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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This week we are watching my brother's Golden Retriever. I cannot believe how easy he is to walk - perfect heeler - sigh!

I constantly struggle with how structured my beagle's walks should be. Each night, we take about a 30-45 minute walk. It's more of a meander since I let him stop and sniff at various points along the way. I do not always let him stop when he wants, but he does get plenty of opportunities. On the weekends when I have a lot more time (and honestly, patience!) our walks are more structured with more of a focus on heeling.

So I guess my question is - how structured are your walks?
 

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When I take Hunter and Casey I try very hard to make it structured. I will let them stop and sniff, but not when they want to. Problem is when my husband takes them they get away with whatever they want, and this confuses them, and makes me the bad guy Hunter is very good with healing and Casey will think about it first.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
oh, the husband is another issue as well - NO structure! But I do the majority of the walking so if he wants to suffer through the constant stops, its his problem - LOL.
 

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We do a combination of things during our walks. We too allow Bodie to stop and smell the roses. But we are also training him to heel and not pull. So we do both on our walks.

On the loose leash he can more or less do as he pleases. If I feel he's farting around too long I'll say Let's Go and we move on. My wife is the walk Nazi, she doesn't give him a lot of time to meander. She likes to keep him moving.

We try and read Bodie to see where his mindset is. For instance, we don't try to work on heel if he's beagling or clearly distracted with a scent. When it is time to work on heel I shorten the leash considerably, place him on my left and we work on him walking side-by-side.

It's been a long process but in the long run we hope to have a good little walker.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
thanks Brien - I think I'm doing the same kind of thing as you. I'm going to start making a more concerted effort to work on the heeling - obviously he's got the beagling part down pat! Believe it or not, walking him with the golden has made a tremendous difference - he likes to walk right beside him! So we're using this week as an intense training session for him!
 

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Oh geez, walks are a battle with Coco. He is usually all over the place when I walk him with someone else. When it's just him & I he does okay but he tends to pull alot. It's gotten better now that I walk/run with him.
 

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Jersey is given a lot of freedom on walks. We worked on heel for about a year and never got it down 100% so as long as my shoulder isn't being dislocated, I let her sniff. She's much better with me and Mike than she is with my Aunt. My Aunt can't walk her at all without being pulled down the street.
 

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I find our walks are more structured when we just take one at a time - with four any attempt at structure basically goes down the drain and we just try to keep it from becoming a fiasco (not always successfully)!

Popcorn is an amazing natural heeler - she sticks right to your calf (even brushing against it with her whiskers as she walks) - as long as she is off leash. Once she is leashed she starts to circle around like the crazed neurotic dog she is - wrapping the leash around me in the process and making forward progress difficult. She isn't a dawdler, though - she is too scared to ever stop and become an easy target for whatever things are out there ready to kill her at any moment...

Moose and Buzz are both quite good alone on walks. Buzz does pick up every piece of garbage (and poop - sigh) he encounters on his walk, but he will drop it when told to do so (unless it is a really tasty poop chaw - double sigh) and he doesn't dawdle. Moosie can be a bit challenging because he tries to protect me from other dogs - but for the most part he isn't a dawdler either and as long as there are not too many other dogs along the way a Moosie walk can be quite enjoyable.

Then there is Booker - she is the master of dawdling and if I try to pull her away from something she wants to sniff (just telling her to come is a complete non-starter) she hunkers down and lowers her centre of gravity so she is absolutely impossible to move. And she ALWAYS has an agenda when she is out on a walk. If I am not going in the direction she wants (what she wants is usually towards a pet store or, depending on her mood and the weather, perhaps the park), she walks like she is every one of her 12 years, and then some. But just a simple change in direction towards where she wants to go and suddenly she is a puppy again - tail up and almost running down the street. What a character - she sure is frustrating but I love her for it!
 

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Depends what you mean by heeling!


To me, heeling is having the dog at your left heel in formal positive, looking up at you with 110% focus... like you see in obedience. I work on this type of heeling during training, not so much on walks... although I do give Daisy a 'look' or 'heel' command when we are out walking just like any other command, and I expect her to come to my heel and walk in formal position.

On walks I don't care if she walks at heel or not - we're not training, and it would be unreasonable to ask a dog to heel properly for an entire walk. I do teach my dogs to walk on a loose leash though, which IMO, is different to heeling.
 

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wow! when i walk my dogs they never lift their nose off the ground. no amount of anything i do has any effect. they still pull, even with the halti, just not as hard as they did before.
 

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Originally Posted By: cheezyridrwow! when i walk my dogs they never lift their nose off the ground. no amount of anything i do has any effect. they still pull, even with the halti, just not as hard as they did before.
Beagles are very much 'what's in it for me?' dogs. To get them to focus on you instead of scenting can take a lot of work, as often scenting is the highest value exercise for a beagle! I'm doing a lot of work to make Daisy see me as more exciting than the smells on the ground, we are slowly making progress


I don't mind if she scents when we are on a walk, just as long as she isn't pulling and focuses on me and obeys me when I ask her to.
 

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Charlie gotten little better so he is off with the Halti. He is with harness. Yes, he still pull hard. I found it helpful if I come to a complete stop abruptly and jerk the leash at the same time saying no pull Charlie. He starts walking slower, and pick up speed again. I'll do it again and again. That tells you they all pull on leash...
I missed my Marlin(black retriever) who passed on. He walked perfectly.
 

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Yes, our walks are very structured. That was the first thing I taught Henry, literally as soon as we stepped out of the shelter. I slipped the little lead up his neck and taught him to heel pretty well, head up, loose but shortened leash, and no sniffing. He does it very well, and even when I don't give the command, he'll hang by my side until I tell him okay. Before I let him sniff or wander (he gets sniffing breaks), I'll make him sit, then count a few seconds in my head before I say, Okay, good boy and he's free. This was really important to me because I adopted Henry to be not only my companion, but my exercise buddy. I've been a runner and cyclist for most of my life, so after he had perfected heeling we stepped it up to jogging and running. Now he heels beside my mountain bike on trails, and beside my rollerblades at the park. It's nice, I'll admit. And it makes him much easier to control if he gets excited.
 

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I notice that when ever I leash macho by his neck collar during our walks he will be pulling me agressively. But when I leash him to those collar than can be place on a dog's body he doesn't pull much, and I find it easier to controll him during our walks.
 

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I've been working very hard with our two because generally I walk them by myself. I like to walk them as soon as I get home from work and my hubby isn't home yet. I've found that Daisy loves to move briskly and will pull much less if I do that. Which actually is good because then I get better exercise.
I walk our two on an easy walk harness which also seems to help. I don't really ask them to heel so much but I do expect them to walk with me. I let them move out and a little in front of my some times, but generally I try to keep them level with me. If I decide to job though I'll give them all the leash they want and they just move along with me pretty well. Rocky has gotten GREAT at staying fairly level with me, even if he moves out away from me. Daisy is getting better. Of course this is all if they don't see another dog LOL.

I've also started taking small pieces of their food with me as a treat. I'm working on getting them to stop and sit when I stop, regardless of if they're walking right next to me or a little ways away. I'll say something like wait to get their attention and then start slowing down. By now they know that when mom does that they're going to get a treat. So they slow down also and sit when I stop (for the most part). It's so funny because Rocky will sometimes just trot along staring at me and not watching where he's going because he's waiting for his treat. LOL!

It just takes time, patience, consistency, and sometimes a little bribery.
 

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Roscoe gave us a run for our money when he was a little pup. It took him over a year (maybe a year and a half) to learn how to walk nicely on a leash. Now, when I take him by himself or with the other two, he walks very nicely, listens and waits when I say wait.

Cole, who isn't even a year yet, is still a little nut on walks, he is very scent driven and still pulling. We are working, just like we did with Roscoe, we know it takes time! We did just get a split lead and that seems to be helping. We put Roscoe and Cole together on it since they walk more quickly and don't stop too often.

Gino, being six years old and half basset, is a stubborn little bugger. We've had him for only a month now and he is ok if I take him out alone or if the hubby comes along. Gino likes to stop and smell the same rose for such a long time! Unfortunately, during the week, I take all three of them for their morning walk and I have Roscoe and Cole wanting to walk briskly and Gino trying to put on the brakes. It is a balance I am trying my best to work out!
 
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