Dogs are a lot of fun, but they can be a lot of work, too. One of the most important things you need to train your dog is how to walk on a loose leash. This will keep both you and your dog safe while out on walks.
In this blog post, we will discuss how to train your dog to walk nicely on a loose leash. We’ll cover everything from basic obedience commands to how to handle distractions. Follow these tips and you’ll have a well-behaved dog who walks perfectly by your side!
Loose Leash Training Guide
- Fill your pocket or treat pouch with treats.
- Decide what side you’d like the dog to walk on, and hold a few treats on that side of your body. For example, if you’d like your dog to walk on the left side, hold treats in your left hand.
- Hold your leash in the hand opposite the dog. For example, if your dog is on your left, hold the end of the leash in your right hand. Let the rest of it hang loosely in a “J”.
- Take a step, then stop. It’s okay if the dog doesn’t stay in “heel” position. Feed the dog some treats from your hand, in line with the seam of your pants. This will help you position the dog.
- Repeat. Take step, stop, feed a treat at your side, along the seam of your pants.
- When the dog is looking eagerly up at you for more treats, take two steps instead of one before stopping and feeding the dog.
- If the dog pulls ahead, stop walking immediately. Call your dog back to you, or use the treats in your hand to lure the dog back to your side, but don’t treat her yet: take two to three steps forward before feeding. This is to prevent teaching a sequence like: “I pull ahead, I come back, I eat.” We want them to learn that walking alongside you on a loose leash makes treats happen, not pulling.
- Gradually take more steps between each treat. You can talk to your dog to help keep her attention on you.
- When the dog walks well on a loose leash, give this kind of walk a name. It could be “heel,” “with me,” “let’s walk,” or another word/phrase of your choice.
- Release your dog (“all done,” “okay,” “that’ll do,” etc.) when they no longer need to walk in “heel” position.
If you have an aggressive dog that needs extra training, contact Dominant Dogs today. Our team of experts can help train your dog to walk on a loose leash and be well-behaved in public. We’ll help you create a safe and enjoyable walking experience for both you and your pet!