Why To Walk Your Dog On A Leash (Part 2)

Afternoon Walk.

Afternoon Walk.

A follow-up to our post “Why To Walk Your Dog On A Leash (Part 1)” …

Teamwork starts with leash work. Your dog is the product of eons and generations of independent activity – working alone and in (unattached) family groups to hunt, eat, play and move about at will. The leash is what makes you a team – moving in the same direction, watching each other to check-in and see what’s next, responding to the environment together. If you want to deepen your relationship with your dog, put a leash between the two of you.

Of course, there are responsibilities associated with this link to your dog. Not only is he tethered to you – you are tethered to him. You must watch out for what’s best, what’s not good, what’s dangerous or perceived as threatening by your dog. I tell students that when they take their dog to an event, the dog comes first. The dog needs water, shade and protection. Your dog is your partner, but you are the leader – the leash imposes this relationship. It’s worth it, because as you practice leash work, your dog gets better at it and your relationship deepens.

Elizabeth Watson