Puppy Forum and Dog Forums banner

1 - 12 of 12 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I have a 6 month old Great Dane/Italian Mastiff and he is great except on walks. I live on a street with about 7 dogs and whenever we go for a walk, if he sees a dog he pulls to go over to them. He has broken several leashes from pulling. He is around 110 pounds and growing quickly and I just can't have a full grown Great Dane mix pulling me down the street after other dogs. I admit I dont walk him as much as I used to, I am afraid he will get hurt by the other dogs or he will snap the leash again and run off and not come back. When he is around other dogs he gets so excited he ignores me and just runs full blast to meet the other dog and run off together. I really need help before someone gets injured.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
683 Posts
Sounds like you have your hands full! =) I have two dogs that are over 100 lbs. each, and in the beginning, they were both pullers. My oldest is a Great Dane/German Shepherd mix, so I had the pulling issue PLUS a strong prey drive, lol! Today, he is a breeze to walk, remains on a loose leash at all times, and it is the direct result of all the work we put in TOGETHER. What kind of collar do you have on him? What kinds of leashes have you been using? What do you do when you see a dog approaching? (How do you react, how do you feel, what do you say, etc.) Have you done any obedience work with him? You will get LOTS of help here, not to worry!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
I have been using a normal leather colar, and a normal leash 5ft black and strong and he has been ripping through them. When I see a dog approaching I stay calm and ignore the dog, or with the more teritorial dog I simply say "No, go away." and they stop and turn around. But when Kronk (my puppy) starts pulling I get annoyed, and then scared because I don't want him to get loose or hurt and then I get angry because by then he is usually loose. I am going to start obedience classes a soon as I can gather the money up, so in the next month or two.
Also he will be 7 months in a week so he might be 8 months by the time I get him in obedience which scares me even more, he will be around 130 (or more) then and all the other dogs in the class will get him so excited he will be pulling me around the room.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,075 Posts
Have you considered a martingale (fabric only). That's my recommendation at this point. Keep in mind it's only a tool and should never replace consistent, enforced training.

We bought my Dane a prong a year ago (he'll be 2 next month!) and we are now weaning off of it and using a flat collar only. He still pulls when seeing other dogs, but I reinforce the 'no pull' command and he listens. It takes time and training.

As for the leash, I'd suggest the kind that has 2 handles incorporated. One at the end of the leash, the other closer to the collar. When other dogs are approaching, you use the shorter leash for better control.

Teach a 'watch me' command for when other dogs are approaching (or strangers for that matter). Reward reward reward. Keep in mind too that your puppy may be picking up on your tension which is getting him more excited.

Good luck!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
683 Posts
I agree with much of what Loki suggested! The two-handled leash is used by military/police dogs here, and they highly recommend it. Also, be sure to check the weight limits on your leash, too, to make sure it is made to hold your dog. Are the leashes breaking at the snap? Generally, I think you get what you pay for, so the two-handled leash or a good leather leash may be the way to go. Regarding collars, I have used a prong with both of my dogs when they're first learning not to pull and have found it to be very effective. However, I must stress that it HAS to be fitted properly (up nice and high behind the ears) and it is only temporary. As Loki mentioned, you should wean off of it as quickly as possible.
When my dog would see another approaching, if he got excited, without saying a word I would immediately turn and go in the opposite direction. If he remained calm, LOTS of praise, treats, etc. This way, he learned that remaining calm led to fun, food, etc. and getting overly excited meant no treats and no new friends. Also, as Loki mentioned, keep in mind that whatever you are feeling travels straight down the leash to your dog! With some obedience work and patience, you'll develop into a good team. He really needs daily walks...not only will it be good for you AND him, it will wear him out and help him behave himself. =) Hang in there!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,354 Posts
It sounds like your horse is not aggressive and only wants to play... so that's good. The Prong collar takes a precise hand, and I've found that it only works for about a month.

However, the "watch me" method that Loki mentions is very effective, when you teach it gradually and similar to a relaxed clicker method. According to Turid Rugaas:

1. Click your tongue and when your dog looks at you, give him a treat, continue doing this for 10 min. a day for about 5 - 7 days, until he looks at you reliably. (Effectively, you are 'loading' your tongue, like a clicker, but it is less precise.)
2. Be alert to see a distraction before he does, click your tongue, and treat, so that you teach him to watch you when there is a distraction.
3. Find a friend with a distracting dog and walk your dog far away, but close enough for him to be interested... Click your tongue and treat (Unlike clicker training, you are not marking the behavior with the click. Instead you're using the click to break his focus on the distraction.)
4. Incrementally and Very slowly over 2 - 3 weeks, come a little closer to the distracting dog. When you get too close and lose control, it is OK in this method. Either stop the session and start again tomorrow, a little further away ... Or, if he is responding well, then you can walk away and return in 10 minutes... you'll have to judge. Obviously, this method is a little different with aggressive dogs.
5. In a perfect world, you'll have reasonable control in about a month. However, assume that each time that he gets too excited, it translates into an additional week of getting him accustomed to other dogs.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,075 Posts
It sounds like your horse is not aggressive and only wants to play..
I know you mean well, but if I had $1 for everytime my Great Dane is called a horse, I'd be a millionaire! It gets so old, so quick!

Editted to add: I love the idea of how to teach the 'watch me' method. I'm totally going to try that as I don't have 'watch me' down pact with my puppers yet!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
All great ideas! I will go out and buy the two handed leash tomorrow, and I will look for a prong as well. "Watch me" sounds like it will be very useful. I will try these all tomorrow, and hopefully in a month or so I will see imporovement :D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,075 Posts
All great ideas! I will go out and buy the two handed leash tomorrow, and I will look for a prong as well. "Watch me" sounds like it will be very useful. I will try these all tomorrow, and hopefully in a month or so I will see imporovement :D
I wouldn't recommend a prong unless you plan on getting proper training with it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1 Posts
Hello

We've just adopted a 1.5 year old Cane Corso and I'm having the same issue. He is fantastic in every way except for dragging me to meet other dogs. Going to try the watch me suggestion although I've noticed that right now it's impossible to get his attention on leash. Should I practise this in the yard and house first ?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
80 Posts
Hello

We've just adopted a 1.5 year old Cane Corso and I'm having the same issue. He is fantastic in every way except for dragging me to meet other dogs. Going to try the watch me suggestion although I've noticed that right now it's impossible to get his attention on leash. Should I practise this in the yard and house first ?
Yes, practice in a low-distraction area that your dog is already comfortable with; your yard is a great place to start. Then start to move out into other areas you will be walking your dog as you and dog feel comfortable.
 
1 - 12 of 12 Posts
Top