"Heel Close!" My beloved dog is doing my nut

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    Now I’m aware that Rafe and I have had a few weeks without Auntie Bev’s training, and I’m also aware that I know how this problem should eventually be solved… HOWEVER

    HE’S DOING MY NUT!!!!!  :help:

    Rafe has a tendency to… well, it started out as dragging, improved to pulling, then improved under a lot of work to just walking 3 feet in front of me.  This, as far as I’m concerned, is not heel.  And it’s certainly not close.

    Had a couple of Bev sessions and decided we needed to do some homework. Cue some of the most frustrating “walks” of his life.  Last week we managed to get to the bottom of the (short) road in only 45 minutes.  Yesterday it took us an hour to get to the (10 mins away) playing field, and at one point we were walking further backwards than forwards.

    I’ve got to stress he’s not pulling, and I’ve no intention of getting a choke chain – I’ve tried it, any pulling at all and he’ll pull back, he could pull me over with a choke on, yes he’d be coughing, but he’d still manage it.  So we try Bev’s way – which IS the right way, I can see that, it’s just that Rafe’s such a bugger and it’s SOOOO FRUSTRATING!!!!  He just wants to walk faster, then faster, and be a little further ahead, then a little more, until he is pulling, and by doG can he pull.

    So I’m having a whinge and a moan because he’s so damned clever that it’s hard to stay ahead of the game with him, and I know it’s a long road ahead because I’ve reinforced his behaviour by letting him carry on on the walk, because if he doesn’t get a run around he climbs the walls at home!!!!!

    If ANY of you have had this problem (I’m sure there must be some) all I want is some comfort in knowing you did, eventually, fix it!!  Moral support time!

    p.s. ironically, he’s fine fine fine heeling off lead, but you can’t do that on roads, and yes I’ve tried with lead round my body… remember he’s a brainy boy.  He reads ME like a book.  Little sod.




    But once you know what to do – the worst bit is the time it takes to sort it – I have personal experience of being Bev’d so I know what I’m saying  ;D

    You just have to stick at it…  I know what you mean about being frustrating but well done for making the start  ;D


    ;D Yep just keep at it. Heel or walking on a loose lead as I call it is THE most frustrating thing for owner and dog!(but once you get there it is the most rewarding ;))  At our training classes its the number one issue the majority of people have! So no you are not alone! There are ‘quick fixes’ such as gental leader, or preferably GenCon- but it really is best to stick with flat collar and lead and LOTS of patience!! Do you use a clicker? Might help him to to pick it up quicker as it lets him know he is has done the right behaviour?


    Yep, do use a clicker, but have only used it sparingly on walks, as when I first introduced it on walks I must have somehow conveyed to him that he had to walk to heel until I clicked, at which point he’d rush forward again, so I’d end up going  “heel”, *click*, *rush forward* “No!!”.  So I stopped with the clicker for a while.  TBH it’s more of a treat for him to be moving forwards than to receive a treat, so we’re going for the stopping him from going forwards each time he moves ahead, with me telling him we’d get there so much sooner if he walked by my side!!

    The main problem with the clicker, and with the walk, is that because for him the going forwards is the greatest reward he can get, if I deny him treats, it’s no great shakes.  He knows what I want him to do, it’s just that that, in his opinion, isn’t going to get him to the field quickly enough.  I know eventually he’ll figure out that we ain’t going anywhere fast with him in front, and even now he’ll creep ahead and then check himself, but if I’m still moving forwards you can see the cogs going *hmm, she’s still moving, I can get away with this*.

    I just find myself avoiding walks where he’s on lead as I know I can’t just ignore it, I have to be persistent.  NIGHTMARE if anyone else is around tho; parents, boyfriend, none show any kind of support as they just want me to hurry up and catch up with them, but Rafe is going mad because he wants to be with them, which makes it 10 times worse and blah blah blah  it’s hard!!

    I’m Not Enjoying Walks On Lead at the moment!!

    But thanks for support as need it much!!


    We’ve been working on heel for a year and a half now……….ummmm, it’s getting there is about as much as I can say  😀    One thing I wish I had done was to teach heel off-lead before we started on-lead.  Sadie sounds very similar to Rafe . Anyway hang in there, apparently it takes a long time with dogs that know where they’re going and know what they’d rather be doing  :canadian:


    your gonna hate me but – Honey does perfect off lead heel and perfect on lead heel – she also does a damn good close on and off lead…hate me yet?  ;D

    Smiling now?  ;D You will get there you just got to keep at it – post your progress here so in a few months you can look back and think yeah we did it  :-*  :-*


    Keep going hun  😉 Is is Mark that did LOADS of work on this and had great results?


    Cheers!  ;D Will defo come back in a few months (or hopefully weeks!) to see what progress we’ve made.

    Made it to the post office and back yesterday, only turning around about 10 times… But I was using bribery, and apparently corned beef has the power to distract Rafe a little from Going Forwards!

    Also think it is helping that I’m putting the lead around my body, so I have both hands free, replicating off-lead stuff a bit better.  Bev would be pleased as I can’t pull him then!


    being there, doing that.

    just come back from a lead walk and i have to say that he (more or less) heels nicely. except when there are close distractions or dogs.

    max used to pull, yank, come across me and nearly trip me up, jump up at passersby, you name it, he did it.  now, if the distraction is mild, i dont need to do/say anything. if it is medium, i say leave it and he looks but doesnt pull. high distraction and its all out the window but i get him back quicker as the time goes by. i still stop quite often and he plonks himself back to my side. i rarely turn anymore. it seemed that we were getting no progress then suddenly he would ‘get it’. its not a slow learning curve up but rather jumpy moves up and sometimes a little dip back down.

    today i went past an infant school at chuck out time!! ‘bad’ timing but i didnt turn round, i controlled the situation adn max was a star!!  he heard them first and grew taller but didnt pull. then we saw them on this narrow road and he listened to me (and the black pudding i had in my hand). luckily the children were mostly in the playground otherwise it might have been abit of an overload for him.
    his only playmate used to be a 4 yo btw, he loovves kids.

    i used to (sometimes still do) dread it and try to avoid times when it was busy and almost panic if i saw a situation up ahead, because i knew what max would do. but i have braved it through lol as otherwise we would achieve nothing.

    this is the 5th month i’ve had him and how he is on lead to how he was is encouraging me to believe we can progress with all the other issues he has.

    if i can do it so can you!!! just ask Bev


    Wow, well that gives me some comfort!  Speaking of which, I’d better take the little sod out!


    Small success!!

    We had a Pleasant Walk.  Only having to turn around and go the other way about 20 times!!  Did the (previously 45 minute) road in 10, and even stood stock still when a giant wolfhound came hurling itself at a gate on the other side of the road, barking at Rafe.  Hackles went up but no dragging me over!!!!

    Admittedly I used extreme bribery (corned beef), but still, he did it!!

    Having both hands free is hugely helpful.

    Cheers for support!!


    Nothing wrong with a bit of bribery!!  ;D


    bribery with black pudding or raw meat works even better 😉


    LOL, yup! Best heeling we ever did was when I had leftover T-bone steak in my pocket!  sure made a mess of my pocket though  ;D


    a whole pork chop goes down well too! :whistle:  😀 although a chopped up one is probably a better idea!

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