gently and as healthfully to your dog as you can. Don't abdicate your responsibility because you think that's not nice! Like I said before, your dog's trachea doesn't care what you are thinking. It's gonna get injured or strained anyway. And it doesn't help your dog mentally to calm down. Learning to connect to you and stay connected to you during the walk, that teaches your dog to mentally calm down. Then you become a unit. -- Good girl. You are the cutie-est! Very good! Then, you become a unit. You're a team that goes through life together, and isn't why we got dogs? Isn't that why we want dogs in the first place? Not to have to be hauled around by them, and not to have to constantly sit there and do these complex, ineffective things. How do you measure a training method for you? It should work! There you go! There's one measure. It should work. And by work, I mean, it should help your dog understand what you're trying to teach it without creating confusion or pain. Alright, that's something that works. The dog gets more relaxed, and happy, you get more relaxed and happy, and the dog is not confused or hurt in the process. Excellent. If it doesn't work, if your dog never learns, if you've been doing the same thing for two months or six months or, god forbid, six years, try something else. But do not throw your dog's mental and physical welfare on the pyre of theory. Please. And I don't care which theory pyre it is. If it is one of correction of it is one of 'all-positive' - quote, un-quote because there isn't such a thing - whatever it is, get over yourself and do what your dog needs to learn in a relaxed, happy comfortable manner. Boy, it's a busy day on this trail! Here comes the guy to pick up some kind of trash bin. Alright. Well, that's not romantic, this is hardly the romantic, leisurely autumn walk in New Hampshire that I was hoping for. Good girl! So, she saw the truck. She got a little concerned. What'd she do? She turned to me and sat. Perfect! That's what I want! Whenever my dog's worried, I want her to come to me, I  don't want her to take off! So much of training is about safety, and that's a safety thing - 'When in doubt, check in with me, I will help you.'  Alright, so I'm gonna put you on pause for a second while we get past this noisy truck. Alright, we're back on lead and I figured actually we'd use the noisy truck. You can hear it backing up... Good! Very good! I just did a pivot in front of her, she's a little ahead of me, but because she knows this game she came just into position. Alright, I just turned to the right, gave a little pulse on the lead - good, very good! Very nice. And she's falling back into position. Now, one of the things to realize is that her reaction to the motorbikes is gonna stick with us for a bit. Dogs don't fake their emotions. When she looks really frightened, she is really frightened. And she's getting chemical downloads into her system that are going to affect her for a while. Certainly not going to go away in five or ten minutes. So, don't be surprised that, if your dog reacts to something in a big way at the beginning of a walk, that they are jumpier and more reactive for the rest of the walk. That would happen to you, too, by the way. if you came around a corner and there was some man in a bush. And he scared you, even if he wasn't doing anything in particular, but you just didn't see him there and you jumped, you'd be looking at every bush, right? Well, that happens to fearful dogs, too. Even non-fearful dogs. Just, dogs who have been frightened. So, just expect that and know you need to give them more help, and be ready to be of more assistance. Not that they're being difficult. They're not, they're coping with the world as best they can. Oh, here we come, back down our road, what a good girl you are! Down. Oh, she paused halfway. I'm gonna wait here to see if she's gonna go up or down. That's good. So, she decided to relax into it, her pause there was partially due, I'm sure, to her anxiety, so I'm just squatting down next to her and stroking her. Nice, long, slow, firm strokes. Give her a chance to relax a little bit. That was my way of checking in and asking her, 'how are you feeling?' And she just answered, 'oh, I'm still pretty stressed.' And I went, 'Alright, well, let's take a minute here. And relax a little bit.' I have my foot on the lead, so if she starts to get up, she guides herself back down... good... Now, the foot on the lead is not holding her down, by the way, it's slack while she's in the down position but if she were to start to get up it would tighten up a little bit. But, when she-- oh, she started to get up, I was gonna hold this, here. Good, that's good. That's a good girl. Good. Now, she went over on her hip, which is a good sign that she's relaxing a little bit more, so she started to get up, I just when quiet, let the leash do the work, and I was there to praise her when she chose to lay back down. Alright, let's go. Good girl, there you are! Doing better now, huh? Another thought I wanna go over is, never let your dog drag you on lead. That is a rule. And, how many times have I watched clients unwittingly-- you know, the dog wants to go pee near a bush, so the dog hauls on the leash and they follow. What I say to them is, 'What just happened?' and they look at me and they go, "Well, she had to pee!" and I said, "So? What you've just taught her, literally, is that when something is important enough, simply ignore my owner. It's okay to drag." So, if you let your dog drag you to a pee-spot - and frankly I think you're more more important than a pee-spot, this is just my opinion - or drag you over to their best friend, or drag you out the door cause they're excited, you're teaching them that when I am excited I can drag my owner for all I am worth. Another little bit of insanity that's going around the dog-training community, luckily it's not spreading because it's so insane that people recognize the insanity generally, is this theory that it takes two to pull on lead. So, if your dog yanks, your job is to release! Because then they're not pulling you on lead! Of course, they seem to miss the glaring problem that the dog has now been rewarded for yanking on lead by getting freedom, which is a huge plus for most dogs. So, the dogs I've seen who have been "trained" in this way, they rear back and they haul forward like the best clydesdale trying to yank a log free. My goodness! It is incredible. And of course what then has been taught you have to un-teach. And then of course you've created a much bigger problem that you have to fix. Okay, let's review. First, you're not going to let your dog drag you anywhere. Dragging simply teaches the dog that when they are distracted enough, it's okay to dismiss you. No, it's not. There's nothing as important as their connection to you. If they want to go over and sniff something, they can stop, look at the item, look at you, and you can decide whether or not you're going to do that together. Of course you will respond to your dog's requests from time to time. But they have to be polite about it. Next, you're going to work your space games. Especially in the house. If the dog does not respect your space, if your dog pushes you out of the way to get to doors, doesn't get up and get out of your way, tries to shove you aside to get to something on the floor, that needs to be fixed because those things impact your dog's on-leash behavior. So, work on games like Mine - that's in My Smart Puppy: Fun, Effective, and Easy Puppy Training (Book & 60min DVD) - and Mother May I, which is an advanced part of Mine; and The Moving Weight, which is another version of using the Mine cue. All these things build on each other. So, you will see how quickly your dog and you progress once you start teaching foundation behaviors and then using them in various ways. Alright? Then, you start doing preflight checks out on the driveway, playing games: Catch My Drift, Beat The Clock, more Mother May I. Those things will lead to your dog listening to you and respecting you more on leash. What is the cue for good on-leash behavior? The leash! The leash itself is the most obvious cue. Those of you who love flexi-leads, be very careful. Often, what dogs learn on flexies is that 'if I pull hard enough, I will get more leash.' Right? Your dog's walking along, they see something, they start to pull, and you reach down automatically and unlock it cause you think 'well, they just want to go look.' What have you just taught your dog? You've just taught your dog, 'pull like a banshee, cause then I'll get more leash.' No! Walk your dog on a regular leash, when you get to an area that you can exercise them, put them on the flexi, and even then the dog is not allowed to drag. If the dog goes north, you quietly go south. When the dog catches up to you, praise, smile, give a treat if they're interested, and walk again. The dog goes east, quietly go west. Do not start saying their name and patting your leg when you change directions. What does that teach your dog? That teaches your dog, 'don't have to watch me, don't worry about it, cause I'll notify you when I change direction.' No, no, no. It's your dog's job to notice and pay attention. So, if you're going to use a flexi, use it in safe, open areas without a lot of other dogs and people, so nobody else is at risk. I do not like them on sidewalks, I do not like them by the road. I know too many people who have lost their dogs because the dog suddenly lunged towards the road, the flexi wasn't locked, and they get hit. Regular leashes for kids. If adults wanna use retractables, just be aware of it and use it carefully. So, you do your preflight checks. And then, when you have your dog's brain, then you start going for a walk. And along the way you can throw in these little game to remind them and to check in with them but that's how you start to get your dog to think, 'alright, I should stay 1) aware of where my owner is, 2) I should stay near their knee so that my owner can turn the way she tends to turn all the time. Who knows why, but she turns a lot in that direction! She apparently needs and owns that space.' Once your dog understands that, things are gonna be a lot easier. Alright, so now you've got some plans, you've got some things you can do and work on.

If you have questions, email me at and until next time, go out and have fun because every dog can be a teacher's pet, and I'm gonna go out and have fun with mine now.

Female announcer: (Bell rings) School's in session on Pet Life Radio with Teacher's Pet. Learn how to communicate with your pet, train your pet, and see the world from your pet's point of view. (dog barks) You may even learn a few tricks yourself. Teacher's Pet, with pet expert and author, Sarah Wilson. Only on Pet Life Radio Dot Com!

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