Dog Training World Forums Obedience Training Phase 1 Obedience When to incorporate leash training? Reply To: When to incorporate leash training?

  • Michael D’Abruzzo

    December 13, 2016 at 3:16 pm

    Hi Adrienne, that’s a good question, especially, since our obedience chart is a work in progress.  Since “leash manners” is about teaching the dog to respect the leash, dogs are almost immediately exposed to some phase 2 correction every time they hit the end of the leash whether they like it or not, whereas other exercises can be taught without the leash and no chance of a leash correction.

    With that being said, the phase 1 PART of leash manners can still be focused on with or without practicing with any traditional training collar.  Here is the breakdown:

    Leash Manners is technically teaching the dog to break the tension on the leash by coming closer to the handler, therefore…

    Marking – Would be praising the dog the moment they release the tension on the leash and then putting your hands on the dog to give affection (or using a treat if it is a dog you are not bonded to).

    Interval reward- Is when the dog gets intermittent praise, love, and/or food for remaining on the loose leash

    Duration – Is the dog getting a reward, in this case usually more freedom, for remaining a loose leash for a set point of time.  This is best done with the word “ok”

    Premack Principle – Is the act of using an activity as the reward for remaining on a loose leash.  So, if a dog wants to geeet a new person while on the leash..the dog can be taught that if he remains on a loose leash, you will eventually give an “ok” and gesture for the dog to slide out more on the leash to meet someone.  Or, a loose leash may be rewarded with unhooking the leash at the dog park, etc..

    A variable reward during leash manners is simply thinning out the reward schedule over time so you do not necessarily need to have your hands all over the dog the whole time the dog is on a loose leash and the dog may not aways be rewarded with more freedom for being on a loose leash.  As with all variable reward schedules, we try to not ever thin out the schedule so much that the dog disbelieves obedience will lead to good things.

    Every component counts in all training exercises to get the best results, and it all relates to other obedience exercises so once the dog and handler get the hang of how it works for one exercise.  New exercises become easier.  If you watch the leash manners video with Judy and Orfeo you should notice much of the “phase 1” part going on which is equally as motivational as the “phase 2″ parts which include the escape conditioning (what to do when feeling leash pumps” and avoidance conditioning (what to do to avoid leash pumps).

    If you have any questions please let me know.