Teaching Dog to Heel

by ronnie

Why are you suppose to teach a dog to heel on your left side?

Comments for Teaching Dog to Heel

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great answers
by: ronnie

just wanted to say thanks to both karen and anna for the great explanations. since i'm not competing will probably heel on the right.

Heel . . .
by: Karen

FOUND THIS ANSWER ON "YAHOO ANSWERS". WRITTEN BY A VET. Makes perfect sense, and it's logical.

Having dogs heel on the left goes back years. The reason is that if the dog is heeled on the left side of the owner, that their right hand is free for other things.

The stepping forward with your left leg actually becomes a signal for your dog to move with you. If you say heel and always step with your left leg first, your dog will associate that with moving forward with you. If you ask your dog to stay, you'd step with your right leg first. This becomes a signal for your dog to stay. Eventually you'll be able to step with your left and your dog will heel, or step with your right and your dog will stay in place, without you even saying a word.

Of course if you aren't going to be competing, you can have your dog heel on which ever side you want. Just change the foot you'd step with for heeling or staying.

right or left
by: ronnie

so does it matter today? can i teach my dog to heel on my right? it just seems more comfortable to me

Gun side
by: Anna K

Goes back to when dogs were hunted and you wanted them on your left side as most people carried rifles with barrel down on their right side.

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