Training your dog to walk on a loose leash makes walking with your furry friend easier and more enjoyable. There is nothing worse than a dog who strains and pulls on the end of a leash.
Training your dog to walk on a loose leash is an easy task with persistence.
Supplies Needed to Teach Your Dog to Walk on a Loose Leash
- Use a simple buckle collar, head halter, front slip harness, or martingale for the best results.
- Pick a leash that measures four to six feet ( do not use a retractable leash).
Teaching Loose Leash Training
To train your dog to walk on a leash conduct the following:
- Use treats.
- Place the treats in an easy-access treat pouch.
- Hold a few treats out on the left side of your body.
- Grasp the leash with your opposite hand. If your dog is on your left side, then you will hold the leash with your right hand. You can allow the rest of the leash to hang in a loose ‘J’ fashion in front of your body.
- Take one step forward and stop. Your dog should move beside you in a heal position.
- Give the dog a treat from your hand when the dog is in line with the seam of your pants.
- Every time your dog looks at you for a treat, take a step forward and make your dog move with you. Stop and feed the dog the treat when the dog moves into position.
- If your dog should move ahead, always stop walking.
- Call your pup back to your side and use the treats to lure the dog back into position but do not give the pup a treat. Instead, take a few steps and when your dog moves beside you then give the pup a treat.
You want your dog to learn that whenever the pup walks alongside you on a loose leash without pulling then you give your furry friend a tasty treat.
As your dog gets the hang of walking beside you on a loose leash, you can walk further without bestowing the coveted treat on the dog.
Always keep talking to your dog to keep the animal’s attention on you so the dog’s focus does not stray.
Once your dog starts walking nicely beside you on a loose leash then you can name the action such as, ‘heel’ or ‘walk.’ Whatever word you use, the dog will start to associate the word with the action and know that he must walk beside you on a loose leash to get a treat.
Loose leash training is an enjoyable activity that your dog will quickly learn to appreciate. With proper encouragement and treats, your pup will grasp the concept fast. Soon you can walk anywhere with your pup alongside you without ever having to worry about the dog pulling or straining at the leash. Once your dog has learned loose leash training, the pup is ready to advance to other obedience lessons.