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The Leash Connection is located at 4414 Augusta Rd. Lexington, South Carolina 29073

Space J-11 & J-12 in The Barnyard Flea Market.

Hours: Saturday & Sunday

9:00 am til 4:00 pm

803-318-9601

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Dogs Need To Chew It is in their DNA. Our job is to provide them with natural dog chews designed to satisfy that craving. Chewing on natural products can clean teeth and help with tarter build up.

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Before doing any training with your dog please read the following articles Rules For Training Your Dog and 5 Commands Your Dog Should Know. This info will help you a lot. If your dog doesn’t walk on a leash very well or goes bonkers when you put him on a leash read and train these 5 commands first. Don’t make it harder on you and your dog than it has to be.  You need to train this exercise in this order and do not move ahead until your dog is solid at each part.

Remember correct as light as possible but as firm as necessary.

What you will need for this lesson: 6ft. leash (5/8 wide for dogs 35 lbs. and under a 1” wide nylon leash or ¾” wide leather leash for larger dogs), training collar properly fitted for your dog (Slip collar or pinch collar) and some cut up hotdogs about the size of your pinky finger nail.

Part 1

Release Command: The use of a release command is to let the dog know when it is working and when it’s okay to relax. It does not mean he can pull you – that is no longer ever allowed. When you want to end a command once your dog has done it, tell him OK and play for a minute.  While doing this remain standing upright – do not bend way over to praise. You want your dog to learn to LOOK UP to you and make eye contact.

Goal For This Exercise: When you tell your dog OK he can play or just hang out.

The Food Magnet Game: To teach this game you will need some cut up hot dogs (cut into small pieces about the size of your pinky nail.) and a hungry dog. If you are going to use food as a motivator your dog needs to be HUNGRY. Take a piece of food in your right hand. Show your dog the treat by placing your hand in front of his nose. When he realizes the treat is there, move your hand SLOWLY to right or left. As your dog follows your hand give him the food reward, praise then release him.

Goal For This Exercise: To have your dog follow your hand in both directions.


Dog Responds to Name:
Put your dog on a 6 ft. leash and let him wander ahead of you. 
While he is distracted, call his name, hesitate (count 1–2 to yourself), pop the leash (a correction), move backwards, and praise him as he is coming to you. 
Back up about 6 to 8 paces, stop, give your dog a piece of food, and praise when he catches up to you Tell him OK and let him get distracted again. Repeat the above steps. . When playing this game I am always trying to sneak away from my dog so I can call him to me. When your dog starts watching you and wants to stay by you this is a good sign.

Continue this until your dog no longer distracts himself but stays near you. 
Now it’s time to add tougher or different distractions. While he is checking out the new interests – call his name, hesitate (count 1–2 to yourself), pop the leash, and move backwards. Praise when he reaches you. I like to call this “Beat The Jerk”. Your dog learns to come when he hears his name. 
If you see him turn away from the distraction and come towards you as soon as he hears his name, you do not have to correct. Instead, just move backwards a few steps and praise. He did not get the leash correction and therefore “Beat The Jerk”. After 4-5 days you shouldn’t need the food anymore because your dog should be coming to you off of your praise.

Goal For This Exercise: Your dog should respond to his name under distractions on the first command. Your dog should want to stay closer to your side and not wander as much.

Proofing Ideas:

1. Have someone just start praising your dog but not using his name
2. Roll a ball
3. Have someone clapping their hands and praising the dog
4. Squeak a toy
5. Have someone with a piece of food in their hand and let the dog smell it but not eat it, now sneak away and call him
6. Have another dog on leash to distract him while you sneak away to call him.

Think of your own proofs. Anything your dog locks in on can be used to proof him.


Remember correct as light as possible but as firm as necessary.


Part 2

What you will need for this lesson: 20 ft. long line or a 20 ft. piece of rope (about the diameter of a pencil) with a bolt snap and a training collar properly fitted for your dog (Slip collar or pinch collar). I always prefer a pinch collar, less work for me.

Dog Responds To Name With More Distance Away From You:

By now your dog should, for the first time in his little furry life, be starting to pay more attention to you and where you are at and where you are going. You have a 20 ft leash and we are going to play “Beat the Jerk” game as we did in part 1 but without the food.  Start at about 10 ft of the line, the other 10ft of line can be on the ground do not worry about it right now.  Too much distance too quickly might confuse the dog.  Now we are starting at 10 ft then increase to 15ft then 20ft.  Any time you are training an exercise and your dog gets confused go back a few steps, build success then move forward with training.

Now let’s get to work.   Have your dog on the 20 ft leash but you are at the 10ft length to begin with and let your dog wander ahead of you.

While he is distracted, call his name, hesitate (count 1–2 to yourself), pop the leash (a correction), move backwards, and praise him as he is coming to you. 
Back up about 6 to 8 paces, stop, give your dog a piece of food, and praise when he catches up to you. 
Tell him OK and let him get distracted again. Repeat the above steps. 
Continue this until your dog no longer distracts himself but stays near you. 
Now it’s time to add tougher or different distractions. While he is checking out the new interests – call his name, hesitate (count 1–2 to yourself), pop the leash, and move backwards. Praise when he reaches you. I like to call this “Beat The Jerk”. Your dog learns to come when he hears his name. 
If you see him turn away from the distraction and come towards you as soon as he hears his name, you do not have to correct. Instead, just move backwards a few steps and praise. He did not get the leash correction and therefore “Beat The Jerk”. After 4-5 days you shouldn’t need the food anymore because your dog should be coming to you off of your praise.
Goal For This Exercise: Your dog should respond to his name under distractions. Your dog should want to stay closer to your side and not wander as much.

Proofing Ideas:

1. Have someone just start praising your dog but not using his name
2. Roll a ball
3. Have someone clapping their hands and praising the dog
4. Squeak a toy
5. Have someone with a piece of food in their hand and let the dog smell it but not eat it, now sneak away and call him
6. Have another dog on leash to distract him while you sneak away to call him.

Think of your own proofs. Anything your dog locks in on can be used to proof him.


Part 3

What you need for this exercise:  Buckle collar on dog and to do the exercise in a fenced in area 50x50 or larger. But the larger the area the more work for you.

Bring your dog, on leash with collar on, into the fenced area with no distractions so it is just you and your dog.

Turn your dog loose and let him get about 20 feet away from you.  Now call your dogs name once.  If your dog starts to come to you back up and praise just like you did in part 1.

Part 2 coming to you is the goal of this exercise. Now let your dog go again in the fenced area.

If your dog does not come to you after calling his name once, do not say anything and start walking toward your dog with a smile but no words.  Your dog will likely do one of two things. 1. Stop and wait for you to come to him or 2. Start running away from you and have a romp in the fenced area.

If your dog waits for you to come to him, keep walking towards him without saying anything. Once you are in front of him, cup your hands and put them under the buckle collar below the dogs ears. Lift his front feet just off the ground and you start walking backwards while holding onto the collar and his feet are still just off the ground. Using your praise voice keep talking calmly to your dog till you are back at the original spot in the area when you called him. It is not really important what you are saying as long as it is a calm voice and calm facial features.  When you are at the original spot, still holding onto collar, put his front feet on the ground and praise him calmly with your voice and slight pressure on the collar.  Release your hands and let him go to run around the fenced area again.  After 1-2 minutes call his name and start over.

If your dog is a runner start walking straight towards him. He will zig and zag and think it is a chase game. Keep going toward him slowly, with a smile, and not talking. Do not move quickly but turn in his direction as he runs around and keep walking towards him.  First time you do this you may be moving for 10 seconds or 10 minutes. Patience! Keep going towards him. Sooner or later he will think What game is this? Dogs usually start to worry and stop running wondering this is not how we play the chase game. Does not matter where he stops running but when he does you will walk up to him and cup your hands and put them under the buckle collar below the dogs ears. Lift his front feet just off the ground and you start walking backwards while holding onto the collar and his feet are still just off the ground. Using your praise voice keep talking calmly to your dog till you are back at the original spot in the area when you called him. It is not really important what you are saying as long as it is a calm voice and calm facial features.  When you are at the original spot, still holding onto collar, put his front feet on the ground and praise him calmly with your voice and slight pressure on the collar.  Release your hands and let him go to run around the fenced area again.  After 1-2 minutes call his name and start over.

Here are some things that might happen or will happen:

You call his name, saying it only one time, and he stops – go get him and walk backwards to the spot where you called him from.

You call his name and he comes ¾ the way to you then stops – this IS an improvement but not the right answer, stop praising and go get him and walk backwards to the spot where you called him from.

You call his name and he comes ½ way to you then stops – same as above, go get him and walk backwards to the spot you called him from.

You call his name then he lays down – go get him and walk backwards to the spot you called him from. This could be an improvement if he was a runner.

Your dog runs from you – go get him and walk backwards to the spot you called him from.

You call his name and he acts like you are not there – go get him and walk backwards to the spot you called him from.

All of this exercise of part 3 up until now was done with no distractions so lets add some slowly. These can also be used for part 2 with 20ft line.

1. Another person just walking around but not talking.
2. Another person with treats in their hand but not given to the dog.
3. Another dog on a leash.
4. Some children running around.
5. Dogs off leash running around but start with just one dog at first.

Remember correct as light as possible but as firm as necessary.



Off Leash Recall

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