The off-leash training goal: Enjoying a walk with your dog running free by your side. The tips in this article may help you gain the reliability you want. To be dependable on Off-Leash, your dog must be readily doing all the exercises such as Name Calling, Come, Sit, Down, Stay and Walking on Loose Leash on the leash. When I say,readily, it should be more than 80% of the time from the first time asking.
Being an Off-Leash or Off Lead is a privilege and not an entitlement. In this blog, the word Off-Leash and Off Lead are referring to the same thing, and words used interchangeably.
As a Professional Dog Trainer, I would say, no off lead until your pup is reliable on a leash. The time and effort to train your pup to do On Lead will be the same effort to train Off Lead.
I want to bring your attention to the benefits of On Leash Training before we discuss the latter. Under the Law of the Republic of Singapore, all dogs are required to be on a lead whenever you are on public ground.
Wouldn't train On Lead became a critical skill to acquire?
What are the benefits of On Lead Training ;
1. No runaway pup, 2. Ensure we can reward your pup readily and regularly, 3. Pup needs to work closely with the owner, 4. Provide great opportunity to ensure you put in good Reinforcement History, 5. Always able to bail my pup out of trouble and 6. Ensure good bonding between the pup and the owner.
What is your objective of being Off Lead? Beside showing off your pup obedience, there's no other good reason. Giving your pup the freedom is subjective. Are you saying, being on lead is going to obstruct your pup movement or freedom? He can eats, licks, barks, bites and almost everything he can do off lead.
Just like anyone of us, before you learn how to run, everyone learns by crawling, sitting up, squatting, standing up, taking our first step, walk regularly, and eventually, we learn how to run.
I reckon Off Leash is like Running eventually, we need to take baby steps, train your pup to be dependent on lead and eventually Off Lead is a natural thing.
I remember when I had my first Shiba Inu puppy. ZACK, he is a very smart boy. However, being an individual breed, his tendency to escape is his second nature. Due to this simple reason, ZACK was trained fully on lead. He had become a reliable boy with excellent recall in his blood.
Nope, I am not saying; you cannot train your pup Off-Leash, I'm saying you need to take time to build up the basic skillsets so that your pup will grow up as an asset to society and not a liability.
As always, have fun and stay positive.