Train Your Dog to Walk on a Leash
Edited by Mian Sheilette Ong, Lynn, Alma, Jen M and 1 other
One of the primary tasks of dog owners is to teach their dogs to walk on a leash. This is a major step in promoting discipline in the life of your furry companion. The leash should not be seen as a constricting, abusive tool, it's used to control your dog and keep him safe. When you walk your dog, you should walk primarily with the help of a leash. Your dog will immediately recognize that you want him or her to be by your side at all times. Mastering the dog walk and effective leash training take patience. Once you train your dog to walk on a leash, you will eventually be able to walk your dog without a leash, and he'll behave as if his being walked on a leash. While still on a leash, you should always be in control, for your safety and for your dog's safety. Just remember that during any kind of training, you should have patience and persistence. Let your dog know that you won't give up and you will earn their respect.
- 1 Significance of Leash Training
- 2 Training your Dog to Walk on a Leash Without Pulling
- 3 Train your Dog to Walk on a Leash
- 4 Choosing the Appropriate Walking Tool
- 5 What if Your Dog Refuses to Walk on a Leash?
- 6 Tips
- 7 Comments
Significance of Leash Training
The leash is often seen as a tool for making your dog a better companion during walks. It helps you control your fur baby, however, it should not be limited to keeping your dog close to you and just letting your dog walk in any manner.
Leash training involves manners. Once your dog recognizes the manners of walking on a leash, they will be able to obey you more, in turn, making them safer while you venture outside your home. You should always keep in mind that your dog should not take over by pulling on the leash. Pulling can be a detrimental habit, especially if the handler is disabled or if there are obstacles such as stairs and ongoing traffic. Neither should you be pulling the dog along.
Basically, leash training is a primer for walking your dog without a leash. When your dog is off leash, you can very well say that you have done your job at making your dog well-mannered, leash or no leash. By then, you will be able to bring your companion to dog parks and dog beaches. You can enjoy your dog's company without the fear of having a runaway or a lost dog to worry about. It all starts with proper leash training. Start as early as two months and you will be all set.
Training your Dog to Walk on a Leash Without Pulling
Keep in mind the following considerations when it comes to teaching your dog to walk on a leash without pulling:
- 1There is no fixed method for teaching your dog not to pull.Methods of training vary for every dog.
- 2Make your walks daily and fun.Think of your walks as training sessions.
- 3You should do this to drain your dog's energy before your loose leash training session. Pulling is mainly caused by pent up energy. So help your dog release that energy first before you conduct your loose leash training.Subject your dog to other forms of exercise until walking on a loose leash is mastered.
- 4Healthy and delicious treats are very helpful for making loose leash walking a positive experience for your dog. Make your treats small and easy to dispense and consume.Be ready with treats that your dog loves.
- 5When you walk fast, your dog will not have the chance to explore the ground, stop, or do anything else. If you move quickly, your dog will find you more enticing to follow.Make sure that you walk quickly.
Train your Dog to Walk on a Leash
Below are effective techniques to train your dog to walk on a leash properly:
- 1If you are fortunate enough to acquire your dog as a puppy, start immediately. It is best to leash train as you potty train. Place a leash on your puppy when it is time to go out for bathroom duties. Remember to give a treat for each step taken with the leash. Bathroom time is also associated with the leash and this is a positive thing. The reward for walking on a leash will be the bathroom break.Start training while young.
The "Stop and Go" Method
This is simple and effective. It's a method to train your dog to walk with a leash without pulling you.
- 1Put on the leash on your dog calmly.
- Walk in the direction you want to go. When your dog starts to walk ahead and pull, stop immediately.
- 2This will give the leash the slack that you want. Reward your dog once this is done.Wait for your dog to stop, turn, and come back to you.
- 3Make sure that your dog always walks at your side (left or right).
- 4Have patience.Repeat this every time you walk.
- 5Give treats every time your dog does this so he won't pull. This is only during the early stages of the training. Eventually, your dog will learn by being accustomed to your method, rather than his expectation of treats.You will notice your dog frequently stopping every time you walk with the leash.
Entice and Walk Method
This technique requires a ton of treats and great timing.
- 1Load your left or right hand with treats cut up into small pieces.
- 2Position your dog at your side, allowing for his nose to sniff out the treats.
- 3The moment your dog walks, pop a small treat into his or her mouth.Tell your dog your signal for walking ("Let's go", "Come on").
- 4Be patient. Make sure you always load up with treats.Repeat this for a few days or a few weeks.
- 5Just stand with your arm and hand loose on your side. Then, tell your dog to walk.Eventually, stop dispensing treats from your hand.
- 6Give treats for walking from your treat pouch or pocket.
The Return Method
This method should only be used if your dog is not wearing a prong collar, a pinch collar, or a choke collar.
- 1Attach a gentle collar and leash to your dog.
- 2Start walking.
- 3This could take a long time, so you have to be patient and persistent.Once your dog pulls, turn back to where you started.
Correcting the Collar Method
Jerking your dog's collar can be helpful in correcting the pulling habit while walking. #Make sure that your dog is wearing a regular collar with this method.
- 1Walk your dog.
- 2Do not pull it.When your dog starts to walk ahead or pulls, jerk the leash back.
- 3Use quick force to do the jerk.
- 4Use less force if you have a small dog or you'll end up with a flying lure at the end of the leash.If you have a big dog, use more force.
- 5Once your dog heeds your correction, you can reward him.
- 6Careful with the jerking or you will damage your dog's neck.
Choosing the Appropriate Walking Tool
Before you start walking your dog, it's best for you to find out which tool will work best for the two of you. Here are some of the choices to consider:
- Snap or buckle collar.
- Harness (anti-pull).
- Head collar or head halter (also called a snoot loop).
- Martingale collar (also called a greyhound collar or limited slip collar).
You should use these tools to teach your dog not to pull while walking. They should be associated with not pulling you while they walk. If you just use them on your dog without training, then they will be as ineffective as letting your dog pull you along the sidewalk.
Although these tools may be effective if used by a professional dog trainer, for training, these tools would be undesirable for you to use. Tools you should stay away from include:
- The regular body harness (encourages your dog to pull).
- A prong collar.
- A pinch collar.
- A check collar.
- A choke collar.
What if Your Dog Refuses to Walk on a Leash?
Not all dogs will accept the leash easily. They might just stop in their tracks or turn back home. These dogs are fearful and it's your responsibility to make walking on a leash a positive experience for them. Below are tips on how you can deal with dog that refuses to walk on a leash:
- 1Your dog's fear of walking on a leash can be overcome with your delicious morsels, which can help make the experience easier.Entice your dog with treats.
- 2The moment your dog moves towards you, reward him with a treat. Move some more and when your dog follows you, reward your dog again. Keep doing this until your dog becomes comfortable walking on a leash with you.The moment your dog stops walking, stop in front and wait.
- 3You can carry your dog a few feet to help your dog walk a few feet with you. When your dog moves, reward with a treat.If your dog refuses to walk continuously, a harness will be helpful.
- 4When your dog becomes confident enough, you can then start walking on busy streets.Choose a quiet path to walk with your dog.
- 5Your dog will eventually move forward. Reward when this happens.Make your dog forget about the fear of walking on a leash by performing tricks.
- 7Just have the persistence and the patience to do so, knowing that the end result will be a dog who is much safer.You can walk with your dog on a leash no matter how difficult it may seem.
- Know the treats your dog likes the most and provide them for his leash training.
- Practice walking on a regular basis so that your dog can be conditioned to walk on a leash.
- Never pull your dog to walk using the leash. This will hurt your dog's neck and he will refuse to walk again.