Hiking was a disaster! - Golden Retrievers : Golden Retriever Dog Forums
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-05-2013, 05:40 PM Thread Starter
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Hiking was a disaster!

Since we've been going to a trainer for my male dog, Diego, I've learned a lot on how to train him to not pull on the leash, and stay calm when other dogs approach. She also said he needed to get more experience, and noticed he really liked roaming through the woods. She suggested to take him hiking with a long lead and just let him go where he wants, so that's what we did. We also took our other dog with us. She's very behaved, but makes Diego not listen well. So that was a big mistake on bringing her along. I also realized that long leads love to get tangled between trees! I've got a headache from all of it, but I know they really enjoyed themselves. I'm going to ask my dog trainer if it would be better to find a fenced in area where we don't have to worry about him pulling my arm out (even on a 20 foot lead!)and free from other dogs. Our training is more for at home, I need to slowly build him up to places such as the park and other new areas. I guess this is more of a rant, but thanks to anyone who understands and read my post. Any tips on dealing with a dog that pulls on the leash? I never trained Diego, I was a little kid, but now that I'm older I am realizing he's been poorly trained. I wish I could take him to new places, but it's really hard to. He's already 7 years old, and I'm hoping I won't have to spend the rest of his life time training him. I know it's possible to train him, but while in the middle of it I find it hard to believe. Has anybody else had this feeling?

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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-05-2013, 09:47 PM
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Practice, practice, practice with him learning to not pull.

For me long leash and pulling equals nothing good.

Buddy can be walked not in long +100 leash not but when if first got him a year ago forget it my arm was almost dislocated by him while doing training on recall in the backyard.

Best of luck to you!

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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-05-2013, 09:56 PM
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I never use a long lead on my dogs until they are 100% solid at loose leash walking. Actually with Ky I din't use a long lead for 2 years. I think it's counter productive when you're trying to teach them.
At this point I will take Ky to the county park in the winter on a 100 ft lead but she knows that when she's on her 6 ft lead there's no messing around.
Bentley won't be on a long lead for at minimum another year.
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-05-2013, 11:12 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by MikaTallulah View Post
Practice, practice, practice with him learning to not pull.

For me long leash and pulling equals nothing good.

Buddy can be walked not in long +100 leash not but when if first got him a year ago forget it my arm was almost dislocated by him while doing training on recall in the backyard.

Best of luck to you!
I asked my dog trainer, and she told me it was okay (as long as he was wearing his SENSE-ible harness) since I'm far enough from him so he can't use me physically as he does in close contact to get his way. BIG relief! I felt like I had just totally ruined his training. It makes a lot of sense. Because when he's next to me and I take a step forward, he just goes to the end of the leash instead of staying in a heel, waiting for me. I am going to practice a lot more with him before we go back. More on the exercises she gave me and the come command. Which, he surprised me a little, whenever I said come in a really high pitched voice he turned his butt around and came. Although, once he came he would head off in another direction. Hehe... we're working on it.

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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-05-2013, 11:19 PM Thread Starter
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I never use a long lead on my dogs until they are 100% solid at loose leash walking. Actually with Ky I din't use a long lead for 2 years. I think it's counter productive when you're trying to teach them.
At this point I will take Ky to the county park in the winter on a 100 ft lead but she knows that when she's on her 6 ft lead there's no messing around.
Bentley won't be on a long lead for at minimum another year.
I think so too. When I attached the long lead to him and said, "ok" he bolted off like a crazy maniac. What's really funny is my dog trainer says my dog acts like he has ADD. Both my dogs are total opposites. Ginger could be off leash and will 100% come back, and Diego will probably never be able to. He doesn't have doggy manners, pulls, etc. But I'm going to whip him in shape. I'm so glad I took him to a trainer...

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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-05-2013, 11:21 PM
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I hate to mentiion it but training is a life long thing if you want well mannered dogs. My 11 year old Golden girl still gets regular training. Of course for her the focus is different than for my other dogs. Training with a dog of any age improves your bond and relationship with your dog. So why not make it fun and enjoy it!?



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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-05-2013, 11:23 PM
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We use a 25-30' leash with Ben and it's amazing how quickly he learned not to get tangled in the trees. He'll go in and out the same way about 90% of the time.

Loose leash walking is hard when hiking because it's such a high excitement place, with so many new scents. I find that Ben is pretty good in places he's been before, but in a new location he forgets entirely that he's supposed to pay attention to us. We often use the prong collar when we are in new places, because it's the only way he'll pay attention at all. If not, he'll pull our arms off, and it can be dangerous when we're in rocky areas or steep ones when he pulls hard. He will usually come when called, because he knows that we will treat him and let him go back out again, but if there is a squirrel, deer, bike, etc. forget it.
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-05-2013, 11:29 PM Thread Starter
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We use a 25-30' leash with Ben and it's amazing how quickly he learned not to get tangled in the trees. He'll go in and out the same way about 90% of the time.

Loose leash walking is hard when hiking because it's such a high excitement place, with so many new scents. I find that Ben is pretty good in places he's been before, but in a new location he forgets entirely that he's supposed to pay attention to us. We often use the prong collar when we are in new places, because it's the only way he'll pay attention at all. If not, he'll pull our arms off, and it can be dangerous when we're in rocky areas or steep ones when he pulls hard. He will usually come when called, because he knows that we will treat him and let him go back out again, but if there is a squirrel, deer, bike, etc. forget it.
Wow, wish my dogs new how to untangle themselves! And yes, it scared me a little how steep this nature trail got. I had to call Diego back to me because I knew if he kept going so far it would be hard on his joints to get back up. I don't want to think about encountering a deer... if he saw one I would have to either let go of the leash or hold on for my life. I have found too that if I let him go back to what he was doing he tends to enjoy coming back to me more.

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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-05-2013, 11:33 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by BayBeams View Post
I hate to mentiion it but training is a life long thing if you want well mannered dogs. My 11 year old Golden girl still gets regular training. Of course for her the focus is different than for my other dogs. Training with a dog of any age improves your bond and relationship with your dog. So why not make it fun and enjoy it!?
Oh yes, I know. I really do enjoy our training sessions. Learning all I can about dogs and training them is something I truly love. And being a teenager, it's really going to help in the future when I adopt and raise my own. But sometimes when I'm in the middle of training and it's difficult, I get really stressed by it. My trainer uses positive reinforcement, so she's always telling me to calm down, don't stress, stay happy, etc. Hehe, she's a realllly great trainer.

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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-06-2013, 01:23 PM
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Casper has the most terrible time on trails. They are like tunnels that he has to shoot through. In our area, trails are typically through dense forest and underbrush, so they are really like tunnels. The people scents go in a straight line, and usually uphill!

If the dog bounces off the end of a long line, then I'd argue the long line isn't much use. In fact, it's more dangerous because it lets the dog get going fast and then bam he hits the end of the leash. Try a shorter long line perhaps?

Some dogs can learn to not get wrapped around trees and poles. Casper is our only one so far, but also the first where we've tried. We have a command, Wrong Way, and that let's him know to go to the other side of the tree. He also knows Back Up to get untangled.

For steep hills and stairs, I've taught Casper to sit and stay at the top. Then I release him, but keep his attention. Then I get him to stop again as needed while going downhill. He has a Stop command, where he stops and sits. If I stop him every few steps, they he can't build up speed.

So, no, we don't go leisurely hiking off into the woods quite yet. Maybe next summer. I ran into a guy hiking with a golden a couple of years ago. That dog was hiking along perfectly. He said the dog was five and it had taken her that long to be really good at hiking.

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