Post # 1
My cattle dog mix is fairly good on a leash- she’s not perfect but we’ve worked on it with her a lot and she has done a good job. Except for in winter- specifically when there’s snow on the ground. She now thinks that outside is her own personal buffet. She LOVES to eat the snow.
This is partially our fault because one of her favorite treats is ice cubes from the freezer- and we thought “why not? No calories, its just water, and she loves it!” So, she goes outside and sees ice/snow everywhere and thinks it’s her lucky day.
And when I say she loves it… I mean she’s, like, borderline obsessed. Suddenly she’s not the same dog we taught all of those good leash manners to. She has her nose to the grass all the time, she pulls on the leash to get that particularly good looking chunk of ice, and when there is a stretch of sidewalk with no grass (we live by a parking lot) she tries to RUN to the next area where there might be snow. She’s acting like a friggin coke addict or something (haha).
I have two issues with this:
1) It’s annoying. Ok, I admit when she first started acting this way last winter, we thought it was funny, but now its not. And none of the techniques we used to teach her good walking behavior has helped.
2) When it’s not 100% freshly fallen snow like we have now (we just got our first snow of the season… yay?) snow is DIRTY. There could be anything in there. I get especially concerned about the bright blue chemical salt that the church on the corner uses on the sidewalks when it’s icy. We have managed to keep her away from that junk for the most part (she doesn’t eat stuff off the sidewalk, only on the grass), but still. I’m concerned about her health.
I’m at a loss. Anyone have any tricks that I may not be thinking of to get her to stop this?
and.. because I just feel like sharing my adorable dog with you….
Post # 3
What do you use to walk her? A neck collar?
You could try either a Gentle Leader or the Easy Walk harness, they both reduce pulling. I personally like the Gentle Leader best. Most people don’t use it properly though. Some dogs find it very annoying, so it can take time training them just to get used to wearing it before even using it, but it can really help improve leash manners when used properly.
Post # 4
@delovely13: aww what a cutiepie! what breed is she?
we use an around-the-nose harness on our little dog. it definitely decreased her pulling (she pulls so hard without it she starts to choke herself!), but she’s gotten a little used to it over the years.
if you don’t want her to eat snow, would you want to try a muzzle?
Post # 5
Hahah awww what a little character.
Could you try bringing her to a closed off dog area to run around like a crazy to tire herself out a bit? Then resume the walk when she’s pooped….
Post # 6
Maybe let her out in an area for a bit off leash at the beginning of/before a walk (i.e. a tennis court) so she sort of snow herself out?
My last dog loved snow SO MUCH, we’d often find that he climbed on top of the patio table to eat the freshest, untouched snow. He was a Golden Retriver… it was always a weird sight to see him ON a table. We used to bring him in bowls of snow to eat, too.
And BTW, your dog will probably eat worse things than dirty snow haha. If you can avoid it, do, but I wouldn’t fret about that too much (my dog was apparently a snob and preferred untouched snow)
Post # 7
I dont have any advice but I wanted to say shes a cutie! My dog loves snow too, though not as much. She’ll get up on two legs and hop around while trying to catch falling flakes. She will also bring in chunks of frozen snow in the house (we let her out on an attached deck) to play with it. Dogs are characters.