obedience heeling exercise - the Heeling Maze with Janice Gunn

This is a great exercise to maintain an advanced heeling dog and also for a dog that has new heeling skills and you are working on body awareness. This exercise forces you as a handler to look where you are going and cue your dog appropriately.

The maze I have set up is quite tight, so if I don’t cue my dog and handle myself properly we are going to crash into objects. The objects I have set up are a variety of things, including gutters, manikins and more. It also helps dogs to become less visually aware and sensitive of their surroundings.

I make up different configurations of what route I am going to take and I do not pre-plan where I am going, this forces me to look where I am going and cue my dog which in turn helps my dog to pay attention to me and my cues!

If you have made heeling fun for your dog it will show in an exercise like this, especially as I am not making any encouragements for behaviour, it is my reinforcement history with both food/toy and me that allows my dog to heel happily without constant support.

Janice Gunn