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Triton: BAT Leash Practice
By: Shawna Gallagher, ABCDT ~ 4/17/2015

It's a beautiful day out, you leash up your dog and head out for your daily walk. All is well until you run across another dog and owner out on their walk. Then all of a sudden the other dog has gotten way to close and your sweet dog is acting like a crazy person. Excessively pulling, lunging and barking, you do your best to get your dog as far away as you can from the other dog and try to keep from falling over or worse getting away from you.  Does this sound familiar? Are you wondering what happened to your sweet dog?

Having a dog who is reactive on leash can be very challenging. You either end up not walking your dog as often or walking your dog really early in the morning or late at night. Reducing the likelihood that you would run into someone else out with their dog. Dogs act this way for a number of reasons and typically fall under one or more of the following categories, fear, frustration, or aggression. Sadly this is a very common issue that is keeping dog trainers like me very busy.

I feel all of your pain and frustration. When I just adopted Triton a little over a year ago he would react to everything from people, large vehicles, bikes, and dogs! He is now pretty good with everything except for some people and other dogs. His main training focus is now to reduce his reactivity to other dogs and continue his work with people. 

If you are among the many people that have a fiesty fido on leash like Triton there is hope. There are some really great training methods out there to help you. In my experience for lasting results you do need to be dedicated, patient, and realistic in your goals for you and your dog. The method that I use is called BAT Training which stands for Behavioral Adjustment Training. I have been studying this method for some time now, and it is fast becoming one of my main tools because it works!!

It is important to practice good leash handling skills. When I first teach this method to my clients they first practice their leash handling with each other and then with there dog. All of this is done in a quiet area without any of the dogs triggers present. 

We have a small field right by our house that we did a little bit of leash handling practice. 

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 Dave Praciticing basic leash holding skill.

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Shawna practicing a slow stop

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It's important to walk behind your dog, so that you don't lead them to the trigger.

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I'm keeping the leash loose and off of the ground.

 

Stay tuned for more BAT training with Triton and others.