OB600: Healing Your Heeling Handling

Instructor: Nancy Gagliardi Little

Course Details

This course is designed for experienced handlers as well as new obedience handlers that know nothing about the finer points of handling during heeling in obedience.

Dogs make mistakes in heeling when they are not properly cued with smooth, consistent, and clear movements by the handler. This class will help you identify the areas of potential confusion in your handling and also help you develop better handling skills. Once you clean up your handling, your dog's heeling will improve. 

Many people struggle with heeling handling. If you have problems with footwork - like finding yourself on the wrong foot at the wrong time or focusing so much on your feet that you are late in executing, then this is the class for you. I have a different way of looking at handling that will shift your focus away from your feet.  If you have no idea what it means to handle turns, starts, and stops in heeling (and desire to do so), then this class is also for you.

We will focus on handling for heeling primarily without your dog. If your handling is perfect and we have time, I might have you add your dog for more of a challenge. 

My strengths are that I am creative, detailed oriented and I love to use my knowledge from agility to help people in obedience (same concepts, just a different application). I have a very unique way of helping people with handling - take your mind off of your feet and be more successful. Come and join us!!


There are no scheduled sessions for this class at this time. We update our schedule frequently, so please subscribe to our mailing list for notifications.

Registration begins at 12 noon PST.

Enrollment limits: Gold: 10 students, Silver: 15 students, Bronze: unlimited. If you are interested in a bronze level subscription, you can sign up at any time during the registration period.


Week 1


General Points & Terminology

Normal Pace & Straight Lines

Week 2

Left Turn

Right Turn

Week 3

About Turn

Week 4


Week 5

Speed Transitions

Week 6

Figure 8

Prerequisites and Equipment

Prerequisites - Gold students should be familiar with all the heeling elements in AKC obedience. You can be at any handling level - very experienced or inexperienced in the ring.

Equipment -

Some students will benefit from using a metronome. 

Masking tape or painters tape - it will help to have a contrasting color to the color of flat area you are working on (pavement, concrete mats, etc).

That's it!!

Course Testimonials

A Sampling of what prior students have said about this course ...

In Healing your Heeling, Nancy shares her unique approach to heeling. Her video observations are very astute and her feedback is targeted for each gold team. The level of detail in her demonstration videos and student comments is amazing! She also has the wonderful ability to help the handler re-frame their thinking in a positive way. This is a terrific class! Clarissa B

This class is just essential to heeling teamwork. I realized how much time I was spending on teaching my dog to stay with me in heel position without giving much thought to my responsibility to be a good leader in this dance. Breaking down every aspect of heeling and learning to feel it is making me more confident every day. What is amazing is that when I do my part right, my partner is right there with me and he clearly finds heeling so much easier. So very glad I took this course. I find myself practicing the feel and rhythm everywhere I go. Thank you, Nancy, for incredible tools. Mary Ann          

The attention to detail in this class was phenomenal. Nancy's knowledge of body posture and movement is incorporated into every lesson. The course provided structure and allowed each handler to create a successful plan to improve their heeling. Highly, highly recommended for anyone who has heeling issues. Ana C.           

We all teach our dogs how to heel, but this is the first time anyone taught me how to heel! That sounds funny, but every instructor of heeling I have had emphasizes their footwork - and all of it is different. But this class stresses what works for us humans in heeling. I has already made a huge difference in a problem I was having and I think I will be much more relaxed when I am heeling with my dog because I am so much less worried about me feet. I LOVED THIS CLASS!             

This is a great class to break down the mystery of heeling. I loved the help of eye and upper body cues do that the feet follow. Another outstanding class taught by an awesome instructor. Ginger M           

Very precise handling instruction. The best handler handling information Ive had.          

I only took this at gold because Denise was so certain that I should. I LOVED IT! Nancy, you have so thought through the issues we all have in our handling, specifically our feet, that you presented ideas and issues clearly and made it is for us to follow. This is in my top couple of favorite classes off all time! Thank you!