Guard Dog Blog

on Livestock Guardian Dogs and small farm life…

Making it up as we go along….


14 hours ago someone asked this question of me on a FB training page.

“Out of curiosity Carolee, what method are you using to teach loose lead walking? Silky leash, yielding to pressure, shaping? Or something else? Looking forward to hearing what you think of using the clicker this way. ”

If I didn’t know this person from other forums and the post on which this comment appeared wasn’t about how I was finding positive results using the clicker WITHOUT food, I might have wanted to respond in a different way.  As it is, this is the first thing that popped into my mind.



For far too long, I’ve prided myself on being the person who can walk the middle line in social situations.  I am diplomatic and can see both sides of an argument, except in the most extreme of circumstances.  I root for the underdog, advocate for understanding and hold my tongue when really I’d just rather smack someone.  I take the high road.

I’ve been completely and utterly delusional.

As my husband reminds me, I have far too many strong opinions to ever be surprised that people don’t like me.  Getting comfortable with that is one thing, but deciding on a response is another.


What I want to say to the above comment is that I routinely use whatever method causes my dog the most frustration and allows me to use the most pain inducing tools I can find laying around the house. Sometimes I even throw in a blender.  I make it up as I go along because dog knows that apart from Koehler, I don’t think that sadistic enough methods have been designed yet to satisfy me.

In other words:


How’d you like them apples?

Instead of responding, I think I’ll just go hang with my dogs.  They rarely ask me if my approach is good enough for them.

They’re too busy having fun.



Author: offleash

Small farmer, student of canine life, advocate, dog rehab and behavior specialist.

2 thoughts on “Making it up as we go along….

  1. It’s great to read all this useful information on dog training.
    I have a concern however. How do you train a younger dog?

  2. @Wilfred, I cannot speak for the author, but my answer would be: Same way you train an older dog, unless by “younger” you mean a very young puppy who is learning about its world and does not already have habits that need changed for the better of the relationship with its owner.

    It’s far easier to form good habits in dogs and reform those that are not so ingrained that any suggestion of change is met with resistance. The ones that have been going on long-term require an owner/trainer that is more dedicated to creating change and reform than the dog is to continuing those habits, and this is where I find some people fall short in many and various ways.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s