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Old 03-07-2011, 11:56 AM   #1
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Default Basic Safety Training Tips for Owners

This is Not about how to train your Yorkie, but how to train/instill into yourself some good habits vs a vs keeping your Yorkie safe when out and about. Something akin to a safe driving or defensive driving course.
I was inspired to write this thread, because of a recent close call of mine, and a recent thread on here. And just so all know I have stories to tell about each one of my suggestions.

No 1. Check your "equipment out" prior to a walk. That means quickly look over your harness and lead, make sure there are no rips or tears, and what ever type of closure you have it is in good working order.

No. 2. Put your harness and leash on inside the house. Quick check to make sure the closure is firmly closed, and not just halfway. Ditto with snap on lead.

No. 3. Be situationally aware from the start. That means if you can, look out your front door, assess what is going on in the moment, prior to opening the door. BTW although this isn't about the dog training, it is a very good idea, that all dogs, are trained to exit the door after you, not ahead of you, and certainly not rushing out the door as if to catch the express train to freedom.
Now open your door look down make sure your path is clear, and then step out.

No. 4 Be situationally aware on your walk. Your eyes need to be constantly moving, to the side, ahead of you, etc. Here you want to see first if a dog is off lead, if a dog is outside in a "gated" yard, if there are a whole group of school kids out for a day's outing, if there are other dog walkers approaching you, etc, etc.

No., 5 It is poop pick up time. Make it a habit to always close lead your dog when you pick up poop. That means shorten up the lead so that the dog stays within a foot of your leg. You can practise your sit/stay with your dog at this time. Poop pick up time, is when we can be quite distracted as we are focussed on an "unpleasant task" that we want to get done in the minimum amount of time.
If there are dogs walking towards you, you have a decision to make, wait until they pass, or if you think you have the time, stoop and pick up. The last thing you want is to be in a squat, your head down, your off balance and some strange dog wants to come up and say "hi" enthusiastically to your 4lb Yorkie. Some folks may prefer to pick up their dog. Your choice, but make whatever you do so habitual that it is automatic for you.

No 6: Car rides: Travel with your dog in an approved crate, or car dog seat/holster etc. Even on short trips to the store; actually especially on short trips. Accident reporting shows the bulk of accidents happen just within a 5mile radius from your home. A "gentle" rear ender could see your free Yorkie bouncing off the windshield or the back of the front seat.

No 7 Removing your dog from the car. Again first is situational awareness. If you are a city dweller, the preference would be to remove your dog onto the sidewalk and not onto the street side. Don't remove your dog, when walkers are passing by, or other dogs are around. You can wait a moment or two. Now you have a choice here. Your dog needs to be trained that they don't move out of the car until that leash is on, and you give the go ahead. How you train your dog to this is up to you. I usually in the early days, find a quiet park, deserted, and with treats, get the dog to sit stay, until I put the leash on. With my Yorkie he is trained to jump up in my arms (he gets a treat), and I quickly put on the lead. My body is oriented in towards the car until I'm sure that leash is on, and I have control of him.

Writing all this has taken 100x longer than putting the above into practise.

Have a safe and happy day with your Yorkie
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Old 03-07-2011, 12:00 PM   #2
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Excellent thread Gail. Very important reminders for everyone.
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Old 03-07-2011, 12:02 PM   #3
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Great post! It's stuff we know, but become complacent about.
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Old 03-07-2011, 12:11 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by KazzyK810 View Post

Great post! It's stuff we know, but become complacent about.
Thanks gals. that's why we need to create habits. Like never move the car until your seat belt is on, it's so automatic for me, I always do it.

Add to the list, I don't think I've covered near everything.
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Old 03-07-2011, 01:46 PM   #5
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Great and sobering reminder. How to keep our babies safe is always appreciated. Thank you so very much.

I have been on YT a while and feel like a dummy for asking, but is there a good way to save this other than just copying it and pasting into a Word document. My Word 2003 is so slow I am hesitant to use it.
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Old 03-07-2011, 01:53 PM   #6
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No 7 Removing your dog from the car. Again first is situational awareness. If you are a city dweller, the preference would be to remove your dog onto the sidewalk and not onto the street side. Don't remove your dog, when walkers are passing by, or other dogs are around. You can wait a moment or two. Now you have a choice here. Your dog needs to be trained that they don't move out of the car until that leash is on, and you give the go ahead. How you train your dog to this is up to you. I usually in the early days, find a quiet park, deserted, and with treats, get the dog to sit stay, until I put the leash on. With my Yorkie he is trained to jump up in my arms (he gets a treat), and I quickly put on the lead. My body is oriented in towards the car until I'm sure that leash is on, and I have control of him.


Another suggestion is to attach the leash before you detach from the car harness/booster.
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Old 03-07-2011, 06:21 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jojomima View Post
No 7 Removing your dog from the car. Again first is situational awareness. If you are a city dweller, the preference would be to remove your dog onto the sidewalk and not onto the street side. Don't remove your dog, when walkers are passing by, or other dogs are around. You can wait a moment or two. Now you have a choice here. Your dog needs to be trained that they don't move out of the car until that leash is on, and you give the go ahead. How you train your dog to this is up to you. I usually in the early days, find a quiet park, deserted, and with treats, get the dog to sit stay, until I put the leash on. With my Yorkie he is trained to jump up in my arms (he gets a treat), and I quickly put on the lead. My body is oriented in towards the car until I'm sure that leash is on, and I have control of him.


Another suggestion is to attach the leash before you detach from the car harness/booster.
Excellent! I always do this. I take my time and focus, especially when I have both Max and Teddy with me because they are runners.
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