Leash Training

Leash training involves teaching a dog to walk on a leash with no pulling or jerking. There are three major techniques for imparting this knowledge to your favorite pooch.  But before you set out on that trail, there are a few things you’re going to need.  You’ll need some sort of collar, whether it be a simple buckle collar, a head halter (not for use on short-muzzled breeds) or a harness (not recommended for strong pullers); you’ll need a good leash made of nylon, chain or leather (Flexi leashes are recommended for trained dogs only); and some training treats.
As you begin to train, remember to be consistent and patient.  Do not allow your dog to walk if he is pulling on the leash, and ask him to sit before you open the front door so he’s not dragging you down the driveway! 

  • The first technique includes the idea of positive reinforcement. This is where those training treats come into play. Always remember that your dog wants to please you, so let him or her know when they’re on the right track by giving them a treat when they keep the leash loose. As the dog learns over time, slowly taper the use of treats until you aren’t giving any at all on your strolls about the neighborhood.
  • The second technique involves you!  Any and every time that your dog pulls on the leash, you must stop walking.  Refuse to budge until the dog loosens the pull on the leash.  (And remember when he does to reward him with a treat and lots of praise!)  In this way, the dog learns that the only way to carry on with the walk is to maintain a loose leash.
  • With the third technique, you’ll be watching for any time the dog makes a move to begin walking in front of you.  As he does, simply turn and walk in the opposite direction.  Some people believe that this method is the fastest way to leash train, but it may be inappropriate for dogs that are nervous because they can develop emotional issues.

The best part of a dog’s day can be the walks they take with you, so successful leash training enhances the overall experience for you and your canine domesticus!  Remember to be consistent and patient in whichever technique you choose.   See you on the trail!

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