A Dog’s View: Tip 4 – Walk without the Pull

billblassSCREENWRITER WANTED to help write my happy ending. The sole prerequisite for this position is love.  Hey there, my name is Bill Blass.  I spend my days at the Town of Hempstead Animal Shelter in Wantagh reading the papers that line my cage.  My favorite part of the newspaper is the Movie section. 

I don’t know about you, but the movies this summer are a bit frightening. Have you seen the flick where monkeys take over the world?  How about the prehistoric creature that devastates a city? I prefer family stories with happy endings. That isn’t to say that my story isn’t any less terrifying than the movies mentioned above.  There isn’t enough time to start from the beginning, so I’ll begin the day I arrived at the animal shelter.  I didn’t arrive in clothing and sandals like the monkeys.  My attire was a choke collar attached to a heavy metal leash that was weighted down with padlocks. My previous owner didn’t keep his promise to love me until the end of time.  In fact, he hated when I showed him affection and took to constrain me in a terrible manner. The marks along my nose are constant reminders of his discourse.   

My prayers were answered he day animal control rescued me.  The staff members and volunteers at the shelter, treat me well.  I even made a new two-legged friend who enjoys my kisses.  Her name is Andrea.  She’s really nice and pretty too.

Laura Garber, my trainer, spends a great deal of time with my dog friends and me. She’s taught us how to act like gentlemen.  I work hard during her classes just so my next owner treats me better.  Do you want me to share a tip I learned just last week?  Great! This is Tip 4 – Walk without the Pull.

Dogs enjoy pulling and are actually encouraged to pull when they wear traditional collars and harnesses where the leash attachment is on their neck or their back.  It’s called opposition reflex and the perfect example is the husky pulling the sled… he shoulders into the load!  But there is walking equipment available that will discourage pulling.  Front-attach harnesses, such as the Easy-Walk or the Freedom Harnesses, are effective in decreasing pulling on leash.  Alternatively headcollars like the Gentle Leader, the Halti, the Snoot Loop, or the Canny Collar, can decrease pulling on leash for dogs with issues on leash (lunging, etc) or for dogs who outweigh/outmuscle their handlers.

Of course, dogs should be trained to loose-leash walk, as if holding hands with their humans, but these no-pull devices can help as you work on these skills.

Thanks for dropping by our blog!  If you’re looking for a friend to watch movies with, please stop by the shelter and complete an adoption form.  I savor a broad array of genres – provided we don’t watch Garfield by Twentieth Century Fox or Disney’s Lion King.  Cats – yuck!

About the Author:  Bill Blass is a three-year old Terrier, American Staffordshire/Mix.  He enjoys spending time with everyone – from kids to strangers.  He is healthy, heartworm negative and up to date on all vaccinations.  Help Bill write a happy ending for himself, stop by the Town of Hempstead Animal Shelter, 3320 Beltagh Avenue, Wantagh, New York and provide him the life he deserves.


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