No Stalking while Walking! – eileenanddogs

A white dog with reddish brown ears and ticking is standing on grass and alertly watching something off camera
Lewis looking at a man in the neighborhood shift his trash can

I have been strolling two to 3 canines just about every working day since April 2021. A single of my aims is to give them the most fun and independence feasible in the constraints of strolling on leash in a suburban community. I have a publish in the will work about the methods I do the job on these objectives. But in the meantime, I’m sharing this fun distinction in the actions of a few dogs.

I reduce the handle I set on walks with the canine. They are on leash, but I give them all the freedom I safely can. I have really few “rules.” There are several paths as a result of the streets of my quiet community, and they get to choose. I live at the stop of a T intersection, so even at the starting, there are three directions to go. I really do not have a rule forbidding backtracking, which makes for walks that are international to a purpose-oriented human. Just one of my puppies (Lewis) from time to time takes “walks” that really don’t even go anywhere and appear chaotic to this human. We often shell out a ton of time with him undertaking electrical power sniffing in my front lawn in the flowerbeds. That is his option, so which is good.

A white dog with reddish brown ears and ticking is sitting in a street next to a driveway looking at something off camera.
We stayed right here for about five minutes even though Lewis watched a rabbit

A buddy just lately asked me what procedures I do have. Hold in head we stroll in the suburbs, and the puppies are on 6-foot leashes. I explained 1) a doggy just cannot go over six ft into someone’s lawn 2) no being out in the middle of the avenue for way too extensive 3) If there is a car parked on the street, we stroll all-around it on the outside (the avenue facet) with each other somewhat than going for walks in someone’s property and 4) the doggy requirements to observe my lead when I have to intervene, say, if a car is coming or we have to have to stay clear of a thing.

But I forgot 1 rule. The fifth rule is no stalking: no turning to comply with other walkers at a near distance soon after they pass us. The amusing thing is that all three of the puppies I walk with want to stalk, but for a few distinct good reasons.


Clara is curious. Even even though she was formerly feral, and her human social circle is four persons large, she is curious about individuals. Just not in an affiliative or sociable way. She’s intrigued in the very same way she may well be captivated to an inanimate item with a novel smell. As well as people today transfer, so that helps make them far more intriguing! But not as…people.

When we were actively playing catch-up socialization at the browsing shopping mall when she was young, she got comfy enough that she desired to stick to passersby so she could get a great whiff. You can see it in the movie at the previously mentioned website link. I allow her do it sometimes in that locale, due to the fact stalking was significantly less noticeable with lots of individuals milling around. But if you are walking on a suburban avenue and someone passes you, they will observe if you instantaneously flip close to and observe them. So I don’t enable her do it straight away, although if she still desires to when they are a socially suitable length absent, I permit her comply with or at least enjoy.


Lewis is normally aroused on his walks. He is reactive, but in an thrilled Tarzan fashion. Men and women and canines thrill him. He may give off a bark or two when he sees a person, but if they beckon, he will be all above them. Basically all about them if I really do not intervene. We do not interact with most men and women we see. There are three whom we cease and say hi there to. But for these other individuals who transfer on—nothing would make him happier than to adhere to them, see what they’re up to, and catch up and soar on them.

Choo Choo

Choo Choo is my pal and partner’s chihuahua mix. She experienced a rough get started in everyday living and has lots of fears. Above a number of yrs, she has realized to go for walks. She enjoys it and has develop into quite brave about new matters and checking out on a microscale. Her behavior is an exciting mixture. When she sees persons, she appears fairly quiet about them (apart from she hackles up). But as before long as they go, she needs to stick to and (quite possibly) capture up to them. Her philosophy is that the greatest protection is surveillance, and her working experience is that coming up from at the rear of is the safest. Considering the fact that most individuals really don’t get pleasure from becoming stalked by a modest, powerful doggy, I do not allow for this! But we do halt and check out.

The Purpose of Subsequent

I believe it is exciting that all 3 dogs want to follow the walkers who go by, but for completely various motives:

  • Clara: non-affiliative curiosity
  • Lewis: reactive sociability
  • Choo Choo: panic

Their behaviors look unique, too. Clara’s is calm and neutral she is intrigued but not passionately so. You may well see her sniffing the air. Lewis is excited and may perhaps pressure to capture up. He may permit out a yip or two. Choo Choo is hackled up and also intent on relocating forward, but for the opposite rationale.

If the people going by had wished to interact, they would have stopped. So in all situations, I avoid the conduct. Sad to say, it’s socially unacceptable. But if I ended up attempting to modify it by schooling, I would have to have to know the functionality.

For Clara, there is no way to strengthen the predicament with teaching at this issue. Even even though she will walk up to a stranger and accept a cookie, she does it as a trained actions. She is well mannered and cooperative, but does not want to be close friends. So letting her trail people to sniff them simply cannot finish effectively. Both they will be weirded out, or they may perhaps transform around to be friendly, and she’d instead not interact. In most cases, you cannot say to a stranger, “Hey, could you stand however with your arms to your sides and glance at that lamppost when my canine sniffs you?” So I control her actions. The best I can do with passing persons is enable her flip all over and sniff as they go away (but not observe them) and consider to present her with other intriguing matters to sniff and look into.

For Lewis, we are performing on his exhilaration, but not methodically. As he makes much more close friends, potentially he will not want to stalk folks so substantially. With his existing good friends, we exercise not dropping his brain (four on the ground and no leaping or pawing). And when individuals who are not his buddies (yet) go us by, he receives to check out and sniff (but not abide by) like Clara.

A white dog with reddish brown ears and ticking is standing in the street and watching two people and two dogs walking away in the distance on the
Lewis viewing a team of two people today and two puppies from a polite length

For Choo Choo, we are doing the job step by step on her worry. We do advertisement hoc counterconditioning when we are unavoidably near to individuals, and that has created her much additional cozy around time. She is also pretty decisive about turning absent from nearly anything she doesn’t like the seems to be or audio of. But I believe it will often be significant for her to check people today we have handed, and she will not want to cease tailing them. She does not get to do the tailing, but as with the other pet dogs, we at the very least transform all-around and look at the people today go away.

The Reputation of Stalking

I have discovered that a lot of other canines want to follow passersby!

If you stroll your canines on leash, do they want to stalk persons or canines who have handed? What do you observe as the perform? Do you at any time allow them?

Copyright 2022 Eileen Anderson