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stop pulling!

(16 Posts)
bigbootsandshoes Fri 03-Jun-16 17:54:14

We have a beagley type rescue dog. Her recall is Shyte so can no longer let her off lead. We've hired private fields to let her have a good run which she loves though.

I used to do canicross but can't anymore due to knee injury. She was GREAT at this.

But I cannot walk her now.

I've bought a halti harness, tried her in a head collar... Just tried to take her out with me on my bike. She just bloody pulls all the time. Then yips at squirrels etc. So not just pulling but highly reactive, lunging and barking. I wear a running belt that she can be attached to to spread the weight but it really bloody hurts.

I can feel myself getting hot and angry.

My other dog is fine and normal.

Today I just want to give up. I dread walking her. My husband is ok but he's bigger and stronger.

Wtf do I do now?

Greyhorses Fri 03-Jun-16 18:15:15

I have the same issue.

The only soloution we have found is to literally go back to basics like you would a puppy with lead walking and also doing lots of desensitisation type stuff for reactivity. It's slow going though.

Have you tried a dogmatic headcollar? Expensive but worth it as mine hasn't budged despite dog doing backflips in the air most of the time. I use mine with 2 anchor points so one lead on the collar to walk most of the time and only using the dogmatic when she is being an idiot.

It is a massive pain though.

bigbootsandshoes Fri 03-Jun-16 22:14:53

Thankyou. I've googled that dogmatic head collar. Looks like it could be good, but I'm worried she just will collapse in a heap, not move and try and pull it off over her nose confused

Dh has said he'll take over all dog walks for the time being just to take the pressure off. He doesn't get so wound up.

Although maybe I do need to do some individual training with her (have done some workshops) as dh takes her each week at the moment.

1frenchfoodie Sat 04-Jun-16 19:00:34

We use a 'figure of 8' with a normal rope lead to good effect on a 5 month old labx we are in the process of training to heel. You put lead on as normal then pull loop larger below her neck, twist once and then pull the extra loop up over her nose. As far as I can see it works by pulling the dogs nose down if they strain on the lead so they learn to self regulate.

The bonus is that as the retraining greyhorses mentions takes effect you can use the 'figure of 8' only when her behaviour is problematic. And if she doesnt take to it you haven't spent much. I worked at a country show stall it was being demonstrated at and it works really well for most dogs. Some try to slip the second loop by rubbing their nose on the ground but a shorter lead stops this. I have to say the dogs in question, and even our pup, sound less reactive than your dog but it it worth a try.

BusyNothings Sat 04-Jun-16 19:20:39

We have two beagles and they are the most stubborn creatures ever. Both myself and dh have had difficult dogs all our life but this is different.

We went back to basics, walking behind us, not pulling, if they pulled or ran ahead we sat and waited. Lots of treats when do the tiniest things right.

Beagles are very intelligent and love to be trained. Have you tried click training with lots of treats? It's taken us two years of fully consistent training, lots of tears and frustration but we are getting there =]

Have you tried joining a beagles forum? Like beagles uk on Facebook? Lots of fab advice from people with lots of experience.

Good luck!

bigbootsandshoes Sat 04-Jun-16 19:55:54

Thankyou. She's a real mix of breeds (rescue) but behaves like a beagle (and has the ears smile) and she has many of those traits.

I think I do need to spend time training her alone. She sees her buddy zooming off having a fine time off lead and she wants to be a part of it. I need to give her a chance to succeed.

Thankyou for the tips. Much appreciated.

bigbootsandshoes Sat 04-Jun-16 19:57:26

The figure of 8 sounds very like the halti head collar I tried. I think it might have been too big for her. She just wouldn't walk and tried to push it off her nose.

1frenchfoodie Sat 04-Jun-16 20:05:04

N.b there is no sizing with the 'figure of 8' done with a rope lead - you pull the loop to go over the dogs nose and then it pulls to the right size through the lead part. I did google to see if I could find link to the method and saw leads described as figure of 8 with sizes but they do not have the advantages of doing it yourself. But there is no guarantees she'd not refuse to walk - if you can borrow a rope lead from a friend it may be worth a go.

Agree on training alone. Our pup gets walked with our old lab but gets separate training session too.

bigbootsandshoes Sat 04-Jun-16 20:24:28

Thankyou. We have a rope lead, so I could give it a go.

Millymollymoo9 Mon 06-Jun-16 12:22:23

Hi, Not sure why/how it really works but I had the same problem with a very boisterous Lab puppy. Tried dogmatic/halti slipped over his nose. had no luck really he sat + sulked! Tried a friends Gencon all in1 and it worked! Watched a few videos on youtube with tips etc from dog trainers and happily for me and my 5 year old son we now have a non pulling fully grown lab!

not sure if he just outgrew the pulling but I now make sure he has it on when out and about. He's a big boy so would be a pain if still pulling, we live near the beach and its etiquette for them to be on leads on the beach so and he now walks by my side with a pushchair and 2 children and doesnt pull us all off course!

Good luck!

littlemonkey5 Mon 06-Jun-16 14:43:50

I used to run a pet stall and my biggest seller was the Ancol Non-Pull Padded Harness. The reason it was my biggest seller was because it worked on the worst of dogs.

We had 2 large wolfhounds (they were massive!!) and pulled like a train. I fitted them with a harness each and the owners paid and went on their way. I always said that if it didn't work, come back same day for a refund. Well, these people did come back - to give a thumbs up and me a hug to say thank you as they had managed to walk their dogs for the first time without their arms breaking!!

You do have to make sure the harness is snug all the way round the body as it works on the pressure plate system and if it is too loose, it is useless and the dog can pull against it which is pointless!

HTH (and no, I don't work for Ancol, I just know this works!).

bigbootsandshoes Mon 06-Jun-16 19:51:25

Thankyou. Off to do some more googling! smile

bigbootsandshoes Wed 08-Jun-16 14:45:27


I haven't walked the dogs since I had my horrible day on Friday. My husband has been walking them instead. But I have the day off and thought I'd have a training session/walk.

I actually do have the gencon head collar - not halti as I'd thought. And it's one size. I thought it'd be too big for her, but it's like the figure of 8 things, so just alters to their head. Anyway....

I used the halti harness but spent some time really adjusting it and fitting it again. Used a double ended lead (clipped to chest and back)

This was good, but when I got to the woods and let good dog off lead, I actually used the gencon head collar on devil dog too. Lots of praise and patience. Stop start and made sure she knew if she walked properly she'd be more comfortable.

This was really good, and she got the hang of loose lead walking, however it took both my hands.

When dog 2 needed to go back on lead, i took the headcollar off devil dog. Both walked really nicely.

When I then let dog 2 off again devil dog was so much calmer I didn't need the headcollar. Loads of treats and praise but it looked as if she had the hang of it. Pulling = being uncomfortable and getting nowhere. Loose lead = comfort, praise, treats and relaxed walk.

Thankyou for all your advice. I hope it helps others too.


LilCamper Wed 08-Jun-16 18:36:50

Get a dog games perfect fit harness, a double ended lead and Google 300 peck.

bigbootsandshoes Wed 08-Jun-16 18:45:09

I have the dog games harness without the front clip. I fashioned a front clip which was why I bought the halti.

bigbootsandshoes Wed 08-Jun-16 18:45:55

Just googling 300 peck methods though... Never heard of it!

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