10 months old and Off-Leash! - Havanese Forum : Havanese Forums
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-24-2008, 08:20 PM Thread Starter
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10 months old and Off-Leash!

Today is Lola's 10 month birthday. For the past month she has been going on daily hikes with her new dog walker Aimee and her best friend Lefty, and a few others. They go in the grass, the ocean, all sorts of adventures. I had her hair cut down to under 1" because she is blowing coat and the hikes were too much to handle. Lola loves the outdoors alot for a city pup.

A 3-day weekend without her boyfriend had Lola pretty restless this morning. She kept jumping up for the door whenever she heard any noise outside, hoping it was Aimee and Lefty.

So at noon off we went to the local park - it is not fenced in, has traffic on 2 sides. It is filled with dogs of all sizes. Aimee said she had been working on recall with Lola and that she comes when called. But I didn't trust she would. Lola pulls at the leash when we walk and just loves other dogs so much, I figured she'd just run off. But we went, we got there, I took her off leash and she did GREAT! She chased around a pug to exhaustion, smelled alot of big dog butts, rolled around in the cool grass, stuck pretty close to me overall, and came when called three times! Treats helped. She always did "sit" for her treats, and lie down when lured. She was happy to come and get back on the leash to go home.

No accidents for the past month, coming when called, this kid seems to know how to make her mom one happy girl!

---Little Lola a.k.a. Princess Pee and Poop and her humom Anne

"Happiness is a warm puppy" Charles Schultz

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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-24-2008, 08:46 PM
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That's wonderful! Congratulations!

Best, Poornima
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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-24-2008, 08:46 PM
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Anne, that's wonderful!! Happy 10-month b'day , Lola!!!

It sounds like you all had a fun day.

Ricky and Sammy haven't been off-leash other than in a fenced yard or at the dog park, that is also fenced. I have not worked on recall all that much, so I'm not taking chances. lol Good to know Lola is doing so well.




Hello. My name is marj and I have MHS.




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“Come to the edge, he said. They said: We are afraid. Come to the edge, he said. They came. He pushed them and they flew.” -Guillaume Apollinaire"
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-24-2008, 08:49 PM
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What a good girl! Happy 10 months

Kim
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-24-2008, 08:49 PM
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Anne- Congrats! Sounds like a great doggy day. Isabelle pulls like crazy on the leash and even my husband finally said she behaves better offleash than on! Keep up the good training as it pays off!

Amanda

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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-26-2008, 12:00 PM
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Great job on the training. I agree with Amanda - it pays off big time. The first year is always hard, but the return on investment is wonderful.


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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-26-2008, 12:34 PM
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This might just be me, but I believe that off-leash is very risky when there are roads nearby. I have read too many tragic stories about very well trained dogs that see something across the street and can't resist. This was posted to one of the golden retriever lists a while back:

Trust- A Deadly Disease

There is a deadly disease stalking your dog, a hideous, stealthy thing just waiting its chance to steal your beloved friend. It is not a new disease, or one for which there are inoculations. The disease is called "Trust".

You knew before you ever took your puppy home that it could not be trusted. The breeder who provided you with this precious animal warned you, drummed it into your head. Puppies steal off counters, destroy anything expensive, chase cats, take forever to house train, and must never be allowed off lead!!

When the big day finally arrived, heeding the sage advice of the breeder, you escorted your puppy to his new home, properly collared and tagged, the lead held tightly in your hand.

At home the house was "puppy-proofed". Everything of value was stored in the spare bedroom, garbage stowed on top of the refrigerator, cats separated, and a gate placed across the living room to keep at least one part of the house puddle free. All windows and doors had been properly secured, and signs placed in all strategic points reminding all to "Close the door!"

Soon it becomes second nature to make sure the door closes nine tenths of a second after it was opened and that it is really latched. "Don't let the dog out" is your second most verbalized expression. (The first is "No!")

You worry and fuss constantly, terrified that your darling will get out and disaster will surely follow. Your friends comment about who you love most, your family or the dog. You know that to relax your vigil for a moment might lose him to you forever.

And so the weeks and months pass, with your puppy becoming more civilized every day, and the seeds of trust are planted. It seems that each new day brings less destruction, less breakage. Almost before you know it, your gangly, slurpy puppy has turned into an elegant, dignified friend.

Now that he is a more reliable, sedate companion, you take him more places. No longer does he chew the steering wheel when left in the car. And darned if that cake wasn't still on the counter this morning. And, oh yes, wasn't that the cat he was sleeping with so cozily on your pillow last night?

At this point you are beginning to become infected, the disease is spreading its roots deep into your mind.

And then one of your friends suggest obedience classes, and, after a time you even let him run loose from the car into the house when you get home. Why not, he always runs straight to the door, dancing a frenzy of joy and waits to be let in. And, remember he comes every time he is called. You know he is the exception that disproves the rule. (And sometimes late at night, you even let him slip out the front door to go potty and then right back in.)

Years pass- it is hard to remember why you ever worried so much when he was a puppy. He would never think of running out the door left open while you bring in the packages from the car. It would be beneath his dignity to jump out the window of the car while you run into the convenience store. And when you take him for those wonderful long walks at dawn, it only takes one whistle to send him racing back to you in a burst of speed when the walk comes too close to the highway. (He still gets in the garbage, but nobody is perfect!)

This is the time the disease has waited for so patiently. Sometimes it only has to wait a year or two, but often it takes much longer.

He spies the neighbor dog across the street, and suddenly forgets everything he ever knew about not slipping out doors, jumping out windows or coming when called due to traffic. Perhaps it was only a paper fluttering in the breeze, or even just the sheer joy of running... Stopped in an instant. Stilled forever- Your heart is broken at the sight of his still beautiful body.

The disease is trust. The final outcome, hit by a car.

Every morning my dog bounced around off lead exploring. Every morning for seven years he came back when he was called. He was perfectly obedient, perfectly trustworthy. He died fourteen hours after being hit by a car.

Please do not risk your friend and your heart. Save the trust for things that do not matter.

Diane
Mom to Scout (Havanese) and Roxy (Golden Retriever), three kids, and assorted other animals
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-26-2008, 03:25 PM Thread Starter
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Diane - thanks for the reality check. I do worry in the park that if another dog took off toward the street, Lola would follow. Dogs are the only thing that really distract her. So, it is a matter of wondering if you can trust the other dogs. And what would make me think I could trust a stanger and her/his dog????

---Little Lola a.k.a. Princess Pee and Poop and her humom Anne

"Happiness is a warm puppy" Charles Schultz

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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-26-2008, 08:28 PM
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Diane - that's a heartbreaking story and just so true. Only inside a fenced area do I ever trust mine off lead (and only if I'm sure that I can get between them and an open gate). Thanks for the reminder.


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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-27-2008, 06:41 PM
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A touching and necessary reminder, Diane. Thank you. I have never let them off-leash and dont' plan on it. I would love to see them off-leash in a fenced-in park or very large yard as they have never experienced that and I think it would be amazing to see them fly for longer distances than they do in our small backyard. I have heard too many horror stories about 'perfectly obedient and trustworthy' dogs. They are animals after all and I don't think any amount of 'come' or 'treat' or 'cookie' is going to distract a dog intent on chasing that squirrel he just spied.




Hello. My name is marj and I have MHS.




"The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated." Mahatma Gandhi

“Come to the edge, he said. They said: We are afraid. Come to the edge, he said. They came. He pushed them and they flew.” -Guillaume Apollinaire"
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