Get Your Canine Companion Off theTrail Quickly
If you hike or walk with your dog, this has likely happened to you. You are on a narrow trail and someone with a dog approaches and for whatever reason it is not appropriate for the dogs to meet. What can you do? You can use a little agility training to help make the meeting easier. As part of agility, we teach our dogs to get onto a table and lay down. For our dogs, we labeled this behavior “Table”. Since there are lots of boulders and big rocks we have taught them “Table” to also be big rocks or boulders. When other dogs approach and it would be difficult to have a polite greeting, we say “Table” and they jump onto the nearest rock or patch of high ground, and we can let the other dogs and humans pass. This behavior can be especially useful for a dog that is uncomfortable around other dogs or people. This cue will easily get you and your dog off the trail momentarily so others can pass. Your dog will have something productive to focus on rather than others around you.
Our little "mountain goat", shown in the picture, will sometimes spontaneously just jump onto rocks, hoping for a bit of attention or a treat.