dogs on trail rides? - Page 4 - The Horse Forum
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post #31 of 80 Old 04-09-2012, 09:56 PM
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post #32 of 80 Old 04-10-2012, 09:53 AM
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my dog stays right with me, but my barn owners great pyrenees goes romping ahead, finds a pond or stream to submerge herself in up to her eye balls, then, when the horses are parrallel, she leaps out! thankfully I have become the master of sitting the spook, and she has earned herself the title of swamp monster :)
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post #33 of 80 Old 04-10-2012, 10:38 AM
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Some friends I ride with always have several rescue dogs. It always seems like they are afraid to cross the rivers. All the horses, riders and the other menagerie of dogs gte across. But we always have one that somebody has to go back, catch and carry across in their saddle or if bigger, Throw them in the river and make them swim.

I'm grateful my friends bring their collection of dogs. That run all around and under foot and my horses have become very accustomed to dog being nearby.
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post #34 of 80 Old 04-10-2012, 11:46 AM
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I used to take my Rottweiler trail riding with me all the time - never used a leash on him while I was in the saddle. IMO, that's just asking for disaster.

I took him through about five levels of formal obedience training (including getting the CGC and ATTS certificates) and practiced the same basic obedience commands (heel, sit, down, stay, come) while I rode in an enclosed area before taking him "out" with me.

He was a really, really awesome trail dog - my horse seemed to enjoy the company, too, since we often rode out alone.

It helps that Rotties are working dogs, and one of the jobs they were bred to do was driving, and he LOVED his "job." Even when we ran into other trail users, wildlife, other dogs, etc. he never left my horse's side unless I actually told him to. On one occasion, I knew there was a loose dog ahead so I had my boy "sit" and "stay" out of sight while I rode on ahead, chased the loose dog back to its house, and then went back and collected my own dog (about 100 feet away) before continuing on.

The biggest thing with taking ANY dog out in public is to be mindful and courteous of other people. Not everyone likes dogs, not every horse does either.

It is your job, and your responsibility, to properly train and socialize your dog. As much as I like dogs, I don't like it when people (hikers, or other horse-people) bring unruly dogs with them and just let them run free. In fact, if someone's loose dog does run up to my horse and starts circling, tryin to nip at his legs, etc. I will politely ask the dog's owner if they would come and collect the dog - or, if they'd prefer, my horse would kick the dog back to them. That usually gets the point across.

If your dog does not have a reliable "recall," it's not ready to be off-leash in a public area.

(this applies to children, too )
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post #35 of 80 Old 04-11-2012, 05:10 AM
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Completely agree with Jolly Badger on all points.

I have a nearly-two-year-old crossbred sighthound. Her initial reaction to anything running away from her is to chase it, and running is her great love. For all of her life, we've been planning a distance-ride through South America, and from December to March of this year we were in Chile making initial preparations. For Delta, this was her first sustained period of being around horses and we really went back to obedience 101, teaching correct behaviour around livestock (chickens are fascinating, you know?), teaching that 'here' still means the same thing even when the command is given from the back of a horse, etc. etc.
We worked on her 'side' command for when we're on public roads, on her 'wait' command to stop her getting too far up ahead, and her 'no' command for forestalling her chasing tendencies or stopping her crossing someone's boundary line.
However, we've got an issue with feral or semi-feral dogs, and guard dogs. Chile is the land of stray and free-running canines, and Delta has had to learn to deal with these animals too - her initial reaction with all dogs is 'PLAY!' but she's had to learn to ignore that reaction because many of these dogs have simply had the play trained out of them. They guard or they chase. Since we're mounted on two horses and leading two others, we can't always be there to get Delta out of problems so we need her to be able to make her own decisions, including a threat if necessary. I have ridden down a chasing dog on occasion because quite simply a number of chasing dogs starts having a pack mentality and when the target is a littler dog, the odds are very unbalanced. We are noticing that with time and repeated commands, Delta is starting to walk closer and closer to the horses' legs when we pass roaming dogs - this seems to put the potential chaser off a bit. It also helps that she's got the sighthound turn of speed and so she can outrun most dogs.
However, we're still working on all of this (she's still an adolescent, after all) and the time that she thought that chasing a herd of geese towards the horses was a good idea is still etched in my memory...
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post #36 of 80 Old 04-11-2012, 10:27 AM
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I used to take my Rottweiler trail riding with me all the time - never used a leash on him while I was in the saddle. IMO, that's just asking for disaster.
I took him through about five levels of formal obedience training (including getting the CGC and ATTS certificates) and practiced the same basic obedience commands (heel, sit, down, stay, come) while I rode in an enclosed area before taking him "out" with me.
He was a really, really awesome trail dog - my horse seemed to enjoy the company, too, since we often rode out alone.

Wow, that was one awesome Rottie! Good job!
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post #37 of 80 Old 04-11-2012, 05:45 PM
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I am going on a trail ride next weekend, that specifically says "no dogs"! I guess something had happened last year at this ride with a dog, so they are saying no more.
I've seen others that say dogs must be on leash at all times, even when riding.
If i were riding with others, i would just leave mine at home, easier that way, just in case something happens
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post #38 of 80 Old 04-12-2012, 07:35 PM
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I think using a leash is a horrible idea...that's just an accident waiting to happen. You have to know your dog. If you think they may run off, then it's probably best not to take them. I bring my Golden and Rott (but not at the same time)- they are very good about staying right with me and keeping out of my horse's path. My Jack Russell, however, stays home for rides because he likes to chase things and has a bit of a complex. If you can walk your dog successfully without a leash and they listen to you, it's probably safe to bring them riding.
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post #39 of 80 Old 04-13-2012, 09:04 AM
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Our dog comes with us on trail rides and isn't leashed. He's sort of a velcro dog. Black and tan, heeler and corgi. 95% of the time he stays right behind the last horse. He doesn't chase deer, rabbits, squirrels unless he actually stumbles upon them. Most of the time they are long gone before he gets there. He comes like a champ. 100% reliable. The only problem we have is when we meet hikers he will circle out 50 feet around them. He's a rescue and after 4 years he is STILL wary of strangers. We have a ton of deer at home and I have called him off a deer chase. He was very badly abused before we got him and has an embedded collar scar. I can't take any credit for his training - He can't seem to learn anything other than come and sit and those he already knew. He LOVES trail rides and walks (he goes off leash) and he stays with us like glue. I think he's actually scared we'll leave him! LOL
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Last edited by HagonNag; 04-13-2012 at 09:04 AM. Reason: typo
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post #40 of 80 Old 04-15-2012, 01:27 PM
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we always have our dog with us in the barn nd around the horses, and he comes in the ring with us and stuff, so Bruin, our dog was used to just going round the ring with horses and following them. So then we just rod aruond the yeard and Bruin would follow, so we eventually tried goingnout in a public place along the bay in NS and he stayed with us. Mind you we would call his name every ooften so his attention was still on us, and he was so well behaved that he now just stays with the horses and us wherever we go! :)
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