Are Off Lead Dog Parks Dangerous

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Apr 112016

Dog Walking & Training Syney Inner WestAs a dog trainer and walker and as the owner of 3 dogs I frequently use dog parks or areas where dogs are allowed to run free.  However, I am always aware of the risk involved in going to off lead areas as so many owners have not socialised their dogs properly or do not pay enough attention to their dogs at the park or don't understand the body language and behaviour of their own dog or of other dogs in the park.  I am constantly vigilant, watching intently to see that any dogs in my care are feeling confident, not being aggressive and are having a good time.

I also watch the other dogs in the park to make sure they are not acting inappropriately around the dogs in my care.  People often comment on how being a dog walker must be such a relaxing occupation and so much fun, which it is, but it is also quite stressful having to be constantly on the lookout to make sure my dogs are safe and I can return them to their owners happy and safe after their run in the park.

This article was published today raising a whole lot of issues relating to off lead parks and I am interested to hear what others think about Vicki's argument.



 Posted by on April 11, 2016

Working with Claire and Betty

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Jan 242016

Labrador Dog Training Sydney Inner WestI was contacted by Claire to help her with her 18 month old Chocolate Labrador Betty. Although Betty was generally very well behaved Claire was having difficulty with two behaviours. Firstly Betty pulled strongly on the lead making it difficult to walk her. This is a common problem experienced by dog owners and was easy to correct by showing Claire how to encourage Betty not to pull by using treats and other strategies such as changing direction. Betty’s walking on the lead soon improved and going for walks became a much more pleasant and relaxing activity for both Claire and Betty.

If you are looking for Labrador Dog Training Sydney Inner West, contact us now 0481184162!

The second behaviour that Claire wanted help with was a more unusual one. Claire reported that Betty, and many of the other dogs at the park where they usually walked, were obsessed with another dog who also walked there regularly. All the other dogs flocked around this one dog try to engage it in play but the dog was not interested in playing with any of them. Betty was particularly keen on trying to encourage the other dog to interact with her and the dog’s owner was concerned that her dog would get hurt as it was much smaller than Betty. In addition Betty often followed this dog to the other end of the park ignoring Claire efforts to call to call her back. This behaviour was making it difficult for Claire to exercise Betty at the park as the other dog was often there. Initially I worked with Claire to build Betty’s focus on her encouraging her to ‘check in’ more often. I also worked on strengthening her recall and initially encouraged Claire not to walk Betty at the park when the other dog was likely to be there. Although these strategies were partly successful as Betty was more responsive and her recall improved, she still remained focused on trying to get the other day to engage with her and pursuing it at the dog park. So another more effective solution had to be found.

Labrador Dog Training Sydney Inner WestAfter much thought, it occurred to me that maybe I could use some other object or activity as a way of distracting Betty and engaging her in a more acceptable activity. By talking to Claire I learnt that Betty was quite keen on playing with a tennis ball. So we decided to try and increase her interest in playing ball so we could use the ball as the object of her focus instead of her focusing on the other dog. Claire built up Betty’s interest by playing with the ball more and Betty soon became much more interested in playing and retrieving the ball instead of focusing on the other dog. So she rapidly lost interest in her obsession and happily played fetch with Claire instead.

This was an interesting experience for me as a trainer and reminded me to work with the dogs strengths instead of only increasing the dog’s level of obedience. We replaced one activity she enjoyed with another activity she enjoyed just as much. Claire is now able to take Betty to the park without her having to worry about her dog heading for the hills in pursuit of another dog and they can enjoy a fun time walking and playing with the ball.

 Posted by on January 24, 2016

I coudn’t believe how quickly she got me the result I was after

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Jan 242016

Betty the LabradorGaby trained my 18 month old labrador, Betty, with me over 4 sessions in Dec 2015 and Jan 2016. I couldn't believe how quickly she got me the results I was after. Walking on the lead without pulling, stopping chasing another dog she was obsessed with (smaller than Better so owner was worried about collisions), and general compliance.

I highly recommend Paw Partners and Gaby. Thank you! Claire Stretch


I loved working with Claire and the very lovely Betty.  Claire was very motivated and had a great rapport with  Betty.  I showed Claire how stop Betty pulling on the lead by using treats and by increasing Betty’s focus on her.  I encouraged Claire to use a ball to distract Betty from her obsession with another dog and this worked beautifully.  All in all a great success!
- Gabby

 Posted by on January 24, 2016

The Holiday Season

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Nov 072015

dog day care sydney inner westBelieve it or not the end of the year is fast approaching and its almost too late to find high quality care for your pets if you are going away.  We are almost fully booked but have some limited availability in early January if you are still looking for pet care.  If we cant help we can refer you to a couple of other carers who we know love and care for your pets in the same way we do.

Don't wait! Our Dog Day Care in Sydney Inner West is filling up, contact us now! 


 Posted by on November 7, 2015