Is it really that important that you dog walk beside you (like Cesar recommends) instead of out in front?

It seems like my dog doesn’t enjoy the walk as much if she doesn’t get to sniff and smell and be out in front. Does it really make that much of a difference?

It depends on why you are walking your dog. If you are walking your dog for the reasons Cesar believes in, then it is very important that your dog walk beside or behind you. A walk like that is more an exercise of the mind than body. The purpose of that kind of walk is to establish pack structure and obedience.

If you are just walking your dog so it can go potty, get some exercise, and sniff around, then it is fine for your dog to be out in front as long as there are no dominance issues at home with your dog.

I rarely walk my dog now that we have established our pack structure. I happened to do a structured walk with her today, but more often than not, I’m doing recall training and frisbee with my dog.

13 comments

  1. Yes it is. Pack leaders always go first. If your dog is pulling in front of you he gets the impression that he is the leader
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  2. The point of making your dog walk next to you is so that you are alpha. And to make them see that they aren’t leading YOU. If that’s not important you can do what you like.
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  3. it’s only to show the dog that you are the boss. but hey, if your dog likes to walk in front, in which most dogs do, let him.
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  4. Depends. Is your dog dominant and controlling? If so, you need to keep her under control during walks. Dogs that walk ahead sometimes feel like THEY are in charge. If your dog is leash aggressive or otherwise, you should not let her be in charge during a walk.
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  5. Well, I think you have a bit more control, but I wouldn’t worry about it unless you have, like a wild and crazy hyper dog or pup. If she doesn’t jerk or jump at people, it’s all good. Let her enjoy the walk however she pleases.
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  6. I would say no, but some people feel the need to be in complete dominion over their pets.
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  7. I let my pup walk out in front so he can explore. I have noticed though, that when we encounter other people that he isn’t sure of or if we are in a high traffic area (as far as cars are concerned) he is by my side.

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  8. Don’t buy into the Cesar Milan crap. It’s just a fad.

    As long as your dog is walking on a loose leash and not bothering anybody, that’s fine. I have huskies, the breed was developed to be out in front. So my guys walk out in front of me. I just have to be alert to things they could pick up off the ground or broken glass they could step in and avoid those things. And if we approach other people, I always pull them back to my side so the people can pass without being sniffed since not everybody appreciates that.
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  9. The reason this is reccommended is so that the dog understands it’s position in your family "pack". If she’s out in front, she’s the leader – she gets to decide where she goes. That’s not advised if you want your dog to allow you to be "pack leader" on other matters…even stuff that’s non-related to walks. If she see’s herself as dominant and you submissive, it can cause trouble if you need to take charge or give instructions at some other point.
    This may not apply to you, but think of all those people you see who are being taken for a walk by their dogs, rather than the other way round. At the very least, it’s uncomfortable to have your arm yanked out each time you go out with the dog. But if there was some situation where your control was needed – say in a busy road, or around young kids etc – you need to know the dog will follow your directions. Those dogs who never stop pulling at their leads clearly wouldn’t take orders from anyone once they’re in their "walkies" mindset! It’s always safer that the dog knows it’s boundaries.
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  10. well i raise working border collies and on my ranch it is a MUST that they walk beside me a never get there head past my knee or if on a horse never past the front legs… And that is off leash.. the reason for this is with border collies when taking them into the field to work you want them to stay right at your side tell you say bring um..

    I belive that is a must to have your dog beside you and not out in front you have better control over the dog if hes beside not infront
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    rancher

  11. I wondered that too. I used to watch Cesar, but have stopped because people on here say he abuses dogs. I noticed he does hit them and poke them, so I stopped watching him

    I’ve just started walking my 4 month old pit and he walks ahead of me. I don’t have a problem with it. I did try to give him only a little bit of leash, so he would stay by my side but I kept stepping on his feet, and he kept bumping into my legs. It’s easier to let him walk ahead a little. He doesn’t have a problem w/ dominance, he knows who the boss is, so I let him walk how he wants.
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  12. It depends on why you are walking your dog. If you are walking your dog for the reasons Cesar believes in, then it is very important that your dog walk beside or behind you. A walk like that is more an exercise of the mind than body. The purpose of that kind of walk is to establish pack structure and obedience.

    If you are just walking your dog so it can go potty, get some exercise, and sniff around, then it is fine for your dog to be out in front as long as there are no dominance issues at home with your dog.

    I rarely walk my dog now that we have established our pack structure. I happened to do a structured walk with her today, but more often than not, I’m doing recall training and frisbee with my dog.
    References :

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