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Training a Herding Dog to Jog

5134 Views 9 Replies 8 Participants Last post by  wvasko
We adopted our half German Shepherd half Queensland heeler about a month ago from a shelter. She was a stray and had never been trained, and she's now about a year old. She has learned soooo much and we are so proud of her! One thing I am not sure how to train her on is to jog next to me. She walks very well on a leash (Save a few exciting puppy ADD distractions now and again), but whether on a leash or off, if I try to jog or run with her, she wants to play and herd me. She will jump up and nip at me. I try telling her 'no' and keep going, and when she continues to jump and nip, I then stop, get her to calm down and make her sit and obey me, which she will do. As soon as I try again, she continues the herding/nipping/jumping behaviour. She is a very sweet dog and listens and obeys most of the time. I have only just started trying to train her to jog next to me nicely and would like some advice on how to do this properly, as I don't see it on the dog training sites I've been visiting (which have been so helpful otherwise!).

Thanks much! :)
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I had the same thing with Betty when I had her. She would go at my heels anytime I went into a run. How I cured that is to start with a good heel. Once you are walking good with your dog next to you, then you can work up to a fast walk. Once you reach a fast walk, you can up it to a slow jog for short distances, just keep working on it. Eventually you will be jogging with your dog next to you. It took Betty about 2-3 months to get to where I can run with her next to me or in front without her going after my heels. But I think the key to it is a good heel first, set some rules and boundaries. Then work your way up from there.
Dog was 11 months old which just makes her a puppy when you got her, there is no hurry. I agree with LWB some obedience class or lessons to start her on heeling pups got to crawl before they walk, larger pups got to heel before they jog.
If you want run with her before the heeling/loose-leash training goodness is fully realized, you can make a stand-off leash by snaking a length of rope through a piece of PVC pipe. Use a pipe that allows the rope to fit reasonably snugly inside, and tie a knot in the rope on either end so it doesn't slide around. Leave about 6" of slack on the dog's end, and enough to make a loop on yours. I use a double-8 knot to attach the clip. You can experiment with lengths and the amount of slack that works for you both.

I used this set up when trying to ride a bike with a dog. The dog heeled well while walking, but as soon as the bike got going he only wanted to bite the tires. As with any new apparatus, start slowly and acclimate the dog to the equipment. Some dogs get wiggy when you break out a new tool.

It's not a substitute for the obedience training suggested above, but just another thing to keep in your bag of tricks.
Nice, different type of heeling stick. I think I will make one for my tool bag. great for starting puppies.
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