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Pro Tips for Walking a Dog that is Reactive

Walking your dog is something that should be enjoyable. You should be able to spend quality time with your dog, getting some fresh air and enjoying the outdoors, and of course exercising. But, not all walks are as smooth as you would want them to be. If your dog is reactive; you can expect that some walks will end up being a nightmare. Whether your pet has always been responsive or has become reactive as a result of a bad experience, there are some tricks that you can apply to keep your walk peaceful.

Avoid Reacting
You may be walking your pet when another dog turns up unexpectedly, and your loving pet turns into a snarling, growling pest. You can never know how dogs communicate but when this happens you sure can figure out that all is not well. The the first reaction by most dog owners is panic especially if they have had past incidences like this one. If you can keep cool; your dog will calm down much quicker than when you panic.

Plan Ahead
If you see a dog approaching you from a distance, cross to the other side of the road so that the two dogs won’t have any contact. Most likely, you dog will still react but continue walking confidently and calmly and praise your dog if he keeps cool. If you run into a situation that you hadn’t expected and weren’t prepared for, quickly make a U-turn. Dogs often operate on the basis of out of sight, out of mind. In the case you experience some difficulty in trying to get your pet to walk away, encourage him to run a little and shower him with praises if he is keeping up with the pace.

Get your Dog to Focus
At times, the only way you can control your dog and prevent him from reacting is by getting his focus. If you see another dog coming your way, pull your dog to one side and start practicing the lessons you have learnt. Ask your dog to sit and stay, while focusing his attention on some form of treat. If he is still likely to react, you might want to block your dog’s line of vision while the other dog passes.

Be in Possession of the Right Equipment
There is no need of walking a reactive dog if it’s liable to slip off its lead. When walking your dog, you must make sure that they are safe. The two hounds design dog harness ensures that your pet does not pull and prevents them from escaping easily. It is a way of making sure that you have maximum control over your dog should the worst happen.

The Reason Behind Your Dog’s Reaction
You most definitely know your dog better than anyone else, so it is likely that you can understand his body language. Knowing, why your dog reacts, helps you address the problem better.

Advanced reading: https://lifewithlilred.com/2017/07/21/5-tips-for-walking-a-reactive-dog/