Many dogs lunge, pull, and bark at other dogs, objects such as skateboards, cars, bicycles, or people when on leash on a walk. This is a behavior we call “leash reactivity.” Living with a leash-reactive dog can be quite difficult as it is can be anxiety-provoking for the human and the dog when there are so many triggers out there.
Dogs can be reactive for many reasons. Sometimes they are uncomfortable being around other dogs, humans, or moving objects such as cars. Other times our dogs are frustrated because they are attached to us by a leash and they want to interact with another dog or the human but the leash is stopping them from being able to do so. The good news is that these behaviors can change with training. Depending on your goals, what we will do is teach your canine companion how to cope with and be comfortable not always interacting with others on the walk.
Typically, we meet with you in your home for the first session to learn more about the behaviors your dog is exhibiting and to teach you and your dog some foundational exercises in a quiet environment. We will then meet you out and about where the behaviors you want to change are occurring. Perhaps we will meet near, but not in, a dog park so we can practice the new behaviors we teach you and your dog. We never go into the dog park but we may work around and near a dog park because if the problem is dogs, we want to be near other dogs.
After every private session, you will receive a detailed, personalized report with the behavior modification exercises we taught you. We are also available in between sessions to coach you as needed. We want to hear about your concerns and successes during this process.
We look forward to working with you and your canine companion so you can both enjoy many walks together!
You can also try our recorded webinar for Leash Reactivity.