Which Side?

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out of the brave- comes the- shiverer!
Barked: Tue Aug 13, '13 9:15am PST 
I've always been more inclined to have my dogs walk on my right side. I'm not sure if it's because I'm right handed or that I can view them better there for some reason, I really just don't know. It occurred to me the other day that not only had I not seen many pet dogs walked this way, but had never seen any service dogs at all doing this. Is there a particular reason for them being on the left side? If there was a logical reason I would have no problem training to use the left side, I was just wondering why it was employed so often. For SD reasons, are there any times when it's easier to have them on the left than the right? Thanks!
Iris vom- Zauberberg

Service Werewolf
Barked: Tue Aug 13, '13 10:58am PST 
It's entirely up to you.

I keep Iris mostly on my left, but I let her switch over to my right to help maintain my personal space. She heels on either side.

SD (retired)
Barked: Tue Aug 13, '13 11:03am PST 
ok the reason way most dogs walk on the left is because that are the rules in obedience trails, they must be walked on the left then... that being said walking an SD on the left is viewed as 'more proper'. on a more practical note if you hold your dogs leash(ei don't use a hands free leash) and are right handed like most people are it is ezer to do stuff like sign a check or pay for stuff if your right hand is free. I"m right handed and so i walk zoey on my left(that is her heel) but i have a command ('other side') to make her walk on my left witch makes moving throw crowded stores much ezer. but it all come down to comfort if you want your dog to walk on your left thee nothing wrong with it. hope that helped smile


Work hard; Play- harder.
Barked: Mon Aug 19, '13 5:59am PST 
Scooter is trained to heel on my right side; Benelli, my SDIT pup is being trained that way as well. The "Off-side" command works wonders. It makes it easier to protect them in places with crowded foot traffic since in a lot of places it is custom to walk on the right.

Hope springs- eternal!
Barked: Mon Aug 19, '13 4:10pm PST 
Gir and I have done a lot of work with heeling on either side, and on switching sides on command. When we're out in public, he's generally heeled onto my right side, switching to my left when we board a bus or get on the subway train (as the kiosks for the boarding passes are on the right side). I like having him heel right when he's working because my right side is my vulnerable side; it helps LOADS with my anxiety to know that I have my trusty working partner watching my "off" side.
SIR AILBE,- Service Dog

Born To Serve- The Damsel In- Distress
Barked: Wed Aug 21, '13 5:06pm PST 
Both my SD and SDIT are trained on the right. I have problems with my left leg and when I use a cane or one arm crutch I use my right arm. It's been so funny working with Ailbe at his school and I'm the only one with a dog on the right side... So, I have to listen really carefully on what the instructor is saying and do the total opposite.

Also, my harness is geared for right hand use only... If my dogs go on my left I have a 95% chance of falling because my leg doesn't function correctly...

Shadow Walker and Ailbe

Barked: Thu Aug 22, '13 10:55am PST 
I think you should train them on whichever side helps you out. You wouldn't use a cane only on the left side for instance if your needs were on the right. Zoey is right that it's from kennel club obedience trials and even then the only reason they have a picked side is to make sure everyone's doing the same thing when it comes time to judge the performance. I train Oberon on the left because I do not have a physical requirement for him to be on one side or the other, but I DO like having me as a bodily buffer between him and cars on walks.

Mali Woo
Barked: Thu Sep 5, '13 9:10am PST 
Mali is trained to heel on both left and right side. I use the word “heel” for the left and “right side” for heeling on the right side. As of late she has mostly been on my right side as I have a torn labrum in my left shoulder.

Button is so far only learning left side, but will learn both sides as well, when

out of the brave- comes the- shiverer!
Barked: Fri Sep 6, '13 4:32pm PST 
These are all great responses! I think I'll train the left side much like others train their right side. So heel would mean my right side (so my current dogs don't have their worlds completely uprooted!) and left side would me, well, my left side. I'm glad I won't be breaking some unsung rule of training!
Flicka ~ CGC

NO-ONE is going- to sneak up on- my Mummy
Barked: Sat Sep 7, '13 8:13am PST 
Bumping to drown the spambots
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