I am a firm believer in "The Walk" as Cesar would put it.  It worked wonderfully with Decker, the Aussie that I rehabbed, and I think that it works well with all dogs, even puppies.  

In the past, I have dog-sat neighbor's and friend's dogs while they went out of town.  And the first thing that I do with them is all of us go for a pack walk.  Since I have never had any altercations with the dogs on my watch, or within my pack, I believe the walk does much more than exercise a dog.

Walking a pack of dogs instantly lets them know where they stand within that pack.  It lets every member know that I am their leader and their defender, and my confidence lets them know that I am not to be crossed.

During this past month, since I have had Chris, we have been going on regular leashed walks.  Even though our area is very safe where cars are concerned, a leashed walk reaffirms me as the packs leader.  They all must walk with me, not in front, as that would be the lead position.  Chris has really blended in and is starting to walk with a slack leash, just what I am after.  She gets very mild corrections, to the side and not backward, if the leash gets tight in my hand.  I am always careful not to jerk her as I could easily give her subluxations in her spine.  I do use a standard flat collar for her, actually she has two, a pink puppy love one and a red tartan, to match our clan.  I alternate collars as she is always playing in the water and getting one of them wet.  I will not move Chris to a stronger collar in the future unless I feel that she really needs it.  But she is a bitable pup, and wants to please, so I am hoping the flat collar is enough for her.

Puppy Love Collar

I cannot stand dogs pulling on a leash.  I think it is disrespectful to the owner.  But many, many times, the owner doesn't know about that disrespect.  There have been tons of times that I have taken someone's dog from them to work them on sheep, and man, my arm is about to come out of it's socket!  So, the sheep lesson gets temporarily halted, and some rules, limits, and boundaries get set first, from me to the dog.  Besides, if I just took the dog, in that emotional state, straining on the leash, gagging, would he even know that I was there in the round pen with him?  Probably not.

So the walks have been pretty good.  Today Christian got a little scared as we passed some noisy geese sounding the predator alarm, but other than that, she has been easy.  And I am very grateful.

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