|Barked: Tue Jan 29, '13 9:58pm PST |
With Charlie, I do the sit stays at street curbs/corners and sometimes the wait command. I always have a command for go, such as "okay"(his release command), or "let's go!".
I did however, teach him to stay OFF the street. Back before I knew better and realized how much of a pain they actually are, I used to walk him on a flexi. That was when I first got him. I was always diligent with keeping him from harassing people, so I always had a good eye out, but I did have to teach him that the street was off limits unless I said so. I used the word "Street" whenever he would step off the curb and haul him back up onto the sidewalk before we would continue our walk. I made a habit of it. I didn't really reward much back then, so there wasn't much of a reward for getting off the street when he was told Street, but it worked the one day I needed it most.
I had him at a dog park, off leash, which is next to a road(it's rarely busy), and up the hill from a busy street. He spotted a dog walking on a leash across the road and took off to go say hi. I called his name. Nadda. He was getting close, and I couldn't think of what else to do, and it was clear that even if I ran, I couldn't keep up, so I shouted, "STREET!" and he halted, his toes right on the very edge of the curb, wiggling his whole body, wanting sooooo badly to go say hi and stuck between whether he should listen to me, or cut across the street and make friends. It helped that the owner of the dog kept walking and ignored him, but it worked! It was my proudest moment with him in those first few months. I ran over, leashed him up, and rewarded him to the high heavens before we went on a walk as a reward and played the whole walk. He loved it and I NEVER had to use it again.
It truly is a handy thing to teach.
I guess that by hauling him off the street when I'd give the word, and keeping the leash short for a short distance essentially made something negative happen if he went on the street without prior permission. He learned that the freedom would be lost if he touched that street. If hindsight were foresight, I would have added a reward to it too. But either way, it worked.
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