Dog behavioral experts agree that regular walking bonds owner with animal, is a great opportunity for socialization, and improves a dog’s attitude and behavior. But walking can be difficult, and sometimes dangerous, for dogs that pull on the leash.
Robert K. Anderson, a retired professor from the University of Minnesota’s College of Veterinary Medicine, and co-inventor Ruth Foster, a longtime obedience instructor, struck the sweet spot for dog lovers everywhere when they perfected the Gentle Leader.
Hailed as a “miracle solution” when it was first released in the late 1980s, the collar controls the movements of a dog’s head during walks. The design enables owners to gently steer their dogs without choking them, and has proven to be an invaluable training tool.
With regular collars or harnesses, a dog’s reflex is to pull against the tension they experience to the throat or chest. But the light pressure the Gentle Leader exerts at the base of the head and nose leads the dog to pull against itself.
Thanks to this U of M invention, today, millions of dog owners enjoy stress-free walks with their best friend.