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Old 06-27-2012, 06:52 PM
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Default I'm still struggling with Bandit's leash reactivity

The area i live in I rarely am bumping into other dogs. Which is an odd thought when you think how close all these houses are together. It seems I'm the only person to walk their dog. Bandit is fine walking by dogs lunging at fences, loose dogs, non reactive dogs but naturally a leashed reactive dog does set him off.

I have no idea how to redirect his attention and reward him because food is not an option when he locks in. Sometimes I can't prevent the lock in either. A dog will come around the corner too quick. I know leash reativity can take a long time to help him through I just want to know if I am doing things properly.

The only way I can get Bandit to refocus on me is to turn around and run away from an approaching dog when they've come around a corner. Is this okay to do? I feel like I might be getting his energy even more up around other dogs and I don't want increase reactivity but if a dog comes whipping around a bend it's either I run in the other direction with him or he lunges at the other dog. I'm thinking leaving in the other directi s way better than letting his normal reaction carry through where he lunges forward and barks.

The distance in which he is reacting is getting less and less but we are no where near ready to pass another dog who is also reactive on a street side by side.
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Old 06-27-2012, 07:03 PM
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Yes, running away is perfectly fine! Reward him with the food after you run away, this may help him see the running away as really fun and even rewarding, form of play. If possible run far enough away that he can still see the dog but will take food so you can practice LAT or whatever you're using to help him.
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Old 06-29-2012, 03:56 AM
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In the beginning stages, turning around and running away IS perfectly acceptable.

What it's telling the dog is, "You acted stupid, and now I'm removing you from what you want [the other dog]"

Does he like squeaky toys? If so, I would have one of those with you. When you turn around and go the other way, see how quickly you can get his attention on the toy. I say squeaky toy, because usually sound helps... but if he has a favourite toy that doesn't make noise, you can try that to. The goal is to get to the point where when he sees another dog, he expects you to bring out his toy (or food, if you want to work it into that).
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Old 06-29-2012, 11:28 AM
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He does like squeaky toys. I actually never thought to use a toy because he is so food motivated. He also REALLY likes playing tug. I should try that instead and see if it helps as to me it seems like a toy would be more likely to engage him for longer than half a second than food will.

Come to think of it... when I let him off leash up in a fenced in field he is SO much more focused on me when I have a tug toy vs when I don't... hmmm. I think we are on to something here.
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Old 06-29-2012, 11:30 AM
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Have you done any BAT with him?
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Old 06-29-2012, 11:59 AM
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No but I am watchin a video on it right now! I am not sure if he is just a frustrated greeter or if he is afraid. I am considering taking a video for you guys so I can get some constructive advice because I am not sure if what i am doing is helping or not.

He really only seems to react to other excitable dogs on leash and we all know lots of people just let hteir dog charge up to yours when displaying that kind of behavior. He is instantly happy when he can FINALLY say hi. Off leash dogs don't get that kind of reactivity neitehr do dogs on leash ignoring him. But he also gets that same release of tension by leaving the sitaution.
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