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Learning to walk on a leash

December 5, 2011

Taking a break on leash

In Germany we did not walk much on the leash and when we did it was usually wide open spaces outside or in a store or restaurant where there was nowhere to go.  Here in our new home, we were on our leashes all the time and there were tangle problems all over the place!  Our first week of walking on a leash was such a challenge and it had nothing to do with not knowing how to heal.  The roads were narrow and many had no sidewalks, Katie and I kept switching sides or taking off after squirrels and chipmunk and then wrapping ourselves around a tree or mailbox, it was a real problem so we had to start learning to walk on a leash properly.

Nice fat squirrel

Our first goal was to each have our own side.  With mom being right handed and Katie weighing twice what I do, she got the stronger right side and I got the left.  We learned our “side” commands in German.  We understand both German and English and mom often uses both languages with us which helps since other US dogs don’t have a clue what we are doing.  Once we got our sides mastered we had to learn not to “tree” mom or drag her down the street every time a critter crossed our path which was almost constant.  This took more work and honestly, every now and then to this day we will take off and drag mom along if the situation deems it worthy!  The last piece to the leash puzzle was not to wrap ourselves around objects.  Mom started using the obstacle command and I caught on quickly and even realized it sometimes required me to backtrack.  After a couple weeks we had the walking down and it had become our new norm.

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