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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I live in an apartment complex, so when I take Fin out he is always on a leash. I use one of those retractable leashes so I can let him run on the grass. I keep it so that when we are on the sidewalk the leash is short and he's right beside me. When we're on the grass I let him run with the leash long. He does pretty well when walking on the path, but sometimes he starts to pull so much that he's choking himself. I don't want to give in and make him think if he pulls hard I'll let him go, but I also do want him to make himself pass out. Any suggestions? Am I sending him mixed signals by letting him free sometimes and not others?
 

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Good question. First, I would walk Fin on a harness, that way he is not choking himself if pulling, and it's better for his back (Beagles are prone to back problems).
Secondly, teaching him to heel is one of the most important commands he should know (along with Sit, Down, Stay, Come). There are many different methods for teaching heel, one of them is walking with a loose leash, and everytime he stretches it , give a little tag and start walking in the opposite direction. When he walks by you properly, say the command, and praise him (you can also treat and later on reduce the treats to once every few times). He will learn to associate walking beside you with the heel command.

Also, have you considered puppy school and basic obedience class with him?
 

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i'm currently taking snoopy to a trainer that was trained by the dog whisperer, Caesar Milan... and this is what he suggests (and also what i am doing with snoopy and its amazing!!!!!)

he says not to use a harness because it takes a lot longer to teach them! (i plan on moving snoopy to a harness once she is trained to take the pressure off her neck and back)
snoopy is in a collar that is not a choker but it has a chain that slides when she pulls and it makes a noise....
when i started walking her... he basically walked in circles to start... but it works!!!
get your pooch off the retractable leash because it gives them a false sense of freedom (tee hee)...
start by getting Fin to sit beside you every time you STOP walking and when you START walking, the second Fin gets in front of you, tug the leash and change the direction that you are walking...
i did this for WEEKS with snoopy and now i only have to correct her once in awhile and she walks right at my side for the most part...
every time you change direction say this way - it teaches your pooch to WATCH YOU while you're walking which is really important because then they don't just wander off!!
also with this method, they pull LESS and when you tense the leash to go the other direction it actually pulls on the side of their neck and not the esophagus so its not as hard on them. EVERY TIME you stop.. say heal and make Fin sit at your side.
once Fin kinda gets the hang of staying by your side when you walk and sitting beside you when you stop, you can walk in a straight line and tense and lease and pull back anytime Fin gets even a few inches in front of you.
Beagles are used to their masters following them on the hunt, so its hard to train them NOT to... but this method WORKS!!!!
the trick is to be consistent!!!
so give this a try if u want
good luck
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I had a feeling the retractable leash would be giving him a false sense of freedom. I just feel bad because we don't have a yard that he can run around in so I wanted to give him a little slack. He LOVES to run. Now sometimes when I walk him he goes into what I call Puppy Rage where he is completely out of control. Jumping, biting the leash, all that good stuff. This only started happening in the past week or so. I'm guessing he is getting his first taste of testosterone. When he does this I try as hard as I can to stop, make him sit, and calm down. Then we continue the walk. A couple times though I was unable to get him calm so I ended the walk. Is this the right approach?

BTW, I have been watching the Dog Whisperer lately. It really amazes me how Cesar gets some of those dogs to calm down so quick. I bet he edits alot of the leg-work out, but it's quite impressive nonetheless. Do you guys agree with his methods and pack mentality?
 

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I use the Halti, it is working at least he is not pulling. He walks perfectly fine IN FRONT of me all the time leading. Never knew how to train him walking side by side, I thought it is hopeless to do so, I'll certainly will try this walking in circle method. Charlie first puppy training had implemented this method, but I forgot. What about the sniffing, Charlie would all of the sudden pulls me to one side and sniff away. At times he is so subborn he wouldn't leave, head pulls to the ground very insisting. Just for a gopher! He is good at healing and sit at the traffic light provided there is no other dog around.
I only use the retractable leash once at the beach. I want to be the one in control! Walking is already a freedom, freedom of sniffing, watching and hehe freedom of speech....arrrroooo
 

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I think his methods are effective but sometimes I think a lot is edited out. He is big on getting rid of lots of energy so sometimes I wonder if the previously crazy dog that is now calm hasn't spent an hour on the treadmill before filming.
 

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ok yes he is throwing a temper tantrum - they're just like kids.
snoopy does this too when she doesn't get her way.

the key is - don't feel sorry for Fin... you MUST always win those tantrums....
when snoopy throws a tantrum she tries to pull in every direction and bite the leash - be very firm, no biting the leash.. and keep walking in different directions until she heals...
you have to win or else he'll learn that's how he gets his way.
time to show you're the REAL alpha male


i love caesar milan - the guy i take snoopy too is his apprentice... he's like the dog nazi!
while i don't do EVERYTHING or agree with EVERYTHING - their method works wonders!!! i totally believe in it and the pack mentality.
the results speak for themselves
 

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Scout used to bite the leash like crazy. I would stop walking, give her a correction, and wait until she was done biting the leash to continue. She is much better these days about it.
 

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I know that retractible leashes are viewed as a no-no by most people, but we have always used them on our guys (we also live in a condo in an urban setting) and are very careful about when they are locked and when they are loose, and I just don't think they are a bad thing for us - and they are also about the only way I can possibly walk all three at once without getting tied in knots.

And Moose certainly was a challenge to walk when we first adopted him (we used to describe walking him as being quite similar to flying a kite) - but somewhere along the way we realized that he had gone from being hell on paws to actually being the easiest to walk on leash of the three - given that Booker is so stubborn that she has already decided where she wants to go before we leave the apartment and fights the whole way if we don't agree, and Popcorn is so scared that she usually spends most of the walk pulling to go home!
 

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I love Cesar Millan! Using his methods I had Henry trained to walk at heel the first five minutes after I had adopted him using a little rinky dink shelter slip leash. The real trick is to never let your dog start pulling and accept only a loose leash. Once a dog leans into the leash and tugs with no correction you're in for more time and work. I took him to petsmart immediately afterwards and he behaved wonderfully. I walk Henry with a choke chain and a leather leash, but occasionally I will walk him with a flexi leash. He still has to heel beside me and only gets freedom when I allow it. I could have phased out the choke chain months ago, but Henry's used to it and wears it respectfully. I rarely have to correct him, so the chain is always loose, and the chain is a security blanket for me in case he tries to bolt, since he can very easily slip a regular collar. I have used chains on many, many dogs with excellent results. It can be a very cruel tool in the wrong hands, however, and you really must educate yourself on its proper application. Always practice being calm and assertive and you'll see results!
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thanks for all your suggestions. I tried them over the weekend. I've been walking Fin on a regular 6 foot leash. I tried the harness, but it didn't work out too well. I've been getting alot more success with a regular collar. The walking and changing direction method seems to be working well. Most of the time he walks great and I don't have to correct him too much, but sometimes he is so out of control I can't calm him down. When that happens what should I do? I've been ending the walk if he won't listen at all. Is that the right approach?
 

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What harness did you chose? That can make a big difference in the result. A regular flat harness is not going to help with pulling, it fact it will make it easier. There are two types of harnesses that are supposed to help stop pulling, the Gentle Leader harness that has you attach the leash to the front of the chest so that when the dog pulls, it turns them back towards you (similar to turning and walking the opposite way) and the Sporn harness - http://www.sporn.com/product_info.php?products_id=28

I have tried both. The gentle leader is a good harness, I could just never get it properly fitted on my dogs and when it turned them around and they fought against it, they pulled the harness right off. I have had much more success with the Sporn. An added benefit is that the straps are fleece lined so no rub marks under their arms.

As far as when he throws a tantrum, I would do what you are doing, stop the walk. a) it's a consequence to his action and
it takes away some of your frustration at fighting to continue to just end it and try again later.

Side note: I have also tried the gentle leader/halti head harness. It works great with the lab, the beagle spent the entire walk rolling on people's lawns trying to get the harness off
 

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Originally Posted By: Ryan79 sometimes he is so out of control I can't calm him down. When that happens what should I do? I've been ending the walk if he won't listen at all. Is that the right approach?
You can also stop, get him to down position and only when he calms down, praise him and continue the walk.

The gentle leader is a good idea, I've never tried that on Chloe though, as she is so petite, and quite frankly I don't know how it would work on a Beagle.
 
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