Walking easy!

Normal walking with a husky is NOT like walking another breed. Although they can be trained to heel, they are naturally inclined to pull, due to their breeding as (surprise surprise!) sled dogs.

This is what it usually looks like to walk Ishka. Pull. Pull. Pull. In the last couple of months, I've gone from three days of aching shoulders after every husky walk, to having some of the best upper body strength of my life.

However, yesterday, Ishka and I went for a walk with Judy and her family. Judy is an Airedale terrier, an appropriate size for socialising with huskies, who often have issues around smaller dogs. Judy is also a beautifully mannered lady from Oldiron Airedales, and I knew she would behave very properly, meeting another dog on neutral territory, which is important with an alpha female tomboy like Ishka.

To allow me to walk at a comfortable speed to chat to Judy's "mum", and ensure that I could keep Ishka from bothering Judy, I walked Ishka on a "haltie". MIRACLE!! Although Ishka wasn't thrilled about wearing it and tried several times to swipe the nose band off, she immediately walked more sedately. I was a little concerned when I went to put it on, as it is a lot smaller and lighter than most of our dog gear, which tends to be on the heavy-duty side. But, Ishka was so well behaved! She politely said hello to Judy and then walked on my far side without constantly attempting to visit/harass the other dog. It was almost like having a dog who had suddenly learnt to heel... because J has worked a lot with Ishka Frankie and Czar to walk properly on a haltie. Doesn't work so well on Bolo, of course! I was able to walk with a loose leash and rarely had to correct Ishka at all. Definitely something to try again!

Ok, I'm slow on the uptake, I know! Halties have been around for ages, I just haven't used one before. Talk about instant conversion!