When I first got my Coonhound she would not walk on a leash. She would sit down, pull loose and buck. Then she started laying down and wiggling out of her harness. The second day we had her she backed of her collar, heavy duty harness, and got away. Since she weighs about 75 pounds I was not having fun pulling her home, or sitting in the grass for a half hour until she decided to get up. She actually sprawled out on the way across the street in our neighborhood one time and stopped a car. Luckily, the driver was patient. he rolled down the window and said "Is that a hound? That explains it."

I started researching about Coonhounds on the web and found that they are difficult to leash train and tend to roam. The bolt and try to run if they pick up a deer scent. Here I was in an apartment, in suburbia, wondering how to magically transport myself to a farm in the mountains, so this dog could have a suitable home.

But not to worry, we had a plan! We found that if we all walked Suri, she felt like she was in a pack and walked without a problem. We began to walk the same route everyday so she learned a routine and it became less distracting and novel. We coaxed her with treats and when she walked she was rewarded. We rigged up a martingale collar and looped the leash through the harness so she could not wiggle free.

My better half and I put a lot of effort into this and soon he was walking her alone during the day while I was at work. I was still afraid to go by myself because I thought I would lose her again. He was sick with the flu recently, and I had no choice but to take her out myself. I took a deep breath, rigged her up and left the house. Amazingly, I suddenly felt like I was walking with a show dog. She was walking by my side slowing when I did, not pulling or stopping, and looking so sharp that someone actually stopped me and asked me how I got my dog to walk so pretty. Now she prances like a show horse and the happiest times in my day are my dog walks. She is one of the best behaved dogs that I have ever had. Now if I could just get my diabetes to behave as well I would have it made!

Tags: leash, training

Views: 21

Replies to This Discussion

Congratulations! With your strategies, you just obedience trained your Coonhound! Don't get complacent, though, she could still smell a deer, dog, cat, squirrel...
Wow, I am so impressed. Can you come train my dog? (He pulls constantly on leash, and goes nuts when he sees dogs, people, squirrels, bicyclers, etc, etc). :)

Actually, I know it's a matter of training me, not him, but I seem to be untrainable! :)
Way ta go, Lots. It takes strength and initiative to figure out what your pet needs and see that he/she gets it.. A lot of people wouldn't bother with all that. Suri is a great dog and a great motivator for you to get outside a couple times a day and exercise yourself as well as your hound.
I wish I could get my cat to walk a little better on the leash. She is smart enough and loves to follow me - from in front. As soon as she figures out where I'm headed, she rushes on ahead of me until there is a decision to be made (change in path direction). Then she tries to 'look busy' until I catch up and she can figure out where I'm headed again - and she's off!
It's too cold to take her with me on walks now but I've still been tempted to stuff her in my big coat and take her with me anyway! The only thing holding me back isn't her, it's me. I know I'd tucker out too soon if I had to carry the 12 pound cat too. So I'll wait for spring and tax time to finish and hope she remembers all she learned last summer! Maybe I could get Suri to show her how to do this leash thing again.
Hi Bikette. A long time ago I read an article that talked about the differences in walking dogs and cats. It said that the cat enjoys surging ahead, a little exploring... It's all perfectly natural. Well, happy spring!
Thanks Trudy... Surging is ok - good for the cat, yes.... not so good for the olde broade on the other end of the leash! I wish I could keep up with her! Hubby says walking a cat is like pushing a rope - but I think he's just jealous ;-)

Good job working with her!! Hound dogs by nature are NOT easy to train. They are so independent yet so dependent on their nose, it feels dang near impossible to get anywhere with them sometimes.

At least, that's my opinion... and I have two beagles. :)

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