The big thing to remember is "who is walking who". Many times, when we go for a walk with our dog, he is walking us. This is not good. We need to be in control when we are in public with our dog. The first thing to remember is that walking is a lot more than just walking. Let me walk (ha-ha) through a scenario of the pieces of a walk and you will see what I mean:
- The Front Door: You don't want to just open the front door and dart out into the walk. It is very important that you establish that you are in the driver's seat from the very start. Have Wolfie sit and stay for you at the front door. Now you open the front door while Wolfie isn't moving. Invite Wolfie out and ask him to sit again. Once everything is calm and Wolfie is giving you focus, begin your walk. Do this in reverse when you return home.
- The Sidewalk: When you and Wolfie are walking, he must always understand that you are the leader. This is done by keeping him by your side so that you both can maintain peripheral vision. If he starts to get a little ahead of you, use your leash and give a gentile flick to guide him back to your side. Change the speed of your walk to make sure that you are walking at your speed and not Wolfies'.
- The Breaks (Potty/Sniffies): Remember that you are in charge. You decide when the walkies stops for a minute for a break. When you deem it necessary, stop and have Wolfie sit. Next use a unique command word like "Free" to allow Wolfie to do his business or just do other "dogie things". When you are ready to continue, use the "Come" command to have Wolfie return to your side. Now you can start your walkies again.