Teaching your dog to walk calmly on a dog leash can make outdoor activities much more rewarding. This is best taught to a puppy, but even adult dogs can learn not to pull and lunge against their leashes. As with any behavior, an older dog may simply take longer to learn. Follow these good dog training tips from the ASPCA. Don’t give up, and soon you’re bound to have a dog that walks happily without pulling and trying to run.
Put in the Dog Leash Training Time
For both puppies and older dogs, time spent learning the behavior is valuable time. The best thing to do is decide that every second spent walking on a reliable dog leash from now on is training time until the behavior is learned. If you let the dog pull and jerk sometimes, he won’t unlearn that behavior. Being allowed to do something only reinforces it, because your dog won’t know the difference between training time and other walks.
Start out by curbing bad behavior even before you attach the dog leash to your pet’s collar or harness. It’s common for dogs to get excited when their owners grab a leash. But wait until your dog has calmed down and is holding still before attaching the leash and heading out the door. There’s no need to command your pet to sit or stay if he’s bouncing around happily. Merely wait until he’s calm to attach the dog leash. This promotes better, calmer behavior from the beginning
One thing that tends to make a pulling dog want to run is the sight and scent of another dog or animal. It could be a domination and aggression response to another dog or the desire to play. By walking at a brisk pace, you’ll give your dog less time to take in all the scents and sights, and keep him concentrating on moving with you instead. This can help lessen the urge to bolt.
Using a Quality Dog Harness and Leash
A dog pulling harness like EzyDog’s dog chest plate harness or vest can be ideal for teaching your dog not to pull. The chest plate helps spread the pressure out when your dog pulls and can make it easier for you to pull back and control your dog. Paired with a shock-absorbing leash that offers better control, it could make teaching your dog to walk on a loose leash easier than you imagine.
For puppies and even older dogs, keep the training walks frequent but short at first. You can’t expect a dog to be able to behave himself on a 5-mile walk without a lot of practice. Use special rewards that your dog’s not used to when he behaves on his dog leash. And don’t forget to get your dog plenty of exercise in other ways to make up for the shorter walks during training.
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