Training Shafts

As I have mentioned in my seminars, each dog has their own personality as well as specific things they may not like. One of the most common problem areas I have seen is dog's that initially do not like the cart shafts touching their sides. With these dogs, you need to be very patient and work with them so that they feel comfortable with the shafts. This can take many months or even a year or more for some dogs while others will take to it quite quickly.

For dogs that do not like the shafts touching their side, I would recommend four specific things that you can do to help your dog get over this.

1. Have a cart in an area your dog will come in contact with it daily so that it becomes an everyday object. This will allow them to become comfortable being around it.

2. Use a 1 to 2 foot long piece of old broom handle or something like that to rub against your dog's sides. Best way to start this is when your dog is very relaxed - perhaps while they are laying next to you while watching TV. Use treats to reward them.

3. Once they accept the "short shaft" you can try the "Training Shafts" described below.

4. Attend group training sessions so your dog can see other dogs pulling carts.


Training Shafts (click on photos for larger images)

The training shafts shown to the right can be easily made from parts obtained from your local home improvement store. You can attach them to the harness and let your dog pull them around. This is much safer than using a cart with a dog that might not be ready.

See more photos below.

You can make your own training shafts using the diagram and bill of materials included below.

If you would rather not make your own, I can build them for you for $25 plus shipping.

Click here for Bill of Materials.