Dog Training

Boudaries Lead to Freedom

July 11, 2024

Giving ourselves and our dogs certain purposeful boundaries will lead to greater freedom down the road.

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Giving ourselves and our dogs certain purposeful boundaries will lead to greater freedom down the road.

“Boundaries lead to freedom” is something we say often in our dog training business. The goal in placing increased “boundaries” in our dog’s life is to ultimately INCREASE your dog’s freedom down the road. Let me illustrate with one specific boundary we teach: the focused heel.

The Boundary of a Focused Heel

In our Chaos to Calm training program we teach a focused heel. To us that means your dog stays exactly at your side, with their ear next to your leg. Your dog learns to move with you no matter which way you turn.

Focused Heel and how it Increases Freedom | Boundaries lead to freedom | Cornerstone Dog Training

If before training, walks with your dog meant running everywhere, pulling, sniffing, barking at everything, and generally not taking any direction from you, then this new way of heeling is definitely increasing a boundary. But there’s a reason we teach it; a bigger purpose!

This increased boundary will lead to greater freedom on your walks. Although not 100% of your walk needs to be a focused heel, your dog needs the skill of being able to have a focused heel whenever you ask. Here’s why!

Freedoms that Come From a Focused Heel

You’ll be able to easily go places with your dog that you’ve never gone before, like hiking or walking inside a dog-friendly store. You as the owner will have more emotional and physical bandwith (because walks will be so much more enjoyable), I wouldn’t be surprised if there’s an increase in duration and frequency of walks as well.

Focused Heel making it so you can take your dog to stores | Boundaries lead to freedom | Cornerstone Dog Training

There’s also a HUGE increase in freedom for your dog’s mental state. Your dog will experience freedom from walk-induced anxiety. Dogs can have anxiety when they feel the need to police and manage everything they see. Although they don’t want the added responsibility, in their mind they are obviously in charge while on walks.

How about freedom from distractions? Distractions pull your dog’s mind in this way and that every few seconds, which is totally chaotic and overwhelming.

Your dog will also experience freedom to feel safe as you walk together, your dog knowing you’re in charge and will handle anything that comes your way. Talk about a relationship booster!

Focused heel on a hike with your dog | Boundaries Lead to Freedom | Cornerstone Dog Training

And all that is just from a focused heel! I haven’t even mentioned the other commands and boundaries! So much good stuff.

Boundaries truly lead to freedom!

The tools we use in teaching a focused heel and other specific boundaries that will lead to more freedom:

Herm Sprenger prong collar–This is by far our favorite brand of prong collar. Please learn from a professional trainer the correct way to use this amazing tool. Your trainer can also help you with deciding the correct size to buy.
Ecollar Technologies Mini Educator— Another amazing tool that requires training to know how to correctly use it. But the benefits will be well worth it! Such an AMAZING dog-training tool!

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