Pro Tips: Exercises Using the Long Line: The Treat Toss Exercise

In the February 2024 issue, we shared a pro tip on the benefits of using a long line. Many dog handlers struggle with leash-related challenges such as pulling and leash reactivity, and there are many benefits to working on a long line. This work involves practicing exercises and playing games on a long line, which eases tension on the line, gives dogs room to move, and helps us teach dogs to walk next to us, with or without a line. 

One such exercise is the treat toss. In this video, I remind viewers of the benefits of working on a long line, explain the purpose of the treat toss exercise, and demonstrate both the treat toss and treat scatter exercises with Nejra, my Malinois. 

Here are a few more tips for having fun with the treat toss exercise:

 Start on a surface where the dog can see the treat easily and don’t toss the treat too far. Examples:

  • Carpet
  • Hardwood flooring
  • Asphalt 
  • Rubber garage mats

 Progress to tossing the treat farther out, but still reachable with the long line attached.

 Progress to working on grass, where the dog must now smell for the treat.

 Progress to tossing the treat farther out on grass.