Re Dogs Off Lead

by Ry Tee, Leeds

I have a large, ridiculously friendly gundog who doesn't jump up, attack, bark or otherwise go in for any antisocial behaviour to people, kids or other dogs - he basically just wants to cuddle, and be cuddled. We can't walk 200 yards down any street on a short lead without some parent asking if their kids can cuddle him! However, he does need - as do all dogs - off-lead exercise in suitable wide open spaces too - not just physically, but for the variety and mental stimulation. He is well-trained, but can't be guaranteed to obey instantly in every circumstance, so I've trained him with a citronella spray - basically, after one squirt when he didn't listen to a 'no' re his climbing a wall to go off a footpath, he decided nothing is worth that, so now responds immediately to just the warning beep, or even before that, when he sees me reach for my pocket! A previous post re a gentleman having a poorly dog on a lead made me more aware of that particular kind of possible scenario, so thanks for posting that. Basically, if all dog owners taught, and ensured that their dogs react appropriately to, the following 4 simple commands, life would be a lot easier, safer and more friendly for everyone! 1) "No" 2) "Gently" (when approaching any dog on a lead) 3) "Mind out!" (for any danger, including when owners with dog on lead have called out a warning re theirs being aggressive) 4) "Wait". As well as all the other usual commands, obviously.


“My four year old Irish Red Setter is usually very well behaved, but in the last few months he has started going for other dogs, on or off lead! It can be quite embarrassing, and obviously dangerous. Any Advice? Also he usually always comes back to my husband or myself, but yesterday, over a large open woodland environment, he chose NOT to come back to me, for nearly 2 hours! After immense calling his name to come back from over other side of a stream, I had to eventually run onto a golf course, right the way through, it! Then he kept running out of the woodland, and along a long and very narrow main road, I was shouting a oncoming traffic to stop, frightened that he would get run over! He kept on running, then he ran into a large field, by this point I had NO idea where I was! I eventually cornered hi, but he would have kept going! TodayI took him somewhere else, where I thought he couldn't escape! But he did! Over a bridge into more woodland and into another farmers field! This time, I gave up and started running the other way, and managing to corner him before putting him back on his lead. Im now very anxious and wary of when and where to let him off!! Any advise? HELP!!!”

Lisa Willis, Upminster, Essex


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