Today’s topic is: Getting dragged by your dog in public. Whether it’s in your home on your street or if you’re out in public trying to go places with your dog. So it’s no fun getting dragged by my dogs.
So what I want to do first is to share just a quick story about a client of mine. And then I want to talk about some practical tips about things that you can do, starting today, to be able to get a handle on this situation.
It’s A Problem
So I went with one of my clients to a local pet store where they’ve been going for some time. And each and every time that they go to get their dog groomed, the dog is dragging them into the store. It is difficult for my client because she’s almost lost her balance a couple of times, and it’s just quite embarrassing. Now, the good thing is, the dog is not aggressive in any way, but it’s a problem nonetheless. As soon as the dog is out of the vehicle, it’s making a beeline to the entrance. Now, it’s not a heavy dog, but the dog is quite powerful because it’s low to the ground and can drag them in.
Okay. So the first thing that you want to solve is, do you have the right piece of training equipment? Now, I’ll give you one piece of advice that I see all the time. People might have these powerful dogs on very wide collars. And what I mean is if the collar is about half an inch, one inch, or two inches thick on your dog’s neck, then that’s going to be too broad. So I want to share some tips with you if this is the situation that you’re going through.
What happens is, whenever dogs have a large amount of surface area to pull into, your dog will pull into that. And it’s tough for you to be able to get the type of control where they’re going to walk nicely on a loose leash. It would help if you opted for something a little bit thinner.
Getting A Professional Trainer
This is why getting a professional trainer involved is essential if you’re struggling with this problem. However, if you cut down the size of the width of the collar, then you’re much less likely to get dragged around.
The second tip that we used with my client was when we showed up at the pet store. So you don’t have to go directly into the store the moment you get your dog out of the vehicle. Because a lot of times, the dog has a very positive experience in the store, and they can’t wait to get in there.
The thing to do is to turn around and walk the other way. If your dog is trying to do it now, this may look very awkward in public. But I’ll tell you that if you start doing that to break this habit of your dog dragging you in, it’s going to be one of the better ones. It’s probably more powerful than changing out the collar, which was a tip that I suggested first. So change direction. And when you do that, I’ll give you one little miniature tip associated with that.
Don’t bend your elbow. The moment that your elbow bends, you become much weaker. I would advise you to lock your arm out, and then with your legs, move in the opposite direction of your dog until you get them to start following you.
Calm the Dog Down
Okay, so the third tip that I’m going to share helped us out when we went to this pet store. Unfortunately, my client had one of those fabric mesh crates with a zipper that you would have to undo. And she has a Bulldog. Calm the dog down and get all the equipment on the dog before they get out of the vehicle. So, trying to have a Bulldog calm down as you undo a zipper is not that easy.
I did it, and it took me probably three or four minutes to successfully get the dog. And then I had to catch the Bulldog as he would jump out of the vehicle onto the ground and hurt himself. So getting an excellent plastic kennel in the back of your car, if your car can accommodate, is the third tip.
It just makes it so much easier if you can have your dog behind the door of your kennel. And then you can latch them up and bring them out calmly. The fabric one just made it challenging. But if you have no containment at all, then it’s going to be very difficult.
Okay, so again, let me go over those tips one more time if your dog is pulling you whenever you’re out in public. One – make the width of your collar a little bit more narrow; two – as your dog begins to pull in the direction that you don’t want them to go, they’re pulling too much. Change directions abruptly. Mini tip number two was to lock your elbow as you make that move. And then the third is to have your equipment on with your dog in the crate before they get out of the vehicle if you can accommodate that.