Here is a video demonstrating the process of “stop and go” walking. The objective is to get your dog tuned in to you as you slow or stop so they become aware of pressure from the leash, collar or harness and slow to walk at your pace. The training is done using food rewards or a tug game, if that is what your dog prefers. The dog must be rewarded for slackening the leash on their own in order to condition this behavior.
For short periods (less than one minute or about a ½ block of city street) notice when your dog starts to go ahead. Just before the leash tightens, stop, keeping your hands and arms near your sides. You can wait for your dog to look back at you or return to you or you can make a sound to get their attention.
As they return, praise and treat, go forward again. The leash may tighten some but should have a bit of slack at all times. At the end of each short session, give your dog a recess to the end of the leash to sniff around and do what they want.
Nancy also teaches classes through our Train the Bay program, now offering virtual classes.
Questions? Visit Berkeley Humane’s Resource Center for more information on our programs and services.