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5 Best Tools for your Reactive Dog!


These tools aren’t JUST for reactive dogs, but they are my go-to choices to help with working through reactivity. Do you use any of these tools in your training? If so, which ones?

1 Notebook

Making simple daily notes about your dog's behavior can make a world of difference! Even something like a smiley or frowning face drawn on a calendar is helpful over time!

2 Harness

Your reactive pup needs a safe, secure tool that won't cause damage or pain to the sensitive neck area if they go over their threshold for reactivity. I prefer the Blue-9 Balance Harness for this purpose.

3 Long leash

Decompression walks are fantastic for reactive pups! You'll need a long leash (at least 15 ft) and a safe, private space to allow your dog to sniff, explore and decompress. Check out this interesting field study for info about the way leash length affects a dog’s behavior and arousal: http://www.dogfieldstudy.com/en/pulse-study/at-the-heart-of-the-walk

4 Snuffle mat

Reactive dogs respond well to enriched environments that encourage sniffing. Bring your snuffle mat with you on your decompression walks to add familiar sniffy objects to new spaces!

5 Treat pouch

It is incredibly helpful to have treats on hand when you're out with your reactive pup. You can scatter them for your dog to encourage exploration and build positive associations with the environment. It also offers a nice place to keep your phone, which should NOT be in your hand while you’re walking your reactive dog!


Do you use any of these tools yet? Let me know in the comments!