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We've recently brought our first dog into the family, an 11wk old female Shiba Inu (Japanese dog had nothing to do with aikido BTW, Seriously! =P ) . By all accounts a difficult first dog, but she's been quite the dream in comparison to stories I've read from others about the breed. One trait that she exhibits that is perfectly in line with the breed is her stubbornness. In our daily leash training the goal is to teach her that she can't pull on the leash to get where she wants to go and that she can't lag behind, she has to stay with me when I'm walking. In the almost two weeks we've had her, she's picked this up pretty well, but it really seems to depend on me and the "connection" I maintain with her. If I let the leash go slack, she will often pick up her pace and try to pull me. If I get ahead of her and let slack get into the leash she will often stop to sniff and then fight against my desire to keep moving forward. If I maintain a very slight tension in the leash, whether she's in front or behind, she walks exactly as I expect her to. She seems to inherently feel and respond to the connection and knows immediately when it's not there or when I'm trying to muscle her. Once I noticed this I started to make it into an exercise for me as well. Taking the slack out of my own body and listening to her through the leash. I've learned that I can feel, through that connection, her subtle changes in direction and changes in her focus as they happen and adjust our connection accordingly so that it is maintained at all times. It makes it much easier for me to dictate where I want her to go if I maintain the connection and she seems to feel the subtle changes from me, through the leash to her and often just goes with it. Everything is aikido!