Introduction to Walk Like a Champ3 minute read
If you have a dog that really struggles with the leash - one that always pulls ahead, one that always darts left and right to sniff something, one that yanks you toward every dog you walk by - teaching her to walk calmly by your side with no tension on the leash is...well, it's hard.
We know we're supposed to say things like:
"21-Days to Stress Free Walks!" (there's always some magic number of days isn't there?)
"How To Train Your Dog to Walk Perfectly! This is all you have to do!" (narrator: that wasn't all he had to do)
"How To Teach Your Dog Not To Pull On The Leash, EVER!" (Can I get false promises for 400 Alex?)
We've watched, read, and bought more of these programs than we can count and if even just one of them worked for us you probably wouldn't be reading this right now.
So teaching great loose-leash walking skills is hard but (c'mon, you knew there was a "but" coming) with the right plan and daily practice, you can make huge improvements in a short amount of time.
We know you're ready to put in the work, otherwise you wouldn't be here, so the important thing is to make sure you're working on the right plan, and that's where "Walk Like a Champ" comes in.
Unlike all those programs and courses we had to suffer through before we figured out what worked, "Walk Like a Champ" doesn't try to pretend that everything is simple and easy or that what works for one dog will automatically work with your dog.
No, Walk Like a Champ is different because it teaches you to think for yourself.
First, it gives you a an easy-to-remember framework - Attention, Position, Moving, and Distractions. This framework is your guide. Anytime you're struggling with loose-leash walking you'll use this framework to diagnose the issue. Is my pup not paying attention to me? Does my pup not like being in position by my side? Are we struggling to move together? Are we great in the backyard but once we take it out in the real world with distractions we struggle?
Second, it gives you tools, shows you examples, and teaches you important concepts so you can easily adapt your training sessions to your specific needs. Instead of saying "play this game and your dog will be perfect" we say, "here's a tool that usually works in this situation" and "here's a game that helps dogs that struggle with x." From there, you can mix and match tools with training to reach your desired outcomes.
Some of these games won't be useful to your situation. Some of them won't seem useful but in fact will end up being very useful, (just like the Karate Kid waxing cars and painting fences), and some will give you such immediate results they'll instantly become your favorite games.
We don't know which ones are which for you. The only way to know that is to follow the course and play the games.
What Your Pup Will Learn
- To give you attention when she wants something
- The value of automatically standing at your side when she has nowhere else to be
- How to move with you and stop with you
- A cue that means come close to my side
- To ignore distractions
What You Will Learn
- The elements of great loose-leash walking
- Ways to get your pup's attention even when there's a distraction
- How to train an informal heeling behavior
- How to teach your pup to slow down, walk by your side, and stop when you stop
- The most helpful cues for managing a walk including "leave it," "side," and "go see."
- How to minimize reactions to the toughest distractions including other dogs