Friday, November 14, 2014

Love That Leash!

Jedi & Roxy -- leashed and loving life
I was on a call last week and had a guy tell me -- with pride! -- that his two Australian shepherds have never been on a leash. He was taken aback by my response: "Oh, how sad." Then he proceeded to tell me that his dogs were so well trained that they never left his property. (Mind you, the area of his front and back yard combined was probably 1600 square feet.) Guy reiterated that his dogs have never been on a leash, like it was some sort of supreme accomplishment. Or maybe leashes were for lower class dogs. For mutts. He had no clue why I thought this was such a tragedy.
I've mentioned the importance of leash training before in relation to animal control officers, veterinary clinics and boarding kennels -- all of which use leashes on dogs. You never know when a dog may end up at one of these places. But think of all the other things that Guy's poor dogs have missed out on because they're owner was too proud (lazy? ignorant?) to teach them how to walk on a leash:
  • Long walks on the beach
  • After dinner strolls around the neighborhood
  • Trips to the pet stores
  • Shopping at Home Depot
  • Dining at pet-friendly restaurants
  • Going to the Pet Expo
  • Perusing the Riverside Arts Market
  • Raising money with charity dog walks
  • Holiday costume parades
  • Nursing home visits
  • Competing in dog sports like obedience, rally, nose work or barn hunts
  • Hiking the Arboretum
  • Attending concerts in the park
  • Checking out the Artwalk
  • Running the bases at a minor league baseball game
  • Meeting the kids at the bus stop after school
  • Jogging the track with Dad at the high school
  • Running alongside a bicycle
  • Becoming an AKC Canine Good Citizen
I'm not saying that every dog needs to be able to heel perfectly -- Lord knows mine can't! -- but all dogs should know how to walk on the leash if they are to be a part of today's society. Leash laws are nationwide. On a happier note, more and more establishments are opening their doors to well behaved, leashed dogs. Confining a dog to the same 1600 square feet for its entire life because you're too conceited to leash train your dog is just plain mean. And in my book, it makes you a Dumb Ass Dog Owner. "My dogs have never been on a leash" should be said with shame, not hubris. Dumb Ass.
Want to read about more Dumb Ass Dog Owners? Click around below to see some of the other posts in this hop. You'll laugh, you'll scream, and you'll thank God you're not "That Guy."-- K
P.S. What fun things do you so with your leashed dogs?

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